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Two Hoo Peninsula firms are among the first in Kent to successfully apply for a Tiger loan in Kent – receiving a combined total of nearly £250,000 to help grow their business.

TIGER – Thames Gateway Innovation, Growth and Enterprise – is a regional growth fund offering low-cost loans allowing businesses to invest in new products and services. Read More

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splashesThe swimming pool at Splashes Leisure Centre will be closed for four days next month (Nov 4-7 inclusive) to allow routine maintenance checks to take place.
The fitness centre will not be affected.

The council is carrying out routine maintenance checks to ensure Splashes provides the best possible experience for swimmers and would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Should further work be required this will need to be carried out at a later date.
Medway Council’s three other swimming pools will be open as usual. The nearest alternative swimming pool is at Medway Park – details of opening times can be found at http://www.medwaypark.org.uk or by phoning 336655.

Picture1Kent Wildlife Trust, Half Term Fun – Rock and Fossil Day Leaders: Ray and Wendy Cooper and Diana Franks from Kent Geodiversity with assistance from Victoria Golding. An introduction to looking at rocks and fossils including a touch table, rock and fossil identification and a chance to work with microscopes to make up a collection of microfossils. Also put in your postcode to discover the rock type under your house.

Thursday 31st October 2013, 11.00am – 1.00pm and 1.30pm – 3.30pm, Tyland Barn, Maidstone, ME14 3BD. Suitable for ages 4 – 14 year olds. Contact: Dot Hughes Cost: Suggested donation of £3.00, Booking essential by telephoning 01622 662012 or emailing dot.hughes@kentwildlife.org.uk

Contact us
Kent Wildlife Trust
Tyland Barn
Sandling
Maidstone
Kent
ME14 3BD

Phone 01622 662012 Fax 01622 671390 or info@kentwildlife.org.uk

false_false_widowsNews stories about false widow spiders are an annual occurrence, but this year the coverage has been far more persistent, with more sensationalised, unsubstantiated and downright nonsense stories than usual. With over 650 species of spider in the country but very limited public awareness there is little appreciation of the diversity of spiders, and any spiders vaguely resembling false widows (and some spiders looking nothing like false widows), are being identified as such by the press and subsequently members of the public, and vice versa since it seems fact-checking by journalists is rare. Having said that, false widows are fairly common and widespread in the South, and have been around for some time. Read More

Young Epilepsy has honoured a former war-time student, who left £100,000 to the charity in her Will, by unveiling a commemorative plaque telling her story.

Former student, Mabel White from Sussex, lived on the Young Epilepsy campus between 1940 and 1943, during the Second World War. Mabel had epilepsy due to a childhood head injury and bequeathed the legacy because she felt that the care and education provided by Young Epilepsy St Piers had transformed her life. Read More

NHS Medway Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is holding it’s next governing body meeting on Wednesday 23 October. The meeting is at the CCG offices at 50 Pembroke Court, Chatham Maritime between 1pm and 5pm and is open to the public.

The agenda and papers will be available on the CCG website (www.medwayccg.nhs.uk) this Friday (18 October) and any questions should be tabled in advance where possible although they will also be taken on the day.

Visitors’ parking is available in the CCG overflow car park at Dickens World. Permits should be obtained in advance. To table a question or request a parking permit, contact Sharon Davies by email sharon.davies6@nhs.net, by phone 01634 335177 or in writing to Executive Support and Governance Assistant, NHS Medway Clinical Commissioning Group, 50 Pembroke Court, Chatham Maritime, Chatham, Kent, ME4 4EL.

Ann Barnes, Kent Police and Crime Commissioner, is delighted to announce that recruitment for her Youth Commissioner post is now open.

Applications can be submitted by visiting http://www.kent-pcc.gov.uk, where a full job description and a statement from the Commissioner are available. Recruitment will close at midnight on 3rd November 2013.

Death is a certainty that we all face and can be a time of distress for not only the person whose life is ending, but the loved ones they are leaving behind. When asked, most people express preferences about their end of life such as wanting to die at home. But few people currently have conversations about this. A short film hopes to change that, and encourage people to let loved ones and health professionals know their wishes. Read More

Snorkellers below the Minack (Rod Allday) / CC BY-SA 2.0

Snorkellers below the Minack (Rod Allday) / CC BY-SA 2.0

Registration has opened for Medway’s newest mass participation event – the Medway Big Splash.

The weekend-long event will showcase watersports, aquatics and water-based activity sessions, all culminating in the main event – a mass community swim challenge.

It takes place at Medway Park and Strood Sports Centres on 18 and 19 January 2014.

The swimming event builds on the success of the annual Medway Mile, which now attracts thousands of people of every age for a one-mile walk or run around Rochester. Read More

Statue of General Gordon (Ron Strutt) / CC BY-SA 2.0

Statue of General Gordon (Ron Strutt) / CC BY-SA 2.0

24th October, 7pm, Royal Engineers Museum

General ‘Chinese’ Gordon was one of the most famous figures of Victorian society and has been immortalised books, paintings and most notably the 1966 film ‘Khartoum’ where he was played by Charlton Heston. Read More

If, like me, you have recently discovered or rediscovered the beauty of the Grain coastal area you may be interested in reading the article written by Michael Dale about the area and beyond. An article he contributed to the Thames Estuary Partnership Magazine for 2012 and reasserts the value or should I say several of the different values of this most remote part of our Peninsula. The full article can be found here TOTT_Winter_2012_36-37 (1)

Michael also runs regular guided walks around the park, stopping on occasions to impart to you the fascinating history of parts of the park. Join one of these if you can, there are two remaining for this season and they take place on the 27th October and the 24th November, you can get more details by emailing michael.dale@virgin.net or calling 01634 270314

This week an email flooded in to our office with a couple of photographs attached. The email was from a lady that lives in Australia, now that’s a big place so to narrow it down a bit, Perth. The lady that sent the email and the photographs is Jean Williams (nee Wall) and she is looking to catch up with class mates from her school days before she and her family emigrated to Australia in 1978. Please have a look at the images and see if you are in them and contact the office on 01634 780041 or email us using office@peninsulatimes.co.uk if you would like to get back in contact with Jean. Click on the image to see a larger version

1946/47 class at the Primary School now the library

1946/47 class at the Primary School now the library


Wainscott school calss of 1952/1953

Wainscott school class of 1952/1953

tuba Saturday 19th October the Kent Police Brass Band will be playing at Hoo St. Werburgh Parish Church and there are still a few tickets available if you would like to go you can get tickets from Stuart Coombs on 01634 251705

If you live within the distribution area of the Peninsula Times printed version, you will doubtless be aware of Anim-Mates charity and the good work that they do. If you have some time to attend one or both of these events you would be providing tremendous help to them. Plus you get to eat CAKE at one of the events and everyone likes cake!

Just to illustrate the kind of people they are. We found a cat hiding under our car at home, clearly injured and clearly in distress. We tried in vain to contact other animal charities for help without success. We called Anim-Mates and hoped, someone answered, not only did they answer but they gave us the address of a vet that could help and even called ahead to say that we were coming and any charge should be referred to them. Unfortunately the poor little cat died as a result of her injuries within a day or so and although it was a short period of time Anim-Mates were there and available to help when bigger and better known charities were not. Please help them if you can by going along to have some fun at these events.

If you can’t quite read the detail click on the image to make it huge!

fun auction 2013

Afternoon Tea 2013

DSC_0176Having successfully won funding of £14m in a joint effort with Veolia Environmental Services, our recycling collections will change to weekly on the 28th October. Almost all of us by now will have received our grey food recycling box which can be kept inside the house and its compostable liner can then be placed in the brown bin or its equivalent.

The increase in frequency should make it easier for most households to make the most of their recycling opportunities for all the items that the council currently process. I for one will be glad to know that Friday is recycle day, full stop, rather than having to peer up and down the road to see what everyone else has put out. Read More

hrhprincemichaelHis Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent GCVO visited The Historic Dockyard Chatham on Friday 4th October.

This private visit was made primarily to meet members of Chatham Historic Dockyard Volunteer Service (CHDVS) of which HRH Prince Michael has been patron for the past 15 years. His last visit to the dockyard was in 2008 when he opened the newly refurbished Victorian Ropery gallery. Read More

Householders in Gravesham will get a new and easy way to increase recycling as part of a major reorganisation of refuse and recycling collections in the borough next summer. The proposals will be discussed by the council’s Cabinet on 7 October.

Under the preferred scheme food waste will be collected weekly in separate new food caddies along with residual waste in black sacks every week. Once a fortnight recycling will be collected in wheeled bins. This has been proved to increase recycling and reduce residual waste as well as limiting the mess caused by food waste. Read more

Road safety st john fisherMore than 200 pupils at St John Fisher RC School have been working on their road safety understanding and abilities. The Year 7 and 8 pupils have been working with Medway Council’s Road Safety Team and Kent Police PCSO Rowan Cornwall on a number of activities and discussions. For many students, starting secondary school provides the first opportunity to independently travel to school. More

The Britannia Theatre will be hosting a wedding fair on Sunday 30th June from 11am to 3pm.

The Britannia Theatre can be found on Leviathan Way at the Chatham Dockside Complex, within Dickens World.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent is the surprising star of Les Misérables the hotly anticipated feature film adaptation of Victor Hugo’s novel, which is due to open in cinemas on January 11, 2013.

The blockbuster production spent more than 30 days shooting on location in the English regions, eleven of which were spent at the Historic Dockyard Chatham, by far the longest stint at any single location. Scenes were also shot at Boughton House in Northamptonshire, Hampshire’s Winchester College and Portsmouth Naval Base, and at the National Trust’s Ashridge Estate in Hertfordshire.

Camilla Stephenson, Supervising Location Manager on Les Misérables , said: “People might be surprised to discover that only a tiny portion of our film was actually filmed in France. There are some fantastic locations to be found in our stunning English regions that worked perfectly for our early 19th Century France. Local authorities, councils and residents in each of our several areas couldn’t have been more helpful and enthusiastic and made a difficult job a real pleasure.”

Les Misérables is the motion-picture adaptation of the beloved global stage sensation seen by more than 60 million people in 42 countries and in 21 languages around the globe and still breaking box-office records everywhere in its 27th year. The Working Title/Cameron Mackintosh production is directed by Academy Award®-winning director, Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech) and stars Hugh Jackman, Oscar® winner Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Eddie Redmayne, Aaron Tveit, Samantha Barks, with Helena Bonham Carter and Sacha Baron Cohen.

Set against the backdrop of 19th-century France, Les Misérables tells an enthralling story of broken dreams and unrequited love, passion, sacrifice and redemption—a timeless testament to the survival of the human spirit. Jackman plays ex-prisoner Jean Valjean, hunted for decades by the ruthless policeman Javert (Crowe) after he breaks parole. When Valjean agrees to care for factory worker Fantine’s (Hathaway) young daughter, Cosette, their lives change forever.

Les Misérables is the latest feature film to shoot at The Historic Dockyard Chatham, which has also provided locations for both the Guy Richie/Robert Downey Jnr/Jude Law Sherlock Holmes films, Children of Men, The Golden Compass and Amazing Grace. Television series: Coast, Countryfile, Call the Midwife and Great British Railway Journeys have also used the Dockyard for filming.

The film and television industry is an important one for the English regions as productions can spend up to £30,000 per day on everything from hotels to props to coffee for the stars when filming on location. Feature films alone contributed over £1billion to the UK economy in 2011, a record figure.*

In Kent alone, filming contributed over £2 million to the economy in the last financial year.

Kent County Council’s Film Office and Creative England are proactive in encouraging this investment into Kent and across the English regions.
Creative England aims to be a ‘one stop shop’ for productions on a nationwide basis (outside London), assisting them in finding everything from suitable locations for filming to freelance crew and facilities companies. It also offers a local authority liaison service through its Film Friendly Partnership programme, smoothing the path for film production companies.

Its crew and locations databases is a cornerstone of the service it provides and Creative England is encouraging property owners or managers interested in filming to register their property details.**

A range of properties is sought, from stately homes, grand manor houses and mansions to large family homes, remote farm houses, and country cottages; from coastal properties, industrial mills and factories to sleek city centre offices, apartments and penthouses.

Kaye Elliott, Creative England’s Head of Location and Production Services, said: “It’s great to see England’s diverse countryside showcased in Les Misérables. We have a tremendous variety of locations in the regions and Creative England works hard both to ensure that productions know about these locations, and to facilitate filming requests quickly and efficiently so that we increase the flow of production to these areas. It’s a huge endorsement that we can attract major film projects such as Les Misérables to film in the English regions.”

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of their very first hit, enjoy the authoritative Beatles live concert show when it comes to Chatham. More

Commissioner’s House in the Historic Dockyard, Chatham, is the oldest naval building to survive intact and in use in Britain today. It was built in 1704 to house the Resident Commissioner, his family and servants. A member of the Navy Board but resident at Chatham, the Commissioner was responsible for the day-to-day running of the dockyard. The house has changed little since it was built, although some internal modifications have been made. The principle feature internally is the main staircase with its magnificent ceiling painting. Painted on wood it depicts an assembly of the gods and was originally in the Great Cabin of the first-rate ship Royal Sovereign. Although attributed to Thomas Highmore (Sergeant Painter to William III) some of the sketch work is known to be by Sir James Thornhill. More

In the maze of corridors within the Masthouses and Mould Loft at The Historic Dockyard Chatham, folk have occasionally seen a glimpse of a figure and have heard strange tapping sounds. More

Learn how to cook fancy festive dishes to impress your friends and family this Christmas thanks to Medway Community Learning.
Places are still available on a five-week cookery course that will teach you how to prepare, cook and present Christmas-themed, sweet and savoury dishes such as Velvet Truffle Torte.
Add a little home-made luxury to your celebrations.
The course starts on Wednesday, 14 November from 7-9 pm at Chatham Grammar School for Boys, Maidstone Road, Chatham.
Course fee is £50. Concessions available.
For more details visit www.medway.gov.uk/.learning or phone 01634 338400.

Medway’s A Block should close because it is just not good enough for people who are suddenly and seriously mentally ill – but it would be better if an alternative could be found in Medway, a consultation meeting was told.

“I think closing A Block is a good idea because the facilities at Medway are rubbish – they have always been terrible,” said Patricia Hardy, 44, from Gillingham, who has schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. More

Medway is gearing up for a day dedicated to showcasing the area’s economic prowess and employment opportunities.

Businesses and industry leaders from across the south east and London will descend on the Construction Expo in Medway, on Thursday, 11 October, for a day dedicated to boosting employment and regeneration in the area. More

Women who are at least six months pregnant in Medway are being urged to contact their GP practice about vaccination to protect their unborn baby against whooping cough. More

This week sees a series of events to help warn people about the dangers of loan sharks throughout Medway and the Hoo Peninsula.
Medway Council’s Trading Standards Team and The England Illegal Money Lending Team will be warning local people to turn away from illegal money lenders and encouraging anyone who has fallen into a loan sharks trap to speak out.
The officers and Illegal Money Lending Team’s mascot ‘Sid’ the Shark will be out and about this week (w/c 24 Sept). More

Image by kind permission of Simon Kelsey

Gallant knights and fair maidens will roam the castle gardens at Medieval Merriment, a free family event taking place at Rochester Castle Gardens during the weekend of Saturday 1 to Sunday 2 September.

The gardens will be transformed into a medieval encampment with a whole array of themed activities, including re-enactments, cooking demonstrations, have-a-go archery, stalls, traders and living history displays.
New features for this year’s event include a medieval fashion show depicting changes in dress through the years, and there’s even the chance to have a personal meeting with the King himself between 12noon and 3pm each day in the castle keep. More

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