Wednesday, June 29th, 2022

Carpet of knitted poppies cascade below base of Riverhead village sign to mark WW1 centenary

WORLD WAR 1 POPPIES: Anyone driving or walking through Riverhead lately cannot have failed to see the wonderful cascade of poppies at the base of the Riverhead Village Sign outside the church. Surrounding them are white crosses, one for each Riverhead soldier who died during WW1, which ended 100 years ago on November 11. If you look closely, you will see that all these poppies – hundreds of them – were hand-knitted by Riverhead residents. The gratitude for organising this display and for recruiting, supplying and enthusing the many local knitters, goes to Riverhead Parish Councillor Shirley Stewart and to all the knitters of course.

ARMISTICE CENTENARY: On Sunday, 11 November Riverhead residents and friends are being invited to gather outside the front of St Mary’s Church, Riverhead at around 10.40am in readiness for a short service and the Two Minutes Silence at 11am which will mark exactly 100 years since the end of the First World War. This venue has been chosen as there is more space there than around the war memorial in the grounds of the Village Hall (where this event usually takes place) as many more people than usual are expected to attend this very special Centenary occasion. Representatives of St Mary’s and the Parish Council will then carry wreaths down to lay them at the War Memorial in the Village Hall grounds and everyone is invited to follow them down. The ceremony will be followed by a Vintage Tea Party in the Village Hall which is being hosted jointly by St Mary’s Church and Riverhead Parish Council. It will feature cakes which were favourites at the time of WW1. There will also be vintage music and archive film footage from that era. Residents are welcome to drop in, even if they can’t attend the service. Anyone interested in the names on the Riverhead War Memorial and their history can find out more on the Riverhead Parish Council website at: www.riverheadpc.kentparishes.gov.uk/ Click on Community and then Riverhead Memorial.

FAMILY FIREWORKS: On Saturday, 3 November the 3rd Sevenoaks Scouts will be holding their family-friendly Firework Display at the HQ off Bradbourne Vale Rd, just beyond the railway bridge. The gates will be open from 6pm for burgers, hot dogs, mulled wine, hot chocolate and soft drinks. Glow sticks will also be on sale. The first rocket will be at 7pm. The Scout Hut will be open for anyone who would prefer to watch from somewhere quieter! Advance tickets are still available from Batchelors’ Butchers in The Square (who also supply the burgers and sausages) and The Bullfinch pub.These are  priced at £5 for a single ticket and £15 for a family (4 people). Tickets are also available on the night at the gate priced at £7 for an individual and £20 for a family. Under 3s all go free. Profits from the event go to the 3rd Sevenoaks Scout Group whose volunteer leaders provide year-round weekly activities for more than 200 Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Explorers. Parking is very limited so do walk there if you can.

CHRISTMAS CARD & COFFEE SALE: There will be a Traidcraft Christmas card and gift sale and coffee morning at St Mary’s Church Hall in Riverhead on Saturday 3 November from 10am-noon. Everyone is welcome to visit to enjoy the refreshments and support this worthwhile cause.

RIVERHEAD CHRISTMAS LIGHTS: Riverhead’s Christmas Lights will be switched on at 6pm on Thursday, 29 November. Enjoy mulled wine, soft drinks and mince pies under The Heights in the centre of the village.

PRE SCHOOL BAZAAR: St. Mary’s Pre-School, which has been attended by hundreds of Riverhead children over very many years, will be holding its Christmas Bazaar at Riverhead Village Hall on Saturday, 24 November from 2.30 – 4.30pm. All the usual attractions will be there including a raffle, tombola, silent auction, toys, children’s crafts, face painting and refreshments. Plus, of course, Father Christmas will be receiving visitors in his grotto from 2.30pm. This is St. Mary’s Pre-School’s biggest fundraiser of the year, so do support your local pre-school.

AMHERST BAZAAR: The Amherst School Christmas Bazaar will be held on Saturday 1 December from noon – 4pm. There will be craft activities, toys, festive gifts, cakes and biscuits, games, a Grand Draw, Christmas hampers, refreshments, Santa’s Grotto and lots more.

CHRISTMAS TREE FESTIVAL: St Mary’s Church will be holding its Festival of Christmas Trees for all to visit over the weekend of 8 & 9 December. Everyone – societies, groups, charities, residents’ associations, businesses, schools, nurseries, families – is invited to display a decorated tree (to be retrieved afterwards for your own use) and to place promotional literature beneath it if they wish. There is no charge to visit but any voluntary donations will be divided between the church and their chosen charities. For more information and to obtain an application form to join in and display a tree see: christmas-tree-fest@stmaryriverhead.co.uk or email christmas-tree-fest@stmaryriverhead.co.uk

BRADBOURNE LAKES: Sevenoaks District Council has agreed to invest £60,000 to restore and improve the Bradbourne Lakes park. The five ornamental lakes date back to 1740, once forming part of the Bradbourne Estate before they were handed to Sevenoaks Urban Council in 1935. Over the years, the Council and local community have worked together to maintain the much-loved park, including investing in new fencing, gates and benches. The Council is now seeking to undertake the most major overhaul of the Lakes since they were built, to secure their future for generations to come.

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