50 reasons to celebrate 2011

From the opening of the Turner Contemporary in Margate and the New Marlowe in Canterbury to the return of the Folkestone Triennial and The Open at Sandwich, 2011 promises to be one of the most exciting years to be in Kent we can remember

50 reasons to celebrate 2011

From the opening of the Turner Contemporary in Margate and the New Marlowe in Canterbury to the return of the Folkestone Triennial and The Open at Sandwich, 2011 promises to be one of the most exciting years to be in Kent we can remember – and did someone mention a Royal wedding?


1 The Blessing of the Waters, Margate

9 January

This ancient ceremony takes place in Greek Orthodox communities around the world for the Feast of Epiphany, to commemorate the baptism of Christ in the Jordan.  In Kent, it’s been held in Margate since the 1960s, chosen because of its proximity to the sea and because the town was home to one of the two major centres for the Greek Cypriot community. On 9 January, whatever the weather, following a service at St Michael the Archangel dignitaries led by a Pipe Band will process to the beach where a wooden cross is thrown into the sea to bless the waters. Immediately a volunteer, or sometimes more than one, jumps in to retrieve it and hand it back to Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateria and Great Britain, who presides.

Most Read

2 Hellebore garden tours, Hadlow College

Hadlow College will be holding a series of hellebore guided tours during February and March. Set within the college’s Broadview Gardens, the National Collection of Hellebores has more than 1,000 plants on display and includes around 45 different species and strains. The collection contains some rare, as well as native and original, species and all the plants are labelled for easy identification. Visitors are welcome to wander round the collection free of charge or join a paid-for tour, taking place at 11am and 2pm on 19, 20, 26 and 27 February and 5 and 6 March. Tickets are �3 (pre-book). Tearoom.

01732 853211 Satnav postcode: TN11 0AL

3 Kent Greeters

Feeling sluggish post-Christmas? Then you need to meet a Kent Greeter! Based on the Big Apple Greeter of New York, the Kent Greeters are friendly volunteers who want to show you around their home town or village. From 2011 Visit Kent is now offering a new aspect to the service where visitors can go out on rural trips with their greeter. So whether it’s cycling in Lyminge Forrest or walking along the River Stour or the White Cliffs, the Kent Greeters can help you become familiar with some of the county’s many footpaths and rural treasures. They can help you find out about the best places for families to visit, places to eat, how to use local transport or to learn more about Kent's heritage, architecture and history. Greets typically last approximately one hour for a maximum of six people and the best bit is – they’re free!

To book a greeter visit, go to: www.kentgreeters.co.uk and complete the on-line application  form specifiying the area you want to visit. 


4 Broadstairs Blues Bash

18-20 February

Mid-February can be pretty bleak, so head for the coast and let this fantastic free Blues music festival in Broadstairs pep you up. In 2010, the organisers put more than 20 local, national and international Blues acts into 10 venues in the Victorian seaside town and the festival attracted several thousand people. Now 2011 is promising to be even bigger and better, with more venues and acts coming on board, from intimate wine bars, pubs and bars to larger pubs and one ticketed (350+) venue with a huge headline act.

info@broadstairsbluesbash.com Satnav postcode: CT10 1QS

5 Taste of Kent Awards

25 February

On 25 February, hundreds of food and drink producers, sponsors and guests will gather at Leeds Castle for a black tie dinner when the awards for the county’s food and drink heroes in 12 different categories will be announced. Now in its sixth year, the competition, run by Produced in Kent, is growing every year and last year saw an 89 per cent increase in votes from the general public. Kent Life, rarely far from a glass of something delicious, is sponsoring the ‘Best Kentish Vineyard of the Year.’

Voting closes on 3 January.

6 New Pirate Cove at the Hop Farm Family Park

Running out of inspiration for entertaining the kids this half-term? Head for the Hop Farm in Paddock Wood and let them loose in the new pirate cove, an exciting new attraction for 2011. There will be pirate and princess-themed activities, a 40ft galleon ship with a treasure island so children can dig for gold and a new 4D cinema experience and extreme zone

01622 872068 Satnav postcode: TN12 6PY


7 Kent Life Garden Competition launch

Following the success of the inaugural competition to find the Best Amateur Garden and the Best Primary School Garden in Kent, Kent Life is launching the Awards for a second year and would encourage all you keen gardeners, young and a little bit older, to start planning your entry now, in readiness for the better weather. Deadline for entries: 17 June.

07809 551221 and visit: kent.greatbritishlife.co.uk

8 My Kent Big Weekend

26 and 27 March

Kent’s most popular free event for local residents staged by the county’s tourism, leisure and hospitality businesses is going to be even bigger and better in 2011:

Visit Kent, the county’s tourism champion, has expanded Kent Big Day Out to become the Kent Big Weekend Out. Last year 128 organisations, ranging from castles and stately homes to steam trains and theatres, offered 18,000 free tickets to local residents. The first Kent Big Day Out five years ago was launched following Visit Kent research that revealed a high proportion of visitors to the county stayed with friends and family and relied on them for advice on the best places to see and experiences to enjoy.

01227 812900 or enquiries@visitkent.co.uk

9 Lambing weekend, Hadlow College

12 and 13 March

Getting more and more popular every year, the 2010 Lambing Weekend at Hadlow College attracted 8,500 visitors, and more than 3,000 cars across both days. So if it seems as if Spring will never arrive, this is a real feelgood experience for the whole family and the sight of the wobbly new-borns finding their feet and  is guaranteed to bring a huge smile to your face.

01732 853211 Satnav postcode: TN11 0AL

10 National Trust properties re-open

If you’re desperate to see how Sissinghurst, Scotney, Chartwell et al have survived the winter and hopefully get a glimpse of some very early signs of Spring, then you’ll be relieved to know that most National Trust properties will be open from mid-March (to early November), usually on three or more days per week between about noon and 5pm, although opening times and arrangements vary considerably from place to place and from year to year. Always check information in advance.

11 John Piper in Kent & Sussex

A major exhibition of paintings, collages and drawings by 20th-century English painter and printmaker John Piper that have never been previously exhibited will take place from 9 March to 21 May at Mascalls Gallery, Scotney Castle and Tunbridge Wells Museum and Art Gallery.

Satnav postcodes: TN12 6LT (Mascalls), TN3 8JN (Scotney) and TN1 1JN (TW museum)



12 Gurkha Festival of Music

7-9 April

Launched in 2000 as a way of helping to raise funds for a memorial to those who lost their lives at Dunkirk and the Normandy Landings during the Second World War, the Gurkha Festival of Music is now a much-loved annual event. Taking place at

The Nye Hall at The Duke of York's Royal Military School in Dover, each year the Festival helps raise funds for young persons with disabilities and also helps The Gurkha Welfare Trust.

01304 366337 Satnav postcode: CT15 5EQ


13 Opening of Turner Contemporary, Margate

16 April

A landmark new gallery, designed by David Chipperfield Architects, located on the seafront and inspired by the light and views that Turner would have seen opens its doors to the public in Margate this month with a major show of works by the great artist. It explores the important role that the depiction of the elements played in JMW Turner’s landscapes, watercolours and late paintings.

The opening exhibition, Revealed: Turner Contemporary Opens (16 April-4 September) explores the themes of imagination, discovery, wonder and the creative spirit. Centred on JMW Turner’s extraordinary but little-known painting The Eruption of the Souffrier Mountains, in the Island of St Vincent, at Midnight, on the 30th of April, 1812, from a Sketch Taken at the Time by Hugh P. Keane, Esqre, 1815 depicting a dramatic volcanic eruption that Turner himself never witnessed, the exhibition will feature new commissions by Daniel Buren, Russell Crotty, Ellen Harvey and Conrad Shawcross, alongside selected works by Teresita Fernandez and Douglas Gordon.

The aim is to develop the gallery into one of the UK’s leading visual arts venues, gaining a reputation for an artistically challenging programme that will appeal to local, regional, national and international audiences. It is hoped that new visitors will be drawn to Margate and thus help support the continued regeneration of the town.

01843 294208 Satnav postcode: CT9 1EY


14 Mothering Sunday and Easter

Both falling considerably later in the calendar than in recent years, you can show your mother how much you appreciate her on 3 March and enjoy the first public holiday since Christmas over the weekend of 22-25 April. Amidst all the chocolate, family time and, hopefully, warm Spring sunshine, don’t forget that Easter is also the most important festival in the Christian calendar and your chance to celebrates Christ's resurrection from the dead, whether that is in your local church or in Kent’s great cathedrals at Canterbury and Rochester.

15 A Royal Wedding

29 April

The announcement of the marriage of Prince William to long-term girlfriend Kate Middleton in Westminster Abbey this April has really set the seal on 2011 being a ‘year to remember’ – especially as it means we’re getting a new Bank Holiday. William, second in line to the throne, has given Kate his mother's sapphire and diamond ring. Although we can’t claim them as our own in Kent, the whole of the county is united in its delight at seeing the happy couple tie the knot and The Queen’s representative in the county, the Lord Lieutenant of Kent, Allan Willett CMG, told Kent Life: “My wife Anne and I, and all members of the Kent Lieutenancy, were absolutely delighted to hear the announcement by the Prince of Wales of the engagement of Prince William to Miss Catherine Middleton and wish them every happiness.” 

16 Rochester Sweeps Festival

30 April-2 May

Traditional Morris dancers and musicians converge on Rochester for the colourful annual Rochester Sweeps Festival. This typically English festival was originally celebrated by chimney sweeps, who welcomed the good weather and hung up their brushes for a sunny day off.

01634 338141 Satnav postcode: ME1 1LX


17 Weald of Kent Craft Show, Penshurst Place

7-9 May

A quality craft show with up to 250 artists and traditional craftsmen displaying and demonstrating, held in the beautiful historic parkland of Penshurst Place.

01892 870307 Satnav postcode: TN11 8DG


18 National Mills Weekend

14-15 May

National Mills Weekend is a celebration of the UK's milling heritage, held on the second weekend of May each year. Organised by the Mills Section of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, it’s a great opportunity to visit and look round Kent’s mills, many of which are not usually open to the public. Check out 13 examples in the county, from Ashford to Woodchurch.


19 Secret Wartime Tunnels, Dover Castle

At Dover Castle, a new visitor experience in the Secret Wartime Tunnels will depict the dramatic events of the Dunkirk rescue in May 1940. Opening in June, the new attraction will use a combination of real experience and original material from the period to imaginatively tell the story of the Miracle of Dunkirk – the rescue of more than 338,000 troops, masterminded from within the tunnels.


20 Explore Kent Walking Festival

1 June-31 August

Relax and unwind in Kent’s glorious countryside this summer during Explore Kent’s Walking Festival, starting in June. Choose a guided walk that the whole family will enjoy and find somewhere new to explore, whether it’s coast or country. In 2010 1,022 guided walks took place between April and July.

21 Glorious Gardens at Penshurst Place 

1 to 5 June

The blooming of the famous peony border at Penshurst Place will be celebrated in ‘flaming June’ with a series of garden-related events. When you need a reviving cuppa, the tea room, reopened last year and run by Leith’s, is well worth a visit for its superb afternoon high teas.

01892 870307 Satnav postcode: TN11 8DG

22 Dickens Festival, Rochester

3-5 June

Rochester boasts close links to Charles Dickens, who spent five years of his childhood there (1817-1822) and returned for 13 years at the end of his life (1856-1870). Since 1978 Medway has held this annual celebration in honour of the Victorian author and over the past 30 years-plus, the Dickens Festival has grown and grown, just like the crowds in attendance. See Rochester return to its Victorian glory, with parades through the town centre and the streets full of colour, costumes and entertainment.

01634 338308 Satnav postcode: ME1 1LX

23 Hever Castle Best of British Garden Festival

20-26 June

The Best of British Garden Festival will see the garden transformed with a patriotic red, blue and white planting theme, in addition to introducing the new Hever Castle Rose. Visiting groups can also enjoy a Champagne cream tea to music of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s in the Castle restaurant.

01732 865224 Satnav postcode: TN8 7NG

24 Deal Festival of Music and Arts

24 June-3 July

The Deal Summer Music Festival was founded in 1982 by the Swedish pianist Lennart Rabes, who moved to Deal from London in 1978. Over the years it has steadily attracted more audiences and international performers. Now re-named Deal Festival of Music and the Arts, the programme, which is always centred on chamber music, will be tightly packed with as wide a range of music as possible, including opera and street music. Festival club events, talks, art exhibitions and education projects.

01227 786111 Satnav postcode: CT14 6EE

25 Folkestone Triennial

25 June-25 September

A three-yearly exhibition of contemporary artworks sited in public spaces throughout Folkestone. Andrea Schlieker conceived and curated the inaugural exhibition in 2008 and will direct the second Triennial this summer. Permanent commissions, including eight works by some of the most significant contemporary artists working today, are located in 25 different locations spread across the town. The Triennial forms a major component of arts-led regeneration of Folkestone, driven by the Creative Foundation, which is leading on the regeneration of the old town area of Folkestone, developing a burgeoning Creative Quarter populated by artists, independent retailers and creative businesses in a growing number of refurbished studio, living and retail spaces.

01303 854080 Satnav postcode: CT20 1RN

26 Wildflowers of Brockles Field

The glorious sweeping landscape at Ranscombe Farm Reserve near Cuxton, owned and managed by conservation charity Plantlife, will have more on offer for local people to enjoy from June onwards. Thanks to new funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Medway Council, Plantlife has bought an orchid-rich meadow adjoining its existing reserve, and will be continuing to improve and restore wildlife habitats across the whole reserve. Ranscombe Farm is a nationally important nature reserve for its rare and threatened farmland flowers, and the wonderful wild plant habitats support a range of other wildlife from skylarks to dormice and speckled wood butterflies.

01722 342730 or enquiries@plantlife.org.uk


27 Dover Regatta

2-3 July

Moving from its customary August slot to July, the Dover Regatta is an annual weekend of family fun along Dover seafront as well as sporting activities in the sea.

07765 514 078 or gill@doverregatta.co.uk

28 Lounge on the Farm, Merton Farm

8-10 July

Celebrating its fifth year, this is a live music festival that takes place on a ‘green’ farm just outside Canterbury. Offers a vast and varied line-up of musical performers plus comedy, theatre, cabaret, family workshops, cinema, two children’s areas and a good supply of local food and drink.

01227 456118 or matt@loungeonthefarm.co.uk

Satnav postcode: CT4 7BA

29 16 July

Open Air Classical Concert, Leeds Castle

Back by popular demand and on its original site, this beautiful Castle provides a dramatic backdrop to a spectacular and romantic summer's evening open air concert.

John Rigby will conduct The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, with narration by actor Robert Powell and spectacular fireworks at the finale.

Tel: 01622 765400 or enquiries@leeds-castle.co.uk

Satnav postcode: ME17 1PL

30 The Open at Sandwich

14-17 July

The Open Golf taking place in Sandwich is widely regarded as being in the top 10 world sporting events for 2011, alongside such major events as the Rugby World Cup, Monaco Formula I Grand Prix, and the Cricket World Cup and is expected to attract around 200,000 visitors to East Kent.

It will be the fourteenth time that the Royal St George’s Golf Club has hosts The Open - the first was back in 1894. The Club was initially designed by Dr Laidlaw in 1887, its original design and use was for London golfers who generally played in overcrowded and unmanaged courses to come and relax and enjoy their round of golf. The Royal status was given to St Georges by King Edward VII in May 1902.

Over the years, the cruel links course conditions have tamed even the greatest of golfing legends, including Tiger Woods who, in 2003, finished joint fourth one over for the tournament. Bill Rogers, Greg Norman and Ben Curtis are the only three players who have ever won The Open at Royal St Georges under par for 72 holes.

01304 613090 Satnav postcode: CT13 9PB

31 Lavender Festival, Shoreham

2-3 July and 9-10 July

The popular Lavender Festival events are held over two weekends at the Alexander family’s Castle Farm. There are tours of the lavender fields, fresh-cut bunches of lavender for sale, lots of herb and lavender plants, plus fresh-picked local cherries and strawberries. Many suppliers offer tastings of their wonderful products - especially lavender foods - and there are also crafts and toiletries. For a unique experience, you can book an Aromatherapy Lavender Massage in the lavender fields on 2, 3, 7, 8, 9 and 10 July. Utter bliss. Free entry to site, car parking �2.

01959 523219  Satnav postcode: TN14 7UB

32 Kent County Show, Detling

15-17 July

The Kent County Show is the largest three-day event in the county with nearly 100,000 visitors each year. Organised by The Kent County Agricultural Society, a charity whose prime objective is to help make agriculture and horticulture more accessible to the public, the 2010 event lived up to its promise and put farming and agriculture firmly back at its heart. We await the 82nd Show with great anticipation.

01622 630975 Satnav postcode: ME14 3EX

33 War and Peace Show, Hop Farm

20-24 July

Taking place at The Hop Farm in Paddock Wood, War and Peace has become the world's largest military vehicle spectacular. It all began back in 1980, when a small group of Kent-based enthusiasts got together to form a local military vehicle club. The Invicta Military Vehicle Preservation Society (IMPS) was born. The first show was held at The Hop Farm in 1987, when just 150 vehicles attended the two-day event.

01622 872068 Satnav postcode: TN12 6PY

34 Ramsgate Week

25-30 July

Ramsgate Week is the Royal Temple Yacht Club’s annual regatta and is widely recognised as ‘the friendly regatta’ and the alternative to Cowes. Moved from its customary August slot this year to be ahead of Cowes Week, this year the RTYC is also hosting an IRC Series for classes 1-3 running from Thursday to Saturday, so busy sailors need only be two days away from the office. The club was founded in 1857 by a group of yachtsmen sailing from the Temple Steps on the Thames in central London. The Ramsgate Clubhouse was opened in 1896 and the Royal Charter was granted the following year.

01843 591766 Satnav postcode: CT11 9HY

35 Whitstable Oyster Festival

23-29 July

One of Kent's most popular annual events, the Whitstable Oyster Festival celebrates the town’s unique history. Centred on the folklore and traditions of the oyster fishing industry, the Festival has grown into a week-long celebration of local culture, with an exciting programme of theatre, art, music, dance and food.

01227 862583 or judy.kneale@canterbury.gov.uk Satnav postcode: CT5 1DB


36 Broadstairs Folk Week

5-12 August

This popular festival of song, music and dance sees the main streets of Broadstairs closed to traffic and around 500 events to enjoy, including concerts, poetry, workshops and craft fairs. The leading acts are in Pierremont Park, with smaller gigs in pubs, restaurants, caf�s and at the bandstand. Musician Paul Sartin has been commissioned by the festival to write a special concert performance piece for 2011. Changing Landscapes will be a mixture of traditional tunes and songs and specially written music by Paul.

01843 604080 Satnav postcode: CT10 1JX

37 Sandwich Festival

21-29 August

An annual event in the historic Cinque Port of Sandwich, involving a 10K road race and more lighthearted 6K fun run, competitions, stalls and live music. Don’t miss the famous Duck Race on The Quay, jazz on Gazen Salts, an illuminated boat parade on the Stour and tours at dusk of The Secret Gardens.

01304 613164 Georgina Maddox or mark.moorhouse@btconnect.com

Satnav postcode:CT13 9AH


38 New Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury

Dates tbc

Built on its existing but extended site in the heart of Canterbury, the new Marlowe Theatre will give Kent a world-class theatre. Audiences will enjoy state-of-the-art facilities housed in a stunning contemporary riverside building. The larger theatre will bring a programme of bigger and better shows, including the largest musicals, the best plays, international quality opera and ballet and a programme of modern and classical music. In an exciting new departure, the theatre will also be home to a second auditorium. The 150-seat Second Space will present new and innovative performances and arts events and give audiences the opportunity to take part in a range of creative workshops and activities. It will be the home of the Marlowe Youth Theatre and will be used to support the development of emerging talent across the region.

01227 787787

39 Electric Lantern Film & Arts Festival, Tunbridge Wells

3-11 September

Tunbridge Wells’ first arts festival - the Electric Lantern Film And Arts Festival - will take place at venues throughout the area and is expected to offer something for everyone, from puppet shows to classic movie screenings. Schools, colleges, professional and amateur painters, sculptors, writers, actors, film-makers, photographers and anyone with an artistic or creative streak will be encouraged to join in. Among the attractions will be a secret art sale (in association with Hospice In The Weald), comedy night, art market, outdoor cinema, numerous workshops, screenings, exhibitions and more than a few surprises. Venues signed up to be involved include Trinity, the Assembly Hall and The Forum, plus a number of local galleries.

Gaynor Edwards on 0845 520 5250 or gaynor@electriclanternfestival.co.uk

40 Kent Life Garden Competition Awards, Hadlow

22 September

Following the success of our inaugural competition to find the Best Amateur Garden and the Best Primary School Garden in Kent, Kent Life is delighted to be staging our second annual awards at a high tea ceremony taking place at Broadview Tearooms, Hadlow College. Watch Kent Life for regular updates, in the magazine and at: kent.greatbritishlife.co.uk

41 Heritage Open Days

10 and 11 September

Heritage Open Days celebrates England’s fantastic architecture and culture by offering free access to properties that are usually closed to the public or normally charge for admission. Buildings of every age, style and function throw open their doors, ranging from castles to factories, town halls to tithe barns, parish churches to cathedrals. It is a once-a-year chance to discover hidden architectural treasures and enjoy a wide range of tours, events and activities which bring to life local Kent history and culture.

0844 335 1884

42 Canterbury Eurofair

23-25 September

Taking place in Dane John Gardens, Eurofair with the Kent Food and Drink Festival is staged by Canterbury City Council working in partnership with Produced in Kent. Up to 100 stalls-holders from across Kent and Europe offer an array of mouth-watering food and drink and crafts. Produced in Kent members will be selling a variety of Kentish products including jams, chutneys, pickles, artisan bread, fish, wild game, Kent cobnuts, chocolates, truffles, oils, fruit juices and wine. The event will also comprise an extensive programme of food demonstrations and talks throughout the weekend as well as musical interludes from the bandstand.

01227 862583 or judy.kneale@canterbury.gov.uk

Satnav postcode: CT1 2UN

43 Broadstairs Food Festival

27 September-2 October

Endorsed by celebrity chef Gary Rhodes, who trained at nearby Thanet College, Broadstairs Food Festival – now in its third year - is a wonderful opportunity to see, taste and enjoy some of the best produce from the Garden of England. Throughout festival week there will be plenty of entertainment and food treats for all ages.

07984 177 577 Bill Hackney or info@broadstairsfoodfestival.org.uk

Satnav postcode: CT10 1QS

44 Tenterden Folk Festival

30 Sept-2 Oct

This three-day festival of folk song, music and dance has the perfect setting in Tenterden, which boasts one of the widest High Streets in the country lined with historic and listed buildings, numerous friendly pubs and restaurants and green verges.

01233 626805 Alan Castle or info@tenterdenfolkfestival.org.uk

45 Country Life at Hever Castle

17-18 September

New for 2011, Country Life at the Castle incorporates the annual patchwork and quilting exhibition and will also host a number of displays and demonstrations of rural crafts, bee keeping and rare-breed hens. Groups visiting Hever Castle throughout 2011 will have the chance to see new exhibition in the Long Gallery, Hever Castle - A Family Affair, showcasing information about each of the families linked with the castle, demonstrating their influence on its architectural development.



46 Canterbury Festival

15-29 October

Canterbury Festival is a multi-arts festival which takes place every October in and around the city of Canterbury, and includes approximately 200 events over the two-week period.

01227 452853 email: info@canterburyfestival.co.uk

47 Kent Coastal Week

24-28 October

Running every October half term, Kent’s Coastal Week last year saw more than 6,000 people enjoyed everything from guided walks and rock pooling sessions to wildlife boat trips, volunteer days and art workshops. In Kent we have some great nature reserves on the coast, ranging from marshes and mudflats to chalk cliffs and shingle. And the underwater areas off the Kent coast are just as rich in wildlife and will be receiving protection in the coming years under the Marine and Coastal Access Act. In 2011 Coastal Week is likely to take up the theme of ‘Creative Coast’ and in 2012 ‘Historic Coast.’



48 Art & Sculpture, Seal, nr Sevenoaks

24-27 November

Kent sculptor and Dragon’s Den star Guy Portelli will bring together the cream of international art for the third annual In Touch exhibition at Dorton House in aid of the Royal London Society for the Blind. The millinery exhibit, new for 2010, will return along with a ladies ‘Mad Hatters Champagne and Tea Party’ with millinery fashion show: to register interest, please email: Stephanie.kamin @rlsb.org.uk.

Tickets will be limited. Private View on 24 November by invitation only.

01732 592500 Satnav postcode: TN14 0EVB


49 Canterbury Cathedral concerts

10 December: Save Canterbury Cathedral concert

16 December: Canterbury Choral Society Family Carol Concert.

23 and 24 December: Canterbury Cathedral Service of Carols for Christmas. Entry to these identical public services is on a first come, first seated basis.

01227 762862 or enquiries@canterbury-cathedral.org

50 A Dickensian Christmas, Rochester

3-4 December and 3-19

Each year, the first weekend of December brings Victorian festivities to Rochester in the form of a Dickensian Christmas, where you can experience street entertainment, readings, song and dance and daily parades. You’ll be captivated by Dickens’ characters as you explore the literary journey that was the great writer’s life.

Until 19 December, you can also enjoy the largest authentic German-style Christmas market in the UK in the shadow of Rochester Castle, featuring up to 300 Christmas chalets, a giant Christmas tree, bandstand and carousel. The castle walls will be illuminated and the entire market will be decorated in festive tradition style.

01634 338308 or lisa.caleno@medway.gov.uk


My Kent

For further ideas on things to do and places to go see www.visitkent.co.uk

Don’t forget to capture your great days out in Kent this year and share them on www.mykent.co.uk. You could even become Kent’s top explorer if you mark enough discoveries.