Thanet community news: Spring clean, radio society, walk, hospice donation and more

Six year old Isobel at Ramsgate fire station Photo KFRS

Kent Fire and Rescue Ramsgate

While it’s a long way off, six-year-old Isobel Kenyon is not only dreaming about being a firefighter one day, but also being in charge of Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS)!

The idea started after Isobel was playing in a park near KFRS’ newest fire station in Ramsgate and spotted firefighters training. After exchanging waves with the crew, curious Isobel asked her dad Rob Kenyon if she could be a firefighter when she grows up.

Rob explains that he and his wife Emma read stories to Isobel about extraordinary women of the last century and one of those was about the first female Asian firefighter in America.

“We are really keen to encourage Isobel to be confident, to know that she should always follow her dreams and that she can be anything she puts her mind to.

“it’s important that Isobel and other young children don’t grow up with the mindset that boys do certain jobs and girls do certain jobs. Every one of us has a place in community and society. We should all have an equal chance to be and do anything we want in life.”

After learning about Isobel’s aspirations, KFRS’ Chief Executive, Ann Millington wrote to Isobel inviting her to visit Ramsgate fire station to become an honorary firefighter for the afternoon.

Isobel met the on-duty crew along with two of the newer recruits’ firefighters: Lora Burkhill and Shaunagh Brown, who is also an England Women’s rugby player and Nikki Escudier, a KFRS watch manager responsible for training new recruits.

Nikki said: “I was exactly the same as Isobel. I knew from an early age that this was the job I wanted to do and love it every bit as much today as I did on my first day 16 years ago.”

During her visit, Isobel got the opportunity to dress as a firefighter, join the crew on a mock 999 call in the fire engine and put out pretend flames using a hose. Isobel was also presented with a framed certificate and a model fire engine.

Isobel said: “I want to be a firefighter and be in charge one day, so that I can help people and encourage more girls to become firefighters.”

Ramsgate Town Spring Clean

Once again Ramsgate Town Centre Spring Clean was a wonderful show of community pride. It was organised by Raushan Ara as part of the Believe in Thanet interfaith community group. Despite brisk weather some 30 volunteers joined in with the event, as part of the Great Ramsgate Spring Clean. In all we covered 13 streets: High Street; Cannon Street; Chapel Place; Harbour Street; Meeting Street; Hertford Street; Addington Street; Liverpool Lawn; Adelaide Garden; Albert Street; Grundy Hill and the lower half of Queen Street. In Charlotte & Albert Court we also helped clear the gardens of litter  as well as weeding and sweeping.  All together we collected over 30 bags of litter and weeds.

After the litter pick a light lunch was enjoyed at the Salvation Army.  Raushan would like to thank all the volunteers especially the learners and teachers from Liberty Group, Rabbi Cliff and his wife and finally Carl Whitehead for the use of the Salvation Hall and their liability insurance. This year the Great Spring Clean has attracted a wide range of community groups and I would to congratulate them on a job well done. The town is looking much improved and we look forward to welcoming our out of town visitors.

Hilderstone Radio Society

Izzy Tighe,12, a member of the Hilderstone Radio Society, and her friend Freya Scholefield (pictured) have successfully submitted an experiment to be carried out on the International Space Station.

They are one of 135 teams across Europe that have been granted ‘flight status’ for Mission Space Lab. The teams’ experiments were selected based on their experiment quality, the code quality and the feasibility of the experiment idea. The selected programs have been tested on ground for 3 hours each,  to ensure the experiment programs will run without errors on board. Izzy and Freya’s experiment is to use the accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer on the Astro-Pi to determine the smoothness of the flight of the ISS during its 90 minute orbit of the Earth.

The Hilderstone Radio Society is keen to encourage girls into coding which will form an important part of space missions. If you would like to learn more about amateur radio, electronics and computing then contact the club secretary at [email protected]


We are looking for supporters and volunteers to join us Saturday, May 18 as we walk along the beautiful coast to raise funds for Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in East Kent.

Motor Neurone Disease (MND) is a devastating neurological disease affecting the motor neurones.  Over 50% of people diagnosed with MND will die within 2 years and others will suffer progressive debilitating loss of movement, speech, breathing and eating abilities.

The MND Association exists to support people living with this incurable illness, by providing opportunities to meet others affected, by providing information, goods and services people living with MND, their carers and families.  We also lobby local and national government to ensure people living with MND get necessary services and support research for a cure.

We raise funds to support the provision of these services in East Kent and we are looking for people to support us in these endeavours, by walking to raise sponsorship.

Our walk will be from Whitstable to Broadstairs approximately 24 miles, alternately you may walk from Minnis Bay to Broadstairs approximately 11 miles or from Margate to Broadstairs approximately 6 miles.

Entry fee to the walk is £10 which includes insurance, a T shirt and a memento of the day.

You can find full details of our walk by visiting where you can see a map of our walk, training programs, sponsorship forms and the walk plan.

Should you wish to donate to our walk please visit

Should you have any enquiries please contact [email protected]

Pilgrims Hospice

DONATION: Karen Cooper, Peter Ireland, Anne Pritchard, Bob Dalgish at Ramsgate Rooks.

Customers of local family butchers Rooks in Ramsgate, have raised an amazing £1,415.32 in support of Pilgrims Hospices since 2016. Peter Ireland, shop manager said: “I have worked for Rooks for 39 years and our team has seen many family members and friends cared for at the hospice.  We understand the need to support this special charity who work so hard to provide end of life care. This is our way of saying thank you.”

Karen Kenward, Community Fundraising Manager said: “The collection tins draw great awareness to our charity. We raise around £15,000 a year with collection tins in Thanet, we have such wonderful support within the local community. Thank You.”

The money raised will help to ensure we can continue providing our skilled and compassionate care, free of charge, to more than 2,400 patients, their carers and their families every year. With 75% of our funding coming through voluntary contributions from our local community, your support makes the  difference.

If you would like to place a collection tin within a retail outlet or business please contact the hospice in Thanet by calling 01843 233934

If you or someone you know is coping with a life limiting illness and you think you may benefit from Pilgrims support, talk to your GP or Healthcare Professional about the options or click here to read about our Wellbeing and Social Programme.

Ramsgate RNLI

Our first quiz night of the year was a thoroughly enjoyable evening at Crampton Tower Main Hall which raised £353.50 for RNLI Ramsgate Lifeboat.

Sincere thanks to everyone who supported the event and a special thank you to Kevin and Janet from Crampton for all their hard work and for providing such an entertaining quiz.

Ramsgate Society hustings

The Ramsgate Society will hold a Husting onn April 18 at 7.30pm at the Royal Temple Yacht Club in respect of the Local Elections in May.

A Husting is a meeting at which candidates in an election address potential voters who are then able to ask questions about the policies the candidates would pursue if elected. The local elections on May 2 come at a time when there are a lot of issues facing Thanet generally and Ramsgate in particular.

The future of both Manston Airport and the Port of Ramsgate are in the melting pot at the moment with strong views on both issues. Meanwhile local authority finances are in a critical condition with the complete removal of all Central Government Grant to Local Authorities in 2020.

The effect of these austerities is already beginning to show but is likely to get much more serious over the next few years. Meanwhile there seems to be no end to the problem of litter in the town and homelessness and the shortage of affordable housing has become a serious problem. There is a lack of investment in our infrastructure and public realm and many people consider these problems as symptomatic of poor governance and management at Thanet District Council.

This Husting is your chance to meet the candidates face to face. To ask questions about the things that concern you and to hear from them what they intend to do to make Ramsgate a better place to live and work

Although the local elections on May 2 cover the whole of Thanet it is intended that this husting will focus on the Ramsgate wards as this is the Ramsgate Society’s area of benefit.  Each political party that is fielding candidates in at least two electoral wards within Ramsgate has been asked to send a representative to the Hustings.  Each of these ‘party candidates’ will have the right to present their case for three minutes and to answer questions from the floor. Independent candidates will then be invited to make their personal statements, again lasting no longer than three minutes. After this the meeting will be open to a question and answer session during which members of the audience will have the chance to raise their concerns with the candidates.

The Ramsgate Society is strictly non party political in its activities and these husting will be conducted as a “non-selective husting” as recommended by the Electoral Commission. A non-selective husting is one that would not reasonably be regarded as intending to influence voters to vote for or against any particular party or candidate.

If the future of Ramsgate is something you care about come and meet the candidates in the May elections and discus your concerns and ask them what they propose to do for the town if they are elected. The meeting will close at approximately 9pm with time afterwards for informal discussion and networking over tea and coffee.

Ralph Hoult community events

Every Second Thursday at St Laurence Church Hall at 7.30pm

May 9 -Ramsgate in the 60s

June 13 -Royal Ramsgate

July 11- What Has Ramsgate Done For The World?

Every Tuesday 10am to noon – Ramsgate History Workshop Club at TCDT The Hereson Family & Community Centre Lillian Road Ramsgate. Free.

Every second and fourth Wednesday 10am to noon in Tesco Westwood upstairs in Community Space – The Thanet Seniors Friendship Club for 50 pLus and it is free. Bring a friend and make more friends.

More details from Ralph Hoult OBE 07969 672 674 or email [email protected]

Paramount Foundation

A property company has created a new foundation to help support children, young people, homeless and vulnerable people in the areas it works in, including Thanet.

The Paramount Foundation, founded by Paramount Independent Property Services based in Rochester, will coordinate a programme of sports, creative arts, gardening and IT, and support community groups to help get young people into education or work.

A key priority for the new foundation, which is a Community Interest Company, will work with partners to provide education and interventions for drugs and alcohol, sexual health, knife crime, gang culture and anti-social behaviour.

Paramount Independent Property Services (PIPS) is a provider of specialist temporary accommodation services in Kent and the South East. It works closely with individuals and families as well as landlords and local authorities, and has set up the Paramount Foundation in order to invest back in the communities it serves.

The foundation will focus on improving the lives and wellbeing of the young people it will work with and be led by Foundation Manager, Matt Salisbury, supported by a team at PIPS. The initial focus of the Foundation will be on the communities of Medway, Maidstone and Thanet, with the aspiration to go countywide.

The Foundation aims to provide IT sessions for local residents and will also host activities such as free Box-fit classes, creative arts and gardening projects in the area.

Plans are also being developed to fund social activities and trips for children and young people to provide positive life experiences and social interactions.

Matt Salisbury said: “Across Kent and Medway there are many young people who are vulnerable to making decisions which will profoundly affect their future health and wellbeing.

“We will be able to provide education and interventions for drugs and alcohol, sexual health, knife crime, gang culture and anti-social behaviour through workshops, alongside sports and creative arts events.

“We’ve already made significant progress in developing a programme of activities and have actively engaged with other community groups to help make a difference.”

The Foundation plans to support young people and help them access courses or qualification opportunities such as NCS or Duke of Edinburgh Awards, and help with private tutoring, college courses, apprenticeships, work experience.

Further information on the Paramount foundation can be found at