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Recent Events


Rotary Club party goes with a swing

RC XMASPARTY22 291122 CD22It has been a significant event in the calendar of the Rotary Club of Whitstable for just over two decades. The club’s annual Christmas party for adults with learning disabilities is always a popular affair with both members and guests alike.

Held in the town’s Marine Hotel, the event had it's beginnings when members took a party of adult students from a local centre for those with learning problems to view the Christmas lights set up by the residents of Ocean Close in Birchington. This was followed by a fish and chip supper back in a Whitstable 'chippie'.

RC XMASPARTY22 291122 CD19 002However, unfortunately, the event in Birchington became so popular that visitors caused huge traffic problems and the residents reluctantly curtailed the event.

This left the Whitstable Rotary Club with a problem; it was so popular with the students that an alternative was needed. At the time, in the early 2000s, late club member David Feasey who was manager at the Marine Hotel in Tankerton offered the hotel’s function room for an annual party and the event grew from there!

RC XMASPARTY22 291122 CD29So, on Tuesday 1st December laughter and music filled the function room at the Marine Hotel once again when the club held the party for the first time after a two-year gap due to the pandemic.

Rotary Club member Mike Bantin who organised the event said, “Around 80 guests from various special needs centres around the area, many accompanied by their carers, attended the event and danced or listened to the disco music played by Ian and Angela Gladwell of Celebration Sounds. The disco was followed by a sausage and chip supper and the visit of Father Christmas, which always proves very popular. Our thanks go to Shepherd Neame and the Marine Hotel for making the evening possible”.

RC XMASPARTY22 291122 CD11Rotary Club President Tony Rix added, “It was a wonderful evening and it was clear that all our guests enjoyed the occasion. I can now see why it is one of the best things we do and why it was sorely missed over the last two years or so. My thanks go to our members who organised and helped, but it needed the enthusiasm of the students who attended (many of them look forward to the evening for many weeks in advance) to make the evening a success”.

Ukraine Day Wednesday 24th August

August 24th is Ukraine Day – it is normally a bank holiday in Ukraine where Ukrainians celebrate leaving the Soviet Union. Rotarians in Kent, in the UK and indeed the world have been very busy these last few months since Putin (I won’t say Russians, as they had no choice), invaded Ukraine causing so much devastation and destroying or disrupting so many lives, and we have raised a very considerable amount of money. However, this is a drop in the ocean to the many billions that is actually needed and unfortunately there appears no light at the end of the tunnel, with an end process to the war in sight.

George Wilson very kindly agreed to let Whitstable Rotary hold a collection on the 24th at Estuary View and I have been to all the stores there to insure they are aware of the day and there are no problems. Our members were there with buckets to collect your donations (also by credit/debit card). In all we raised £740 - so thank you for your generous donations. 

Whitstable Rotary is one of the 70 clubs in our District (1120) and just recently one of our clubs Minster-on-Sea) arranged for a large lorry, funded totally by the transporter, to take 50 wheelchairs (unfortunately in desperate demand), many medical items, mattresses and many other items needed directly to Ukraine, collecting donations on the way, and bringing back loads of Ukrainian books for both children and adult refugees currently resident in the UK. It is envisaged with the publicity generated that 4-5 other transporters have since come forward and might do something similar in the near future – so we would have a Rotary convoy!

Unlike other big charities where sometimes 20% of donations disappear in operating costs - one big advantage Rotary has is that the operating expense is zero in 99.9% of cases. There are similar Districts to our 1120 in all of the surrounding countries to Ukraine, (and ofcourse in Ukraine itself) and these Districts are organising and synchronising Rotary clubs who are working extremely hard, all hours, to purchase items these poor people need and providing transport to deliver them directly to Ukraine or to refugees currently residing (I won’t say “living” – many are in School halls sleeping 100 to a hall with virtually no space between beds – and they are the lucky ones, others are living in tents and in 2-3 months the temperatures will be well below zero. This is not for a night or two, not a week or two, but months on end – can you imagine, the noise, the smells, the untidiness and the collective sorrow of losing loved ones!).  There is essentially no limit to what these surrounding Rotary clubs to Ukraine can purchase with many companies donating required goods, where very little is actually available within Ukraine to purchase. Also they know what is actually needed and transport (most donated free by local operators) are relatively very short journeys compared to us and most European countries. Our District 1120 has already transferred several tens of thousands of pounds donated to buy and deliver many of these day-to-day items that we take for granted.

 We have some Ukrainian Refugees in Whitstable and our thanks go to Rtn Kim Foster and mainly local businesses who has raised nearly £20k for them so far, but the plight of other refugees  within Ukraine and in the immediate surrounding countries like Poland, Rumania, Moldavia, who have accepted literally 100’s of thousands of fleeing Ukrainians, that are getting very little, or in most cases no state aid to help - due to numbers and lack of finance of their Governments, are in a much worse position.    One of the projects Rotary is involved with is the provision of 50 “permanent” temporary housing each for a family of four in the village of Moshchun  that was totally destroyed (over 2000 buildings out of 2700), in spite and for no reason, by the Russians on the initial invasion of Ukraine which will be manufactured in Ukraine and thus give employment and will cost £10k each and include a fridge, cooker and toilet

 We also have a facility on our website (www.whitstablerotary.org) to accept PayPal donations and PayPal take zero%  i.e. You donate £10, we receive £10 and that £10 (if important to you, please state whether to support Ukrainian refugees here in Whitstable or for Ukrainian refugees in Ukraine and the surrounding countries i.e. Poland, Rumania etc.) -and then your £10 +20% if you allow us to obtain Gift Aid from the government, goes directly to a Ukrainian refugee - in some format.

So please help us help the Ukrainian refugees. I know we are all experiencing hard times today with the current high cost of living - fundamentally caused by Putin’s invasion in one way or another but the plight of these people is far, far worse,  both in physical living standards and in most cases the mental and physical pain they have had to suffer, and continue to suffer. 

The pictures show the temporary houses for a family of four being installed

Moshchun 1 Moshchun 2 Moshchun 3 Moshchun 4 Moshchun 5


Rotary Concert for Ukraine

On July 5th Whitstable Rotary organised a concert given my Canterbury Music Makers and conducted by our very own Steve Wassell held in the three large tepees at the Crescent Turner Hotel, Whitstable - all tickets sold out and we raised over £1000 for the Ukrainian refugees resident now in Whitstable and local areas, some of which attended the concert. Pre the concert,  Concert 1Concert 4b  a barbeque was arranged by the hotel. The weather could not have been better and everyone was treated to a most beautiful sunset looking down across the harbour to Sheppey. There were several Rotarians attending from our other local clubs and a party of 12 came from our President’s (Tony Rix) previous club in Medway.  Canterbury Music Makers is a very professional 50 strong group of local musicians who give various concerts throughout the year for various charities . A popular programme  of music by Strauss, Tchaikovsky, Rossini, Gounod Richard Rogers’ Oklahoma & all time prom favourites: Jerusalem, Rule Britannia, Pomp & Circumstance was chosen. After this success, we hope to repeat the event within this Rotary year

Rotary Club of Cham-in-Bayern  visit Whitstable 16th June 2022

After many delays and cancellations due to Covid 19, at last we were able to welcome one of our partner clubs Cham  to a wonderful weekend of Fellowship organised mainly by Rtn Andrew Gough. Even this did not go smoothly as their flight to Gatwick was cancelled by EasyJet at almost the last minute, reducing the number from 18 to 10, as an expensive alternative flight was arranged into Heathrow. As usual the weekend was actioned packed. After collection at Heathrow we drove to Penshurst Place returning to Whitstable in the late afternoon for a traditional "Fish and Chip" supper on Whitstable Sea front, watching the sun fo down. The next morning a coach was hired to take us to Chapeldown Vineyard for a tour and some excellent tasting. Following lunch at the Bull Inn, the coach took us to Faversham for an interesting guided walking tour around this lovely town where of course we saw an old copy of the Magna Carta dating back to 1300. The evening was spent at the Cresent Turner Hotel where we were served an excellent meal and a very good talk by Cham's outgoing President Helmut - in English of course. On Saturday, Rotarians went in individual cars to Greenwich to visit Seaman's Hospital, the Naval College,the Maritime museum and ofcourse the observatory followed by dinner at the Trafalgar Tavern before returning back to Whitstable. Sunday morning, after a hearty breakfast we said goodbye (or rather Auf Wiedersehen!!) to our German friends with some staying on to visit other friends, Isle of Wight, while others were driven back to Gatwick for their return flight. Weekends like this of fun and fellowship are partly what Rotary is all about. Roll on next year when we can visit Cham.


Charity Car Parking

Just a quick comment and thanks for all the people that so generously donated an "extra amount" for the Charity Car parking last Saturday for the terrible situation in Ukraine and that which is developing in the surrounding countries re the evacuees. We raised £624.23 which was amazing considering how bad the weather was. Our Thanks also go to Whitstable Junior school, as apart from their own collections, they have waived the 50% of the daily takings which normally they receive from whatever charity is organising the parking that day. We had a Rotary meeting on Tuesday where we voted to add £1000 (actuall £1000.77) so we will be donating the sum of £1625 to the DEC. Unfortunately there will be many, more "Ukraine requirements"  and there are many events being organised by Rotary clubs around United Kingdom and Ireland  as this war continues to further help the poor, brave people of Ukraine -  and also from us - so watch this space!

Picture of two of our Rotarians Malcolm Ramsey and Tony Rix manning the collection point

The History of the British Motor Industry Parts 1 & 2     18th May on Zoom  ist car

Whitstable Rotary Club has invited Paul Adey (FIMI, MIM, MIRTE) to speak on “The History of the British Motor Industry”. Paul is a Member of the Association of Motor Industry Historians, Fellow of the Institute of the Motor Industry, Accredited Raytheon Worldwide Training Professional, Qualified public speaker and presenter, and over 60 years experience in the motor industry, from shop floor to boardroom - so Paul has a wealth of knowledge of the motor industry, and not just in Britain, so his talk was informative, interesting - and fun!



Santa on Zoom

December 20 Just to thank all those children that participated in this new venture for us that we may repeat next December. I think all the children thoroughly enjoyed the experience


Steve's Bike Ride


On May 27th, thirteen adults embarked upon Whitstable Rotary's annual cycle tour for charity, this year being Mercy Ships. The group was made up of four members of Whitstable Rotary Club, one member of Canterbury Sunrise Rotary Club, two spouses, three friends, and with a support vehicle manned by two members of Whitstable Rotary Club and one spouse. We set off early on 27th May by ferry and landed at Loone Plage, Dunkirk . Later that morning we met four Rotarians from our contact club in Hazebrouck-Merville, three cyclists and a van driver, who escorted us to Brieve, where we had greetings and a delicious lunch. We then departed and headed towards Diksmuide, leaving the French Fellows at the Belgian border. We continued on to Diksmuide where we stayed the night in an hotel. The following morning we cycled on to Ghent, stopping for pancakes and ice-cream en-route, and found our hotel, which was situated ten yards from the Cathedral, in the hub of the city. We then spent the third day resting and enjoying the wonderful city of Ghent with all its cultural delights, setting off after a large breakfast the following morning. The way back was a mirror of the way there, but it all looks different the other way round! The route was mapped out meticulously by P.P.Mike Bantin, using Google maps, and was driven in advance by P.P.Steve Wassell and Mike Bantin. It turned out to be quite a spectacular route, mostly country lanes and always flat and smooth. Although the weather was very changeable with some thunder storms, we stayed dry the whole time. The ride was in aid of the President's charity, Mercy Ships, deservedly so as our President Kevin Fielding rode with us.

Many thanks to all who took part in this very memorable ride.

Steve Wassell (tour organiser)  Added by Kevin Fielding "Thanks in particular to PP Steve Wassell for organising this event - without him it would bever happen (Which might be good as it would relieve my aching muscules and definately sore bottom!)"


Olive Picking at Olive Grove Farm, Italy 1-11th November 2020

 Hopefully this year the crop will be goodThe weather is usually still great at this time of year and the olive picking "theraputic" and certainly not difficult. A great time will be had by all - we might even pick some olives! The proceeds as usual will go to Rotary Foundation. If anybody is interested in joining us for any few days between 1-11th please contact Kevin Fielding - olive picking is between these dates not necessarily all of them! Accommodation is limited and is on a first come first serve basis. Only need contribution towards food and DRINK!  For further information please contact  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  


 Rotarian Mike Bantin (with short hair) removing some olives into the nets

Family Cycle Ride along the Crab & Winkle

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On Sunday May 19th we held our very first Family Fun Cycle ride along the Crab & Winkle line to Canterbury and then back to Whitstable. The ride started at All Saints Church carpark at 1pm but unfortunately despite extensive advertising by posters, social media and Rotary Radio the turnout was extremely disapointing.  Ced and Deana who were serving tea, coffee and softdrinks weren't rushed off their feet, but I am sure the families were very thankful at the end of their ride. We were raising money for Mercy Ships (never heard of Mercy Ships? - they do any amazing job)  AND Tankerton FC for Deaf childrenThis event was about raising money BUT more for some family fun which almost everyone in the family could partipate in.  After the poor turnout it is doubtful whether we shall hold the Ride again next year - but watch this space! Thanks to all who particpated both cyclists and Rotarians who helped marshalling.


The KM Big Bike Ride

WP 20190428 10 58 12 Prob  Sunday 28th April was thw Big Bike Ride organised by KM We helped in marshallingand erected our flags on marshal point 5 for good visability!! Nearly 300  participated and a little surprising how many called out "Thank you" as they rode past. Managed to get five A3 poster for the Family Fun Cycle Ride in some strategic positions before the race at Betteshanger Park. A good morning!


Cyclone Idai

IDAiI collection

On Saturday 6th April we braved the cold weather to collect money outside St Alphege Church for the poor people affected by Cyclone Idai Southern oarts of Africa. The money (£98.96) will go towards a Shelterbox that contains almost everything one would need is suc a desperate situation where people have absolutley nothing. Our Thanks go to the Church for giving us permission, - and the lovely ladies that provided some tea and coffees



Shop by the Sea

 Saturday, April 20th saw the launch of "Shop by the Sea", and organisation initiated by Canterbury City Council to which the vast majority of shop owners on Whitstable and   Tankerton have joined. Whitstable Rotary were asked to give out leaflets on this day in various parts of Whitstable and Tankerton to publicise the launch of this exciting new   venture. Herne Bay has a similar concept that has proved quite valuable since it started. So if you see us come up and take a leaflet and find out more about this organisation -   and Happy Easter!


 Rotary Day

 Saturday February 23rd was Rotary Day. around the world. We were outside Whitstable Library all day raising awareness of Rotary and in particular the massive campaign Rotary has made since the mid eighties. In 1985, Rotary launched its PolioPlus program, the first initiative to tackle global polio eradication through the mass vaccination of children. At that time there were 1000 cases/day. Rotary has contributed more than $1.7 billion and countless volunteer hours to immunize more than 2.5 billion children in 122 countries. In addition, Rotary’s advocacy efforts have played a role in decisions by donor governments to contribute more than $7.2 billion to the effort. Today, there are only three countries that have never stopped transmission of the wild poliovirus: Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan. Just 37 polio cases were confirmed worldwide in 2016, and 18 in 2017 which is a reduction of more than 99.9 percent since the 1980s. Rotary will raise $50 million per year over the next three years, with every dollar to be matched with two additional dollars from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. These funds help to provide much-needed operational support, medical personnel, laboratory. Our thanks go to the staff of the libarary that allowed a cable connection so that we could serve hot Tea, Coffee and Cakes to passers by of which there were a steady flow all day - and the weather could not have been better! Donations


Panto in Whitstable

Our thanks once again go to the Linley Players who provided tickets for their final dress rehearsal on Tuesday 15th January. We had a great turnout from children from Whitstable and everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves, Oh no they didn't, Oh yes they did! AS usual the club provided bar drinks and an ice cream for all participants.


Christmas Collections outside Tescos & Sainsburys


We were outside Tescos & Sainsburys again this Christmas, this time the weather was much warmer (thought still cold). Our grateful thanks to the many people that so kindly gave us generous donations. I can assure you all the money will be well spent on very good causes and local charities.  A BIG thank you!


Whitstable Rotary collecting money outsideTesco's & Sainsburys during December

  Once again saw nearly all members of the club participating in what has become a traditional event for us receiving donations outside Tesco and Sainsbury. It is wonderful to see thelittle children's eyes light up when they see Father Christmas - or is the Christmas sweeties that catch their eye. Seriously though it is so rewarding to see their obvious excitement. A BIG thank you to all that donated. I can assure you it will all go to very good causes - 100%!!


Party goers get into the swing with Rotary Club of Whitstable


There was much music, dancing, laughter and fun when the Rotary Club of Whitstable held it’s annual party for adults with learning difficulties at the Marine Hotel, Tankerton on Tuesday evening. Rotary Club President Kevin Fielding said “The Christmas party has been a feature of our club’s calendar for well over 20-years and every year it seems to grow in popularity with our guests and is regarded by our members as one of the most worthwhile events of our year”.“This year we had 75 students accompanied by carers, relatives and staff drawn from the John Graham Centre, Strode Park, the Swalecliffe Day Opportunities Centre and Aiding Independence”. “The disco was very popular and a good number of our guests spent time dancing to the musical selections of DJ Ian Gladwell and no doubt building up an appetite for the sausage, chips and beans supper that followed”.“The evening is a means by which we can include those who find themselves in a less fortunate situation in the social life of the town. We know that all of our guests enjoy the evening, indeed many of them have been regulars almost since we started the event and look forward to the evening each year as do our members”.

 Once again our thanks go to Shepherd Neame, the Marine Hotel and DJ Ian Gladwell for their continued support and help in running the evening, it was as always a fantastic event”.

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Rotary Family Fun Walk along Crab & Winkle Line October 21st

On the weekend  20-21st October Rotary had an environmental Clean-up weekend and we have decided to clear up litter along the old Crab & Winkle Line, starting from the Kent College school car park  (off Neal's Pl Road), Canterbury.  We are thankful to both Kent College for giving us their car park for the day and to Canterbury City Council that supplied bags, gloves pickup tools etc.  Although the walk was surprisingly clear of rubbish we still managed to fill about 4 sacks of litter.Kevin Fielding said “This was our contribution to Rotary’s Environmental Clean Up weekend and like everyone else we are conscious of the issues regarding litter and discarded plastic along our roads and pathways and on Sunday members of our club and other volunteers who took part in the walk collected seven bags of rubbish and we hope has made a small improvement to the environment”.

We also decided the walk would be open to the public and despite intensive advertising in local digital media only one couple turned up - So thank you Sam and Emma from Faversham - and congratulations on your pregnancy Emma - we wish you well! Hope you enjoyed walking with us.

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Whitstable Bulb Planting for Polio Eradication October


Members of the Rotary Club of Whitstable have been busy over the last two weeks on projects to brighten  popular area of the district. On two consecutive Tuesday afternoon’s members of the club could be found planting up to 5000 crocus bulbs around the garden area built into the former boating pond on Tankerton seafront at the Priest & Sow corner. The project was however not without a snag. On the first Tuesday the ground proved so hard that the battery powered drills used to bore holes for the bulbs soon lost power, but as Kevin Fielding, president of the club explained “Two weeks later the proprietors of the Seaview Café allowed us to run out a power cable from their establishment in order to use mains powered drills to help the situation and we thank them for their assistance”. Kevin Fielding, continued “We are planting the bulbs to highlight Rotary International’s Polio Plus programme which was launched in 1985, to tackle global polio eradication through the mass vaccination of children. Many people do not realise the massive input Rotary has had, and will contiue to have in the eradication of polio. In 1987 there were 1000 cases per day. Rotary has contributed more than $1.7 billion and countless volunteer hours to immunize more than 2.5 billion children in 122 countries”. “In addition, Rotary’s advocacy efforts have played a major role in decisions by donor governments to contribute more than $7.2 billion to the effort. Rotary International is also part of The Global Polio Eradication Initiative, formed in 1988 that includes the World Health Organization and various government departments the world and Rotary play’s its part in fundraising, volunteer recruitment and awareness-building of issues connected with polio with the result that only three countries reported 22 cases in total. Quite a result! Many Rotary doctors and nurses that have given their time to this terrible illness."

 “We hope that by planting the bulbs we can highlight Rotary’s continuing work in this field and in addition brighten up the area around the garden in the former pond which our club took over some years ago but we admit has become rather neglected in recent times, something we intend to rectify” .“Our club is always looking for local projects to support in addition to our other causes we support both local and international and on that note we are very keen on recruiting some new members”.

 If you would like to make a donation please contact our Secretary


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 Martha's Trust 3rd October

We visited Martha's Trust near Deal to present a cheque for £500 to Kerry Rubins who gave us a talk on this wonderful charity that looks after the severely handicapped residents. We astounded by the dedication and genuine affection given to these residents by the staff. One often hears a host of bad stories re carers etc. today but the staff here could not be further at the opposite end of the spectrum - They were wonderful!

Crocus Planting for Polio October 2nd

We had purchased 5000 crocuses to highlight the huge effort Rotary as made in eradicating polio with the intention of planting around our Rotary garden on Tankerton slopes and so with drills and forks we arrived on Tuesday afternoon. Only one problem the ground was so hard we could not even make an indentation with the fork and the drills soon ran out of battery power, but we managed to get probably 200 in and decided we would come another day after some rain had made the ground softer!


September 7-9th 2018  

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Had my first District (1120) Conference this weekend held at the University of Kent in Canterbury - which was fantastic! The speakers weren't just good they were exceptional but I guess the highlight of the whole event was the Proms Concert on Friday evening by the Kent Sifonia Orchestra conducted by our very own Past President Steve Wassell - I felt very proud of being a Whitstable Rotarian!  T hose who did not go really missed out! I shall definately be there next   year, especially as it is being held in Canterbury again.


September 2nd  2018

Had a great President's Lunch last Sunday, for 24 Rotarians and partners. The weather was perfect and thanks to Kathryn for some excellent food


Choir Nieppe St Martin, France  Saturday June 10th 2017


Whitstable Rotary partly sponsored the choir St. Nieppe St.Martin who came over from France to sing at St. Mary Bredin Church, Canterbury. Entry was FREE but a collection was taken at the end of the recitel in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. The director is Pascal Codron. The choir is quite famous in France and is very popular. We were pleased to see a good turnout - but there were still plenty of seats vacant. To say they were great is an understatement! Their vocal harmony, timing were just superb but their choice of music was outstanding especially an African song. The weather ofcourse was superb which greatly enhanced the beautiful gardens of St Marys. Those who did not come missed a very moving event.

Nieppe is a little rural town of 7500, close to Lille. The choir is like a large family covering all ages from 7 to 77 years. They have no musical barriers so a wide variety of music  for all tastes, but above all they all share a great desire to give their time and musical expertise to the public. Since 1981 many young people have joined the choir and for some it is their children who also now belong - all with the same conductor Pascal Codron at their head. They rehearse every Friday evening in the church of St Martin de Nieppe and cover many genres (Handel, Mozart, Vivaldi, .... Gospel, French and foreign songs.

They are reguarly seen on Sundays in the church but also cover weddings etc. and give outside concerts with all the money raised going to charitable organisations. Aside from the regular rehearsals they meet in November to celebrate Saint Cecilia - the patron saint of music. At the end of the academic year they leave for a weekend away at many different destinations.

In April 2016 they celebrated their 35th anniversary with two exceptional concerts which attracted over 1500 people all in aid of "Medecins Solidaires Lille". Maybe we can make this into an annual event!



Rotary and Chestfiled Golf Club support Prostrate Cancer Charity



£7000 has been present to the Prostate Cancer Support Association (Kent) through the combined charity fundraising activities of the Rotary Club of Whitstable and Chestfield Golf Club.  Past President Malcolm Ramsey, in whose year of office the funds were raised said “These funds will go towards purchase of a BK bladder scanner and probes for use in the Kent & Canterbury Radiography Centre, which is part of the Maidstone Trust”. “The price of this scanner is £48,800 and an additional cost for of £15,000 for a rectal probe used in the insertion of beads into the prostate to target radiotherapy treatment. This equipment purchased for our Kent hospitals will help to save 100’s of lives every year and both the rotary and golf club members a pleased to have been able to make this donation to the cause”. Terry Laidlaw and Graham Edwards, from the PCSA Kent, told the club that “Prostate Cancer affects 1 in 6 men in the UK and is a cancer that hits ‘below the belt”. PCSA Kent was formed in 2006 and is a patient led organisation supporting those affected by prostate cancer. The charity is also involved in raising public awareness of the disease and has a successful fundraising programme which aims to raise funds for medical equipment and training within the hospital specialities that provide care for prostate cancer patients”.



Christmas Collections at Tesco and Sainsbury's

First a big thank you to the general public for their very generous donations (£4727.30). I can assure you this money  will be well spent on deserving people and organisations. These two collections are one of our main charity event of the year - and this year it was particularly pleasant as in general the weather was very good. Our tanks to Mike Bantin for organising the two events and a special thank to Sharon Perry to not only did 14 2 hour slots but also raised a lot of money from her workplace.


Disco Party at the Marine Hotel 6th Dec 2016

Once again the dinner and disco party for the learning difficulty students was a huge success, with lots of very positive feedback from parents and carers, and even a spontaneous kiss and hug from one female carer to our President Steve! (Bonus)! Many thanks to all who turned up to assist, especially David Cavell, our very own Santa, and very special thanks to Mike Bantin for organising it and entertaining us with his dancing! Our thanks also go to Shepherd Neame who annually sponser this event. This is what Rotary - having a great time, but also providing a very worthwhile event much loved by very deserving people - is all about and we felt quite moved by the way the students greeted each other with hugs after a year's absence. We have also made a potential new recruit with one of the dad's showing an interest in what we do! We also need new Rotarians!


Visit by Hazbrouck Rotarians 4-5th July 2016

We welcomed and entertained Rotarians from Hazebrouck-Merville. The main purpose of their visit was to attend the Handover meeting on the 5th. President Malcolm has arranged for several events in and around Whitstable, Broadstairs and Margate, including afternoon tea and aperitifs in Malcolm garden, a meal at the Minnis Bay Brasserie and bowls in Cliftonville. They stayed the night on Monday 4th July and they returned. Malcolm commented that our visitors thoroughly enjoyed their visit. Congratulations to now Past President Malcolm on a great year and we welcome President Steve for this new year 2016-17.


Cycle Ride to Minis Bay 18th June 2016


Rotary Ride  Minis Bay Cycle

This weekend (18-19 June) was Rotary National Cycle Day where clubs organised their own activity to raise money for Prostate Cancer Support. The weather was "OK" i.e. it di not rain but was quite dull, windy and cold! We set out from Minis Bay cycling along the sea frontto Reculver and then back to Minis Bay where a nice cup of Hot Chocolate/coffee/tea helped to ease our cold limbs. Our thanks to all al sponsors 


Visit to Krakow 26-29th May 2016

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On May 26th 2016 thirteen people, made up of seven Whitstable Rotarians, one Chestfield Rotarian, four spouses and one friend, travelled to Krakow in Poland for a four day meeting of our contact club from Cham in Germany and their contact club from Eisenstadt in Austria. We had an enlightening few days with glorious weather, visiting Wawol Castle, the Jewish quarters, Schindler's factory, the local citadel and on the final day, a very poignant trip to Auschwitz.The whole event was organised by the Austrian Rotarians, led by Lucy Schindler (no relation), the wife of one of their members, who did a sterling job with organising accommodation, meals and travel arrangements whilst in Poland. Plans are afoot to invite Cham club to Whitstable in 2017, and to meet up with Cham and Eisenstadt in Austria in 2018.

It was a very memorable tour which will be regarded very fondly for years to come.

Steve (Chairman International Committee)



Sunday 28th February 2016 at The Gulbenkian Cinema

Whitstable Rotary Club held a Charity Film Night (in the afternoon!) of the new Dad's Army film, released on February 6th, which was well attended by local people. The event commenced with a glass of champayne and canapés  It has a great cast of English actors and actresses and a  good screen writer and director and was a great laugh,The National Anthem  at around 4.30pm!!!!! - takes one back!. The picture below shows Rotarians Brian White & Brian Brooks in "fancy dress"

 a good proportion of the ticket price is going direct to charity - Hounds for Heroes. If you fancy dressing up in a World War theme - all the better!

Download Poster (PDF)(not just picture below)

Press Release (Supplied by Chris Davey)

RC DADSARMY 050216 CD29       Dads army poster

14th – 18th April 2015: A cycle tour to Arras, joined by Hazebrouck-Merville Rotary Club at St Omer, who took us to see La Coupole, where Hitler manufactured and launched many V1 (doodlebugs)and V2 rockets, followed by a tour of St Omer Cathedral, and later they took us for a meeting and a meal in an exclusive restaurant. A speech was given by Patrick Boortel, welcoming us to France, and a reply was given by David Cavell. This was followed by a multi-course meal. The following day, several Hazebrouck Rotarians joined us on the ride to Arras, stopping for lunch halfway there, then returning home. We carried on to Arras where we stayed for two nights, visiting Wellington Caves, the secret jumping off point for 15,000 allied troups, Vimy Ridge, the Canadian war memorial, and Notre Dame de Lorette, the French memorial. We then cycled back, once again staying overnight at St Omer. The trip raised £1.530 for the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance.

Christmas Party  was on the 15th December at the Chestfiled Golf Club.  Entertainment by Mike Bantin and Steve Wassell with a Christmas quiz actioned by Malcolm Ramsey. Our thanks to Malcolm for organising this event


Collections at Tescos and Sainsburys (December 2014) 

This was one of the better years for the weather with the sun out most days and little wind - MOST unusual!. We collected £3602.80 (plus a few Euros and US cents), which was better than last year. Can we thank all those that gave their hard earned money which will all go to very worthwhile local charities. Also we would like to thank Derek Boulting who so generously offered us several sacks of mistletoe - that generated even more donations - and a few kisses.- perhaps our local "Rockstar" can charge a pound-a-peck next year!  Also our thanks got to Tescos and Sainsburys for allowing us on their premises to collect the money


Visit to Hazebrouck (November 4th),

Six Fellows and two partners/spouses travelled to Hazebrouck-Merville to join with our contact club for their “Masse de Souvenir”. This is an act of remembrance for their deceased members and included members and their partners, friends and relations of the deceased. The service was a simple, moving Roman Catholic mass with a splendid accompanying choir and organ and particularly memorable, was a solo harmonica player! The Service was held in the church of St Thomas of Cantorbery (the French spelling!) We then ventured to the next village to visit a recently completed restaurant for a champagne reception and a three course meal. Unfortunately, after much warmth and friendly banter, we had to eat our sweets hurried before the French ate theirs in order to travel back to the tunnel terminal.



Merman (14th November 2014)


 Whitstable Rotary Club President David Cavell has raised around £600 for the Kent, London Policeman and cabbie completed his 2km swim in one hour which considering he could only use his arms was some achievement. David was accompanied in his swim by fellow Rotarians Ted Rooney (who also swam 2km), Mike Bantin and Piroska Cavell along with Granddaughter Sascha Said David “The ‘Merman’ the costume was made by my wife Marika and was very realistic however I am not sure that it aided my swimming as by the end of the event I was pretty tired, however around £600 will go to the air ambulance and I thank all those who have sponsored me and to the Whitstable Pool for allowing us to raise the monies for a very worthwhile cause. In addition and at the request of the pool staff, £50 will also go to the RNLI as it is their chosen charity”.

RC MERMAN 121114 CD10c


RC MERMAN 121114 CD37c




Whitstable Regatta (July 2014)


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Whitstable Rotary Club was once again involved with the Town's annual regatta over the weekend of 12th July, showing off two new sideshows- an old favourite, Splat the Rat , and a brand new one designed by one of the Rotarians, Peter Thomason. Based on pin ball, or bagatelle, but with golf balls and a club, it proved to be a great success with a continuous queue of people waiting to have a go, with a gallery of spectators throughout ! The weather was perfect on Saturday and the most was made of it, as Sunday dawned wet and windy ,so not wishing to damage the game it was decided to call it a day. Nevertheless, the club revived it's high profile at the event with some good support from the members, and raised a significant amount for charity, yet to be confirmed. We look forward to the next event where our new attraction can be used ! (Organiser Mike Bantin)



Tour de France (July 2014)


Knowing how important the Tour De France is the Frence we organised this weekend for our parnter club Hazebrouck to view in England, so arrived on the Saturday, we have an excellent lunch at Kevin &Kathryn's followed by watching Stage 1 on the television. In the evening we dined at the Table Table opposite their hotel. On Sunday the weather was not to kind but we walked through Canterbury seeing some of the many sights before arriving (late!!) at the Old Neptune pub in Whitstable for a light lunch and a walk along the prominade to the Castle as the sun materialised, followed by an evening meal at the Long Reach. On Sunday we had organised a 14 seater bus to take us to London to view the race, ably collected & driven by Steve W. Arriving at the O2 we took the river bus to Westminster and then walked to the Union Jack club for a quick lunch before returning to Tower Hill to watch the race, then back to the O2 and drive back to Brenley Corner for the French to return to Folkstone (Organiser Kevin Fielding).






Golf Day (July 2014)

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Berlin Visit with Partner Club Cham (June 2014)

Our strong ties with our partner club Cham were further strengthened during this wonderful visit to Germany. Arriving at Berlin we were met by Reinhard Hopfl and taken to our hotels. After a short rest we went by local bus to Potsdamer Platz, Holocaust memorial, Brandenberg gate and then on to the German parliament in the Reichstag followed by a superb dinner in the Restaurant Tucher. On the following day, Friday we had a long, enjoyable trip on one of the Berlin tourist river boats seeing many of the city buildings, a walk to a shopping area Kudammm and a church, part still standing after WW2 now established as a "working" memorial and again in the evening a further superb meal in the restaurant Sorriso. On Saturday we had an interesting visits to the old Stasi building/museum and the Teur... an allied listening post to accumulate radio information from the soviets etc. In the evening we travelled to the famous  Restaurant Adlon for our final meal before departure the next day. Before departure some of us were driven to Potsdam while others attempted a visit to museum island (5 museums located on an island in the river). Rotary is about many things but these partnership club activities are a most important part - and a most enjoyable one to!! (Organiser Kevin Fielding)



Rotary Dog Walk (March 2014)


On Saturday 29th March Whitstable Rotary completed this year€™s Rotary Dog Walk. Starting and finishing at Strode Park and through local woods, it lasted just over one and half hours, the walkers and their dogs arrived back at Strode Farm for a cup of tea or coffee and a good hose down for the dogs, as although very dry for most of the walk, there were some distinctly unavoidable wet places. Most of the dogs thoroughly enjoyed being hosed down afterwards before getting back in their owners cars.  It was lovely to see an assortment of  dogs, some big some small,  race around the fields.  Whitstable Rotary’s President Andrea Gough came with his wife and beautiful greyhound (name???) Attracting some people from  as far away as Redhill, Whitstable Rotary raised £100 for "Hounds for Heroes" -  and the weather could not have been better, everybody and a thoroughly good time. Kevin Fielding, the organiser said œThis is Rotary -€“ we like helping charities “ but we like to enjoy ourselves at the same time if possible!



Pantomime Outing (January 2014)


On 21st January we took Family's from the Whitstable area who would not normally get the opportunity to attend the preview evening at the Whitstable Playhouse to see Cinderella , this is an event that The Whitstable Rotary Club has been doing for over 20 years and have taken over 2000 children and parents/carers to this wonderful evening of fun magic and music. (Organiser Gordon Johnson)



Tesco & Sainsbury's Collections (December 2013) 


Continuing our Christmas tradition members of Whitstable Rotary Club donned Santa outfits and held buckets aloft in anticipation of the goodwill of Whitstable folk over the Christmas season outside the Tesco and Sainsburys stores in Whitstable. We were certainly not disappointed! Altogether, we raised £928-56 at Tesco, and despite some apalling weather conditions, £2,814-89 at Sainsbury. Overall a healthy season, despite the cold, wind and rain. Many thanks to everybody who so generously gave. We can assure you it will find a very worthwhile cause. (Organiser Steve Wassel)


Row The Channel (7th December 2013)


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  After months and months of arduous training, 4 stalwart, super fit Rotarians made their way early  on a grey misty Saturday morning in December to Dover to row across the English Channel. Arriving in Dover and looking at the mountainous waves we realsied the enormous challenge we had set ourselves €“ and that was just in the harbour! We did have two Rotarians AWOL, apparently one found his passport had expired and the other a business meeting €“ poor excuses, obviously chickens!

No I lie -€“ indeed there were actually 4 Rotarians (Mike Bantin, Kevin Fielding, Jeremy Mills, Malcolm Ramsey (also partners Jayne Spratt and Kathryn Wilson), but we were neither super fit (no training whatsoever) and we were not actually rowing the Channel. P&O had kindly offered a place on the ferry for our excerise rowing machine (kindly donated for the day by Tonics Fitness Centre, Sheerness). So after meeting in the carpark we drove onto the ferry and found ourselves placed just outside the shopping area - perfect! We than proceeded to take turns in rowing across the Channel. There were even some encouraging words from our fellow passengers like "row faster and the ferry will go quicker", but somehow that didn't seem to work (we were probably rowing to slowly!). After arriving in Calais we disembarked and drove to the Aqua Raile restaurant where we met our partner club from Hazebrouck. After a wonderful (and I do mean wonderful) meal and just a little bit wine (don't forget we were rowing back to Dover and we didn't want to be charged for "drink rowing") Ok well a lot of wine, we drove back to the ferry and rowed back. During both trips we walked around the ferry (not the one rowing!) shouting to everyone to place their money in our constantly getting heavier buckets. We raised just over £400 which was divided equally between Mercy Ships and RNLI. A great day out – having a great time and raising money for very worthwhile causes – that is Rotary! (Organiser Kevin Fielding)



Tea Dance at the Marine Hotel (3rd November)


(Organiser Piroska Cavell)




Rotary Cycle Tour to Ypres (27-31 August 2013)

The cyclists numbered seven: three club members from Whitstable Rotary Club (Steve Wassell, Kevin Fielding, Mike Bantin), the President of Canterbury Sunrise (Richard Davis), one wife and one partner of club members (Dot Wassell and Jane Spragg) and cycle mechanic Christopher Harrington, a friend of Steve Wassell. The support vehicle was manned by two club members David Cavell and Rob Smyth and by Joan Crighton widow of past member Alex Crighton. The five day tour covered just under 150 miles in four days' cycling. (Thursday was a day off in Ypres). We rode to St Omer on the first day and on to Ypres on the second, meeting a contingent from Hazebrouck who escorted us first to a restaurant for lunch, then on to Ypres, by a very attractive scenic route. In Hazebrouck, we were treated to a reception in the Town Hall by the Mayor and President of the Hazebrouck Rotary Club and received gifts of local beer and T-shirts commemorating the event. That evening we arrived in Ypres and watched the Last Post ceremony, given by the Fire Brigade at 8-00pm every day in gratitude for the allied forces’ efforts during the Great War. On the second day (Thursday) we decided to visit Hill 62, a strategic battle field of some importance, with a cemetery and an estaminet with museum and preserved trench system. This was followed by a picnic lunch in the sun. On Friday we set off back to St Omer, this time by a more direct route and cycling into a head wind, making the going more difficult. The weather stayed fine, however, and everyone maintained high spirits. We went back to our original restaurant for an evening meal. We visited the market in St Omer on Saturday before leaving on our last leg of the journey. We arrived at the docks in Dunkirk, buffeted by the ever-increasing wind and some light rain, but in time to catch an earlier ferry. After some considerable snoozing on board the ferry, we all arrived safely back in Dover at just after 3-00pm. We raised £1,150 insponsership which has been  put in a holding account to sponsor a concert to be given by Kent Sinfonia and choirs and musicians at Simon Langton Grammar School for Girls. ;(Organiser Steve Wassell) 




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