Huge effort for Ukraine aid taking place at Quex Barn

The Ukraine aid donations and volunteers at Quex Barn Photo Frank Leppard

A huge Ukraine aid collection has been taking place at Quex Barn in Birchington with donations being welcomed until at least the end of next week.

Thousands of donations have been taken to the site which owner Ian Mather has given for use.

Photo Frank Leppard

Items still in high demand include batteries, transistor radios, torches with batteries or wind-up torches, matches and pet food. Other donations called for areBlankets, sleeping bags, mats, towels, Hygiene products – sanitary pads, tampons, masks, nappies, wet wipes, toothpaste, toothbrushes, shower gels, shampoos, disposable razors, Medical supplies: plasters, hydrogen peroxide, bandages, food with a long life, money to cover shipping costs to the Ukraine. Any donations are gratefully received.

Photo Frank Leppard

The first shipment of supplies is due to be transported out tomorrow (March 8).

Donations can be made between 8am and 5pm.

Susan Johnson and Edyta Jobczynska Photo Frank Leppard

The effort is being co-ordinated by Susan Johnson, Edyta Jobczynska and Anna Sabatowska alongside Ian and his team. They are working with the Polish Association and being helped by the Friends of Quex Park and numerous volunteers including Rotary members.

Edyta, who works at Quex Barn, had seen the collections being made in her native country of Poland and also wanted to help.

She said: “I had a lot of conversations with our customers at the barn and felt like everyone wanted to do something to help but didn’t know how to approach it

“I asked Ian if we could make the barn a collection point and he’s said absolutely, as he wanted to speak to me and ask whether there is anything he could to to help

“The response was huge, we really didn’t expect that and I feel like it brought the community together

“It will help so many people that have lost everything and had to leave their country.”

Photo Frank Leppard

Ian said: “We are continuing to collect until the end of next week at the earliest. We have our first shipment heading off tomorrow. The response has been amazing!”

Find Quex Barn on facebook here

Collections of diabetic medical supplies are also being organised by Type One Style from a hangar at Manston airport.

Collection at Manston Photo Sam Bambridge

Under the banner of United For Ukraine the team and volunteers shipped out their first load at the weekend.

Volunteers have been sorting, collating, packing and loading. The effort is being coordinated by Charlie Cawsey of Type One Style.

Type One Style  have aggregated over £120,000 of supplies and have much more coming. They are working directly with the Ukrainian government and a network of volunteers inside Ukraine that they have built using digital platforms.

They are shipping to Ukraine and border regions.

To help the effort fill in the volunteer form here

Homes near Chernihiv after night time artillery strikes

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s military action into Ukraine on February 24 has seen heavy artillery assaults in cities including Kyiv and Kharkiv.

More than 1,5 million people have fled from Ukraine with the vast majority crossing into Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Hungary and Moldova.

The UK has allocated an additional $100m directly to the Ukrainian government budget to mitigate financial pressures created by Russia’s invasion.

This comes on top of the UK training 22,000 soldiers, supplying 2,000 anti-tank missiles, providing £100 million for economic reform and energy independence, and providing £120 million of humanitarian aid including £25 million of match funding to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) appeal.

The Metropolitan Police’s War Crimes Team is gathering evidence in relation to alleged war crimes in Ukraine in support of the International Criminal Court (ICC) investigation, which was confirmed by the ICC Prosecutor on 2 March.

To help

Cash donations can be made to the Disaster Emergency Committee which works with member charities and local partners operating on the ground in Ukraine and western border countries

Find the British Red Cross Ukraine crisis appeal here


  1. Pity that any transport going out to Ukraine can’t come back with some of the refugees. Why not?

    • Maybe because the aid is being ent out in trucks and Van’s, rather than buses?
      But even if the vehicles were filled with refugees, they’d be sent back as soon as they got here, thanks to our government’s policy.

    • Do you ever say anything positive, or is your default position to criticise the Tories first?

      As no-one else has said it… a BIG well done to all those donating and volunteering.

      • I criticized the tories last.
        Maybe you’d clarify which government it was that has only granted 50 visas?

        • Oh I do apologise!
          I see that as of this evening the number of visas granted has gone up to 300!
          That’s a small train load.

          • I was a volunteer once Peter, as a Prison Visitor, and I have no reason to doubt that the Home Office, responsible for providing Visas to Ukrainian Refugees, largely women and children, couldn’t run a bath which was my experience! This appears to be the case now, as hundreds of Refugees are encamped at Calais, and are being told to go to Paris, or Brussels to get a visa by the Home Office, as if! Duurh! And yes, its Johnson’s fault, as he is supposed to be the head of the Tory government, again Duurh!

          • I’m not disputing this, but my point is there are a lot of hard working local volunteers giving up their time, yet some people can’t find it in them to give any praise or encouragement, and instead jump in straight away to criticise. As for Ms. Tongue, I wholeheartedly support her disability campaigning, but she is unrelentlessly negative, and has been for years.

          • And…… Priti Patel may rival Nadine Dorries as the country’s most fanciable MP, but she also rivals Dianne Abbott for being the most useless. Even Sir Rog is calling for her resignation, and I couldn’t agree more.

  2. Is all this food etc actually getting through to those that need it, it’s chaos there and too dangerous to drive in Ukraine surely. Marvellous effort, well intentioned but stuff needs sorting this end and even more so that end where they could just be overwhelmed.
    Is it coordinated.

  3. And what is happening with all these donations now that we are not part of the EU? Are fees on them payable when they enter into the EU? Would it not be more sensible to make a financial donation to one of the charities operating closer to Poland so that there is no customs paperwork and less miles to transport needed items?

    • It would be better to fly from an airport that actually exists, and has basic things like landing lights, control towers, ILS, radar, fuel and planes.
      By far the best we can do is carry on contributing to the £Ms already donated to various charities.

        • Quite so. If people gave spare cash, the best thing to do is to donate it via a charity succ as DEC or Red Cross. The funds will be available almost immediately where they’re needed.
          If you can’t spare actual money, then donating stuff is next best, especially stuff listed by the charities.
          The problem is, as we’ve read on IoTN, that of logistics and red tape.

      • I was volunteering at Manston centre for the reception of donations, we were told by the organisers that it’s likely that the Airforce Hercules would take the donations to Ukraine, they don’t need a functional airport to land or take off.

  4. But there is no airport at Manston…

    It’s chaos at Dover, according to another Kent-based paper.

    • What a stupid statement Marva, of course there’s an airport at Manston, it’s disused, it hasn’t disappeared.

      • The same way there’s a Woolworth’s in Ramsgate high street. It’s now called Poundland….but really it’s still Woolworth’s.

        • That literally makes no sense to your comment of “There is no airport at Manston” Marva…. you are absolutely bonkers 🤪

          • And of course there is still the Swiss Cottage pub in King Street, it’s just that you can’t see it because it’s been demolished and flats are currently being built on the site.

  5. According to RSP, there is no airport at Manston.
    And even if their is, it lacks some basic things such as landing lights, fuel, instrument landing systems, radar, a control tower.
    On top of that, there’s the small matter of a CAA licence and a DCO. Without those, planes won’t fly.
    So their might be some faded, fly splattered road signs saying “Manston Airport”, but functionally their is no airport.

  6. Last time I drove past the defunct airport I saw Roger and Craig sweeping the runway and dancing round the sink hole with Radio 2 on full blast in the background. They also had some garden solar lights that were owls and beavers set in fake bits of tree trunk they were going to use as runway lights.

    Well done to everyone doing their bit for Ukraine, I agree the donations need coordination and not all donations are financial. Our time and effort are also hugely valuable.

  7. I’ll repeat what I’ve said before that there is a far more complex history on Ukraine and Western interference and exploitation. The Western media propaganda just now is shameful as many experts are pointing out on the level fake photos headlining. The level of stupidity reached is breath-taking when a Milan university bans the teaching of Dostoevsky! And after the dubious coup, the president of the Ukraine is an ex reality star known for raunchy videos, with a multi million dollar villa in the States. It truly is being played out as a movie, while looking the other way, Pfizer is forced to release important information by the CDC in the US. Worth reading. Worth making sure donations go to the right place and are needed.

    • Any suggestions as to how we might make sure our donations are going to the right place?
      Do I take it that you do actually accept that there’s a humanitarian crisis in Ukraine that needs our help?

      • Andrew, I have made donations monthly to a number of Refugee charities for years, and donated more when funds are available! The United Nations High Commission for Refugees(UNHCR) made an appeal last week, and they can take donations over the phone on 0800 029 3883, or As I was child refugee myself during the war, I also donate to UNICEF, the child refugee charity, on 0300 330 5580, or by: [email protected]

    • Dont suppose you have a link for the Pfizer info do you? Media seem to have forgotten about covid when a few weeks ago they were still scaremongering.

      • Covid is alive and well, unlike the 200 or so people in the UK who die from it every day.
        Infections in the UK are on the increase, and the “R” number is greater than 1 in every region.
        Hope this helps

  8. Anyone know if Quex Park and Manston are liaising? That way, any aircraft being used could serve both hubs.

    • I think Manston is being used primarily for medical supplies. I understand that some MP’s are seeking the agreement of Michael Gove to use Manston to fly supplies out rather than by road as they are so urgently needed.
      I think I read that collections at Queen Barn and Manston are linked in some way.

  9. Why can’t the refugee’s just be allowed over from Calais on the ferry, to be met and processed here in Dover, they can then be met by their families or driven by volunteers to places that will provide help. After all the people who come over illegally by sea crafts have not got visas to enter, many just disappear to goodness knows where. Let the Ukrainian people here as soon as they get to Calais, it is the most humane thing we can do to help these shocked and frightened people

    • Because some NON-Ukranians are turning up with fake papers. So if we did that, then literally tens of thousands of economic migrants from everywhere would turn up within weeks, and it would be very difficult to return them.

      • These problems, people turning up with false papers, don’t seem to be affecting
        Germany (30,000), France (2500) Ireland (2200).
        Whatever happened to humanity in this country?
        Oh yes: Pretti Patel.

      • It would be very difficult to return them now we’re out of the EU, and can no longer apply the Dublin protocol to migrants.
        Even if we wanted to.

          • Even if we wanted to.
            Alone in the civilised world, the UK is obstructing to flight to safety of the elderly, women and children from the atrocities of Ukraine.
            Our government, and those who support it, should hang their heads in shame.
            Whilst brothers are being shot, and daughters are being raped, the UK government is setting up a trestle table in maybe Calais, or perhaps Lille, or possibly Brussels, which might or might not be staffed when terrified, traumatised, exhausted, hungry and thirsty refugees eventually get there.
            To be told they can’t have a visa in case some of them are imposters?
            Shocking sentiments. Unbelievable.

  10. UPDATE:
    Sir Riveroak raised the offer of Manston in the HoC.
    Ben Wallace thanked him, but said there were plenty of active runways available.

  11. From what I saw on TV, Sir Rog was referring to the redundant Fire fighting Training buildings at Manston, which will be used by the Border Force to house migrants, or I could be wrong! Either way, and for my two penneth, this war will be going on for long time, probably years, and the only solution will be a United Nations force, to go in and run the country, because NATO is a “defence” force, and cannot be used “offensively”

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