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Village Directory December/January Edition • Issue 136 • Royal Mail

Aldington Area

Harringe Plants at Christmas





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Seasons Greetings


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Welcome Hi everyone, welcome to the last edition of 2017. Christmas is coming and a new year is on the way, I do hope you are all organised. Christmas is a time of joy and celebration – I love it and always have done. When it comes to Christmas I have never grown up. When I was young I would ask for a board game each year, it was part of my master plan to draw everyone away from the TV, to interact and have fun instead. My most memorable game was ‘Dare’ because it was the least competitive and most silly, it forced very sensible family members to do ridiculous things. I have fond memories of my dad impersonating a chicken until his turn came around again! This was often followed by the traditional family sing song, with family friend Fred on the accordion accompanied by dad on the drums. These days my son is the occasional drummer but we have ALL attempted that Phil Collins drum roll - there was something in the air that night – I’m not sure you’d call it music! Christmas is also a time for putting our differences aside and extending the hand of human kindness. No-one should be alone at Christmas, if you know someone that is, why not invite them in and make them an honorary member of the family for the day, who knows, it could be the start of a wonderful friendship to carry through into 2018 and beyond! I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support of this magazine and of all of our advertisers. I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and a very happy new year. I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and happy new year.


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The Garden

Get Real This Christmas by Pippa Greenwood

Christmas is well and truly just around the corner and whilst your thoughts may be on gifts, meals, crackers and cards, don’t forget the tree. And I mean a REAL Christmas tree not a tinsel one; a real tree complete with needles and, if you go down the really traditional route, that wonderful aroma that only a proper freshly-potted or freshly-cut Christmas tree can bring. I’ve heard people say that a ‘real’ tree is bad for the planet; after all we’re meant to be planting trees, not felling them! But don’t forget, British-grown trees are most definitely not an ecological disaster zone think of them as a crop plant rather like a field of cabbages, except that on the whole a field of Christmas trees will be given less fertiliser and fewer chemicals than many classic crop plants. So go on, make sure you get one this Christmas! There are a few things you ought to think about before you buy your tree - it can be really daunting when faced with rows of different types at very varying prices, so what would suit you best?


The Norway spruce (Picea abies) is the traditional tree, definitely my favourite but perhaps not ideal if you are more houseproud. It has gorgeous, short dark green pointed needles and that unmistakable Christmassy aroma, but sadly it is the most likely to drop its needles. Having said that, if you treat it well it won’t perform badly and you can enjoy the lowest-priced of the real trees complete with the traditional look. The Serbian Spruce (Picea omorica) is quite similar to the Norway spruce and has long been the favourite festive tree in central Europe, with a distinct blueish tint to the underside of the needles. As it is fairly slender it is a good choice for smaller sitting rooms, and is goodlooking with decent needle retention…but of course no Christmas-tree smell! The Nordmann fir (Abies nordmanniana) has become increasingly popular in recent years and is now the biggestselling Christmas tree in the UK. As its shiny green broad needles are quite soft (making it a good choice if there are small children around) and are

almost impossible to shift, it is certainly a good choice for those who hate any mess! The Fraser fir (Abies fraseri) is less widely available, but the combination of its good looks and needle-holding ability makes it well worth considering. It has a narrower base than the Norway spruce so is also useful in smaller houses. So, with all these tempting choices, hopefully you’ve been persuaded to take the plunge? But how do you make sure you buy the best tree of the type you’ve decided on? And how do you make it keep its needles and its appearance for as long as possible? • It is important not to buy a real tree too early, as the longer they hang around after they’ve been cut the more likely they are to go downhill. • I always try to buy a tree produced by a member of the British Christmas Tree Growers Association – the BCTGA logo should be on the tree or clearly displayed nearby. • Take time to choose the tree

The Garden – check that it has a good, full shape and that it is not too gappy or lopsided (or if it does lean, make sure that this will be hidden when the tree is in your house). Check the needles - they should be glossy (for those varieties where this is a characteristic) and the correct colour for the type of tree you’ve chosen. They also need to be free from pests and diseases basically anything yellowed or inclined to shed, or with white fluffy bits should be avoided at all costs. Never buy a tree that has already been netted as this makes it a real lucky dip situation since you can’t see what you’re getting! • If you do buy one quite early then the most important

thing is to keep it outside - just recut the end of the trunk and put the tree in a bucket of water in a sheltered spot outside. If it was in a net when you bought it, remove this as it is important to get air circulating around the needles. • When you bring the tree inside, try to avoid putting it anywhere too warm or close to a heat source , and make sure that you use a stand with a water reservoir and that you keep the water levels topped up - if kept supplied with water then even the notorious Norway spruce Christmas tree should hold its needles well. When Christmas is over and it is time for the tree to come down, complete the green loop

and make sure you recycle it they’re not the easiest thing to recycle or compost at home, but many councils and garden centres now offer a re-cycling and Christmas tree chipping service. Visit Pippa’s website www. for great gardening gifts: a stylish ‘Grow Your Own with Pippa Greenwood’ gift card (a perfect Christmas present, where the recipient receives their chosen garden ready vegetable plants in the spring and every week Pippa emails with topical hints, tips and advice), gardening tools, raised bed kits, GrowerFrames, signed books and more!

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Mowgli by Montgomery Vets


ello everyone, Mowgli here! I can’t believe it is nearly Christmas! Before I know it, the Christmas tree will be up and Ebony and I will be climbing up it, falling off it and posting the baubles under the boot room door. There are probably still some in the boot room from last year…. It is my secret hiding place and I am often surprised that even quite big things can be crammed under there. From time to time Jane clears out the boot room- it is like a mystery lucky dip!


t is nearly time to find out if we have been good enough for Santa Paws to come. I have to admit that I am a bit sceptical about Santa Paws- I have a tendency to be a bit mischievous (hard to believe I know…..) but I always seem to get plenty of Christmas presents. Do you think that he knows that my heart is in the right place? This year I have been very good. Well, mostly very good. There is the continuing small issue of Jane’s rug that looks quite threadbare and I did smash quite a lot of crockery at one point with a badly timed jump….. but I hope that Santa Paws will see beyond all that and that he will leave me plenty of catnip mice and dreamies. Ebony and I just love dreamies!


bony and I have been deciding what to give our feline friends as gifts this Christmas. We take this very seriously and always insist on trialling the toys before we select them..... Clive falls for this every year and comes home with a selection bag for us! We have had great fun and have chosen lots of catnip products. We have asked Santa Paws for a new cat scratching tree as ours is getting very wobbly and bald. We would like a very tall one. Clive is a bit worried about my sense of balance (don’t know why- I’m not the one that has spent quite a bit of time over the years on crutches!) and says we can only have a very sturdy one. Vets! They are so cautious!


So what if I fall off the book shelves with great regularity or often plunge off the top of the wardrobe when I am rolling around and forget where the edge is?!


have also been thinking about my New Year resolutions. I think I might have to resolve to sharpen my claws on the rug a little less often. I expect Ebony will have to make her usual resolution of going on a diet.


ope you all have a wonderful Christmas and I will write again in the New Year and let you know how we are getting on with our resolutions. I can feel my paws starting to tingle already at the thought of how lovely it is to scratch that rug.....

~ Mowgli

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The Home

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By Ann Haldon

How to Plan for the Boxing Day Sales shopping on the high street you need to keep all your receipts, and the store’s returns policy should be printed on the back.

Boxing Day is generally regarded as the biggest sales day of the year in the retail industry, so if you’re heading to the shops it’s worthwhile taking time to plan well in advance. One of the major problems of sales shopping is the sheer number of offers available, and it’s very easy to be distracted once you start. So what steps can you take in advance to help you get the most out of your day, and also protect your finances for the year ahead? Before you start high street or online shopping • Find out the store opening times before you go - they vary on Boxing Day, with some shops remaining closed. You can find this information from a store’s website and social media pages, along with details of the items that might be included in the sale. • If you’re shopping online, save the home page of each store into your computer, along with the product codes of any items you’re interested in. • Check out the returns policy for each store as you may have to pay for the returns postage and packing yourself. If you’re


Planning your spending According to the Centre for Retail Research¹, the total Christmas spend per household in 2016 was £809.97. Even if you don’t spend this much on Christmas, it’s an expensive time of year when you also factor in credit card bills for the sales. If you are not able to repay the balance at the end of the month, you may find the savings you’ve made are suddenly reduced. So what can you do to alleviate the strain on your finances and make sure you don’t find yourself in unmanageable debt in the New Year? • Stay within your budget Calculate how much you can afford to spend on Boxing Day, and stick to it. By focusing only on the items you want, you won’t overstretch yourself financially. • Use comparison websites to find the best price Compare prices online before you head out to the shops if there’s something in particular you’re looking for – this can save a lot of time and money. Are 0% interest credit cards a good idea? Balance transfer cards offering 0% interest for a fixed period of time are a good way to deal with large purchases. If you buy the goods on your ‘standard’ credit card and then transfer the balance over you can save a significant amount

in interest, but there are also potential drawbacks: • If you miss a single payment on a 0% credit card, the provider will withdraw their offer and you are likely to be charged an extremely high rate of interest in its place. • Fees are charged when you originally transfer a balance – usually a percentage of the amount transferred. • Credit card providers are often owned by larger banking institutions, and it is unlikely you’ll be accepted for a balance transfer offer if you already hold a card connected to the group. Whether you are purchasing a specific item or buying birthday presents for the year ahead, the Boxing Day sales represent a great way to save money. Planning ahead helps you stay in control of your spending in the face of temptation, and manage your finances without entering serious debt. ¹ shoppingforxmas.php credit-cards/balance-transfer-creditcards personalfinance/747790/Chrsitmassales-UK-Boxing-Day-sales-Januarydeals-discounts


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Home & Interiors Christmas Elegance

By Katherine Sorrell

It’s all too easy to go overboard at Christmas. This year, why not decorate your home with subtle glamour, creating a sophisticated seasonal backdrop to festive times with friends and family. This living room is welcoming and cosy, but also cool, calm and collected, thanks to a subtle colour scheme of greys and whites, together with touches of texture in the form of wicker, wool and wood. Traditional Nordmann Fir, from £29.99; LED warm white string lights, from £9.99; wool throw, £59.99; Firwood star decoration (set of three), £44.99; Magical Hare cushion, £39.99; tree decorations, from £1.49; all Dobbies.

A glimmer of metal is all the rage, and these minimal, slightly rusted zinc garlands satisfy the trend without adding any bling. Use along the mantelpiece, twined along the Christmas table or hung on the wall. £29.95, Decorator’s Notebook.

An intriguing and subtle way to display the twinkle of fairy lights. Bo 80 LED glass-domed cylinder, £13, B&Q.

A simple white backdrop with natural, twining leaves is perfect for offsetting the glow of candles. Large silverdipped candle holder, £29.99; LED glitter twig wreath, £39.99; medium silverdipped candle holder, £9.99; reindeer bell ornament, £4.99; decorated glass bauble, £3.99; garland (price and details on application); all Dobbies.

IDEAS FOR ELEGANT FESTIVE DÉCOR • Too many colours together tend to look garish. Choose one main colour theme for each room and stick to it. This season, dark backdrops are very on trend, with accents of gold or brass, while white, beige or grey are classics that always look great, with dashes of red or green for that seasonal feel. • With limited colours, textures come into their own. Think linen, wool, fur (faux if you prefer), wicker and – this year’s must-haves – concrete and velvet. • For this look, avoid twee animals, anything knitted or made from felt, and all-out glitter (a little sparkle goes a long way). • Christmas ornaments tend to be collected over the years, and so can look rather haphazard if all displayed in one go. Carefully choose a selection that co-ordinates and – stay strong – put the rest back in the loft for next year.


Beautiful baubles will add class to your Christmas tree. Walther & Co bronze acorn and leaf decoration, £9.99, Cotswold Trading.

Set a Christmas table with gorgeous linens and decorate each plate with a simple bauble, pine cone and sprig of eucalyptus. A ribbon finishes it all off. Perth fabric, £49.50 per metre, Ian Mankin.

Instead of a knitted or hessian sack, how about a pretty, printed fabric design? Night Owl Christmas sack, £5.50, Sophie Allport. A wreath and tea light holder in one, this unique accessory in matt brushed brass is the subtlest of Christmas decorations for minimal, modern homes. Opt for white rather than multi-coloured lights and, if you are planning to use them on a pale background, make sure you find a set with a clear cable. 120 LED lights, £9, B&Q.


The Home

Who can resist a delightful Christmas display? This magical woodland scene is dusted with snow, featuring two wooden reindeer silhouettes and warm white backlighting. Aspen forest Christmas scene window light, £14.99, Lights4fun. Photograph: Oliver Perrott

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THE CHRISTMAS TECHNOLOGY SURVIVAL GUIDE ’Tis the season to stock up on batteries

There are very few people whose Christmases won’t involve some kind of technology: not just presents, although even the simplest toys seem to come packed with tech these days. You might use technology to provide festive music, or to stream a crackling log fire from Netflix. Here’s how to make sure technology doesn’t trip you up during the festive season. First, check with Santa to see what kind of batteries the children’s toys will need, because even the simplest toys often have an electronic component. Having a good stock of rechargeable AA and AAA batteries (and a charger!) covers most eventualities, but some manufacturers like to keep you on your toes by demanding LR44s or CR2032s or other arcane options. Don’t leave it to the last minute: relatively uncommon batteries can be hard to find at short notice, especially if you’re reliant on small shops. Look out your sharp scissors and a small Phillips cross-head screwdriver too: electronic items often come in plastic packaging that’s hard to get into, while larger toys can be secured to their packaging with screws or cable ties. Not every device that needs a charger comes with one - mobile phones in particular tend to


come charger-free - so you might need to get additional chargers or adaptors. Check first, though: the charger you need for, say, a new Nokia is the same as for a Kindle or PlayStation 4 controller. If some of your gadget gifts are pre-owned - something that can save you a great deal of money - it’s definitely worth checking that the batteries still hold a charge, because batteries have a finite lifespan. For example, many PlayStation Move controllers being sold asnew on eBay have been sitting in warehouses for so long that their rechargeable batteries no longer hold a charge, even though they are unused. Replacement batteries are easy to get, but not on Christmas Day. If Santa’s bringing a games console, it’s a very good idea to connect it to your broadband well in advance: there’s nothing more dispiriting on Christmas Day than having to wait hours for a system update to download before you can play anything - especially if your broadband has slowed to a crawl because everybody else in the street is trying to do the same thing. And if you’re planning a bit of multi-player gaming with two or more people in the same room, make sure you have enough controllers.

It’s a similar story with computers, tablets and smartphones: there have often been quite significant system software updates since they were made. There’s less pressure than with consoles, though, because while consoles tend to be quite huffy - Xbox Ones and PS4s often refuse to let you use online features until you’ve updated your system software - computers and mobile devices don’t demand you drop everything. Did we say “drop”? Unfortunately one of the problems with technology as presents is that some gadgets are eminently breakable. It’s worth checking if your home insurance or current account protects items such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops or TVs from accidental damage (and that the excess doesn’t make such coverage pointless) - and with mobile devices for children it’s an even better idea to put their gadget in a sturdy, scratch- and impact-resistant case. That way you can be confident of a smashing time without smashing anything expensive Images L to R: Energiser battery charger; screwdriver set from Amazon; PlayStation Move controllers; iPad toddler protective case

The Home

East Brabourne

Individual eight bedroom property set in 4.8 acres and includes eight stables, feed room, tack room, large studio with kitchenette, property can be spilt into two dwellings, with two driveways and separate gated entrances.

£1,150,000 SOLD STC


Seven bedroom detached village property, offering flexible accommodation and far reaching countryside views.



Stunning five bed detached house of around 2400 sq ft built to exacting standards in 2007. Exceptionally large and adaptable accommodation with four reception rooms, impressive kitchen/ breakfast roomm, utility and conservatory.

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An extremely well presented and maintained four bed detached property with integral garage. It offers light and bright spacious accommodation with sitting room with brick built fireplace and wood burning stove.


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A charming two bed period cottage situated in a lovely quiet lane on the edge of the village, situated in an AREA OF OUTSTANDING NATURAL BEAUTY.





Talbot House is an historic Grade II listed property situated in the heart of the beautiful Ashford churchyard.


Spacious bespoke detached house built in 1999 by a renowned local builder, standing in a superb immaculate 1/3 acre plot. The property has countryside to front and rear enjoying spectacular views all the way to the Sussex coast.

Situated in a sought-after part of old Kennington this spacious Earls built extended two bed semi-detached bungalow is being offered for sale for the first time in many years.


Situated in a small loop road this extended two bed semi-detached bungalow offers surprisingly spacious accommodation in a good-sized plot.




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Indulgent Escapes Looking to escape the in-laws for a couple of hours? We may have found you the perfect book to indulge in.


The One – John Marrs Imagine a world where a simple DNA test can help you to find your one true soulmate. Would you take it, even if you think you’ve already found love? The One follows five people in their search for their DNA match. One is desperate to start a family. One is head of a global company. One is already engaged. One is prepared to travel to the other side of the world to meet her match. And one is a killer. A real page-turner that will keep you reading until late into the night.

The Prime of Ms Dolly Greene – E. V. Harte Dolly lives in a tiny house in London, with her 21 year old daughter. So far, so ordinary. But the way Dolly makes ends meet is anything but ordinary. Dolly is a tarot reader and when she hears about the discovery of a dead body, she can’t help but remember a recent client she had a very bad feeling about. But will the police listen to her suspicions? A light-hearted read that combines crime, humour, fantasy and romance in one engaging tale.

All the Little Children – Jo Furniss A family wild-camping trip turns into a fight to survive in this gripping debut novel. Marlene and her sister-in-law have taken their children to a forest for a short holiday before the start of term. When they spot columns of smoke in the distance, and not an electric light in sight, they start to suspect something has gone badly wrong. As the enormity of the situation unfolds, and Marlene finds more children in need of protection, she needs to decide how far she’ll go to protect her family. Gripping.

The Betrayals – Fiona Neill Sometimes there are four sides to a story. Daisy has just got her life back together after battling through years of OCD. But then a letter arrives addressed to her mother, which threatens to open old wounds and reveal the secrets Daisy has tried so hard to keep hidden. The Betrayals was awarded the Richard & Judy Book Club 2017 Thriller award, and it’s easy to see why. An emotive novel about the complexities of family life, mental illness, betrayals and the fallibility of memories.

How Hard Can It Be? – Allison Pearson Teenage kids, ageing parents, a next-to-useless husband, menopausal woes – Kate Reddy has them all. And now she needs to get back into working life – a decade after leaving her stressful job as the manager of a hedge fund. No easy feat when you’re approaching 50. This is the sequel to the bestselling I Don’t Know How She Does It, but works just as well as a stand-alone novel. A brilliant read, it’s laugh-out-loudfunny in its depiction of the trials and tribulations of the sandwich generation.

Dark Matter – Blake Crouch Jason Dessen hasn’t achieved all he planned to with his life, but on the whole he’s content. So when he’s kidnapped and escapes to find his home has changed, his wife isn’t his wife and his son doesn’t exist, he’ll stop at nothing to put things right. But is he the college professor he believes himself to be, or the genius scientist others seem to think he is? A really intriguing book, with a fast-paced storyline, lots of twists and turns and a very clever narrative. You won’t want to put this one down.

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our job to make it as easy for you as possible when it comes to

Issue 2 2

Going the extra mile (26.2 miles!) Hello folks! Firstly a big thank you for taking the time to read my blog in last month’s issue and also for those who have subsequently sponsored me. Secondly, a big apology for including details about the pub quiz after the event! (Didn’t quite get the timings right) Nevertheless, the quiz raised just short of £300 which is the equivalent of paying for a disabled child to attend a Work Skills Day and acquire vital experience that could help them get a job. Such a fun evening with the benefit of knowing the money raised will truly help in such a positive way. So, back to the training…. Well, I’ve only managed to go out a couple of times this month due to winter setting in and the adverse effects it can sometimes have on my asthma when combined with colds and coughs. I’m also finding it more and more daunting with each run; not when I’m running because I find running both relaxing and stress busting but when I’ve finished and look at how far I’ve run and then need to multiply it by 3 or 4 to make it up the 26.2 miles.


I’ve read a lot about nutrition and energy supplements but I’m surprised to find little medical research supporting mince pies as an effective recovery food!! Nutrition is all a bit mind boggling….protein, carbs, sugars, sodium, what to eat/drink and when……I naively thought it would be a case of tying up my running shoes and getting out there. If anyone has any experience/hints/tips I would love to hear from you: Now the dark nights have drawn in, the high viz and reflective gear is really earning its keep. If you are driving though the Aldington area and you see a glow-in-the-dark-tight wearing-floating headtorch…please throw him a mince pie! So how are we doing for fundraising? We have broken the £1000 mark and are well on the way to reaching my minimum target thanks to the generosity of everyone so far. However, it would be absolutely amazing to not only reach the minimum but to exceed it for the deserving children that benefit from the amazing work of Whizz-Kidz.

By donating what you can and/or asking friends and family to do the same will help me to not only ‘move a life forward’ but to move several lives forward and what could be better than that? I hope you all have a relaxing time this Christmas. Thanks, Stu.

Donate at this address: k/stu Just some of the services your donations helps Whizz-Kidz provide: £27 funds one hour’s expert assessment by a Whizz-Kidz therapist, helping provide a disabled child with the powered wheelchair that meets their medical, social and educational needs. £90 enables Whizz-Kidz to support a young disabled person for one day of their work placement. £3,500 provides a manual chair that fully meets a disabled child’s needs. £5,600 could provide a disabled child with a life changing powered chair.

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Electric Bicycles (Ebikes) The Cycling Revolution

You cycle gently in the normal manner but the varying level of electric assistance helps carry you along effortlessly, easing the task of climbing hills, banishing the discomfort of headwinds and speeding your journey home when the sky darkens and there are signs of rain.

Do you love the idea of going out for bike ride? The fresh air, the feeling that you are giving your body some exercise, pedalling along at a leisurely pace taking in the sights around you?

An electric bike makes cycling fun!

The humble pedal cycle has changed in recent years. We all have wonderful memories of ambling along beautiful country roads, relaxing and appreciating the scenery, perhaps even stopping for a picnic. However we can also recall occasions when we have had some challenges, crawling up hills, fighting headwinds and occasionally being caught by a shower of rain! How the electric bicycle revolutionised cycling!



You can use your bicycle as a conventional push bike knowing that when you would like assistance you just have to push a button!


Your journeys can be slow or brisk; as you wish! An increasing number of people are cycling to work again, rediscovering the joy of light exercise, beating the traffic, whilst reducing congestion and helping the planet. There are electric bikes for everybody; General purpose hybrid bikes, mountain bikes, folding bikes and more. Why not come and try one in Rye? Tell us about yourself and your cycling plans and we will help you choose a bicycle suited to your needs. We’d like you to accept this as an invitation to visit our showroom for a no obligation chat and free demonstration. An electric bicycle could really change your life!


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L i v e Ja z z 2017

T h e Fo l k e s t o n e J a z z C l u b At T h e To we r To B o o k C a l l : 0 1 3 0 3 2 7 7 1 7 5 All gigs start at 8pm ~ All gigs £12 admission Seat Bookings: 01303 277175 Email: Website: Dec 7th PAUL LACEY’S Music of Harry

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ASHFORD CONCERT BAND Friday 8th December 2017

7.30pm St. Mary’s Church, The Churchyard, Ashford TN23 1QG In Support of Crossroads Care East Kent

Jan 4th From the Jools Holland R&B Orch

Derek Nash’s Picante’ Latin Band

Tickets £5 on the door

Jan 11th The Liane Carroll Trio Jan 18th From the USA --- Scott Hamilton



Jan 25th Mick Foster Quintet with

Alan Barnes

Feb 1st Pete Long’s -- Pocket Basie

Jacqui Hicks with The Brian Dee Trio Feb 8th

February 13th

Direct from Ronnie Scotts The Artie Zaitz Quartet

February 22nd

The music of Al Jolson “

Jazz’n Jolson “

Brandon Allen Quartet play the music of Gene Ammons March 1st

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December The Weald of Kent Computer Club does not meet in December. It normally meets on the third Wednesday of the month. It will start again on 17th January 2018 at 7.30pm In the New Village Hall, Biddenden. Annual membership is £10.00 Nonmembers are welcome at £2 a visit. Full details: Enquiries:

What’s On 11.30–1.00 selling cakes, preserves, handknits, floral wreaths and much more… Free admission & parking. All proceeds to Appledore Parish Church.

Ja n u a r y 2 0 1 8 13th Hos pice Jumble Sale in Sellindge Village Hall doors open 12 pm til 3 pm (please note new time)

3rd A Concert of Music for Advent Sung by Lees 27th 10am to 12 noon. COFFEE MORNING Scout & Court Music at St Mary’s Church, Smeeth at 7pm £8 Guide Community Centre. Lower Road Woodchurch. to include refreshments. Children free and welcome. Entrance £1.50 includes cake & a beverage. also 6th Shadoxhurst Flower Club will be holding Raffle - Bric-a-brac - Books. Proceeds for upkeep of their Christmas meeting at 7.30pm at Shadoxhurst Centre. Village Hall. Presenting a demonstration by Jacqui Arnold, entitled “Jingle all the Way”. The members competition is “Candlelight”. Visitors £7 to include a buffet. Call 01233 732212 for more information 9th Ashford Invicta Singers Christmas Concert. It will be held at Willesborough St Mary’s church at 7:30pm in aid of church funds.

Plus special guests Queen's Regimental Association Corps of Drums

8th Christmas Special. A fun evening with wine, mince pies, our usual delicious cakes and a raffle! Please note the earlier door opening time of 6.45pm for 7.30pm screening. Tickets: £4 (members), £5 (non-members). All available at the door. Raffle: tickets available on the night. Venue: The Memorial Hall, The Green, Woodchurch TN26 3PF. Refreshments: pre-show and interval bar (wine), mince pies, hot & cold drinks plus our usual delicious home-made cakes for sale 9th Spiritualist Meetings held every Saturday evening, at Highbury Hall. Highbury Lane Tenterden, TN30 6LE. 6.30pm start, doors open by 6pm. refreshments afterwards. December 9th - Maggie Carrington. EC. £4. 16th - Sue Wrotchford, (candle light service.) Last one this year, back again on 13th January 2018. All are welcomed. ps we have a page on facebook, Tenterden Spiritualist Centre.

Inspiring Workshops

11th Smeeth W.I. will meet at 7.30pm at Brabourne and Smeeth Village Hall for their Christmas Celebration Meeting when following with Yvonne Fernando, NLP Master seasonal buffet snacks, Paul Harris will entertain Practitioner & Life Coach us with The Story of Pantomime. A warm RELAXATION MINDFULNESS MEDITATION welcome awaits any lady visitor and for more 8 week programmes information do please contact Joy Taylor 01303 Thurs 25 Jan - Thurs 15 Mar 812165 or Margaret Garrett 01303 812165. 2nd Appledore Village Hall Festive Floral Demonstration by Sophie Beanie (NAFAS) 9.30 – 11.00 am (doors open 9.00 ) Tickets in advance from Donna 01233 758256 - £10 to include refreshments. Followed by Christmas stalls

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The History of Christmas Traditions By Alison Runham

Every year, some people mourn the loss of traditional, more faith-based Christmas celebrations. Yet most December 25th traditions are far less Christian and much more recently adopted in the UK than they may think. Celebrating on DeCember 25th Jesus’ birth date isn’t documented and the gospels of Matthew and Luke, written long after his death, give contradictory clues. Some scholars say the sheep on the hillside and the census suggest good weather, indicating spring to early autumn. So why is Christmas celebrated on the 25th of December? Midwinter festivals abounded by the time Christianity took hold. There were winter solstice celebrations such as Yule and Koleda, and the Roman festivals of Saturnalia (which included decorating your home with evergreens – sound familiar?) and Dies Natalis Solis Invicti, ‘birthday of the unconquered sun’, on December 25th. It was easier for early proponents of 26 Christianity to introduce it into

these longstanding festivals than to persuade people to give them up.

mythology it’s also a symbol of love (hence kissing under the mistletoe).

The first Christian Roman Emperor, Constantine, began celebrating Christmas on December 25th in 336. A few years later, Pope Julius I declared it the official date to celebrate Jesus’ birth. Some scholars believe he also chose this date to honour Hanukkah and Jesus’ own religion, Judaism.

Christmas PuDDing The original ‘Christmas pudding’ was frumenty, a thin 14th century porridge containing raisins, currants, prunes, wine, spices, beef and mutton. However, by around 1650, people ate plum pudding, and by Victorian times, it was similar to the modern-day Christmas pud.

Orthodox and Coptic Christians celebrate Jesus’s birth on January the 7th - the ‘original’ December 25th. Our December 25th moved when we adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1752.

the Christmas tree Evergreen fir trees have been used in winter festivals for thousands of years to symbolise the coming spring and everlasting life, although they were often hung upside down from the ceiling rather than stood upright. ‘Christmas trees’ emerged in the 1500s in town squares but took time to come into people’s houses. The Royal Family had one from Georgian times, but an 1848 photo of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert and their family gathered around theirs popularised the idea.

Yule logs Today, Yule logs have been mainly superseded by logshaped chocolate cakes here, but neither are connected to Jesus’ birth. Yule logs were part of the Scandinavian Yule celebration, beginning at the winter solstice and running into January. Yule logs were burned to mark the return of the sun and festivities continued until they burned out. Celts also burned a Yule log, believing it persuaded the sun to return and bestowed good luck on those who dragged it from the forest. hollY, ivY anD mistletoe Evergreens were used in winter solstice festivals to bring good luck and signify the coming spring. The tradition of hanging mistletoe in the house is an ancient Druid custom to ward off evil spirits, but in Norse

a merrY Christmas Christmas wasn’t celebrated widely in the UK until the Middle Ages, when it was predominantly a time for merrymaking and feasting on animals too expensive to feed through winter. It was later banned for many years by the Puritans for its Pagan origins. It began to recover in Georgian times with a focus on charity and gift-giving, paving the way for the idealised Victorian Christmas described by Charles Dickens.

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Quirky Britain The High Street Shops Where It’s Christmas All Year Round by Kate McLelland

Are you one of those people who starts looking forward to next Christmas as soon as the decorations are packed away? If so, there’s no longer any need to shed a tear as those boxes crammed with shiny baubles, fairy lights and tinsel go back into the loft. Thanks to a growing British shopping trend, you can now enjoy Christmas all year round. The tradition of all-year Christmas shops began in the USA, with the first stores opening in the 1970s. Leading US retailers include Bronner’s, which boasts a half-mile long ‘Christmas Lane’ decorated with lights, and The Christmas Loft, a chain store providing displays of almost life-size ‘Christmas Villages’, complete with churches, shops and scurrying villagers stocking up for 25th December.


Here in Britain a growing number of retailers are trying out all-year Christmas shopping, with many of the more successful stores located in areas known for attracting tourists. In Stratford-UponAvon, The Nutcracker Christmas shop - with its range of festive figurines, table decorations and tree ornaments - makes

a lively contrast to the staid Shakespeare souvenirs on sale elsewhere. The shop is part of a small family business founded by Robert Newman in 2001. After giving up his job as a care worker, Robert had intended to open a small gift shop, but a visit to a trade gift show in Birmingham opened his eyes to the huge potential for selling festive goods. He now owns a chain of Christmas stores in England and Scotland. Lisa Hill-Whyte, owner of the Isle of Wight’s Jingle Bells Christmas shop, was inspired to open her business in 2009 after visiting Christmas stores in Austria and America. She began by filling an adjoining tea room with Christmas merchandise during the winter months, but this move proved so popular that she was able to realise her dream of selling festive goods for most of the year. Her Shanklin store now stays open seven days a week, from March to Christmas Eve. Lisa says: “We do as much business in April as we do in December and our busiest months are July, August and September.” The shop closes on Christmas

Eve, then after a brief pause in January Lisa and her husband start buying stock for the coming year. She says: “We love Christmas and don’t mind listening to Christmas music all year: we are not fed up with it by the time 25th December arrives, and we certainly don’t think it’s strange selling Christmas things in March.” Lisa’s policy is to stock items that are “a little bit special”, so customers can personalise their Christmas tree decorations. As a result she has had some unusual requests: “Some customers ask for a certain animal that you wouldn’t necessarily expect at Christmas – such as a fish, raccoon, tiger, elephant, sheep, cow or fox. The list is long, but I have found all these and others. I haven’t been caught out yet!” Lisa’s business sells only Christmas goods, but some general stores are now getting in on the act. The Plymouth Herald recently reported on the decision by Chaplins Superstore in Plympton, Devon, to create an all-year-round display of Christmas goods. However, the Chaplin family, who own the store, took the decision to

separate the Christmas display from other parts of the shop, where suncream and sandals remain on display during the summer months. Buyer Vanessa Chaplin says: “What we don’t want to do is disrespect anyone who doesn’t want to see Christmas decorations at this time of year, and we fully understand it is not for everyone.” So what attracts shoppers to buy Christmas items at a time of the year when the festive season should be furthest from our thoughts? Hayley Corden from Bromsgrove sees it as part of the tourist experience. She says: “Whenever we go away we always try to buy a Christmas tree decoration. As well as picking up pieces from year-round Christmas shops in England, we’ve also bought items from places like Iceland





and Canada. It’s lovely to look at your Christmas tree and remember all the places you’ve been.”

customers inside! Christmas seems to start earlier and earlier these days, and seeing it made me really cross.”

James Tunstall from Newquay, Cornwall, enjoys the “magical feeling” he gets in a Christmas shop. He says: “While I probably wouldn’t buy anything until November or December, I love to browse out of season. It’s about recalling the Christmasses you had as a child, and these shops bring it all back.”

Whether the sight of a high street Christmas shop thrills you with memories of childhood Christmasses past or makes you boil with rage, it seems that from now on - should they so choose - fans of the festive season will be able to shop for Santa stockings, advent calendars and shiny baubles whenever they want.

However, some shoppers are very far from experiencing nostalgia when they see festive goods on sale out of season. Whilst enjoying a summer holiday in Dorset, Tracy Whelbourne from Chesterfield was shocked to find Christmas decorations on sale: “So there we were, enjoying the sunny weather, and what do I see? A Christmas shop, open, with

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Salmon & Monkfish Filo Wreath Serves 6

Ready in 1 hour 30 minutes, plus chilling time

This festive wreath makes a great alternative to traditional roast turkey and can be prepared in advance the night before. Ingredients: • • • • • • • • • •

Use the sunflower oil to grease a 1.2 litre capacity ring mould, then line the mould with cling film. Brush the sheets of pastry one by one with melted butter and use nearly all of them to line the ring mould. Overlap the pastry sheets slightly as you go and repeat the layers 3-4 times. Leave the excess pastry to drape over the side of the mould. Mix the salmon, monkfish and prawns in a large bowl and stir in the lemon juice and chopped dill. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Spoon the fish mixture into the pastrylined mould, pressing down gently. Fold the excess pastry in over the filling and top with more buttered sheets of pastry, cutting them to fit and completely cover the filling. Stamp small star shapes out of any remaining sheets of buttered pastry and place on a plate. Cover the ring mould and the plate with




Sunflower oil, for greasing 100g butter, melted 270g pack filo pastry, thawed if frozen 450g salmon fillet, skinned and diced 450g monkfish fillet, skinned and diced 225g cooked peeled tiger prawns 2 tbsp lemon juice 3 tbsp chopped fresh dill Salt and freshly ground black pepper Lemon wedges and dill sprigs, to garnish

cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour (or overnight). Carefully invert the ring mould onto a large baking sheet and then remove the mould and the cling film. Re-melt any remaining butter and brush all over the pastry. Bake in a preheated oven at 190C/fan 170C/Gas Mark 5 for 40-45 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden. Bake the pastry stars on a separate baking sheet for 5 minutes until golden. Allow the wreath to stand for 5 minutes then transfer to a serving platter and decorate with the pastry stars. Garnish with lemon wedges and dill sprigs.

TIP Filo pastry sheets can vary in

size so simply cut to fit. Don’t worry if they tear, just place another piece of buttered pastry on top to cover the tear.

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Cake and Bake Chocolate & Walnut Biscotti These crunchy Italian biscuits are perfect for dunking into a festive coffee or serving as an after dinner treat. They also make a great foodie gift packed into clear gift bags and tied with ribbon and a Christmas label!

Ingredients: • 50g unsalted butter, softened • 100g golden caster sugar • 1 medium egg, beaten • Finely grated zest from 1 orange • 50g dark chocolate chips • 50g walnut pieces • 1/2 tsp baking powder • 175g plain flour, plus extra for kneading

Makes 20 Ready in 1 hour, plus cooling time


The biscotti will keep in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. You can change the nuts – try pecans, toasted almonds or hazelnuts, if preferred. 32

1. Preheat the oven to 180C, fan 160C, Gas 4. Cream the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl until pale and fluffy, then beat in the egg and orange zest. Stir in the chocolate chips and walnut pieces. 2. Sift over the baking powder and flour and stir well until combined. Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured surface and knead to a soft dough, adding a little more flour if necessary. 3. Divide the dough into two pieces and shape each to an oval shape roughly 20cm x 10 cm. Place on a large baking sheet and flatten slightly. Bake for 20-25 minutes until firm and light golden. Cool for 5 minutes. 4. Transfer the two pieces of semi-baked dough to a chopping board and, using a sharp knife, cut each piece into 10 slices. 5. Return the slices, cut-side down, to the baking sheet and bake for a further 8-12 minutes until crisp and golden. Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool completely.

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Local Markets Ashford Farmer’s Market First Sunday of every month from 10am to 2pm in the lower High Street. Charing Farmer’s Market Charing Church Barn 9 -11.30 every Thursday morning. Contact 01233 740176 Egerton Every Friday 2 - 4.30pm Millennium Hall Rolvenden - 01580 240763 Every Thursday 10am -12 noon St Mary’s Church and the Village Hall Rye Farmers Market Every Wednesday at Strand Quay 10am - 1 pm (From Midday Oct - April) Rye Market Every Thursday at the Cattle Market Car Park. Early till around 3pm (depending on the weather)

Rye Country Market Formerly WI Market Rye Community Centre, Conduit Hill. Every Friday 10am -11.30am Tenterden Country Market Every Friday 9.30am -11.00am St Mildred’s Church Hall, Church road. Tenterden High Street Market Friday’s – 0830 – 1400 Wittersham Market Every Tuesday Village Hall 9am. - 11am Tel: 01580 753062 Wye First and third Saturday of every month on the Village Green in Wye. Tel: 07804 652156

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Kid’s Corner


Kid’s Corner

Helping Your Child To Become Money Savvy by Kate Duggan Purses: £3.95 each from It’s never too early to get into the habit of saving up for what you want. Good habits learnt in childhood can last a lifetime.

penalty to take the money out and the account can be in your child’s name if they’re aged seven or older.

If it feels as though your children are constantly asking for new toys, sweets and gadgets, you might want to consider giving them weekly pocket money, with the proviso that once it’s gone, it’s gone. If they want to save up for something big, like a scooter, help them to focus by sticking a photo of it by their money box. You can also remind them about their goal when they’re tempted to spend their money on ‘tat’. Do they really want that Shopkins blind bag now, or would they rather buy a scooter in a few months’ time?

Fixed-rate accounts Fixed-rate accounts often earn a higher rate of interest than easy-access accounts, but your child will be tied in to a set period before they can withdraw any money without a penalty.

You can buy money boxes that have separate sections, such as short-term savings, long-term savings and quick spends. Or just make your own, with different labelled jam jars. Children’s savings accounts It can be difficult to resist dipping into a money box, so you might want to think about opening a savings account for your child, particularly if they want to save up for something big, or you want to start putting some money away to help with university fees or a house deposit. Easy access accounts Easy access accounts are handy for short-term savings. There’s no

Regular savings accounts If you or your child can commit to saving at least £5 each month, a regular savings account often pays a higher rate of interest than the accounts previously mentioned. However, the rate usually drops considerably if you make any withdrawals within a set period, and it often drops anyway after the initial bonus period ends. Junior ISAs If your child is saving for a longterm goal, such as university, a junior ISA is a good way of locking the money away from temptation. As with adult ISAs, you can choose between a cash ISA and a stocks and shares one. There is a greater risk with a stocks and shares ISA, but there’s also the possibility of higher returns. Do compare rates, as some savings accounts actually offer a better rate than a cash ISA, and are easier to access.

Which financial provider to go for? helps you to easily compare the rates of children’s savings accounts and junior ISAs. While the AER (annual equivalent rate) is important, you’ll also want to consider other aspects when choosing a provider, such as: • How easy is it to deposit money? • How often can you withdraw money without paying a penalty? • Does the provider align with your values? For example, do they have an ethical policy that says they won’t invest your child’s money in companies that use child labour or test on animals? • How easy is it to manage the account? Depending on your child’s age, they might also benefit from an account that comes with an app for their smartphone and a cash card. Family budgeting The Money Advice Service is a useful resource if you need to improve your own finances. It offers free advice on everything from budgeting to pensions. Visit or call 0800 138 7777.


Clubs & Societies

Aldington Ladies Gentle Exercise Club Wednesday afternoon 2-4.30pm at Aldington Village Hall. Fee £4 per session . Wear comfy clothes and non-slip socks if possible. Contact Anne Warrener 01303 812703. looking forward to seeing you! Aldington & Bonnington Gardening Society We meet on the 2nd Thursday of the month in the Aldington Village Hall at 7.45 pm for 8.00. We have a varied programme of talks, shows and social events. Visitors and new members are always welcome. For further details please contact Jean Evans on 01233 720618 or Aldington Corner Quilters is a long established group of friendly ladies meeting on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month at Aldington Village Hall, 7.00pm - 9.00pm. We have a mix of beginners and experienced ladies who share their latest projects and ideas. We always welcome new members so if you are interested come along one evening and meet us. For more details contact Julie Coney - or 01303 813944 (eve). Aldington Tennis Club We are a social / family Tennis Club encouraging all ages and abilities to play. Flood lights and coaching enable us to play all year with our members from around the local villages. All the information is listed on our web site


Aldington WI on 3rd Mon every month. All ladies welcome, 7 for 7.30 at The Walnut Tree, Aldington. Ashford Radio Aeromodellers, we have a field at Sellindge for flying seven days a week, and fly indoors in Ashford Market on various Thursday evenings during the Autumn, Winter, & Spring, please visit www.araclub. for more details, or phone Iain on 07956501510, or myself (Roger) 01233 627694. Ashford Decorative & Fine Arts Society (part of NADFAS). A great way to expand your knowledge of the arts, with inspiring monthly lectures given by some of the countries top experts, together with days of special interest and arts visits. All lectures are in Aldington Village Hall, usually on the third Tuesday of each month, from September to June. Membership is open to all. Bilsington Ladies meet in Bilsington Village Hall 2nd Thurs. of month at 2.15pm. Interesting speakers and a warm welcome awaits. Call Jan 01233 641820. The Brabourne and Smeeth Branch of the Royal British Legion meet every first Tuesday in the month at the Brabourne Baptist Church at 7.30 pm. New Members area always welcome, please contact George Taylor 01303 812165 or Ron Cooper 01303 813330 Brabourne & Smeeth Gardeners’ Society We meet on the last Friday of the month at Brabourne & Smeeth Village Hall, 7.15 for 7.30pm. (No meeting in December) New members and visitors will be made very welcome. For further info call Wendy Sanders 01303 813451 East Kent Morris Men Do you like dancing, beer,

socialising, music, having fun? Why not try Morris Dancing? We are recruiting for new members. Weekly Wednesday dance practices at Mersham Village Hall, 8pm to 10pm; afterwards we practise drinking in the pub opposite! No experience required. Why not give it a try? Details from or 01795 536 262 Quilting Group held in the Oak Room, Smeeth TN25 6SA. If you are interested in quilting or patchwork why not come along and learn new skills and share your expertise with like minded people. Beginners and advanced levels are welcome. Bi-monthly meetings, for further information contact Marion on 01233 750319 Sellindge Gardening Association meet on the 3rd Wednesday of the month in the Durling Hall Sellindge (next to the main hall) at 7.15pm for 7.30pm start. Our programme includes speakers, a summer show, social events, day trips and an annual holiday. For further details contact Linda on 01303 813288. Sellindge Table Top Sale the 1st Saturday of each month in the village hall Sellindge. Tables booked in advance are £5. 00 Each and on the day (If available) £8. 00. Telephone for more information 01303 813475. Refreshments are available and home made cakes. Smeeth W.I. We meet on the second Monday of the Month at 7.30 pm in the Brabourne & Smeeth village hall for further information do contact Joy Taylor 01303 812165 Stanford & Postling WI meet in the committee room at the rear of Lympne Village Hall on the 3rd monday of every month. we are a small but friendly group who would love to wlecome new members. For any further information please contact Elaine on 01303 863096 or Iona on 01303 238390. The Get Together Club meet second Wednesday of the month in the Durling Hall, Sellindge from 2pm to 4pm. new members welcome. Lympne Short Mat Bowling Club meets every Mon & Thurs 7 00 pm to 9 30 pm September to May in Lympne Village Hall. It is a small, friendly, sociable club. Do come along and try your hand at an enjoyable, skilful game. Do come along you will be made most welcome. For further details call Joyce Groom - Match Secretary on 01303 230983/0750 652 5971 Sellindge Linedancing Club We are your local line dance club. We meet every Tuesday & Thursday. Are you interested in joining us? You don’t need a partner to line dance! We are starting a NEW BEGINNERS CLASS on 5th September 6.00pm until 7.00pm Entry fee is only £2.50. If you need to know more or even to reserve your place, please ring Maureen for further details. 07989 210449 Ashford Model Railway Club - We meet on Wednesday evenings at the barn café at Willesborough Windmill. between 7.00pm and 9.00pm, and the club would welcome new members. Club members are currently building a model of Rye in 00 gauge in the SR period. Contact John White on 01233 733416 for more details.


Plain Road, Brabourne Lees, Kent TN25 6QN Enquiries: Geoff Thorpe 01303 813152 or Babs Ruck 01303 813743 Village Carol Service; Sunday 17th December at 4pm. Come and celebrate Christmas with us by singing your favourite Carols by Candlelight and hearing familiar Bible readings, followed by seasonal refreshments. Messy Church: First Saturday of the month. We will be celebrating Christmas at our meeting on December 2 from 3pm – 5pm. Families of all ages can get together for a time of fun!! Contact Margaret Austen 01303 812555 for more details Ladies Coffee Morning: We will be celebrating Christmas on 7th December, by having lunch at the Kennington Carvery. For more information please phone Pat 01303 812219 All ladies welcome! Art Club We will meet on Tuesday December 12 from 10am – 12noon for a social time. New members welcome. Further details from Mike on 01303 812484 MP’S Surgery: Our MP Damian Collins, will be holding his monthly surgery at Brabourne Baptist Church from 3.45pm to 4.30pm on Friday December 15. If you have any questions, complaints or comments, please book an appointment by e-mailing your name, post code, subject and message to: shepwayconservatives@ or telephone 01303 253 524 Meeting Point; Sorry, but we will not be meeting in December. Please call Cathy for further information 01303 814132 Cafe Wednesday Christmas Special: Celebrate Christmas with us at our extended Cafe Wednesday on December 20 starting at 10am. Mince pies, Christmas refreshments and Carols More details from Babs 01303 813743 Café Wednesday The Café is open every Wednesday from 10am to 11.30am. Drop in for coffee, biscuits, company and a warm friendly atmosphere. Choice of books available. Everybody welcome First Wednesday of the month: A free clinic is held on behalf of Hi-Kent, to service and provide batteries for hearing aids, Church Bookings If you wish to book the church hall for a meeting or function, please phone Geoff Thorpe 01303 813152 Sunday Services: There is a regular service at 10.30am every week. Morning Worship is followed by refreshments in the side hall. Lively Discussions! Home Groups meet on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. Everyone is welcome to come and join us! We are very informal and friendly. Please phone David 01303 814437 or Geoff 01303 813152

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Every second Saturday in the month May - September 12 noon start Sellindge Sports and Social Club 69, Swan Lane, Sellindge


First Sunday in the month April - December 9am - 12 noon Victory Hall/Field Food, Bargains, Toilets

Community Events, Clubs & Societies are free to list, send to 37


By John Fletcher, Public Governor for Ashford

Is the NHS heading for major change? of call to see family doctors, community nurses, social and mental health services and access to treatments nearer to home is also included. In addition, all the out of hours services are being rationalised in order to be more effective.

There has been little restructuring of the NHS since it was set-up and the system has operated well for many years. It is characterised by division of services into primary care (contracted doctors in surgeries) community services (offered by the NHS throughout the country) and hospital care (the major hospitals).

During 2015 the NHS introduced plans to tackle these problems. They were aimed at developing and introducing a sustainable and effective service. STP’s (sustainable and transformation plans) have evolved into a sustainable and transformation partnerships now operating in Kent and It seems that the future for healthcare locally lies in the Medway. direction of new specialised How will we be affected by centres (hubs) staffed and these changes? equipped to treat patients who might otherwise have gone to The first sign of change is the hospital. Doctors will be left identification of a number of with more time to deal with areas in England selected to more complex problems and test a new integration system. hospitals will not be inundated In East Kent, Encompass, with those who can be treated which includes 13 surgeries easily at local clinics or at in the Whitstable Faversham, home. Canterbury Ash and Sandwich areas is one of the new Vanguards.

This traditional division is now being questioned because it is seen as an ever increasing barrier to the type of care needed. The increasing population (1.8million in Kent and Medway and with estimates of a 23% increase in this by 2031), an increasing life expectancy (people aged over 70 are expected to increase by 20% in the next 5 years), more and more people with long term conditions (diabetes, This system of delivering care, lung and heart diseases) all it is claimed, will mean fewer add pressures. trips to hospital with locally held clinics for cancer and dementia patients. One point 38

Likewise South Kent Coastal CCG is developing an initiative which becomes operative in January 2018. In this scheme patients will be able to attend one of 5 hubs in the area for consultation and treatment. They may be referred to their own GP for further much more detailed consultation or they may receive treatment at the hub.

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Time to Relax Yvonne Fernando, NLP Master Practitioner & Life Coach lets us know... Stress comes in many forms, from tense, tricky relationships at home to pressured interactions at work. Financial pressures, conflicting priorities, unresolved issues, digital frustrations and travelling on congested roads can all add to the stress burden. Often we just brush off or deal with stressful situations with no adverse effects. However, when stress becomes negative (we feel we can’t handle it), problems can arise. It can affect health, wellbeing, relationships, sleep patterns, weight gain/loss, digestive problems, heart, capacity for memory and many other disorders. Anxiety, stress and depression are closely related and if left unchecked can develop into physical depression. While there’s no doubt that modern living can produce some unwanted side-effects, the good news is there’s a lot we can do to prevent and manage anxiety, stress and

depression. NLP can help to identify the root cause of anxiety and stress and pinpoint changes that might need to be made. Relaxation is one of the best antidotes to stress. Learning how to relax can clear the mind, calm the emotions and result in a healthier body. In a relaxed state people are more creative, can solve problems more easily and see things from a different perspective. Try some of these tips to keep stress in check and bring balance to your life: • Physical Activity • Mindfulness • Yoga • Meditation • Regular Sleeping Pattern • Relaxation • Journaling Yvonne works with adults and children to make positive life changes. T : 01233 878474 M: 07968 785714 E : References available. NLP is safe for children.


How Do I Tell If My Elderly Neighbour Needs Help? by Kate McLelland

According to Age UK’s report “Later Life in the United Kingdom”, published this year, 3.64 million people in the UK aged 65+ live alone. With so many older individuals living independent lives, it often falls to neighbours to sound the alarm if the behaviour of an elderly person gives cause for concern. So what are the signals that show something may be wrong? WHAT SHOULD I LOOK OUT FOR? Signs such as curtains remaining permanently open or closed, or newspapers left sticking out of the letterbox, can indicate that there may be a problem. The first step should be to knock on your neighbour’s door. If they answer, try to engage them in conversation, and if you are invited in, use your visit as an opportunity to check how they are living. Does the house look clean and tidy? Is it warm? Are pets being cared for properly or are there signs of neglect, such as overflowing litter trays?


If you’ve made several attempts to knock on the door but there’s no answer, you could ask people in neighbouring properties if they have seen or heard anything. Finally, ring round the local hospitals to see if your neighbour has been admitted. If you

continue to draw a blank, it may be time to call the police.

regular check that they are safe and well.”

CALLING SOCIAL SERVICES If there’s no emergency but you suspect that your elderly neighbour may have developed a mental or physical health issue that puts them at risk, check if they have a relative or close friend that you can phone. If the answer is ‘no’, you could call the Age UK helpline on Freephone 0800 009 966 or contact the social services department at your local council.

Between 6th and 10th November the National Association for Care Catering (NACC) celebrates Meals on Wheels Week. This is an initiative created to raise awareness and demonstrate how vital the service is. Meals on Wheels is currently a discretionary service, not supported by all local councils, and NACC is campaigning for the government to make it a statutory, protected service for those considered most at risk in the community.

When a local authority is told that someone may be in need of care and support they are obliged to carry out a needs assessment, even if the individual in question has not requested one. MEALS ON WHEELS There is usually a clear course of action when an older person is found to be at risk or in distress. However it’s not always so straightforward when someone simply appears to be lonely or not eating properly. One solution may be to help them set up a ‘Meals on Wheels’ delivery. The Royal Voluntary Service (RVS), the original provider of the Meals on Wheels service, says: “Our home-delivered meals service provides friendly social contact for those who may be confined to the house, and a

As a concerned neighbour, you could make a real difference with a simple intervention, whether that’s starting a friendly chat or taking positive action to support the elderly person in question. If you’d like to hear more about the Royal Voluntary Service Meals on Wheels service, telephone 0845 608 0122 or visit

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Puzzle Time

Word Ladder

Sudoku Fill in the grid so that every row, every column, and every 3 x 3 box contains the digits 1 through 9, with no repetition! That’s all there is to it, you solve the puzzle with reasoning and logic there’s no maths involved and no adding up. It’s fun. It’s challenging. It’s addictive!

Change one letter at a time (but not the position of any letter) to make a new word - and move from the word at the top of the ladder to the word at the bottom, using the exact number of rungs provided.




Crossword Across 7. Light wind (6) 8. Add up (6) 9. Not pretty (4) 10. Take away (8) 11. Tenth month (7) 13. Deprived (5) 15. Two times (5) 17. Remaining (7) 20. Booklet (8) 21. Assists (4) 22. Floats (6) 23. Unlocked (6) Down 1. Horrendous (6) 2. Refute (4) 3. Childhood illness (7) 4. Investigate (5) 5. Barely (8) 6. Coerced (6) 12. Engaged (8) 44 14. Stopping place (7)

16. Gun or knife (6) 18. Bowed (6)

19. Nearby (5) 21. Pinnacle (4)


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Important Information Emergency 999 Police Neighbhd Team Ashford & Tenterden


Out of Hours Doctor William Harvey Hospital

101 0800 555 111 0845 4349655 01233 633331

Samaritans 116123

Electricity: Southern Electric EDF Energy Gas: Natural LPG

0845 770 8090 0800 783 8866 0800 111 999 Details on tank

Macmillan Cancer Support W:

Parkinson’s UK, Ashford Branch Contact Mike Wharrad

01233 623520

St. John Ambulance Brigade 01233 611 414 East Kent Strokes 01233 840448

SE Kent Multiple Sclerosis Soc. 07767326138 email:

Royal British Legion CPRE Kent

01233 620 167 01233 714540

Royal Mail Residential Customer Services

Doctors Surgery Hamstreet Surgery Sellindge Surgery

01233 730190 01303 812180

Parish Councils: Aldington & Bonnington

01233 721757


Brabourne & Smeeth Mersham & Sevington Sellindge

01233 623902 01233 750415 01303 813 271

Ashford Borough Council 01233 331111 W:

Ashford Gateway 0845 8 247 247 Citizens Advice Bureau 01233 626185 Brabourne and Smeeth Community Warden: Graham Kingston 07813 712805

08457 740740

National Train Enquiries

Bus Enquiries Arriva Bus Enquiries Stage Coach East Kent (Timetable) (Customer Services)

0844 800 44 11 0871 200 22 33 08456 00 22 99

Village Halls Aldington 01233 720213 Brabourne & Smeeth 01303 813746 David Smith, Bilsington 01233 720818 Hamstreet 01233 732568 Mersham 01233 503192 Smeeth 01303 814977 Stowting 01303 862819 Sellindge 01303 813250 Sellindge Spts & Soc. Club 01303 812437

Veterinary Surgeons Montgomery Vets

01303 813756

Ashford Volunteer Centre 01233 665 535 Age UK Ashford 01233 668 765 CARM E: W:

High Pressure Jetting Service & Repair to Sewage treatment plants Soakaway Testing Cesspool Emptying Service

01233 840624

Disclaimer: Every care is taken to ensure this directory is as accurate as possible but the publishers do not accept responsibility for any loss or damage resulting from errors or omissions.

The Village Directory Coverage

Delivered by Royal Mail to 56,400 Homes & Businesses

PUZZLE ANSWERS Kid’s Corner: Henry collects ‘7 mince pies’ on the way down the chimney. The word ‘elf’ can be found 6 times.

Word Ladder: ROCK rick rice rile rill HILL




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Aldington December 2017  

The Village Directory, a community and advertising magazine delivered monthly to every rural home and village in the borough of Ashford Ken...

Aldington December 2017  

The Village Directory, a community and advertising magazine delivered monthly to every rural home and village in the borough of Ashford Ken...