Concert at St Michael’s Church Fri 18 May: University of Kent Chamber Choir

We’re very much looking forward to a visit from the University of Kent Chamber Choir and Sinfonia, who will be coming to St Michael’s Church on Friday 18 May for a concert at 7.30pm.

Conducted by Dan Harding and Matthew Cooke, the event brings a blend of sacred and secular music from across the centuries, featuring especially the Stabat Mater by Pergolesi, a popular work from the Baroque period for which the Choir will be joined by players from the String Sinfonia.

Here’s the Choir singing My Lord Has Come by Will Todd, one of the pieces which will be included in the concert:

The performance is free, and includes refreshments; there will be a retiring collection in aid of St Michael’s Church. Put the date in your diaries!


Art Exhibition in St. Michael’s Church

Art Exhibition by Local Artists

8 – 9th July, 10am – 5pm

Local Artists, including those who have contributed to the Hernhill Village Calendar 2018, will be exhibiting their work at this exhibition. Many of the works on show will be available to purchase with a percentage of the price going to St. Michael’s Church.


St. Michael’s, Hernhill. Watercolour by Ted Battersea



Art Trip 17 May 2017

Art Trip    to the Dulwich Picture Gallery

Wednesday 17th May 2017                                                

A Trip to see the paintings of the artist Vanessa Bell (née Stephen; 30 May 1879 – 7 April 1961) an English painter and interior designer, a member of the Bloomsbury Group and the sister of Virginia Woolf.

Art Trip

A minibus will depart from Herne Bay at 9:00am, Tankerton 9:15 and Hernhill village hall 9:30.

Approx. arrival time at the gallery is 11:30am, for a 3 hour visit.

Cost for bus and entry fee is £46

Please contact Alice for further details and to book

01227 751583 / 07732938005 




Hop to the first Hop Fest Fringe this weekend

This year, for the first time, Faversham’s Arden Theatre will be bursting with stand-up comedy, spoken word, poetry, theatre and more in the first Hop Fest Fringe.

Better Together: at the Hop Fest Fringe

From 2 – 4 September, alongside the annual Hop Festival, the Arden will froth with creative life, including ancillary events such as ‘Prose at the Purifier’ bringing theatre and poetry to the Purifier Building. Family-friendly events include ‘The Little Girl Who Was Sold With The Pears’ as a double-bill with ‘Baby,’ a dance-theatre performance using pop music to explore the joys of pregnancy and motherhood.

‘Better Together’ uses slapstick, acrobatics and physical comedy as it asks how you become best friends with someone, while ‘Water-Watcher’ weaves folk, fable, alchemy and ancient rites through spoken word as it investigates the north Kent coast.

hopfestfringe-logoFind out more about all these events here; tickets are a mere snip at £5 each, and the Hop Fest Fringe runs from Friday 2 to Sunday 3 September. Toi toi toi to the first Fringe Fest!

The smell of a Whitstable summer: The Whitstable Pearl Mystery by Julie Wassmer

Julie Wassmer’s big-hearted crime novel, The Whitstable Pearl Mystery, reads like a love-letter to the seaside town of Whitstable, infused as it it with deft touches of local colour that can only be painted by someone who knows the area intimately. The very sea-air permeates the novel, bestrewn with vivid depictions of seaside beach-huts, thronging Oyster Festival hordes, and an empathy with the rise and fall of the tide, that breathes in time with the town itself.

Anyone looking for the gritty melodrama of Wassmer’s time as a screenwriter for EastEnders might be disappointed, for this novel is infinitely warmer, more generously-spirited than the television series. If the novel has any flaw, it’s that it perhaps relies so much on attention to geographical detail to give it sense of place, with roads, streets, shops, landmarks, dropped so often that it starts to feel as though the exactitude of the local geography is something of a crusade for verisimilitude. But perhaps this is only evident to those who know the terrain, and it is a meagre thing when measured against the vividness with which local colour is evoked.

The gentle denouement works well, and draws to a close with a pleasing knotting-up of loose ends. There are nods to Seasalter’s people-smuggling past (a key factor also in James McGee’s period thriller, Rapscallion, too), the history of the Red Sands Forts, and plenty of tourist-thronging scenes to ground the novel in a firm sense of the region’s history and its bustling present. Read the novel and inhale the warm breeze of a Whitstable summer.

All boats rise with the tide: cultural and retail collaboration

It’s very exciting to see some of Faversham’s cafes beginning to feature artistic opportunities amongst the crockery and cutlery recently – both Jittermugs and the newest addition to the town’s cafe-culture, The Yard are currently hosting exhibitions of work by local artists.

It seems to me that this is a development which could also serve the wider community, whereby the arts and retailers work together for the benefit of wider promotion. Local photographers could celebrate Faversham’s shops, cafes and historic buildings and amenties, and in return, shops could host artists’ work, displays and exhibitions.

IMG_2374The eye-catching window displays which frequently adorn The Disgruntled Cat could form the basis for a photographic exhibition, for instance, that the shop itself could then host, or which could be featured in a display in the Alexander Centre, or a pop-up gallery at another venue in town. Customers browsing for goods would also be exposed to artwork, to paintings and drawings celebrating the life of the town and its inhabitants. Restaurants such as The Saddlers or Posillipo‘s could host temporary paintings; a photographic exhibition might explore the various eateries to be found around the town. Art in unexpected places is always exciting: live music in a library (!), poetry in a cafe, pictures in a farm-shop…

For a creek-side town with a nautical heritage, the metaphor ‘All boats rise with the tide’ is entirely appropriate; and if we could pull this together in time for June, when the public eye will be drawn to Faversham for the celebrations of the Magna Carta, so much the better. If we can work side by side to promote and foster businesses, the arts, the history and the town of Faversham, we could really begin to reinvogorate the Market Town of Kings. There’s a vibrant community, full of creative individuals, that feels like an untapped resource at the moment; it’s all about finding new ways of engaging customers, and drawing people over the threshold. An art exhibition in the foyer of Faversham Pools, or a floating exhibition or book-club on the boats at the creek, anyone ?!

IMG_2375If you would like to develop this idea, get in touch: talk to us on Twittter. If we can get retailers, artists and traders talking to one another, it could be a welcome tonic for the town’s economy too. Let’s see if we can make this work.