We’d like to invite you…

to the annual Otford Society Garden Party, on Saturday 6th August from 6-8pm at The Old Parsonage, Otford High Street. Tickets (for Otford residents only) are priced at £20 per person but numbers are strictly limited, so order soon here. The ticket includes a welcome drink, delicious canapes and great company in a beautiful setting. We look forward to seeing you there!

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Otford celebrates the Queen’s Jubilee

What a wonderful day! The sun shone and the people of Otford turned out in great numbers to celebrate her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee. Thank you so much to everyone who came to the Great Village BBQ for making it such a wonderful event. Huge thanks go to the large team of volunteers who made the day happen – we genuinely couldn’t have done it without you! Also thanks to St Barts for all the help and support; to the Evangelical and Methodist churches for the wonderful activities for children; to Emma and Richard for the lovely cakes, teas and coffee; and to The Rising Sun for the tasty Hog Roast, burgers, sausages and vegan meals. The wonderful musical entertainers did an amazing job and it was really helpful that so many people put their rubbish in the bins or took it home. What a brilliant and fun event – well done to the whole village!

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Great support at the Village Fete

Once again the crowds flocked to the Wheel of Fortune at the Otford Village Fete on May 28th. As well as providing a lot of fun and some great prizes for everyone who took part, 26 spins of the wheel raised a terrific £460 for the Otford Society. This will go a long way to funding our projects and events for the next year.

A big thank you to everyone who came along to support us.

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Otford’s Community Star!

Chairman Rod Shelton was delighted to present the Otford Society’s first Community Star Award at our Annual General Meeting on May 26th. Sue Stephenson is well known to residents for her work in the Parish Office, and for her unstinting support of so many community initiatives. Congratulations Sue! And do keep telling us who in the community deserves recognition; this is to be a quarterly award.

It was wonderful to see so many in the village hall for our first AGM since 2019. We are grateful that more people stepped forward to volunteer for our village projects – THANK YOU. Roger Gough’s talk “Otford – into the Future” gave great insight into the challenges that we face and there were numerous helpful questions and suggestions that we have noted.

Finally, if you haven’t yet signed up for the Society and made your annual donation of just £10 per household, you can do so here.

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Great Village Jubilee BBQ

Otford Parish Council and the Otford Society are joining forces on Thursday 2nd June to lay on a village-wide celebration of Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

The village barbecue will be on The Green from 12 noon to 4pm. It will be our big community event of the year and everyone is welcome. Enjoy a perfectly cooked, carved slice straight off the hog roast or choose from the sizzling barbecue.  

A drinks tent serving Kentish ales and Otford cider is being run by the Rising Sun. There will be a stall selling soft drinks and cakes, and an ice cream stand. Three village churches are involved in the day, with stalls of locally made craft items and children’s entertainment.  Miss Vintage, known to many for her popular annual appearances at the Otford Village Fete, will be singing songs from the era of the Queen’s accession. And the Kent based  ‘bluesabilly’ band Move over DaLi will be sure to keep your toes tapping!  It’s going to be a really fun lunchtime for all the family.

There are no restrictions on the number of people who can attend this free event. However in order to plan the catering and ensure that nobody is disappointed on the day we are selling advance meal vouchers to guarantee lunch. These can be obtained from the Parish Office and the following Otford businesses: Yvonne’s, Otford Dry Cleaners, Mille Fleurs, Denise Thompson Designer Florist, Mermaid Dreams, Sally’s Cake Emporium, Pond View Café and Bill Skinner. They cost £1 and will entitle the bearer to £2 off the cost of any hog roast or barbecue meal.  Note that the vouchers cannot be used on other food or drinks stands.

Bring rugs and chairs and settle down to enjoy your picnic. This is Otford’s Great Village Jubilee Barbecue. It will be a memorable event for the whole family.

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We’re at the Fete!

Be sure to come and visit our stand at the Otford Village Fete on May 28th – we’ll be opposite the entrance so you can’t miss us! It’s an opportunity to find out what we do, meet some of the Committee and sign up for our mailing list. We will once again be running the ever-popular Wheel of Fortune, with great prizes for both young and old.

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Annual General Meeting

All Otford residents are invited to our AGM at 7pm on Thursday May 26th in the Memorial Hall Clubroom. The meeting will include refreshments and a talk on the way ahead for Otford by Roger Gough, Leader of Kent County Council and member for Sevenoaks North and Darent Valley. Come and have your say about the issues that concern you and hear our plans for the year ahead.

Full Details

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Facelift for Otford Station!

This beautiful poster, already on display at Otford Station, is one of six that have been designed by artist, Kit Boyd, for the Darent Valley Community Rail Partnership

The new group, part of a network of similar partnerships across the country, aims to create links between local communities and rail services in the area.  It covers all the stations between Swanley and Sevenoaks. We are now working on a plan to identify what improvements are possible at Otford Station and how they can be implemented.

We already have some exciting ideas, but we are looking for more residents to come forward and help us transform Otford Station into a really welcoming place. The Otford Society has resolved to give the partnership its full support and is offering to coordinate volunteers.

If you are interested in getting involved, please contact dvcrp@otfordsociety.org.uk

For more information on the art of Kit Boyd, including details of alternative versions of the Otford poster, visit www.kitboyd.com

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Join in the ‘No Mow May’ challenge

Did you know that not mowing your lawn for a month can create a tenfold increase in nectar available to bees and other pollinators?  Between 1980 and 2013, every square kilometre in the UK lost an average of 11 species of bee and hoverfly. Well it’s up to us to make a difference.

Leaving longer between cuts or even leaving a patch in your garden to grow beautiful wildflowers will make such a difference and help bring back the bees. So take up the challenge and leave the lawn mower in the shed for May and watch the beautiful wildlife thrive in your own garden. Find out more at: www.gardensillustrated.com or www.plantlife.org.uk.

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Rabbits don’t lay eggs!

Once again we are organising a family trail around the village at Easter. From today Otford will be overrun with rabbits, and they are laying their eggs all over the village – in shop windows along the High Street and at the Parade. Also in the trees and verges of the footpath that runs past the Palace. How many rabbits and eggs can you count? Children under 10 will be able to claim a small prize by reporting how many they’ve spotted to Fine & Country or Mille Fleurs in the High Street and Ibbett Mosely in the Parade. Look out for the posters! Note that the Pond is not part of the trail, so don’t cross over there! The event will run until April 26th.

NOTE: Like all the family activities we organise over the spring and summer, our Easter trail is completely free. If you haven’t yet supported the work of the Otford Society, you can make a donation here. And if you have already, Thank You!

Continue ReadingRabbits don’t lay eggs!