You are currently browsing the monthly archive for February 2013.

Mothering Sunday, Sunday 10th March 12 noon – 4pm

Find out more about the origins of Mothering Sunday and treat your mum to a handmade card, or present her with a special handmade award! Craft activities for children in the Education Room from 12 noon – 4pm. Special lunchtime menus in the Garden Restaurant. Or treat Mum to a stylish afternoon tea! More


Penshurst Place & Gardens prepares for the Spanish Armada on
Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th March from 12 noon to 4pm

This popular family event recreates life at Penshurst Place in 1588 when the Spanish Armada threatens to invade England. On Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th March, the household readies itself for the anticipated invasion and a skilled cast of costumed actors and musicians portray some colourful characters in Tudor England. More

A female author known for her witty and rebellious writing style will be sharing her experiences to mark International Women’s Day.
Writer Scarlett Thomas, will be at Rochester Community Hub on Friday, 8 March to talk about her career, and she will also be available for book signings.
Scarlett has written such titles as Bright Young Things, Going Out, PopCo, and Our Tragic Universe.
The talk begins at 7.30pm and is free of charge.
This is one of many events which will be taking place around the world on 8 March to mark International Women’s Day (IWD) and to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women.
To book a place at the Scarlett Thomas talk, phone 01634 33744 or email

People all over Medway will soon have the opportunity to learn how to communicate without words. In the coming weeks a selection of courses, some free, will be on offer to teach sign language and Makaton. The communication courses held by Medway Community Learning will be running throughout March and April. More

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Help is at hand for people who find themselves out of work through redundancy, or who are under threat of redundancy.

Medway Community Learning (MCL) Skills Support for Redundancy programme offers training for anyone over the age of 19 who has been made redundant within the last six months, or who is under threat of redundancy. More

Mike TaylorKYJO FUNDRAISER CONCERT FOR ELLENORLIONS HOSPICE IN MEMORY OF MIKE TAYLOR (1944-2012) Date: Saturday, 16th February 2013 Time: 7.00 pm Venue: The Brook Theatre, Chatham, Kent ME4 4SE Box Office: 01634 338338 £12, conc £10, students £5 In memory of the band’s former manager, the late Mike Taylor, Kent Youth Jazz Orchestra. (KYJO) will present an evening of funky big band jazz featuring celebrity jazz soloists. Proceeds from the event will go to the Ellenorlions Hospices in North Kent, which supported Mike through his illness last year.

A new, three month pop-up art studio for adults with learning disabilities in Rochester High Street funded by the Arts Council, is about to open.

Art About is a not-for-profit Community Interest Company and is run by the lead artists Helen Morley and Wendy Daws. The purpose of this project is to provide excellent contemporary Fine Art opportunities to adults who are excluded from mainstream higher education, for reasons of disability or disadvantage. The focus is on developing the artist, their art and their abilities, rather than disability. More

4 February was the 30th anniversary of Karen Carpenters Death. On the 28 February Carole Gordon, with the Blue Jeans Band and Singers will be performing at the Woodville Halls Gravesend, paying tribute to Karen Carpenter with their show “Voice of the Heart” Karen Carpenter – A musical memory with tracks from The Carpenters. Box Office 01474 337774

Patients and the public are invited to have their say on the proposed move of the DMC GP Practice and Walk-in Centre at a public meeting on Tuesday, 5 February from 6.00pm to 8.30pm at the Balmoral Masonic Hall, Balmoral Road, Gillingham. More

A scheme tested by NHS Kent and Medway to allow patients control of Personal Health Budgets is now being rolled out across the country for NHS Continuing Healthcare patients.

NHS Medway and NHS Eastern and Coastal Kent were among 60 areas which trialled giving NHS Continuing Healthcare patients the choice of controlling the money for their care and support if they wanted to. More

The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith visited Auto22 garage, Gravesend at the end of last month.

Launched by the young people’s catch22 charity, the Auto22 garage is a social enterprise that offers servicing and repairs for cars and light vans, providing work experience, training and apprenticeships for young people to learn mechanics.

The council has been working with Auto22 and has created employment at the Brookvale Depot for George Burman, aged 19, as an apprentice mechanic. George has been on a learning programme with Auto22 for one year and recently completed a four week work experience trial at the Brookvale Depot. More

The Ramblers will be hosting Great Britain’s biggest ever short walks festival from 4 – 11 May in a drive to get more people discovering the wonder of walking in 2013. This festival is supporting Britain on Foot, a campaign to encourage more people in Britain to get active in the great outdoors. More

Shop staff, and town managers will be taking part in the English tradition of Pancake Races on Shrove Tuesday (12 February). The fun event – part of “Heart Month” is being run to promote awareness and raise funds for the British Heart Foundation. More

Now Gravesham CAN with community grants

Community groups and organisations will be able to get money for projects and to improve facilities from a new capital fund called Gravesham CAN (Communities And Neighbourhoods).

The scheme is divided into three categories – grants up to £10,000 for major projects, smaller grants at the discretion of every of ward member of the council for local groups, and a fund to help create networks in the new communities in the borough. More

The Stroke Association is calling on South East people to get their nominations in for the Life After Stroke Awards (LASA) before the closing date on 1 March. With over 170,000 people living with the effects of stroke in the South East, the charity is seeking nominations to honour the stroke survivors, carers, organisations or groups who have shown dedication, determination and courage in the world of stroke.

The ceremony will take place at London’s Dorchester Hotel on 26 June 2013. Nine categories including Adult Courage, Creative Arts and Fund-raiser of the year will be presented by a host of celebrities.

This year the charity is welcoming the first patron of the awards, ‘Apprentice’ star Karren Brady. Karren said; “I was in danger of having a stroke myself and so this is a cause that is very close to my heart. I’m still at very high risk and know how frightening the condition can be. A stroke happens in instant but its effects last a lifetime. The Stroke Association is doing great work supporting people affected by the condition and celebrating life after stroke. “I am thrilled and delighted to be the first LASA Patron and am calling on everyone affected by stroke to nominate someone they know for these very special awards.”

Celebrities attending the event included TV’s Angela Rippon, rugby star and stroke survivor Michael Lynagh and Olympic medallist Shelley Rudman. Katherine Staley, from the Stroke Association said: “As stars of stage and screen are being honoured for Oscars, BRITs, Grammys and BAFTAs, this is the chance to shine the spotlight on stroke survivors, their carers and professionals working in the world of stroke to celebrate some of the amazing achievements made.”

You can make your nomination online at Alternatively, you can call 0207 566 1540 or email and we can send you a form in the post.

Around 30,000 men and women aged between 17 and 25 will be invited to take part in the Medway Chlamydia Screening Programme next month. During February, young men and women will receive a letter telling them how to order a self-test kit to screen for Chlamydia.

Chlamydia is still the most common sexually transmitted infection in the UK and for that reason Medway’s Sexual Health Improvement Programme is providing young people with the opportunity to say yes to the test. It is more likely to affect sexually active young people, under the age of 25, with approximately one in 10 being affected. With Chlamydia often showing no signs of symptoms it is even more important to get screened. If left untreated, Chlamydia can cause longer-term health problems, including infertility.

Using condoms is an effective way to reduce the risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections and preventing unplanned pregnancies. Free condoms and sexual health services are available across Medway, for details of local services visit If you are sexually active and under 25 you should be tested for Chlamydia annually. The test for Chlamydia is simple – just one quick and painless test that you do yourself. You do not need to be examined. Order a kit by going on at, texting 07949147136 with your name, gender, house number and postcode or phone 07949 147136 (leave a message out of office hours with your name, house number and postcode).

A driver has been fined £600 for failing to produce a valid waste carrier’s licence. Stephen Collins, 60, from Gravesend was stopped by Kent Police Motorbike Team on Anthony’s Way, Strood, on 11 September. His Ford flatbed truck was loaded with waste materials including broken brake discs, tyres and white goods. More

British Fencing has announced that that this year’s Cadet and Junior GB Championships will be held at Medway Park on Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 February. This is the first time that this event has been held at Medway’s centre for sporting excellence and everyone is welcome to come and watch the event. More

As the annual statistics for the RNLI are released, numbers show that the charity’s new lifeguards in Thanet have proved their worth over last summer, with almost one in ten beach visitors speaking directly with a lifeguard for advice. More

Tap into your inner creative writer at a workshop with a Medway-based award-winning writer. Poet Philip Kane will lead the workshop entitled – What if? – at Medway Archives and Local Studies Centre where he will help guide wannabe writers into the art of creating alternative histories and parallel worlds, using the archive’s resources along the way. The workshop is on Saturday, 9 February from 12noon to 3pm at Medway Archives and Local Studies Centre, Clock Tower Building, Former Civic Centre site, Strood.
Workshops costs £5 but places are limited so booking is essential, phone 01634 332714. Please bring your own writing equipment.


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