Community news: Wilder Wellbeing, Lifeboat Station, Dreamland Heritage Trust, Armed Forces Day, Westwood Cross, Margate Radio, RNLI, Looping the Loop, soul choirs, art at St Laurence, Your Leisure and Copperfield Court

Open day at Ramsgate Lifeboat Station Photo by Hannah Carney

Kent Wildlife Trust

Over 65? Kent Wildlife Trust has a FREE 6-week ‘Wilder Wellbeing’ programme running at Pegwell Bay in June.

Sessions will include gentle walks along the accessible coastline, where there will be opportunities to rest on one of the benches and enjoy watching wildlife. It’s a chance to meet others and forge connections while appreciating nature. Participants can take part in relaxation techniques and nature-based crafts

Carers are welcome to attend to support individuals if needed. Toilets and parking are available on site.

We may also be able to assist with travel cost to attend the sessions.

Booking is essential and a registration forms can be requested by emailing [email protected] or completed on this link Wilder Wellbeing (

Ramsgate Lifeboat Station

Last Saturday as part of the ongoing RNLI Two Hundred Anniversary celebrations, Ramsgate lifeboat station held an open day.

Last weekend was a show of great support by the public and our volunteers, as we welcomed them into our lifeboat station for the day.

The public were able to meet our volunteers, including crew, lifeguards, shop assistants, water safety and management teams. Upstairs, the public could learn about two hundred years of saving lives at sea from station archivist John Ray.

Along with our shop and raffle stalls, cupcakes were donated by volunteers Angie Lamport and Vanessa Ray, Shipshape and Copperfield Court Care Home, Broadstairs.

Our Tamar class lifeboat Diamond Jubilee, and relief Trent lifeboat Henry Heys Duckworth were on show, manned by our volunteer crew who answered many lifeboat questions about the top speed of a lifeboat and how the inflatable Y boat housed under the aft deck is deployed during a launch.

Mayor of Ramsgate, Councillor Pat Moore was in attendance, and thoroughly enjoyed chatting to the representatives of local charities and lifesaving services. She was particularly interested to find that the National Coastwatch have a dedicated VHF channel for reporting any unusual sightings along the coast, VHF Channel 65.

Photo by Hannah Carney

Miss Ramsgate and her court were also in attendance, they explored the two lifeboats and were intrigued by the orange colour of the boats.

Eric Burton, Chair of the Ramsgate Lifeboat Management Team said:  “It was great to see all of our RNLI volunteers working together to raise over £1100 for Ramsgate Lifeboat Station. As a charity that relies purely on donations we are extremely grateful for the support of the townsfolk of Ramsgate and its local areas. Without their support we couldn’t continue to save lives at sea.”

Dreamland Heritage Trust

Join us for the Dreamland Heritage Trust Gala Dinner and Charity Art Auction on Wednesday 3 July as we celebrate 15 years of the Dreamland Heritage Trust and 104 years of the Dreamland park.

Our gala dinner features a sumptuous three-course sit-down meal, set within the stunning ambience of the historic St Augustine’s Chapel, Westgate and doors will be open from 6pm for a drinks reception to kick off the festivities. Prepare to be captivated by an unforgettable evening of entertainment! Including a breathtaking art auction featuring works by both local and internationally renowned artists, all in support of our mission to preserve and celebrate the heritage of Dreamland.

Our distinguished guest speakers for the evening will be Wayne and Gerardine Hemingway in conversation with radio host Bernie Morgan, offering exclusive insights into Dreamland’s remarkable reopening journey back in 2015. Experience the grace and skill of dance performances by Jo Jos school of dance & Performing Arts, accompanied by the melodic prowess of the One Love band.

We are also joined by the legendary guest Mick Tee who will transport you back in time to the vibrant Dreamland Rendezvous club era with an electrifying mix of music. Tickets for the event are priced at £45 per person, inclusive of a 3 course sit down meal, reception drink on arrival and teas/coffees. Optional donations gratefully welcomed. Every contribution, large or small, will make a meaningful impact on the success of our community initiatives. Please note tickets are limited in availability.

To purchase tickets click the link below or reserve your space by contacting [email protected]

Special Thanks to our event sponsors Bright Start Nursery & RSP Manston Airport

Armed Forces Day Parade

To commemorate Armed Forces Day this year, arrangements have been made for the representation of ex-Service Organisations and other bodies to attend a parade around Ramsgate Royal Harbour and a Drumhead Service on Saturday 29 June.  The Mayor of Ramsgate, Councillor Pat Moore, Ramsgate Town Councillors and other guests will also attend.

Harbour Street Parade will be closed from the entrance/exit of the Pier Car Park along to the turning circle (by Wetherspoons) from 8am until 12pm on that day. All parking bays along this area will be suspended during this time.

The actual parade will march along Harbour Parade to the turning circle between 10.40am and 11.00am when a Drumhead Service will take place in the turning circle.  On conclusion of the service the parade will march along Harbour Parade and dismiss at the end of the road at approximately 12pm.

At the conclusion of the Drumhead Service, the Parade will be reformed and return along Harbour Parade and dismiss at the end of the road.

Westwood Cross donation

Westwood Cross in Broadstairs proudly announces additional donations of more than 100 coats to a third benefitting charity, The Salvation Army.

This follows the overwhelming generosity of customers during its annual Coat Xchange event held at the shopping centre in December 2023. The response was so immense that the original charities, RISE (Rough Sleeper Intervention Support and Empowerment Team), and domestic abuse charity Oasis, offered that the additional coats be donated to another deserving charity, leading The Salvation Army to graciously accept.

Francesca Donovan, Centre Director at Westwood Cross, said: “We’re pleased to continue our support for those in need by donating even more coats to The Salvation Army. The overwhelming response from our community during our Coat Xchange event was truly heartwarming. It’s a privilege to collaborate with The Salvation Army and other charities to ensure that these generous donations reach those who need them most.”

Captain Mark Kent, at The Salvation Army, said: “We are deeply grateful for the generous donation of coats from the customers of Westwood Cross Shopping Centre. These coats will provide warmth and comfort to those facing hardship in our community, helping us continue to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need.”

Margate Radio

We’re delighted to be offering a FREE Youth Radio Production Course starting on Monday 3rd June from 5-7pm and running every Monday until Monday 22nd July. The Margate Radio team will be on hand to guide young people through learning to produce their own radio show whilst building their confidence and skills.

The course is open to 16-25 year olds, however we’re particularly interested in hearing from 16-18yrs olds who are from minority backgrounds and live in Margate or Cliftonville.

Dates: Mondays from 3rd June – 22nd July

Time: 5-7pm

Venue: Where Else? 21-22 The Centre, Margate

Age: 16-25 yr olds

There are limited spaces so please encourage and support young people to sign up ASAP to avoid disappointment.



His Majesty The King has granted permission for a garden party at Buckingham Palace in celebration of the 200th anniversary of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

The RNLI 200th Anniversary Garden Party will be held by HRH The Princess Royal, accompanied by Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, and HRH The Duke of Kent on Thursday, 23 May.

The Duke of Kent has been President of the RNLI since 1969 during which time volunteer lifeboat crews and beach lifeguards have saved more than 51,000 lives. Sir Tim Laurence is also a Vice President of the lifesaving charity and former Deputy Chair.

The garden party will bring together around 2,500 of the RNLI’s long-serving volunteers, staff and their families and will also feature an Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat in the palace grounds.

Among those attending from across the charity will be lifeboat crew, lifeguards, water safety volunteers, fundraisers and recent recipients of meritorious service awards and The King’s Birthday and New Year Honours.

Ramsgate Lifeboat Station are delighted to have nine members of their crew invited to the Garden Party on Thursday. The names of those attending are Nelson Wood, Phil Mace, Scott Warren, Tim Burrell-Saward, Steve Mitchell, Wayne Goldfinch, and Paul Ionescu, as well as their partners. Sadly two of our lady crew were unable to attend Caroline Hoyal and Maz Critchley.

RNLI Chief Executive Mark Dowie said: ‘We are incredibly honoured that His Majesty The King has granted permission for the RNLI 200th Anniversary Garden Party to take place at Buckingham Palace in celebration of 200 years of saving lives at sea.

‘Our hosts, The Princess Royal, The Duke of Kent and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, have been hugely supportive of our charity over many decades and it will be a huge honour and privilege for many of our volunteers and staff to meet them.

‘Volunteers are the lifeblood of the RNLI and I am looking forward to being able to thank them personally, along with their equally dedicated families and our long-serving staff members, for their courage and commitment to saving lives.’

Head of Volunteering at the RNLI Donna McReath said: ‘I would like to thank each and every one of our incredible volunteers.

‘We couldn’t do what we do without their vital support and the time and effort they generously dedicate in a wide variety of roles, from lifesaving crew to fundraisers and those who volunteer in our shops, museums or by sharing our water safety messaging.

‘They are all lifesavers, and this special Garden Party is a wonderful opportunity to recognise and celebrate the joy and impact of volunteering for the RNLI. We are always looking for new volunteers to join our charity to help us continue saving lives at sea.’

Since the RNLI was founded on 4 March 1824, following an appeal to the nation from Sir William Hillary, the charity has saved more than 146,277 lives – this equates to an average of two lives saved every day for 200 years.

Today, the RNLI operates 238 lifeboat stations around the UK and Ireland, including four on the River Thames, and has seasonal lifeguards on around 240 lifeguarded beaches around the UK.

Looping the Loop

Building on the successful launch of its Social Singing Sessions, Looping the Loop is excited to announce a new series of these vibrant gatherings, now available both online and in-person. Starting on Wednesday, the 12th of June, these sessions will be held from 11 AM to 12:30 PM at Ramsgate Library, in a separate, specially designated room. The sessions will also be accessible online, providing flexibility to attend based on participants’ circumstances and energy levels each week.

“We are thrilled to work with Ramsgate Library to host our hybrid Social Singing Sessions—an accessible space that embodies our commitment to inclusivity and community engagement,” Estelle Rosenfeld, producer at Looping the Loop, stated.

Meg Bird, an emerging Jazz singer-songwriter from Margate, will be facilitating the sessions.”Singing can have such an amazing impact on wellbeing. The physical and social effects of singing in a group, especially, can leave you feeling on top of the world. In these sessions, no matter your level of experience, I hope to work with participants to build a little singing community and to send you off singing throughout the rest of the week,” she shares.

Fiona Wonford – GOLD Delivery Manager at East Kent Mencap, shared her observations: “We have only had the group for two weeks and the marked difference in the participants from week 1 to week 2 is already noticeable. Along with that, they have been talking to peers and staff about how great it is and how they feel much more confident about joining in.”

Looping the Loop’s new Social Singing Sessions are designed for everyone, celebrating the joy of singing together in a relaxed, welcoming setting. Participants can expect a series of fun and informal sessions that are open to all, regardless of singing experience. These gatherings foster a supportive community where each voice is celebrated, emphasising the uniqueness of each participant’s natural voice without the pressure to perform.

The sessions are an uplifting experience that will leave participants smiling and energised. They offer a fantastic way to meet new people and connect with others by singing together. Additionally, with the hybrid flexibility of these sessions, participants have the opportunity to join online or in person, catering to convenience and ensuring everyone can take part in the way that suits them best.

Whether you prefer to join from the comfort of your home or in the stimulating environment of the library, these sessions are open to all. No previous singing experience is necessary—just a willingness to participate and enjoy the camaraderie of group singing.

To find out more details and to sign up for the Social Singing Sessions, please visit:

Kent Soul Choirs

A group of nine soul choirs in Kent has joined forces with their colleagues in London to mark Mental Health Awareness Week (13-17 May) by raising money for suicide prevention charity Papyrus.

And the UK Soul Choirs plan to continue to collect for the charity across their forthcoming festival performances across Kent and London this summer.

Papyrus was chosen to receive support after the tragic loss of a loved one of a choir member – and, so far, the choirs have raised a staggering £1000 in a week.

The charity minded choirs have also supported mental health charity Mind in the past, making a music video during lockdown, raising £10,000 after losing a choir member to depression.

The money so far has been raised through an initiative called ‘Bring a Friend Week’. Members were encouraged to bring a friend along for a sing-along, coffee and cake and a chat to mark the importance of Mental Health Awareness Week in keeping mental wellness in focus.

Founder and choir director, Abi Gilchrist, said: “Singing has been proven to help support our mental wellbeing, and being part of a choir combines that with friendship and companionship throughout life’s ups and downs.

“We launched the ‘Bring a Friend’ initiative to encourage members to bring someone along to share the joy of choir – and for them to experience something together. We know that people often have anxiety about trying the kind of activities that we know benefit our wellbeing – like singing – because it is scary to try something new where you don’t know anyone and don’t know what to expect.

“Over the years, I have seen the transformative power of singing and of belonging to a choir, so I am really keen to spread the word to people who may want to give singing a try.”

For more info, visit

Art show

June 1, 10am to 4pm, St Laurence Church, Ramsgate

Preview evening May 31, 6pm to 8pm.

Book a pitch – call Mick 07966225217

Pitch money and donations to The Clock Appeal.

Your Leisure

Hartsdown Pool – Credit Your Leisure _ AG Studio

We’re serious about doing social good and adding social value to people’s lives here at Your Leisure and our mission is “to improve the health, wellbeing and lifestyle of everyone within our communities.” That’s why we will be marking the first ever ‘Seriously Social Week’ in May as part of a national campaign that showcases the work of leisure trusts, like ours, putting people above profit, connecting communities and helping people to become healthier, happier and more creative, regardless of age or ability.

Seriously Social has been organized by national body Community Leisure UK of which Your Leisure is a member. Starting Monday 27, May – each day of the week will focus on a theme to show how organisations like ours help create social impact and create happier, healthier communities.  Themes include Health & Wellbeing, Environment, Inclusion, Community and Employment & Skills.

Warren Reeves, Managing Director of Your Leisure, said: “We are proud to be part of a network of social organisations operating with a social conscience, delivering social good when providing public leisure and culture services. Our core business is about purpose – helping people first. Supporting society to “Live Better”, employing local people, creating safe spaces, connecting communities, working towards net zero and supporting people, with quality health and wellbeing services for all. Seriously Social is a brilliant way to highlight not only the difference we make but also why we do what we do.”

So, whether you are already active or have not yet started your wellbeing and health journey, Your Leisure is here to inspire and support you. Visit one of our leisure centres (Hartsdown, Ramsgate, Tides and Blue Wave Complex) this week to enjoy swimming, our gyms, fun exercise classes, sports and more… and get ‘Seriously Social’!

Copperfield Court Care Home

Copperfield Court, part of the Oyster Care Homes portfolio, celebrated its grand opening on Thursday, 16th May, with great fanfare. Situated in Broadstairs, Kent, this pioneering care home combines luxury living with an uncompromising commitment to sustainability.

The grand opening event was officiated by television presenter and newsreader Jan Leeming, who led the ribbon-cutting ceremony. The event was attended by the Mayor and Mayoress of Broadstairs, along with many members of the local community.

Guests had the opportunity to explore the home’s state-of-the-art facilities, including a bistro, cinema, hair salon, and café. Each space has been designed to provide both comfort and high-quality care, ensuring that Copperfield Court is equipped to offer 24-hour residential, dementia, and respite care.

Eve Balcombe, General Manager at Copperfield Court, expressed her delight at the successful launch: “We are thrilled to have opened our doors and are immensely grateful for the warm reception from the Broadstairs community. Every aspect of Copperfield Court has been carefully crafted to ensure our residents feel at home. Our focus is on creating a supportive and vibrant community that not only cares for our residents but also celebrates life at every stage.”

The celebration highlighted Copperfield Court’s commitment to environmental sustainability, proudly partnering with LNT Care Developments to aim for net-zero carbon emissions. The entire facility is powered by Solar PV panels, showcasing a forward-thinking approach to energy use.

For more information or to book a tour, please visit or call 01843 423 207.

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