Thanet community news: Blood donation, Probus, church sale, Vindicatrix, Margate RNLI, camera club, Coppafeel fundraiser, Female Fit Club and Friends of Botany Bay

Bill Scarce has reached a milestone with his 100th blood donation

100th blood donation

Kingsgate resident Bill Scarce has reached a milestone with his 100th pint blood donation.

The 79-year-old former London bus driver, who moved to Broadstairs with wife Janet five years ago, has been giving blood since he was 18.

The great-grandad says he started in around 1973 and does not plan to stop just yet. Currently the record for the oldest blood donor is 86-year-old Australian James Harrison.

Bill says the aim is simply to help others.

He said: “You help other people every time you give a pint. I don’t mind doing it and it is needed by other people.

“They used to say you had to stop at 70 but I am a regular and I shall carry on.

“You can now give four pints a year, it used to be just two when I first started. I wanted to get to 100 pints and feel it is an achievement. I’d encourage other to donate blood too.”

Find out more about donating blood here

Broadstairs Probus Club

The Broadstairs Probus Club provides a friendly forum for retired and semi-retired men over 55 who have been involved in a professional or business working life and who live in the Broadstairs area.

In December, the club held its annual festive lunch at The Yarrow Hotel where members and their guests, and widows of past members tucked into some delicious traditional fayre.

The proceedings were chaired by the new President for 2022/2023 ,Michael Bon, who organised little Christmas tree decoration gifts for all the ladies present.

The club also gave presents to Lee Osborn and Alexis of The Yarrow management to thank them for looking after the club`s coffee mornings and formal lunches in 2022.

A free Christmas raffle was held to which The Yarrow management kindly donated a lovely bottle of wine.

President Michael also announced that the club was going to make a donation to The Salvation Army of £100 for their Christmas charity. Subsequently, two of the members, Ross Holding and David Llewellyn, personally agreed to add £100 each to increase this donation to £300.

The President handing over the donation to Captain Carl Whitewood of the Salvation Army

The club meets for a coffee morning on the second Tuesday of every month and for a formal lunch on the fourth Tuesday of every month, both at the Yarrow Hotel.

The club is always looking for new members so, if you are interested in finding out more or perhaps trying out a free coffee morning, then please contact Rogan Montgomery-Smith on 01843 603939 or email him on [email protected] for further details.

St Nicholas at Wade Church

A Past and Present sale will be held at the church on Saturday, February 25 and will include bric a brac, glassware, toys, clothing, jewellery and books. Tea, coffee and cakes too!

The Independent Vindicatrix of East Kent Association – M.N.

We held our first meeting of 2023 on January 12 at The Racing Greyhound in Ramsgate with a full agenda to discuss.

Thanks were given to all maritime associations, town mayors. MP and supporters for their Christmas / New Year wishes.

A report was given on the health of some members including sadly one elderly member Edwin Brown who “crossed the bar” days after Christmas.  Our thoughts are with his widow and family at this time, R.I.P. Edwin.

Report was given on our participation at the St Peter’s Church CWGC “Armistice Day” service on November 11, where we paraded our Standard along with our fellow M.N. Training Ship Association Standard Bearer from the Prince of Wales Association and the East Kent Submariners Association Standard Bearer.

Once again pupils from the village school recited the Kohima Epitaph and another played the “Last Post”, congratulations to all.

A report was also given on our participation in the Ramsgate “Remembrance Day” parade which was once again, very well attended.  Details were given on our delayed New Year dinner which will be held on March 18 at the Racing Greyhound and menu selections were requested.

It was reported that Dover Harbour Board has been stopped from dredging any more of the Goodwin Sands. It was reported that the Margate RBL’s “Festival of Remembrance” services, usually held at the Winter Gardens, will no longer take place. Information was given for our annual coach trip to our M.N. Memorial at Tower Hill in London for National Merchant Navy Day on September 3.  It was reported that due to low membership and ill-health that three of the Australian Vindicatrix Associations have had to close and then we heard that the U.K. T.S. Vindicatrix Association will be folding this year due to similar reasons.  A very sad day for us Vindi Boys but our East Kent Association will continue.

Our next meeting will be on Thursday, April 6.

Margate RNLI

Margate RNLI lifeboat station is set to receive a boost from Thanet-based construction company WW Martin Ltd, who has made the life-saving team its nominated charity of the year for 2023.

WW Martin was founded in1877 just seventeen years after the RNLI first stationed a lifeboat at Margate, and the construction company has a long and proud record of supporting local good causes. Choosing the lifeboat station as it’s charity will provide a welcome boost towards the volunteers’ work of saving lives at sea along Thanet’s coastline. This comes after the two lifeboats at Margate, along with RNLI Lifeguards who patrol Thanet’s beaches, experienced one of their busiest years in recent times during 2022.

There is a connection between the company and the RNLI locally in that Derek Amas, Senior Site Manager with WW Martin, has been part of the lifeboat team at Margate for over 30 years. He holds the position of volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager, responsible for the running of the station which currently has 33 volunteer crewmembers and officials ensuring the station is ready to respond to emergencies at sea 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

In announcing the news, Ian Posnett, Director of WW Martin, said: “From speaking with our Senior Site Manager, Derek Amas, who is also the Operations Manager for RNLI Margate lifeboat station and who has spent over 30 years as a RNLI volunteer, we know the passion and commitment the team at Margate have for the work they undertake day in day out.

“With the RNLI undertaking such vital services, their dedication and work is admirable, and this is why we have chosen them as our nominated charity for 2023. We are proud to be working with them this year and look forward to raising funds to support the RNLI Lifeboat Station, Margate.”

Derek Amas, Lifeboat Operations Manager, Margate RNLI said: “I could not be happier or any more grateful. The RNLI has been a huge part of my life for 30 years now and the support we receive from the local business community is fantastic. It helps us all at RNLI Margate, both volunteer crew and fundraisers, to continue with our work to save lives at sea.”

Margate RNLI’s first ever Christmas tree chipping fund-raiser has raised a welcome £409.27 for the cause of saving lives at sea, also providing the opportunity to show off the station’s lifeboats and facilities to the public.

Volunteers at the lifeboat station were fortunate to have an offer from Joe Weitzel of Top Branch Tree Services to provide a free Christmas tree chipping service for the charity and the public were invited to bring their old Christmas trees along to the station where Joe put them through his giant shredder, reducing them to chips which will be used sustainably for pathways and allotments.

A steady stream of visitors turned up, many in family groups with their children who watched spell-bound as their last remnants of Christmas disappeared into the machine and were spat out at the other end as a mountain of woodchip. The crew soon lost count but its was estimated that around 70 trees were reduced to chips. The service was provided free of charge although people were invited to make a donation towards the RNLI’s funds.

Thanet RNLI Fundraising Group were on hand to collect donations and a total of £409.27 was raised with the souvenir shop also welcoming visitors. The crew like to consider the station is part of the local community and just as importantly visitors were able to see the lifeboats first hand and meet the team.

Derek Amas, Lifeboat Operations Manager, RNLI Margate said: “This was the first time we have tried this and it was a great success, both as a fundraiser and in allowing us to meet some of our supporters and let them see what we get up to. We are grateful to Joe for providing his expertise and machinery, hopefully this is something we can repeat next year.”

Isle of Thanet Photographic Society

The club’s second quarterly print competition on 5 January attracted 50 entries. Judge Paul Parkinson commented on the high standard and the difficulty of selecting the top 5 from the intermediate and advanced groups. In the end, James Foad triumphed with his stunning image of the Chalkhill Blue butterfly with pollen (pictured above).

The next open subject competition will be for digital images on 2 February.

We are looking for inspirational guest speakers and competition judges for our 2023/24 programme. Anyone who would like to come and support the club in this way would be most welcome to get in touch via our website or email: [email protected]

Meetings are on Thursdays at 7.30 pm at the Portland Centre, St. Peter’s, Broadstairs. Annual adult membership costs just £35 (£17.50 after 31 January) and the weekly fee is £4 (£5 for non-members). New members are welcome.

For further information about the club, including membership and the programme, please visit our website: or find us on Facebook.

Coppafeel and Samaritans fundraiser

A Drag Quiz and Karaoke night will be held at Silvers in Margate High Street in aid of Samaritans and Coppafeel.

The venue has been donated for free to organiser Kristina Webb who competed with business owner Charlotte Silver in last year’s Mrs Diamond UK title.

Kristina now lives in Sheppey but is originally from Thanet, growing up in Ramsgate and Broadstairs, She attended Christ Church Primary and Ellington Girls until Year 10 and wants to host the event in Thanet.

It takes place on Saturday, March 11 from 7.30pm. Tickets are £20pp. Quiz teams of 6.

Book tickets via

The Female Fit Club

The Female Fit Club is holding a fitness and weight loss day retreat in Ramsgate at The Comfort Inn aimed at women over 35.

The retreat will focus on helping women to look and feel their best without any complicated plans or fads. It takes place on Saturday 4th February and will include lunch and biscuit breaks as well as of course a variety of fitness classes and workshops, such as Clubbercise and yoga.

The sessions are run by Leanne Hawker who is a qualified fitness professional with a menopause specialism

People can contact Leanne on [email protected] or WhatsApp  07971833664 for more details.

Friends of Botany Bay CIC

Friends of Botany Bay CIC, a community interest company. We work to keep our beaches clean as well as organising local community initiatives to plant trees, including the community fruit orchard and wildflower meadow at Knockholt Road, CT9.

We are hosting our second annual fundraising gala dinner on Saturday, May 13, 6pm-8pm, at St Philip’s Church, Palm Bay.

Canapes and bar on arrival, followed by a three course dinner. You will be entertained after dinner by the Greyhound Buskers, a fabulous 7 piece ukulele group.

There will also be a raffle with lots of amazing prizes to be won. Tables seat 6-8 people.

All proceeds will support the Friends of Botany Bay cic in our work litter picking the beaches, clifftops and streets, maintaining wildflower meadows and the community orchard and other initiatives to protect the natural environment around Botany Bay.

Find tickets:

Sponsorship packages are also being offered. A package would help promote and raise you brand profile in the local Thanet community. · Your company logo on table- stand · Guaranteed photo and acknowledgment on all our social media channels inc 2400 + Facebook followers · Priority placing of sponsor photo on press releases. Price £50 per person, minimum 6 people.

For reservations and more information, please call 07479 98 66 88


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