Thanet community news: Young artists, Spring clean, Rotary, Dumpton safari, lunch to support locals and Martha Trust

The Great Ramsgate Spring Clean

*The Great Ramsgate Spring Clean

Thanet is a beautiful place – but fly tipping and litter often make it much less lovely than it should be. A group of Ramsgate residents are on a mission to change that – and they’re asking for your help.

Ramsgate Town Team runs a few different initiatives to try to tackle the town’s litter problem. One of them is the Litter & Recycling Forum, set up 3 years ago to bring together Thanet District Council, Ramsgate Town Council and some of the many voluntary groups that look after areas of the town together to reduce litter.

One of the things the Forum does is co-ordinate the annual Great Ramsgate Spring Clean as part of Keep Britain Tidy’s national Big Spring Clean, with litter-picking events running all across the town. This year the Spring Clean starts on Friday, May 28 and runs until Sunday, June 13, and at least 15 litter picks are taking place, each led by a different local group.

Forum Chair Tricia Austin said: “The Spring Clean is a real team effort: TDC providers litter pickers and rubbish bags, the Town Team provides hand sanitiser, Ramsgate Town Council technicians are busy throughout the fortnight ferrying equipment and picking up and disposing of bags of rubbish, and our fantastic local groups of volunteers lead sessions in their own areas. We have events taking place in every Ramsgate Council ward this year, from Northwood to Montefiore, ranging from small ones where neighbours tidy up their own streets to the Ramsgate Society’s big ‘Chine to Chine’ coastal clean-up which marks the end of the Spring Clean on Sunday 13th June.

“Anyone who wants to help can just turn up, wearing old clothes and bringing their own gloves if possible. Most of the litter picks run for a couple of hours, but you don’t have to stay the whole time: even if you can only spare 15 minutes, you can make a real difference. All the events are family-friendly – so come along, bring the kids and get some fresh air while doing something really worthwhile to improve our town!”

A list of Spring Clean events can be found on the #GreatRamsgateSpringClean Facebook group or by emailing [email protected]. And it’s not too late to organise extra litter picks: if you’re keen to get something going in your own area, or if you have any questions about taking part, you can email the Town Team or message Tricia on 07775 794408.

Rotary Young Artist Competition

Every year young people are encouraged to enter the Rotary Young Artist competition in three age categories; Junior 7-10 years, Intermediate 11- 13 years and Senior 14 –18.

The competition has a different theme each year, and this year it was ‘Wild Nature’.

Due to Covid 19, many schools were closed so we tried many ways to get the information out using social media, local magazines, and by word of mouth.

The District Winners went through to the National Competition and we delighted to announce the names of our local talented young people.

Junior – Naomi Wright  9 years ( Mountain scene)

Intermediate – Elena Wrobel 12 years (Bobcat)

Senior – Nicole Brokane  15 years (Dolphin)

Thanks must go to Ramsgate local artist Steve Alexander, Margate Rotary Member Brian Homewood who organised this year’s District Competition, and Jean Shrubb from Ashford Rotary for aiding the judging

A huge achievement, well done to everyone who entered this prestigious competition.

East Kent Hospitals Trust

A dementia support worker at the QEQM has raised more than £1,500 for East Kent Hospitals Charity’s Dementia Appeal.

Gemma McNutt decided to hold a raffle to mark Dementia Action Week and secured dozens of donations from local businesses as prizes.

She sold tickets to her colleagues, and at the same time asked them to contribute a positive word about dementia to a mood board she created. The words will be turned into a graphic she hopes will be displayed in the hospital.

Gemma said: “I wanted to use Dementia Action Week to raise money and also awareness and this seemed like a great way to do both.

“I was overwhelmed by the generosity of our local businesses – many of them have had a very difficult year because of the pandemic but they were all very willing to donate.”

Gemma presented a certificate to each business to thank them for their support, and many displayed theirs in their window to mark Dementia Action Week.

She added: “I want to say a huge thank you to all the shops and businesses who gave prizes for the raffle, and to all my colleagues for their support.”

The winners were drawn on Friday by Dee Neligan, senior charity officer for East Kent Hospitals Charity, and the total raised was £1542.50.

Dee said: “Dementia Action Week is the perfect time to support our Dementia Appeal. Gemma has worked incredibly hard to raise this money and it will make a real difference to our patients living with dementia.

“It could help fund arts activity sessions, or provide specialist equipment such as memory boxes or wall coverings to help people feel more relaxed while they are in our hospitals.”

The following businesses donated prizes:

Comfort Inn, Ramsgate; Eyecatchers hair and beauty; Little Beau Beauty; Hassan’s barbers; Comfort Inn The Salon; Hornby Hobbies; Goodwin’s in Westbrook; The Cow Shed in Birchington; Richard Trade Tyres and Repair; Hang Loose Bluewater; Palm Springs Hair and Beauty Cliftonville; The Eye Lash Club by Victoria; Jazzette’s Hair and Beauty Cliftonville; Christy Wine Bar Birchington; Bodilight Broadstairs; Blush Hair and Beauty Westgate; Burger King Westwood Cross; Secret Garden Florist, Kaspas Westwood Cross; Lush Canterbury; Watling Tyres Margate/Gravesend; TG Aviation; Tesco Westwood Cross; Lashes by Harley; St Augustine’s Golf Club; Replenish Beauty Westgate; Pegwell Bay Hotel; Simply Floral Cliftonville; Infinity Fitness Gym Margate; Avon hamper donated by Hayley Berry.

Anti-litter poster competition

Sir Roger Gale and Craig Mackinlay MPs are urging primary schools in Thanet to take part in an anti-litter poster competition during September and October.

The constituency-wide competition is being run by anti-litter charity, Litter Angels, which was set up to educate children about the negative impact that litter has on our environment. The charity is backed by McDonald’s and Keep Britain Tidy.

The competition is targeted at year-5 pupils. Schools that agree to take part will receive a lesson pack with instructions on how to enter.

Once all the entries have been received they will then be narrowed down to one winner from each school. Each winner will receive a goodie bag containing a certificate, a personalised mug and a copy of the Litter Angels storybook.

One overall winning poster will be displayed in McDonald’s car parks across Thanet and both the school and winning pupil will each win a cash prize.

Sir Roger said: “As we know from local experience of our beaches and roadsides  – just look at the verges on the on the Thanet Way – litter is a major issue . One way of tackling to help to address this  is to teach future generations the impact litter has on our environment, using a fun and artistic approach, in the hope they will take pride in where they live and not drop litter.

“I hope local schools will want to take part in the Litter Angels anti-litter poster competition to achieve that aim.”

To register your school email [email protected] or visit

Thanet Rotary

Thanet Rotary Club recently learned of the inspiring work of the charity Mary’s Meals ( which aims to give one good meal every school day to some of the world’s poorest children. They are now feeding over 1.8 million children.

For Mary’s Meals it is important not only to meet the needs of the hungry child, but also that they attract children to the classroom where they can gain a basic education. Instead of working or begging for food, children can attend class knowing that the promise of a meal each day will enable them to concentrate and look to a future where they can be free of poverty and reliance on aid.

Mary’s Meals have a vision that invites all of us to offer our money, goods, skills, time or prayer to help those suffering extreme poverty in the world’s poorest communities. Incredibly, it costs no more than £15.90  to feed a child for a whole school year and Thanet Rotary Club have donated £1,590 which will feed 100 children. The money comes from members’ donations reflecting money saved over the Covid period.

There are 6 Rotary Clubs across Thanet. If anyone is interested in joining Rotary or working with us for the benefit of the community, local and international, why not check us out at With the promise of an end to the Covid restrictions which have held us all back, we are getting ready to reboot and engage in the fun and purpose which Rotary offers.

And if you are part of a group or community which might be interested in hearing more about the work of Mary’ Meals, we recommend you  contact  [email protected]’/;.

Dumpton Garden Safari

Dozens of stalls will take part in the first Dumpton Garden Safari, organised by resident Laura Chapman.

The event takes place on Sunday, May 30 from 10.30am to 3pm.

Laura said: “It’s not my idea. It’s an idea another lady had that I’m using. Because of lockdown people decided to use the time to sort through their homes. But, also due to lockdown they couldn’t donate it to charity shops because everything was shut. This led to people trying to sell it on social media marketing groups and not everyone is successful at that.

“The lady whose idea it was thought that a massive community involvement garden sale was a great idea and the few that have happened because of her idea were very popular. That’s why I decided to arrange one for Dumpton.”

The Safari will be held across 13 roads in the Dumpton area.

Birchington lunch to support local businesses

Staff at Your World Financial Services in Birchington have been supporting local business by shutting up shop and choosing a village destination for lunch each day.

Boss Duncan Forster is a Birchington local who has worked everywhere from the newsagents – as a paperboy and working up to assistant manager – to being a barman at the pub on Birchington Square.

In 2019 he went to a  London auction and bought the Old Lloyds Bank  in Birchington Square. It had been empty for four years and suffered very bad water damage from an extremely leaky roof and flooded basement.

Very soon after purchasing the bank Covid hit and brought with it a string of delays and knock on effects to Duncan’s plans. Despite this he renovated the ground floor into an office and has grown the team from 4 to 6 people with more plans to expand.

Duncan said: “This week we felt that the local cafe’s, pubs and restaurants reopening indoor dining after such a long time was something we should support.

“We know how hard it’s been for our customers, neighbours and friends in these trades. I made the decision that we would shut up shop, lock the doors, put a sign on the door ((“Closed for Lunch … supporting a local business”)) every day this week and we would all go and eat in one of the local establishments.

“After each lunch I’ve posted a few pics on our Facebook page of where we’ve been and shared it on a couple of local groups

“To our absolute amazement this has been extremely well received and is becoming a ‘thing’.   Three people stopped Hayley (our home insurance specialist) in the street on her way to the post office.

“Two asked where we are going for lunch that day and one said she and her husband are going to do this all next week inspired by our antics.

“We’ve received loads of love from the locals, all  Facebook groups and the establishment themselves.”

Where the team have been

Monday – Strawberry Fields Coffee House

Tuesday – Driftwood Cafe

Wednesday – The Powell Bar and Bistro

Thursday – The Cow Shed

Friday – Blend Coffee Lounge

Margate Detachment, A Co, Kent Army Cadet Force

The detachment is open and recruiting after a long closure due to COVID-19.
The detachment has COVID 19 safety precautions in place, so rest assured the safety of your child whilst in our care is paramount.

So, if you or your child has an interest in the army and military skills and are aged 12 to 18 years old and in academic year 8, pay the detachment a visit and you will get a warm welcome.

We are at 69 Victoria Rd, Margate CT9 1NA

We parade once a week on a Monday from 7pm to 9pm hopefully see you soon. Please bring facemasks.

Martha Trust

Two fundraisers undertook a 75mile triathalon for charity Martha Trust at the weekend.

Stewart Brown and Scott Jackson successfully completed the 55 mile cycle,1 mile swim and 19 mile walk in under 12 hours and were greeted by lots of people at the finish line opposite The Kings Head Deal on Saturday night.

Martha Trust Fundraising & Events Officer Kerry Banks BEM joined them for the last 11 miles to boost morale and support them.

The fundraisers had to contend with gruelling weather conditions plus Scott had a puncture for the last 15 miles of the cycle and had to stop 6 times to inflate.

Scott said: “We would like to say a huge thank you to Mike and Ben Guest, Chance Donnelly and Jojo Lawton for transporting us to each activity of the challenge. Thank You to Dover leisure centre for letting us have a extension on our swimming slot. Thank You to friends and family that came and braved the showers to welcome us back, to Martha work colleagues,to everyone that has donated and to Kerry for joining us and getting us through our walls at the end.”

Stewart added: “It was by far the toughest challenge I’ve done but I’m so glad we completed it. It felt like nothing was on our side with Scott’s puncture and the horrible weather but we got through it and absolutely smashed our target so feeling very pleased with ourselves. Pleased but sore.”

Kerry said: “It was my absolute pleasure to be able to support the boys with their challenge plus to join them for the last leg -we are so incredibly proud of what they have achieved for our very special residents at Martha.”

The duo’s fundraising is currently at £1430. -if you would like to make a donation please visit their page at

If you would like to undertake a challenge for Martha Trust please contact the fundraising team on 01304 610448 or email [email protected]