Thanet community news: New era for butchers, clubs, art and Silver Sunday fun

Alan Dadd and Justin Marsh Photo Frank Leppard

Dadds Butchers Westgate

Dadd’s Butchers in Westgate has been taken over by staff member Justin Marsh following the retirement of Alan Dadd.

Alan opened the Westgate shop in September 2010. Prior to that he was in St Peters working for Mr Cox. Alan has been a butcher since the age of 15.

Justin worked for Alan for the last four years. The 49-year-old, who is due to wed partner Diane but has had to postpone due to the pandemic, says the business name, staff and service will remain as before.

Photo Frank Leppard

Justin packed in his factory job to go self-employed in the IT field and took a part time job at Dadd’s for extra income.

He said: “Alan has always been great and now I have bought the business off him. It will carry on as usual.”

Thanet Schools Young Artist’s Festival

The Thanet Schools Young Artists’ Exhibition 2020 is now open for viewing at The Margate School in Margate High Street, check for opening times.

Works from 39 Thanet schools and colleges and over 500 paintings to view .

Ramsgate Rotary Club

Despite the fact they are currently unable to hold their normal weekly meetings, members of Ramsgate Rotary Club are continuing to play their part in trying to fulfil community duties.
They are spending time ‘cleaning up’ The Chine on Ramsgate West Cliff, in conjunction  with the Western  Undercliff Group .
They are being led by President Julie Miller, who said: “Although life is far from normal members are treeing their best to maintain their comity links and this is a project we felt was very worthwhile.”
Anybody interested in finding out more about the club, which is meeting on Zoom, should go to the Ramsgate Rotary Club website

Silver Sunday

Kent Coast Volunteering is not letting Covid stand in the way of their tradition of putting on a celebration to mark Silver Sunday for Thanet’s older residents. They are hosting a free online programme of exciting taster sessions from 10am – 4pm on Sunday 4 October. These sessions will bring culture, music and exercise into the homes of Thanet’s over 55’s.

The programme starts at 10am with a talk from local published author Jane Wenham-Jones of BroadstairsLit. Jane will talk about writing in Thanet and how to get published. There will also be the opportunity to ask questions. From 10am – 11am, there will be relaxing sessions where you can learn the techniques of natural lift face massage and hand and arm massage.

At 12pm Turner Contemporary will be talking about the gallery, JMW Turner, future exhibitions and their work with older people. 1-2pm will see a talk from Margate Museum, followed by a Tai Chi taster session at 2pm. To round off the day, local singer Hollie Harris will be performing popular songs, from the 1940’s to the present, that participants can sing along to at home.

Senior Project Co-ordinator, Samantha Howlett, said: “With the latest Covid restrictions announced only this week, I think a lot of people are feeling rather subdued. We hope our Silver Sunday event will bring some much-needed cheer to Thanet’s over 55’s and take their minds off the pandemic”.

Silver Sunday is a day in the national calendar, the first Sunday in October, which asks the nation to pause and think about older people and celebrate their contribution to society.

Please visit or email [email protected] for details of how to take part. Internet access is required to join the sessions, which will take place via video conferencing platform Zoom. Support is available for people who are not familiar with Zoom.

QEQM Hospital League of Friends

We’re delighted these items we recently funded are now on the Wards and in daily use:

8 red portering wheelchairs solely for the use of patients in A & E costing a total of £4,329

A music system with DAB radio costing £189 for patients undergoing MRI scans to help make the experience less stressful

Cabinets, baskets & other units to improve & enlarge the storage facilities withing Paediatric A & E costing almost £5,000.

We can only continue to support our local Hospital in this way with the public’s help, especially as most of our fundraising activities can no longer take place because of the pandemic. So please kindly consider donating or leaving us a legacy in your will – you can even specify the Ward or Department in which you want the money spent. More information at our website or on our Facebook page.

Broadstairs Rotary Club

The President has been ‘forced’ to serve another term. This isn’t the tale of a continuing American saga, but much closer to home, at Broadstairs Rotary Club.

Much of the fun in being President of a Rotary Club, apart from the weekly members’ meetings, is getting out and about meeting the various organisations who benefit from Rotary’s help in different ways as well as visits to other local Clubs and the event of the year – the Annual President’s Night.

President Sue Johnson said “There are so many unknowns with Coronavirus. It looked as if limitations on face-to-face meetings might apply for some time to come, so it was agreed that I should stay in the chair for another year. We have continued to serve the community, helping Oasis Domestic Abuse Service, a couple of food bank initiatives, face masks and goodies for NHS staff. We have also continued to ‘meet’ every Thursday, but Zoom meetings cannot fully replace the fun we have at our face to face evenings over dinner.”

Sue, originally from Ramsgate, has lived in Thanet all her life. She has always been involved in community service of some sort – as a Cubs Akela, on schools’ Parent Teachers Associations or through the Church. After her children had grown and flown, she went to University to get her nursing qualifications and has worked in various NHS roles since. She is now a Clinical Support and Learning Facilitator based at the QEQM.

Sue added: “There was an empty gap in my life after the children left home. I considered myself lucky in life and wanted to give something back. Happily, I found Broadstairs Rotary Club 10 years ago. It’s a great Club, a group of people who accept and respect each other.”

“These are the strangest of times in terms of our social and community lives, but Broadstairs Rotary is working to find creative ways to continue serving the community.”

East Kent Hospitals

Poorly children across East Kent Hospitals were given a boost thanks to a generous donation from The Top Model Foundation.

The charity donated 140 goody bags, full of toys and other things to distract youngsters during their treatment.

They were presented to staff at Dolphin Ward at the Kent and Canterbury Hospital by representatives from The Top Model Foundation, which was founded by professionals from the fashion industry and is dedicated to improving and changing the lives of children and young people in the UK.

The visit was arranged after they decided to support the Child Health appeal organised by East Kent Hospitals Charity.

Dee Neligan, fundraising and development officer for the hospital charity, said: “We were delighted to receive these goodie bags, and the children accessing our care have been thrilled to receive them.

“Due to COVID19, play facilities across our Child Health services have been reassessed, and children can only have ‘single use’ toys and games as a result. The Top Model Foundation have helped us to make a big difference for our sickest children.”

For more information on the charity visit or to support the Child Health campaign visit

Isle of Thanet Photographic Society

September has been a busy month for the camera club as the new season got under way with excellent talks (via Zoom) given by Leigh Woolford from South Wales and Kieran Metcalfe from Greater Manchester. We’ve also announced the results of our Lockdown challenge for members.

Leigh’s talk was wide-ranging with some excellent images of sporting and musical events, street and urban photography, finishing with some beautiful landscape shots of the Lofoten Islands and Iceland.

Kieran showed us his techniques for shooting into the sun and how to capture the sunburst effect whilst blocking out the flare on the image. He also explained the use of side-lighting and how shadows accentuate patterns in the landscape. Some excellent images of sunrise and sunset as well as astro-photography gave us great ideas for experimenting.

Club member Peter Brewer was declared the overall winner of our Lockdown challenge, with chairman Laura Drury being the runner up. For the challenge members had to produce an image for each subject, namely, Leaves, Order, Cooking, Keys, Doorway, Outdoors, Washing and Naughty. Peter’s image of Leaves is attached and highly appropriate as autumn colours begin to beautify our countryside and gardens. A great time for photography!

Our first competition of the new season will be on 5 October and we have a full programme of talks and presentations booked through to June 2021. Full details are on our new-look website ( ) and we are on Facebook.

We are a friendly club and welcome everyone with an interest in photography, encouraging members to get creative and take part. The annual membership fee has been held at the previous year’s level of £35. Non-members can attend our virtual meetings for £5 per session.

Kent Community Foundation

Since March, grant maker Kent Community Foundation has awarded over £2 million in emergency funding to individuals, charities and community groups across Kent and Medway who have either been affected by, or are working with, those who have been affected by the pandemic

Over 600 grants totalling just over £2m have been awarded to organisations and families from Kent Community Foundation Emergency Funds, which were set up in March in response to the overwhelming needs of communities across Kent and Medway. To put the enormity of this in context, Kent Community Foundation usually provides grants totalling £2.5m over a twelve-month period. In what has been a very difficult time for the charitable sector the Foundation will award over £4m to good causes across the county this year.

The grants of between £250 and £16,000 have been awarded to grassroots charities who make a huge difference within their community.

Westgate and Birchington Inner Wheel

Westgate & Birchington Inner Wheel member and Cancer survivor Hazel Hedges plans to walk 88 miles for Air Ambulance and Viking Unit at QEQM!

The Inner Wheel District of Kent and East Sussex (District 12) celebrates 88 years this year. To commemorate this milestone, Joint Chairmen, Sheila Cragg and Christine Davies have suggested that members do ‘88’ somethings! They are both planning to walk 88 miles during the 8 months from 8th August to 8th April, but others are planning to make 88 cup cakes or make a quilt with 88 squares, swim 88 laps of the pool or make 88 donations of 10p, etc. to raise money for the District charity, Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance.

Westgate & Birchington Inner Wheel club members have reason to be grateful to the Air Ambulance, as they were instrumental in saving a member’s life, after she fell and broke her neck. All the club members are happy to support this charity.

However, Chris Hedges, President of Westgate & Birchington Rotary club this year, and he has chosen two charities which reflect the help, support and treatment that his wife, Hazel, a Breast Cancer survivor received, namely the ‘Viking Unit’ at QEQM Hospital, (where she had all her life-saving Chemotherapy treatment) and Macmillan Nurses, who were always on hand to help and support her. She got the ‘All Clear’ in March.

Therefore, Chris and Hazel (pictured above) plan to walk the 88 miles over 8 months to raise money jointly for the Air Ambulance and the Viking Unit. Some may remember that the W & B Rotary club were instrumental in raising a high proportion of the money for the Unit some years ago, when they hosted ‘70’s Extravaganza’ at Quex in 2008, raising £50,000.

Chris and Hazel’s sponsored walk started on the 8th August and Hazel has already done 19 miles towards the 88 miles! Unfortunately, Chris has recently had surgery and at the moment is unable to walk far, but in his absence her daughter or friends accompany her! They try to go out most days & Hazel is now mostly managing a mile, & sometimes even 2 miles! When Hazel had the ‘All Clear’ she could barely manage a walk to the beach and back from their home in Sea Road, Westgate. They plan to split the money raised in half to go to the Air Ambulance & Viking Unit! W & B Rotary and the Air Ambulance both have Gift Aid status so they can get 25% more of any money raised!

They would be grateful for sponsorship for this venture! Contact Hazel on 01843 833565  or 07889 655497.

Park Avenue Woodland Group

As members of the Park Avenue Woodland Group Broadstairs, we would like to thank wholeheartedly the chairman and the councillors for the very positive virtual Thanet District Council meeting held on the 10th September. A  substantial part of the meeting and most of the the public questions concerned Thanet tree coverage and the environment.

We would also like to express our gratitude to the many councillors, outside Viking ward, who spoke at the meeting in support of our cause – to maintain Park Avenue woodland as an open space and to insist that Parkstairs Ltd replant the trees they felled in February.

Moving forward, we would hope that we can rely on the relevant council departments and enforcement officers to demonstrate the same level of commitment needed to preserve our  green spaces.


  1. Purchased my meat from Ron Cox for many, many years both for business and privately traveling from Westgate to St Peter’s following the closure of the Westgate butchers. Purchased from Dadd’s since its opening.. 50 years of purchasing from the same butcher must be testament to its service and quality of meat. Enjoy your well deserved retirement Alan, get your comfy chair and watch the Koi.

  2. Dadd’s is by far Thanet’s best butchers. Great news that it’s continuing.

    Now, can we see the return of a fishmongers to Westgate or Birchington?

  3. Long live small businesses and in particular butchers, the meat you get from these super stores just doesn’t have the quality, please everyone support your small businesses

Comments are closed.