Community news: Minster Marshes, Tracking Trudy, female veterans, Powell-Cotton Trust, Pilgrims Hospices, KCH and POW, East Kent Hospitals and RNIB

Minster primary children entered the Save Minster Marshes art competition

Save Minster Marshes

The Save Minster Marshes campaign group recently held an art competition at Minster Church of England Primary School to try to highlight the plight which this precious biodiverse wildlife habitat is facing.

National Grid’s Sea Link project would mean 9 hectares of land taken up by an onshore converter station and sub-station at Minster marshes in the Stour Valley.

The Sea Link project involves creating a subsea electricity cable between Suffolk and Kent which National Grid says will help deliver the UK’s energy security strategy and net zero targets.

The proposals outline a preferred route of 10km of onshore and 140km of undersea cables, together with potential landfall and converter station locations at Friston substation in Suffolk and at Richborough.

National Grid’s preferred route runs from a landfall in Pegwell Bay to a proposed converter station site and high voltage pylons over the land to the south of Minster.

There are campaign groups such as the Kent Wildlife Trust, Campaign to Protect Rural England, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, the Save Minster Marshes group and many others all desperately trying to get National Grid to Rethink Sealink!

As part of the efforts to raise awareness, the Save Minster Marshes group held the art competition for youngster at Minster primary.

The first 3 winners were from Key stage 1 (5 – 6 yr olds) and the other 2 were from key stage 2 ( 10 and 11 years).

The children won wildlife prizes for their school which were handmade especially for by Save Minster Marshes founder George Cooper.

Find Save Minster Marshes here

The search for Trudy

Trudy is a 7 year old Westie, extremely nervous and timid, who has now been missing for 17 days.

Her owners went on holiday to Norway on Thursday 15th February at 7pm, but that evening, Trudy got out of her collar and escaped a family member’s garden in Charing Crescent, Westgate.

Despite trying to get her for nearly 3 hours Trudy managed to get across the Canterbury Road, run along to Hengist Road and then up Sea Road where she was last seen on the pavement, cliff side running pass where the last field is for the golf course.

There have been no sightings since then.

The Missing Dogs and Strays in Thanet group is asking people to print posters out and put up in shops, etc, door knock to alert everyone asking them to check gardens, sheds etc for Trudy whom we are hoping has found a place to hunker down, also any ringdoor bells, CCTV. If seen, please contact 07718229188 immediately.

Find the Tracking Trudy group here

Thanet Female Veterans

On Friday, March 8th, a new Thanet Female Veterans group will be launched.

This monthly gathering will be a great place for female veterans and female spouses to connect, discuss issues, highlight needs, and reflect on experiences from the Armed Forces.

The first meeting will be 9:30am-11 am at The Veterans Association in Birchington and then the group will discuss different days and locations for ongoing monthly meetings.

Powell-Cotton Trust

The Powell-Cotton Trust (PCT) is excited to announce the appointment of Sarah Corn as the new Chief Executive Officer. Sarah will lead the trust at the start of a new phase of development and growth for the charity.

A passionate advocate of the museums sector, Sarah has almost 20 years of industry experience and joins the museum from her current role as Director of The Old Operating Theatre in London. Sarah brings proven experience in leading museums through periods of change and helping them to grow and develop based on sound strategic planning and engagement.

Clare Valentine, Chair of Trustees, said: “We are delighted to have found someone of Sarah’s quality and calibre to lead the trust and implement our new and exciting strategy which will lay the foundations for our next 100 years.”

Sarah said: “I’m very excited to be joining the Powell-Cotton Trust at such a significant point in the museum’s journey. As a resident of Margate, I have fond memories of visiting the museum over the years and know what an important role it plays in our community. I look forward to working with the team, partners, neighbours and visitors to help the Trust achieve its ambitions for the future.”

Sarah will begin her new role on the 29th April.

Museum Opening Times:

Museum and Gardens: Weekends and Bank Holidays. 10th Feb-March, 11-3pm, April-August,

11-4pm, September-1st November, 11-3pm.

Access to Quex House is by free guided tour with standard entry for the museum. Tours will

take place throughout the day. Please note Quex House is occasionally closed on wedding days.

See website for dates.

Pre-booked school and group visits are available seven day a week.

Prices: Adult: £4.00 Concession: £3.50 Child (4-16): £3.00 Infant (0-3): Free

Pilgrims Hospices

This April, the people of east Kent are invited to participate in Make a Will Month 2024, a charitable initiative led by Pilgrims Hospices in collaboration with local solicitor firms. During this month-long event, participating solicitors will generously donate their time and expertise to write and review Wills, waiving their usual fee in exchange for donations to Pilgrims Hospices.

For over a decade, Pilgrims Hospices has provided invaluable support to the local community by offering the opportunity for individuals to ensure their affairs are in order and their wishes are fulfilled through the Make a Will Month initiative. Since its inception, the scheme has raised an impressive £200,000 and assisted over 1000 people in east Kent.

In preparation for this year's Make a Will Month, participating solicitors were invited to the Thanet Hospice Therapy Centre in February. During the gathering, they had the opportunity to learn more about the vital care provided by Pilgrims Hospices and discuss the upcoming scheme over breakfast.

Ellie Cane, Individual Giving Manager, expressed gratitude to the solicitor firms for their continued partnership, emphasising the significant impact their support has on patients and their loved ones.

The following solicitor firms are generously participating in Make a Will Month 2024:

Boys & Maughan

Girlings Solicitors

Pengelly & Rylands

Prospero Solicitors

Stilwell & Singleton

Whitehead Monckton

Appointments for Make a Will Month 2024 are now available and can be booked directly with your preferred solicitor. For more information on the participating solicitors and their contact details, as well as suggested donation amounts, please visit

Make a Will Month 2024 presents a unique opportunity for individuals to secure their future while supporting the compassionate care provided by Pilgrims Hospices to those facing life-limiting illnesses in the local community.

Kent Community Foundation

2022 opening lantern procession Photo Carl Hudson

On 8 March the world celebrates International Women’s Day – an event that belongs to all those committed to forging women’s equality

In Thanet, International Women’s Day is the focus of an annual festival delivered by POW Thanet who have been financially supported by experienced grant maker Kent Community Foundation since 2020. Now in its ninth year, the Power of Women Thanet, festival will run from 1 to 24 March and its theme for 2024 is ‘rest’.

On International Women’s Day (8 March) activities in Margate will include a sponsored swim at the Walpole Bay Tidal Pool, a meditation at the Turner Contemporary and an exhibition at the TKE Studio with renowned local artist Tracey Emin.

The month long festival will also include an Art Trail, Music for the Soul at St Lukes Church Ramsgate, a Mother’s Day cream tea and writing workshop at Powell-Cotton Museum and free printing workshops. And for those not able to attend the events in person, Sunday17 March will be a free digital day with a series of talks, workshops and exclusive content to enjoy remotely.

In 2023 the festival had 19,500 beneficiaries, attracted 300 artists performers and creatives in over fifty venues and made significant strides in promoting gender equality and empowering diverse voices through art.

Rosanagh Fuller, Chief Executive, POW Thanet said, “Each March, the shores of Thanet come alive with the POW Annual Festival, a tribute to International Women’s Day and a celebration of the boundless creativity of women and non-binary individuals. The 2024 festival’s theme is rest and includes workshops, exhibitions, performances, and the festival welcomes both in-person and virtual attendees, from local enthusiasts to global art aficionados.

“Our mission is to provide arts and creativity to all Thanet community members. We believe that the arts and creativity have the transformative power to make the world more equal. Our Kent Community Foundation – Connecting People Who Care with Causes That Matter engagement initiatives run year-round, sparking inspiration and broadening horizons with young people and local community groups. We foster collaborations between artists and local institutions, amplifying the reach of our public arts endeavours.”

Natalie Smith, Director of Grants and Impact and Deputy Chief Executive said, “Kent Community Foundation has been supporting the work of POW Thanet since 2020. The POW Thanet’s post 2023 festival survey reported that, 90% of respondents (either strongly agreed or agreed) that the festival made them feel joyous and inspired, and more than 80% of audiences agreed that the festival allowed them to celebrate International Women’s Day, made them feel more connected with their community and more included in the arts. The POW festival offers the community a month of varied activities and makes art much more accessible for the residents of Thanet and we are proud to support their work.”

To find out more about the 2024 POW Thanet Festival visit

To contact Kent Community Foundation about funding for charities and community groups call 01303 814500, email [email protected] or visit

East Kent Hospitals

A specialist nurse is raising money for essential supplies to help prevent deaths from diabetes in a formerly war-torn country.

Amanda Epps, lead nurse for diabetes with East Kent Hospitals, is joining a group of specialist clinicians on a trip to Sierra Leone in West Africa next month.

The expedition is organised by the Help Madina charity and funded by the Transpetrol Foundation, and Amanda and her colleagues hope to raise £5,000 to pay for equipment and medication.

She said: “In Sierra Leone, diabetes is an enormous threat to life. Lack of insulin means that the life expectancy of someone who develops Type 1 diabetes is less than one year.

“Before we got involved with the charity, children with Type 1 diabetes would die due to lack of insulin. Now they are linked up with another charity, Life for a Child, who provide everything from insulin to test strips and needles, but we need to educate people about how to manage the condition.

“Insulin is still difficult to get hold of for older people with Type 2 diabetes, and there is huge concern within the local community about diabetes, and a lot of misinformation – some believe it is caused by witchcraft.”

Sierra Leone was wracked by a 20-year civil war, and also badly hit by infectious diseases such as Ebola, cholera and TB. The team, which includes a GP, diabetes podiatrist, and a dietician, will visit four different areas of the country, and two hospitals, to deliver supplies and help educate local leaders on diabetes and issues such as wound care.

Amanda, who lives with Type 1 diabetes, as does her teenage son, said: “The situation in Sierra Leone is almost unthinkable for those of us lucky to have good access to healthcare, and the drugs and equipment we need to manage diabetes.

“One person used a newspaper to cover a gangrenous foot, which caused widespread sepsis and led to a premature death. The extreme heat and living conditions out there make these situations even more difficult.

“Any donation really will make a difference to people who are in such need of help. Diabetes is a global concern that the World Health Organisation has highlighted as an evolving catastrophe. The number of cases of diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa is rising dramatically and the complications of this condition cause enormous human suffering and premature death.”

Amanda has been donated glucose meters and test strips from supplier Glucorx to take with her for use by older patients. To add to her fundraising, or for more information, visit


Children across the UK will be exploring the wonderful world of reading on World Book Day®, Thursday 7 March.

World Book Day® aims to encourage reading for pleasure, especially because it is the biggest indicator of a child’s future success in life. It also aims to make sure every child can have a book of their own to read.

For 2024, the theme is ‘Read Your Way’, and children are being encouraged to read any way they like to, whether it be out loud, in their heads, a sentence, a chapter or a page.

Here at the Royal National Institute of Blind people (RNIB), we want to make sure that children with vision impairments can celebrate the power of reading alongside their sighted peers. This means giving them access to the same books and reading opportunities at school and at home.

That’s why we have accessible versions of all of this year’s World Book Day UK titles available in audio and braille as part of our RNIB Library.

This year’s range of books provides adventure, mystery and laughter and titles include Elmer And The Patchwork Story by David McKee, Loki: Tales Of A Bad God by Louie Stowell and The Doomsday Date by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé.

There’s something to suit beginner readers right through to confident book lovers.

Children can have their very own World Book Day® copy to keep, in either braille or CD! The books can be ordered in their preferred format from RNIB’s Helpline on 0303 123 9999. They are also all available to download in audio and braille from RNIB Reading services at