Times of Tunbridge Wells 10th August 2022

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Wednesday August 10 | 2022

Martial arts club punches its way to World Championships in Slovenia

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By Victoria Roberts CLUB members from a Tunbridge Wells Taekwon-Do club are taking to the international stage this year after seven competitors qualified for a competition that allows junior and lower-grade competitors to gain international experience. The martial arts club, which is based at St Gregory’s Catholic School, is preparing a squad of four adults and three juniors for the 8th International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF) World Cup in Koper, Slovenia, starting on October 1. As a club-based tournament, participants face competitors of their own age, weight, sex and Taekwon-Do grade. “Anyone can go,” said squad member Michael Westlake. “That’s why we were so keen to attend this. It is not elitist at all.” Club coach Luke Thompson is a former

England coach and the current Scottish Open Male Champion. He said: “With over 2,000 competitors from 60 countries, we will compete with the best of the best at the largest World Cup the International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF) has ever seen. It will be the club's biggest challenge so far.”

Fundraising As a sport with no official funding, the club is fundraising for its seven competitors, and adult chaperones for the three junior members. “Our athletes are a mix of pre-junior, junior, advanced senior and veterans who have won national and international medals,” Luke said. All funds go towards costs of flights, accommodation, safety equipment, t-shirts, tracksuits and registration fees. The club’s fundraiser is at GoFundMe.com/f/ tunbridge-wells-taekwondo-to-the-world-cup

Lions bring back the classics for summer



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IT’S been a vintage summer for the Tonbridge Lions, with a concert of beloved musical standards as part of a memory project, and a classic car tour. The Musical Memories choir, a Tonbridge Lions project for those with or without memory issues, performed golden oldies such as ‘Bangers and Mash’, ‘Moon River’ and ‘Bring Me Sunshine’ for an audience at Tonbridge Methodist Church on July 30. Musical Memories is organised by the Tonbridge Lions Club, as a joint project between the Tonbridge Dementia Friendly Community (TDFC) with Kent County Council.

Charity TDFC is the chosen charity of the Mayor of Tonbridge & Malling, Cllr Sue Bell. She said: “Without community organisations like the Tonbridge Lions, we would not have the benefit of important events like this.” Explaining the importance of music for memory issues, Christine Parker of the Tonbridge Dementia Friendly Community, explained that the

amygdala – the part of the brain which is generally affected in the later spread of dementia – is associated with emotion, which, triggered by music, can unlock long-forgotten memories. This has made music a powerful way of helping and caring for those with dementia. There were more memories in the social calendar on July 24, with the 8th Classic Car Tour, which raised money for local charities, including £1,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support in memory of Malcolm Sanger. Malcolm, who was a great supporter of the local Lions Car Tours, passed away earlier this year. A lifetime’s worth of cars took part in this year’s tour, with the oldest two cars dating from before World War II – a 1934 MG PA Midget and a 1936 Riley 12/4 Adelphi. Mayor Cllr Bell started the tour, waving off 51 vehicles from Tonbridge School. They travelled through the lanes of Kent and Sussex before lunch at Powdermills Hotel in Battle, East Sussex. After lunch they returned by a different route back to Tonbridge School, where they were welcomed by Tonbridge Lions President Richard Hill, and finished the day with a cream tea.

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