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Tonbridge Parent Support Group – First Meeting, 14th March, Tonbridge Methodist Hall

Tonbridge Parent Support Group – 14th March – 9.00am -10.30am – Tonbridge Methodist Hall, Higham Lane, TN10 4JG

A group of local parents have joined forces to set up a parent support group.  This will be an opportunity for all parents to support each other through the highs and lows of parenthood.

Everyone attending will have the opportunity to offer and receive mutual support and help design future meetings.  The meetings will be relaxed and informal with refreshments available.

If you would like to join the group or help out please do come along.

Tonbridge Methodist Church, Higham Lane, TN10 4JG

For more information please contact

Competition – Win a Family Ticket for 4 to ‘The Vicar’s Picnic Music Festival’

WIN A FAMILY TICKET FOR 4 to ‘The Vicar’s Picnic Music Festival’ – Yalding Kent 20th July – 21st July

Kent’s BIGGEST little festival is back with another fantastic event including a kid’s field, Creative Workshops, Artists and Poets and a line up including ‘Cast‘ and ‘The Fun Lovin Criminals’.

To WIN a Family Weekend Ticket for 4 tell us which British band will be one of The Vicar’s Picnic’ headliners.  To enter and view full terms and conditions visit:

The festival takes place on the afternoon on Friday 20th July and all day Saturday 21st July, at The Lees, Yalding, Kent, ME18 6DF.

Closing date: 31st May 2018 – One entry per household

N.B. By entering, all winners agree to their contact information being shared with the competition prize donator.

A NEW Mind & Body Antenatal Course in Tunbridge Wells – The Unity Birth Programme

The Unity Birth Programme

This is a brand new fully comprehensive mind and body antenatal course. Including Yoga, hypnobirth, Active Birth, breathing for birth (and life!), optimum foetal positioning and mindfulness.

Sign up to the Unity Birth Programme and you get loads of fantastic benefits above and beyond the weekly class; Not only will you receive a FREE Pregnancy Yoga Flow DVD and FREE handouts to support your learning but you also gain access to the Unity Birth Partners Scheme where I’ve teamed up with some of Tunbridge Wells’ best local therapists and pregnancy / baby businesses who are offering exclusive discounts to help support your pregnancy and postnatal recovery. Included are reflexology, osteopathy, new born photography, massage, nutrition, family first aid, acupuncture and more!

The classes are held at one of Tunbridge Wells most beautiful Yoga studios, The Yoga House, near the Pantiles.

6 week courses start from April 17th in the evening and Friday mornings from 20th April.

Couples Hypnobirth and Active Birth workshops also starting on Sunday 10th June.

One space is reserved per course at a 50% discount for those in financial difficulty.

I’ve been helping mums get ready for birth for over 16 years. I’m a Senior Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, British Wheel of Yoga teacher, Birthlight Perinatal teacher, Active Birth teacher (trained by Janet Balaskas), KG Hypnobirth teacher and pregnancy and postnatal yoga course tutor at YogaGro.

Pregnancy Yoga and Postnatal Yoga with Baby Massage classes also available in Tunbridge Wells. 07702751143


Peppa Pig’s Muddy Puddle Walk – for Save the Children

Peppa Pig’s Muddy Puddle Walk for Save the Children returns this spring for nurseries and families

This Spring will see the return of the UK’s muddiest fundraising event for little ones – Peppa Pig’s Muddy Puddle Walk for Save the Children. Last year saw 160,000 children across the UK take part, raising an incredible £243,000 for Save the Children’s vital work, and this year the charity hopes even more people will sign up, take part and donate.

Between 23 and 29 April 2018, nurseries, early years groups, families and children up and down the country are being encouraged to take part in a Muddy Puddle Walk to raise money for the international children’s charity.

Organising a Muddy Puddle Walk is a great way for your little ones to explore the world around them and jump in muddy puddles, like Entertainment One’s Peppa Pig, for a worthy cause.  Whether you splash in puddles along a trail at the park or get creative and make your own puddles indoors from paper and foil – your Muddy Puddle Walk will be a fun day to spend together that littles ones won’t forget. Raise funds in the way that suits you – help walkers get sponsored for their walk, ask for a donation to take part or even bake Muddy Puddle cupcakes to sell on the day! The money you raise will help Save the Children’s work to transform the lives of vulnerable children in the UK and around the world.

Sophie Pirouet, Fundraising Campaigns Manager at Save the Children, says: “We hope everyone will get outside this Spring, come rain or shine, and help raise much needed funds for Save the Children. It’s so easy to take part and it’s the perfect excuse to explore the outdoors with your little ones. By jumping in muddy puddles like Peppa Pig and raising money for Save the Children you can help give children a brighter future.”

By taking part in a Muddy Puddle Walk and raising money for Save the Children, you can help vulnerable children around the world have a safe place to play and learn.  Sign up now at  for your free Muddy Puddle Walk Fundraising Pack full of fun Peppa Pig inspired activities to help you get started – with tips for great walks indoors and out, fundraising ideas, fun activities to get your walkers ready for the big day and at the end of the walk, there’s a free Peppa Pig sticker reward for every child. The fundraising pack will also explain what life is like for children in different countries, helping them see how they are making a difference through supporting Save the Children.

Children’s Activity Week – April 30th – May 4th 2018

Don’t miss Children’s Activities Week which will run from April 30 – May 4 2018!

This is a NEW national event celebrating all the positive benefits that clubs, classes and activities bring to the lives of children and families across the UK – helping kids stay healthy, fit and happy!

Throughout the week hundreds of thousands of children will be dressing up for their favourite activity around the theme ‘#WatchMeFly’. There’ll be amazing competitions, VIP visitors to clubs and classes, a world record attempt with Sid Sloane from CBeebies and so much more – all raising vital funds for Caudwell Children and the Children’s Activities Association. For more on the week, to learn how YOU can be involved and to see the fantastic celebrity and sporting Ambassadors already signed up visit

Pub in the Park Tunbridge Wells- Final Line Up

Pub in the Park 2018: stellar music and chef line-up is announced for Tom Kerridge’s food festival!

Michelin-starred chef and TV personality Tom Kerridge’s food festival, Pub in the Park 2018, has released its amazing line-up of the best culinary and music talent that the UK has to offer – including Jamie Cullum, Mel C, Razorlight, Billy Ocean, Tom Odell and Sophie Ellis-Bextor taking to the stage, and superstar chefs Josh Eggleton, Paul Ainsworth and Tom himself cooking up a storm.

Texas, Will Young and KT Tunstall will also be playing at the festivals, and other exciting chef appearances include GBBO winner Candice Brown and Stephen Harris of The Sportsman, which was just named the UK’s best pub in the Top 50 Gastropubs Awards.

The first ever Pub in the Park festival took place in the beautiful town of Marlow in May 2017. Headed up by Tom, and with a stellar line up of chefs, pubs and chart-topping music, the festival sold all 18,000 tickets within 24 hours. Building on the sell-out success of 2017, next year will see the man himself Tom Kerridge take Pub in the Park on tour around the UK.

Tom and his fellow chef mates will be visiting four English towns across the country, bringing his Michelin-starred pubs, plus a selection of other top UK pubs and restaurants to serve their most popular dishes. Every event will celebrate the very best food the country has to offer, combined with great live music, chef demonstrations, top quality shopping and other festival fun. On top of the national chef and music names, each event will celebrate the local community in the form of brilliant local artisans, pubs, local foodie heroes and musicians.

Pub in the Park Tunbridge Wells is delighted to welcome the Tanner brothers with the award-winning Kentish Hare, and The Sportsman (Stephen Harris), which recently made the top 50 list in the 2017 Good Food Guide. Among the stellar line up in Tunbridge Wells includes The Wife of Bath (Mark Sargeant) serving up spectacular Northern Spanish inspired dishes, multi-award winning and Michelin-recommended The Compasses Inn (Rob Taylor), alongside two Michelin-starred Atul Kochhar with his restaurant Indian Essense and much-loved Michelin-starred and TV Chef Angela Hartnett MBE.

Headlining at Pub in the Park Tunbridge Wells is folk-pop singer Tom Odell, Razorlight, R&B legend Billy Ocean, pop queen Sophie Ellis-Bexter, Mel C, and Scouting for Girls. The afternoon crowds will be played to by Toploader and The Christians.

The Pub in the Park Bath, Tunbridge Wells and Knutsford chef line-up also features The Hand & Flowers and The Coach (Tom Kerridge), Paul Ainsworth at No 6 (Paul Ainsworth), The Hardwick (Stephen Terry), and Candice Brown, winner of the Great British Bake Off 2016. Michelin-starred Pony & Trap (Josh Eggleton) with its “field to fork” ethos serving up food sourced as locally as possible will also be joining the line-up in Bath and Knutsford.

Tom Kerridge said “I am delighted to be able to share the magic of Pub in the Park with the beautiful British places of Bath, Tunbridge Wells and Knutsford. Expect great food, brilliant music and an ace day out.”

Pub in the Park will be taking place on the following dates at the following venues:

  • Marlow, Higginson Park 17-20 May
  • Bath, Royal Victoria Park 8-10 June
  • Tunbridge Wells, Dunorlan Park 6-8 July
  • Knutsford, 7-9 September

Pub in the Park is delighted to confirm that Hospitality Action is its charity partner. Hospitality Action is Tom Kerridge’s chosen charity, and offers vital assistance to all who work, or have worked within hospitality in the UK and who find themselves in crisis. The festival will be supporting their work with a number of fundraising initiatives.

Tickets cost £25 for the afternoon and £40 for the evening. Children’s tickets, VIP tickets and all weekend tickets also available – visit for full info.

Tickets to Pub in the Park will go on general sale on Friday 2 February. For visitor information and priority booking on Thursday 1 February, sign up to the Pub Club at

If you are interested in taking part in Pub in the Park as a pub, chef, stallholder or sponsor, please contact the organisers on / 03300 555 729

Please see full chef/pub line-up below:

Tunbridge Wells
Tom Kerridge – The Hand & Flowers and The Coach

The Tanner Brothers – The Kentish Hare

Mark Sargeant – The Wife of Bath

Josh Eggleton – The Pony & Trap

Paul Ainsworth – Paul Ainsworth Restaurants

Rob Taylor – The Compasses Inn

Stephen Terry – The Hardwick

Atul Kochhar – Indian Essence

Stephen Harris – The Sportsman

Angela Hartnett (chef demo only)

Candice Brown – Great British Bake Off winner 2016 (chef demo only)

Please see the full music line up below:

Tunbridge Wells

Tom Odell (Fri eve)

Sophie Ellis Bextor (Fri eve)

Toploader (Sat aft)

Gabrielle Aplin (Sat aft)

Razorlight (Sat eve)

Mel C (Sat eve)

The Christians (Sun aft)

Billy Ocean (Sun eve)

Scouting for Girls (Sun eve)



Hearing Dogs for Deaf People – Great British Dog Walk – 21st April


Hearing Dogs for Deaf People has announced that their much-loved series of dog walks is to continue, for a fourth year, in 2018. This year the Great British Dog Walk returns to the National Trust property, Ightham Mote in Sevenoaks, Kent on Saturday the 21st of April. By coming along, participants will be helping the charity to raise funds and awareness so they can train more life-changing hearing dogs.

The event will feature lots of activities for both adults, children and of course, dogs! There are stalls with lots of gifts, homemade crafts and refreshments as well as a fun dog show, a chance for your dog to try agility and demonstrations of Hearing Dogs at work.

The entry fee is for £10 for adults in advance or £12 on the day and free for children (under 16). There is a free special limited-edition Great British Dog Walk doggie bandana for each adult ticket purchased. You can choose between two distances – A gentle, family friendly 3km walk or a more challenging 8km walk which is unsuitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs.

Hearing Dogs for Deaf People trains dogs to support deaf people both inside and outside the home. The dogs will alert their owners to important sounds such as the doorbell, fire alarm or their baby crying in the night. They also offer companionship and security in an often isolating world. With 1 in 6 of the UK population suffering from hearing loss there is a growing demand for the charity’s services.

The walks will take place in the grounds of Ightham Mote, walkers wishing to enter the house and gardens are welcome to (entry fee applies unless you are a National Trust Member). Unfortunately, dogs that are not assistance dogs will not be permitted into the house and gardens. There is plenty of parking (£2 fee, free for National Trust members), toilets and refreshments will also available. Dogs should be kept on leads while on the walk routes.

For more information and to book your tickets please visit

If you are interested in volunteering at this event or would like to find out more about Hearing Dogs for Deaf People please contact Emily Lyle on 01844 340695 or email

Kent Carers Matter Campaign

County-wide Kent Carers Matter campaign launches

A new county-wide campaign – Kent Carers Matter – has been launched to raise the profile of the 1 in 9 adult Carers in Kent and to increase access to Carer services.

151,000 adults in Kent are Carers, looking after a family member, partner, friend or neighbour who due to physical or mental illness, disability, age related difficulties or an addiction cannot cope without their support. Being a Carer can be a positive experience, but it can also be challenging and exhausting, which can impact on a Carer’s mental and physical health or well-being.

Kent Carers Matter has been developed by five Carer organisations in Kent to:

  • raise the profile of Carers in Kent
  • increase access to Carer services
  • support health and social care professionals to identify and refer Carers to services earlier
  • provide more opportunities for Carers to engage with and have their say about local and national issues that affect them.

If you are a Carer

Whether you describe yourself as a Carer or not, looking after someone can be tough at times, but there is information and support available.

  • Contact one of the Carer organisations in Kent to access a Carer’s Assessment, get information about your rights and entitlements, talk to experts who understand about being a Carer, join a support group to meet other Carers, participate in training or organise a break from caring.
  • Look after your own health and well-being. Tell your GP you are a Carer and how caring is impacting on your physical and mental health.
  • If you also work, you may be able to reduce the stress of juggling being a Carer with work demands by speaking to your employer. There may be some simple changes that could be made to make things easier.
  • Talk to family and friends about your caring role, your concerns and worries if you can.

What you can do to support Carers as a friend, relative or colleague

It’s likely that you’ll know people who are Carers (though they may not use that term.) You can help as a friend, relative or colleague by:

  • Being aware of how being a Carer might affect the rest of their lives.
  • Being a listening ear and offering practical help and support when you can.
  • Recognising how valuable and important being a Carer is.
  • Encouraging Carers to look after their own health and well-being.
  • Suggesting Carers tell their GP and workplace about their caring role.


 Over 6.5 million adults in the UK are Carers (Census 2011)

  • 1 in 9 adults (151,000 people) in Kent are Carers. (Census 2011)
  • 3 in 5 people in Kent will become a Carer at some point in their lives. (State of Caring 2017, Carers UK)
  • Carers in Kent save the public purse around £3 billion every year (Value of Caring 2015, Carers UK)
  • Carers are all ages, come from all walks of life and backgrounds and unlike care workers, are not paid.
  • Many Carers also combine caring for someone with paid work.
  • Carers provide a valuable and often invisible role in society.

 More information

For more information about Kent Carers Matter and to find out what support is available for Carers in your area visit

Top winter walks in Kent

Top winter walks in Kent revealed by The National Trust

A winter walk after Christmas provides the perfect antidote to those days spent indoors unwrapping presents and eating festive feasts. National Trust rangers in Kent have pulled together their top trails to blow away the festive cobwebs and walk off that Christmas excess.

It’s time to wrap up warm, throw on some wellies and get out on an invigorating woodland walk around Emmetts Garden.The frosty countryside around Ightham Mote offers trails for all abilities, and keep your eyes peeled for wildlife such as robins and snowy squirrels on an estate walk around Scotney Castle. Whichever route you choose, there is something to suit all tastes.

With the help of National Trust members, supporters and volunteers, the conservation charity looks after some of London and the South East’s most beautiful countryside and coastline. The National Trust offers access to extraordinary outdoor places so people can get up close to nature and wildlife and are moved to help the Trust look after them.

Here are some of the best local walking trails and events to put a spring in your step during the cold winter months:

Scotney Castle, Kent

Parkland trail

Take an outsiders view of the medieval ruin from the parkland trail, which loops around the estate. In winter, stark views open up across the moat and up towards the house, giving a different view of the historic landscape.

Wrap up warm and turn right into bare-branched Kilndown Wood. Despite the chilly weather squirrels scuttle between the majestic trees, and red berries add a splash of festive red.

Loop back up to Scotney’s house and take a detour into the gardens. The moat is stunning on a clear winter’s day, with light morning mists giving way to calm reflections in the water.

Pop into the café for a festive treat before you go – it’s Christmas after all.

Ightham Mote, Kent

Ightham Mote’s walk to Shipbourne and Fairlawne

This circular walk begins with a wander through ancient Scathes Wood, before taking in some wonderful views of the Kentish countryside on the way to the neighbouring estate of Fairlawne and on to Shipbourne.

The trail passes beautiful churchyards, across fields and into sheltered woodland. There are some stunning views of the Kent countryside to be had along the way, framed by frosty bare branches.

A full circle will bring you back to Ightham Mote and the cosy Mote Café, with warming festive drinks and seasonal treats in store.

Emmetts Garden, Kent

Weardale Walk

Enjoy a brisk winter walk from Emmetts Garden to neighbouring Chartwell. You’ll be walking in the heart of the Kent countryside, steeped in history with fascinating landmarks to see along the way.

The Weardale Walk is fully waymarked, and passes through the woodland areas of Toys Hill and Hosey Common, as well as the pretty hamlet of French Street.

Allow time to pause and take in wintry views across the Weald of Kent, almost uninterrupted by man-made landmarks.

The trail will return you back to Emmetts Garden, passing the Old Stables tearoom back to the carpark.


For more winter walks visit:

Penshurst Place Shortlisted in Happy Family Category in Top Tourism Award
  • Penshurst Place is shortlisted in new Visit Kent Tourism Awards 2017
  • Public are invited to vote for winners – starting today and closing on 20th October
  • Each public vote automatically entered into a free competition to win six days out in Kent*

Penshurst Place and Gardens is shortlisted in the “Happy Family Award” category in the newly introduced Visit Kent Tourism Awards 2017.  Having been chosen from nearly 100 entries, the West Kent family favourite is now relying on the public to vote for it to win the title by registering their support before voting closes on 20th October.

The Kent Tourism Awards scheme comprises seven categories and has been introduced by Visit Kent to recognise and reward exceptional standards of customer service and outstanding visitor experience within Kent’s tourism industry. This is the first year the scheme has run, and competition to win one of the prestigious new awards has been fierce with 97 companies entering and just 22 tourism businesses making it through to the final shortlist. The winner will be decided by public vote and announced on 24th November.

Lucy McLeod, Head of Marketing & Events says “There are so many fantastic things to see and do in Kent so it’s wonderful to have to be shortlisted in the first Visit Kent tourism awards. Penshurst Place is at its core, a family home, and we work hard to ensure those families values are reflected in what we offer our visitors. We look forward to providing many more years of exciting experiences for families to enjoy and hope the public get behind the scheme and votes for us.”

Penshurst Place runs annual events committed to providing families with educational and entertaining trips and experiences. There are eleven walled ‘garden rooms’ that offer a fantastic backdrop for hide and seek and, and during special events, can be seen concealing secret clues to garden trails. Families who visit the estate can also enjoy the huge adventure playground, historic house, and woodland trail, as well as yearly events including crafts, insect experiences, falconry, historical re-enactments, storytelling and the summer maize maze.

Visit Kent CEO, Sandra Matthews-Marsh MBE said: “The judges were really impressed with the number and standard of entries in our first year of running the awards. All of the finalists in the family friendly category demonstrated how they’re continually delivering exceptional experiences for the family market and showcasing Kent to families as part of the visitor experience and through their marketing. Do make sure to cast your votes for your chosen finalists, and make your choices count.”

To vote simply go to Visit Kent’s website or and choose your favourite from each category.  Anyone who votes will automatically be entered in to a free prize draw to win six sensational days out at a range of Kent attractions in 2018, worth approx. £300 (*terms and conditions apply). You’ll need to enter your email address and your full name to enter the competition. A winner will be selected at random on Monday 23rd October.

About the Visit Kent Tourism Awards

A new scheme introduced this year by Visit Kent, The Kent Tourism Awards sets out to recognise exceptional standards of customer service and outstanding visitor experiences within Kent’s tourism industry. With seven categories of awards up for grabs, the scheme attracted 97 entries and 22 of which have been shortlisted.

The Kent Tourism Awards Scheme was created to further motivate the county’s tourism businesses to create even more compelling experiences and adopt best practice.

Finalists will receive an official award, accreditation and feature in a Visit Kent social media and PR campaign. Winners will also get the chance to go forward to the national Awards for Excellence operated by Visit England (subject to Visit England eligibility criteria).

 Kent Tourism Awards finalists 2017

Rest Your Head Award, sponsored by M Assessment Services (Small Accommodation Provider of the Year)

  • Elmley Nature Reserve
  • House of Agnes
  • Coastal Mill Cottage – Mulberry Cottages

Happy Family Award, sponsored by Quinn Estates (Family Friendly Business of the Year) ‘Best Family Day Out’ or Happy Family Award?

  • Penshurst Place and Gardens
  • Diggerland
  • Nethergong Camping

Big Sleep Award, sponsored by Sleeping Giant Media (Large Accommodation Provider of the Year)

  • Eastwell Manor
  • Hotel du Vin
  • The Yarrow Hotel

Big Day Out Award, sponsored by Brachers (Large Visitor Attraction of the Year)

  • The Historic Dockyard, Chatham
  • Turner Contemporary
  • Dreamland
  • Leeds Castle

Hidden Gem Award, sponsored by Southeastern (Small Visitor Attraction of the Year)

  • Battle of Britain Memorial
  • Copper Rivet Distillery
  • Go Ape Bedgebury

Raising the Bar Award, sponsored by Shepherd Neame (Tourism Pub of the Year)

  • Buoy and Oyster
  • The Dog at Wingham
  • The White Horse

Lasting Impression Award, sponsored by Pillory Barn (Ultimate Tourism Experience of the Year)

  • Champing – Churches Conservation Trust, St Mary’s Fordwich
  • Canterbury Medieval Pageant – Canterbury BID
  • bOing! – Gulbenkian, University of Kent