Mods, unofficial Meltdown and an award for Olby’s directors Eli and Heather Thompson

Scooters in Margate Photo Carl Hudson

An unofficial Margate Meltdown will take place tomorrow (May 31) with the arrival of around an estimated 300 motorbikes (UPDATE: The number of visiting bikes far exceeded this number).

Scooters have already arrived in Margate and Ramsgate this weekend for a Mods and 60s gathering.

The annual Meltdown, organised by Ace Café in London, is cancelled but many bikers have decided to make the run anyway.

A ride out to Ramsgate Photo Mark Stanford

A scooter competition and ride out has taken place.

Music for the Mod weekender is usually hosted by Heather and Eli Thompson from Olby’s Soul Café.

The pair won the Produced in Kent Community Legends Award at a virtual ceremony this month.

Organised as a showcase of the very best products and food and drink businesses across Kent and Medway, the Taste of Kent Awards are held annually.

Virtual awards

The nomination recognised Heather and Eli’s long-standing dedication and contribution to the area, stemming back to 2001 when they first moved to Margate and committed to assisting with its regeneration. Also cited was their generous support for the community during the pandemic.

In common with many businesses, Olby’s was impacted when government restrictions caused venues to close. Despite these challenges, Heather and Eli helped Medway African Caribbean Association (MACA) to raise funds for and set up a project which would deliver food to vulnerable and isolated African Caribbean elders across Kent and Medway during the pandemic and beyond it.

Started in May 2020, and part funded by Martin Lewis Charity Trust, Home from Home is the first African Caribbean Meals on Wheels delivery service. The provision operates twice weekly and is managed by Heather in partnership with MACA.

In September 2020, Olby’s planned a Covid-safe group meeting, meal and healthy eating talk for those receiving Home from Home support.


Heather and Eli said: “It was so lovely to see them smile, chat and enjoy each other’s company after being isolated for six months.”

Also created during the first lockdown was Olby’s Heart of Gold, a Facebook campaign launched in April 2020, asking customers to nominate incredible people who deserved a treat. The prize was a two-course Sunday roast and two children’s meals for two winners every Sunday. However, Heather and Eli were so moved by the nominations received in the first week that all 34 nominees received free roasts from Olby’s.

Heather and Eli said they were “absolutely delighted” to win the award.


  1. Well done Heather and Eli. Well deserved recognition for all you do. You are a valuable asset to Margate and Thanet.

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