Thursday, May 30th, 2024

Your latest news and diary dates from Weald Village

Compiled by Susan Gidman 

VILLAGE SHOP FUTURE SECURED: The purchase of the old Methodist Chapel by the Parish Council took many years to complete but it has enabled the Community Shop currently operating from next to the Memorial Hall, to have a secure home in the future.

Refurbishment of the building, started in October 2017 but was made complicated by the fact that the original structure was built straight onto the bare earth. Planning consent involved the construction of a small kitchen and a disabled toilet facility as well as disabled access and the installation of a defibrillator box.

At the recent Parish Council meeting Rosie Wood, the Leader of the Council, performed an informal opening ceremony before the meeting which was held inside.

LONDON MARATHON: Ian Walker from the Weald Community Shop partnered visually impaired runner Paul Smith again to compete in the recent London Marathon.

Ian said:  “I have always admired the courage of visually impaired runners, when watching the London Marathon over the years and, as a runner myself, decided that I would get qualified to be a Guide Runner.  I trained so that I could cover the marathon distance myself and then contacted all of the charities that support the visually impaired and offered to guide any of their runners in the London Marathon.

“Last year, I was contacted by Kent Association for the Blind, who, coincidentally provided practical support to my late father, who lost his sight in the last few years of his life.  They had a visually impaired runner, Paul Smith, who was looking for a guide. Since then Paul and I have run two London Marathons, will be doing a London to Brighton ride on a tandem in June and are looking towards a John O’Groats to Land’s End ride in 2020, to coincide with the centenary of Kent Association for the Blind.”

If, perhaps, you  would like to donate the link for giving is  The duo has already exceeded their £1,300 target but Ian is hoping that once all donations are in from online donors, his running group Oaks Blokes and customers of Weald Community Shop, that they will exceed £2,000.

VILLAGE WALK: Roger and Moya Grady are leading the walk this month (Saturday 5 May at the new time of 9:45am) and they have said that it will involve a lot of bluebells! The group will departing from the community shop so as to be back in time for coffee.

GREEN FINGERS: Lots of Weald gardeners have been potting up their spare plants and getting them ready to sell at the Horticultural Society Plant Sale on Saturday 5 May between 09.30 – 11.00 in the Memorial Hall car park.

SILENT AUCTION: Vivienne Teckoe (07484 194969 or email: is organising a Silent Auction for the Weald Summer Fete at the end of June and is asking local people and businesses for vouchers/tickets/prizes to be auctioned on the day of the Fete. All the money raised will be put to improving the playground equipment at Weald School. Some very generous pledges have already been made including a one-year family membership to St Julian’s Club, a tour of the House of Commons, vouchers for Malabar Coffee House (Sevenoaks & Riverhead) and a vintage afternoon tea at Rose & Olive (Uckfield) but more pledges are sought.

Have you got a skill or a service you might offer – gardening services perhaps or the preparation of a meal for six? Perhaps you might have a holiday cottage and would be prepared to give away a week’s rental or, perhaps, you could provide a taxi service to a local hospital for someone who might need it soon. What ever you can donate will be gratefully received and the proceeds of the auction put to good use for the benefit of school children in the village.

WIZARD SHOW FOR  MOTHER AND DAUGHTER: In June, to celebrate their 50th anniversary, Sevenoaks Entertainers are performing the all singing and dancing show, ‘The Wizard of Oz’, supported by a cast of more than 100 and a 14 piece orchestra.

Several Weald villagers are involved including Sophie Bea who was last seen as Alladin in the recent pantomime of the same name, also produced by Sevenoaks Entertainers. She is joined by Lily-Rose Meade who has been a member of the Young Entertainers for several years. But, probably a Weald first, the cast will also include mother and daughter Roberta and Verity Briant (pictured). Roberta takes one of the principal roles as the Wicked Witch of the West. Verity performs as a Lullaby League munchkin.

The first night of The Wizard of Oz’ at The Stag Theatre is on Thursday 14 June at 7:30pm. With five more shows to follow, Friday 15th at 7.30pm, Saturday 16th 1.30pm & 6.30pm, Sunday 17th at noon with the final show on Sunday 17th at 4.30pm. Tickets are now on sale at the STAG.

PIE NIGHT AT THE WINDMILL: This Thursday (10 May) it is a pie-night special at the Windmill pub when the Hartley Morris men will alspo be performing from 8pm. If you would like to book a table for the pie night please contact Matt & Emma on 01732 463330.

ANNUAL MEETING: The Memorial Hall is holding its AGM on Wednesday 16 May (8pm start). The Chairman, Hilary Allen and the Secretary, Carolyn Moss have indicated that they will be stepping down at the AGM so important decisions will need to be made so that the Hall can continue its valuable work for the community.

CANINE PARTNERS: Robin Marchant was down to attend the Women of Weald meeting on Wednesday (2 May) with Sarah, a member of the Canine Partner charity to talk about the vital work that they do in enabling people with a variety of challenging disabilities to carry out some everyday tasks.

Pandora, Robin’s Canine Partner, sadly died earlier in the year and he is waiting to be partnered with a new dog. The process of matching the personality of a dog to its human companion can’t be rushed and a great deal of training is required. A Fun Dog Show is being held on Saturday 2 June to raise funds for the charity.

MUSICAL TREAT IN STORE: Dr Shantanu Sharma will be playing the sitar at Weald’s Indian inspired fund-raiser on Sunday 6 May.  Following a buffet lunch she has prepared an interesting and varied programme of music  – some traditional English music as well as Indian classical pieces.

Shantanu studied the sitar with the highly respected and renowned Pandit Debu Chaudhuri and after completing her doctorate in music from Delhi University, went on to lecture there for 20 years, becoming senior lecturer of music. She is a published author and has appeared on All India Radio

In UK, Dr Sharma has been associated with several programmes and organisations aiming to showcase Indian classical music in an interesting and enjoyable manner that appeals to a wider audience. To this effect, she has collaborated with other Indian artists locally for a musical video for ‘Indian Raga Lab’ which features a blend of north and Carnatic (south) Indian classical music. Recently, she has teamed up with British musicians and formed a group called ‘The Sacred Hearts’ who perform various ancient Indian chants with fusion music that soothes the soul.

The programme will begin with Dr Shantanu Sharma introducing the instrument and then playing some traditional western music as well as Indian classics; it sounds intriguing. Shantanu completed her PhD in the sitar and taught at Delhi University for 20 years so we are in for a treat – as well as the food.

If you have not yet booked your ticket, contact Susan or Richard Gidman on or 01732454222. Everyone is welcome (Adults £18, £10 for children). There will be some mild curry dishes as well as some slightly more spicy.

LAST ORDERS?: The  Windmill pub is on the market. The current landlords Emma and Matt are already decorating a pub in Tonbridge that they have bought and are in need of someone to make some curtains for it. With all the talent in the village is there someone out there who can do the job required! If you have the sewing skills, time and inclination, please contact Emma by email at

50 YEARS OF SERVICE: Alan Hindley, Scout Leader of the Weald pack was honoured at the weekend with an award for his 50 years of service to the scouting movement. He joined as a young boy and became a leader in his early 20s. His wife, Liz, is also a leader in the movement supporting the Cubs and Beavers.

The troop in Weald, awarded the accolade, ‘the most improved pack’ at the same meeting, is now 60-strong including Beavers, Cubs, and Scouts. A new Beaver leader is still needed. It would be extremely sad if the troop was to fail for lack of leadership support.

FUNDRAISING OFF TO A GOOD START: On 22 April, after the St George’s church Annual Meeting and service, Layla Major, Charlie Carr, Will Baber and Izzy Chatten made an early start to Christian Aid fundraising by setting up a stall selling cakes, biscuits, drinks and sundry other items, raising £61.92 in the process.




If you have any Weald news you would like considered for inclusion, send it by email to:

Share With:
No Comments

Leave A Comment