Saturday, May 18th, 2024

Famous steam train from bygone era to pass through Eynsford on Saturday

STEAM train travel from a bygone era will be making an appearance in Eynsford on Saturday (26 October) when The Golden Arrow passes through the village, complete with all the regalia it displayed while pulling carriages on the continental boat train.

The Golden Arrow first made an appearance in the UK in May 1929 when Southern Railway introduced the train on the route between London Victoria and Dover to coincide with the launch of a new first class only ship, the Canterbury, for the ferry crossing to France.

The journey from London took 98 minutes and ordinary first- and third-class carriages were added in 1931 when the Canterbury was also modified to allow other classes of passenger.

On Saturday, The Golden Arrow Iron Duke 70014 will be leaving London Victoria at 10.45am and will be making a journey to Canterbury West. The estimated time of arrival is around 1.20pm.

For train enthusiasts, keen photographers, or just interested parties, it is expected to cross the Eynsford Viaduct at around 11.15am.

Such is the interest in this train that every available seat, costing from £65 – £250 is sold out. The train will be making a return journey and will arrive at Victoria at around 8.10pm.

CHRISTMAS IS COMING: The churches in Eynsford and Farningham are both preparing for Christmas. St Peter and St Paul’s is holding a Christmas Market in Farningham Village Hall on Saturday 30 November from 11am – 3pm and St Martin’s is holding its Christmas Fayre on Saturday 7 December from 11am – 3pm in the Eynsford church.

There will be many stalls at Farningham and refreshments will be available. Donations for stalls may be left in the church porch or call Barry for collection on 07398 094536 or email: Proceeds from the Christmas Market will go the church.

In Eynsford on 7 December there will be crafters’ stalls with children’s and adults’ gifts, jewellery, scarves, cards, book-marks etc. Plus other stalls will offer home-made jam, food hampers and chocolate-filled mugs. There will also be a prize draw, a soft toy tombola and a chocolate tombola plus the ever-popular as-new gift stall as well as the beautiful Lights of Love Christmas trees. Refreshments include mulled wine, cakes, tea/coffee & sandwiches. Entrance is £1 for adults (children free) and you get a free tea or coffee.

CHURCHYARD TIDY UP: St Martin’s is holding an autumn tidy up on Saturday (26 October) from 9am. Volunteers should meet from 9am at Olive Seal Hall, and are asked to bring their own tools. Times may vary because of weather conditions but plans are for hot drinks at 10:30am and then a ‘thank you’ lunch at 1pm. It is hoped many villagers will come along to help make the churchyard looking as good as possible as the next couple of weeks will see more visitors to the village church for All Souls on 3 November and Remembrance Sunday on 10 November.

EYNSFORD IN BLOOM: The next working party meetings are at 9.30am on Tuesday 29 October, and 9.30am on Saturday 2 November. New helpers are very much needed and always very welcome. The working parties meet in the main village car park opposite the church. Tools and coffee are provided. For more info call Pauline Penny on 01322 864751

FARNINGHAM & EYNSFORD LOCAL HISTORY SOCIETY meets on Friday 8 November at 7.30pm for 8pm in Eynsford Village Hall for a talk by Dr Jean Stirk entitled ‘Creep, Pull, Push’. It is about Workers on the Move and covers the various influences and the willing or unwilling motives behind the moves and how to trace moving families. Members free, non-members £2. Enquiries via email at: or go to the website:

* Plus, another date for your diary. Farningham & Eynsford Local History Society will be showing old films of the area during the 1950s 60s nd 70s in Farningham Village Hall on Friday 6 December.

FARNINGHAM GUITAR CLUB is holding two Musical Charity Concerts in aid of Gravesham & Dartford Phab Club (Physically Handicapped & Able Bodied) Club at Farningham Village Hall on Saturday 9 November and Saturday 16 November – 8pm – 11pm (doors open at 7.30pm). The club promises a couple of hours of entertainment containing an eclectic mix of folk, rock, pop & blues music (with a bit of humour thrown in). The audience is invited to take along their own refreshments. More info by emailing: and to order tickets at £9 go to:

POLYCHOR CONCERT: St Peter and St Paul Church in Farningham will be filled with music on Saturday 16 November during a Polychor Concert. The programme starts at 7.30pm and includes two of Handel’s ‘Coronation Anthems’ and Britten’s ‘Ceremony of Carols’. Interval refreshments will be available. Admission is £10 (U18s free) and tickets are available from: Norman’s the Butcher in Eynsford, Wadard Books in Farningham, or by emailing: Tickets can also be bought on the door.

FARNINGHAM AND DISTRICT HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY: The AGM and supper are on Wednesday 20 November. New members are very welcome. Email:

EYNSFORD GARDENER’S CLUB: The next horticultural show is Saturday 16 November at 2pm in Eynsford Village Hall. This is also the date for the club’s AGM. More information about this show, our other shows, and how to become a member can be found on the club website:

A FARNINGHAM FRIDAY CAFÉ is held at the Shand Hall, just behind Farningham Church, from 10am – noon every Friday. Everyone is invited to come and share a coffee or tea with old friends or new. For more information email:

TEA AND CHAT: A friendly group meets every Thursday at Farningham Village Hall and offers a supportive and enjoyable break to anyone who is lonely or perhaps just needs a little time away from their house or would like to meet some new friends, chat and share some cake and tea. For more information email:

FRIENDS OF FARNINGHAM is a group of volunteers who meet for just an hour twice every month to help tidy the village. For more information email Cllr Carol Salmon on: or Jane Grey on:

WALKING INTO FRIENDSHIP AND FITNESS: Regular walks start from Eynsford Riverside at 9.30am on Monday mornings. There is no need to book, just turn up and meet the group and the leader. Usually walk are around five miles long. For more information contact Mike Riches on 01322667654 or email: Alternatively look on the website:

The Eynsford & Farningham Village news is compiled by Viv Parker. If you have any news or events you would like considered for the village column you can email them to:

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