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Discovera different GraveshamCoverHeritage Festival17 May - 1 June 2008


WelcomeI am delighted to introduce this year’s festival programme,which is packed with events representing the wealth ofattractions Gravesham offers.I hope you thoroughly enjoy your visit, discoversomething new and then tell others what a fascinatingand attractive area Gravesham is.Our thanks go to the local groups and individuals whosupport the festival with their knowledge of, commitmentto and enthusiasm for the area.You are always very welcome in Gravesham - pleasecome again soon.Councillor Brian SweetlandFor further information contactTowncentric, 18a St Georges’ Square, Gravesend, DA12 0TB01474 33 76 00 info@towncentric.co.ukwww.discovergravesham.co.ukDisclaimer: Refunds will be given providing cancellations are made atleast seven days prior to the event. Towncentric reserves the right tocancel any event within the programme due to unforseencircumstances or if insufficient response.2


NewTour of Cobham Hallp21Tour of Gads Hill Schoolp30Discover Old Telephone Directoriesp10Sailing Barge Tripp16Guided tour of Land Securities Observatory p14Family Fun Day at St George’s Churchp16Craft making workshops at the Chantry p 4Gravesend My Townp22Luddesdown Valley Walkp26ExhibitionsTowncentric- a collection of Sikh pictures of local andnational significance. All pictures by local photographerSurinder Singh. Open 9am - 5pm, Monday to Saturday.St George’s Church - exhibition of model boatsthroughout the fortnight. The church will be openeveryday from 10am to 4pm.St Andrew’s Art Centre open 18, 24, 25, 26, 31 May and1 June, from12pm - 3pm. Hosting a small exhibtion anddisplay of memorabilia.3


Saturday 17 MayHistorical Tour of Gravesend LibraryThe Library, Windmill Street, GravesendChristoph Bull (District Manager of Gravesham Libraries)will delight you with an amusing and highly popular tourthrough Gravesend’s Carnegie Library, showing you areasnot usually seen by the public and relating some mad andracy stories associated with the staff and the public whohave used this well loved building over the past century.Meet at the library in Windmill StreetTickets available from Gravesend LibrarySpaces are limited so buy your tickets before the event.11amMask making at Chantry Heritage CentreFort Gardens, Gravesend£1 per personLet your imagination run wild with our fun and creativemask making workshop. Design your own mask with avariety of sequins, glitter and colouring pens, start fromscratch or use one of our templates.Suitable for ages 4+ with parental guidance. Places arelimited to 10 children per session so book early.Sessions at 12pm, 1pm, 2pm and 3pm£2.50 per child


Pocahontas PromenadeMeet at TOWNCENTRIC, 18a St Georges Square, GravesendJoin our experienced guide who will take you on a twohour walk around our many fascinating and largelyunknown historic attractions. Around every corner youwill find traces of time gone by beginning with one ofGravesend’s most famous landmarks, the final restingplace of Pocahontas.Not suitable for people with walking difficulties.Places are limited, please book early.2pm - 4pm £4 adults, £2.50 for senior citizens and childrenMeopham WindmillMeopham Green, MeophamDiscover this fine, weather boarded,mill originally built as a “model mill”.Climb to the top to admire theview.Tickets to be purchased at thewindmill. Please note that thereis limited access for people inwheelchairs.Saturdays 24, 31 MaySundays 18, 24 Mayand 1 June2.30pm to 4.30pm£1 per personCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 00 5


Saturday 17 MayCobham Heritage ExperienceThe Street, CobhamAlso on27 MayA day in Gravesham’s most historic village.Start with a talk in St Mary Magdalene Church, a GradeOne listed interior, home to the world’s largest and finestcollection of full-length brasses and many othertreasures. A tour and talk about Cobham College, with adisplay of college artefacts, will follow.Finish off the day with tea and biscuits at the College.Please note that this event is not suitable for those withmobility problems.Places are limited to 40 people so book early.2pm - 4.30pm£6 per personAlso open todaySt George’s Church,see page 3 fordetails6


Sunday 18 MayNational Sea Training Centre OpenOff Mark Lane, Norfolk Road, Denton, GravesendThe Thameside campus will be open to the public, withlive demonstrations and history of the old sea school.Visitors will be able to look around the campus to viewhow cadet training is carried out. This visit runs inconjunction with the Thames and Medway Canal event.10am - 4pmFreeWalk across Chalk MarshesMeet at junction of Lower Higham Road and Castle Lane, ChalkChristoph Bull (District Manager of GraveshamLibraries and Chalk local historian) will take you acrossChalk’s marshes to the Thames bank and then to Denton,returning by the Thames & Medway Canal towpath.On the way Chalk’s history and folklore will be told andDenton’s past will also be explained – in amusing style.Please note stout footwear is recommended. Not suitable forpeople with walking difficulties.2.30pmFree - no need to bookCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 007


Sunday 18 MayThames and Medway CanalMark Lane, Denton, GravesendThe Thames and Medway Canal Association will be at theMark Lane site of the canal and at the National SeaTraining Centre Annex on the service road towards No 4swing bridge. There will be an information stall, display,hand built coracles and activities. This is an opportunity todiscover, join or volunteer to help with this majorrestoration project. The National Sea Training Centrecampus will be open for refreshments andconveniences. If the water is sufficient there will be smallboats on the canal.10am - 4pmFree - no need to bookAlso open todayChantry Heritage Centre - see p17 for detailsSt Andrew’s Art Centre - see page 3 for details8


Monday 19 MayGuided tour of Gravesendand Milton CemeteryOld Road West, GravesendAlso on22 May 3pm to 5pm28 May 6pm to 8pmListen to a local research group explain the history of thecemetery and its origin as the Victoria Gardens, a place ofentertainment and prospective tourist attraction. FollowTony Larkin, local historian, around the grounds which areon the English Heritage Register of Historic Parks andGardens. Be entertained by stories and admire thestonemason’s art in the monuments. Meet in the Grade IIlisted chapel formerly the concert hall of the gardens.Please be aware thatlarge parts of the walkwill be on unevenground and there willbe no shelter from theweather so beprepared for rain orshine! Places arelimited so book early.2pm - 4pm£2 per personCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 00 9


Monday 19 MayDiscover Old Street andTelephone DirectoriesThe Library, Windmill Street,GravesendDiscover old street/telephoneand trade directories in Gravesend Library’s LocalCollection: very useful for tracing the history of yourhouse, family and business. Christoph Bull (DistrictManager of Gravesham Libraries) and Zoë Gray(Community Services DevelopmentLibrarian) will be on hand to answerquestions and offer advice.Tickets available from the library.10am - 12pmFree10


Tuesday 20 MayCanal RestorationBetween Mark Lane and Canal Road,HighamAlso on27 MayThe Thames and Medway Canal Association will have aworking party at the above site and will be pleased tomeet anyone who would like to know what is being done,why and how. For the exact location contact BrianMacknish on 01732 823725 or 07807 240687.9am - 12pmFreeVisit to the GurdwaraClarence Place, GravesendGuided visit to the temple. Your chance to learn moreabout the heritage of the Sikh community and their placeof worship. Places are limited, so book early.12pm - 1pm£2 per personAlso open today - St George’s Church, see page 3 for detailsCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0011


Wednesday 21 MayArchitecture Walk around GravesendMeet at Towncentric, 18a St George’s SquareCome and join a circular two hour walk, around the centreof Gravesend taking in St George’s Church, the High Street,Queen Street and King Street. Hear about the history ofthe buildings and the names of some of the streets.The tour is not suitable for people with walking difficulties.Please wear suitable footwear.11am - 1pm£4 adults, £2.50 child and senior citizensNaughty Nuns and NightingalesSt Mary’s Church, Church Street, Lower HighamJoin the RSPB on this circular walk which will lead fromLower Higham Church across the marshes towardsHigham Bay. We will look at the springtime wildlife andlearn about the antics of the naughty nuns who lived inthe nearby abbey.The walk is flat but includes 10 stiles so walkers will needto be reasonable fit and flexible. The marshes can be quiteexposed in any weather so walkers should wear suitableclothing.2pm - 5pm£1 per person


Royal Terrace PierRoyal Pier Road, GravesendPlease meet the guide at the entranceRoyal Terrace Pier was built and designed by JB Redmanaround 1842 - 44. It stands on cast iron doric columns. Thearchitrave and frieze (deck level and above) were replacedwith glass fibre in the mid 1970s. Over the years it hasplayed host to the arrival and departures of countlessRoyals and visiting dignitaries. It was renamed “Royal” in1863 after Princes Alexandria arrived there from Denmarkto marry the Prince of Wales. Join us on this interestingtour and experience the sights and sounds of the riverfrom a location which is rarely open to the public.2pm£1 per personAlso open today - St George’s Church, see page 3 for detailsCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0013


Thursday 22 MayGuided tour of LandSecurities ObservatoryThe Observatory, Southfleet Road, SwanscombeThe Observatory is Land Securities’ centre of operationsin Ebbsfleet. Over the next twenty years it will serve as abase for promotion of the area and as home to the teamdelivering this 17 million sq ft project. The building isintended to provide a dramatic view over the 1,000 acresite and is the ideal vantage point to watch the progressof the development. Remember your camera.6pm£1 per personAlso todayGuided tour of Gravesend and Milton Cemetery3pm - 5pm - see page 9 for detailsSt George’s Church - see page 3 for details14


Special opening ofGravesend MuseumHigh Street, GravesendAlso on 23, 24, 29, 30and 31 MayThis may be your last chance to see Gravesend Museum inits present form. Come along to the Old Town Hall in theHigh Street, where information on the area is on display.The museum will be manned by members of GravesendHistorical Society who are always pleased to talk aboutthe history of the area and neighbouring parishes.10am - 3pmJeskyns Discovery WalkJeskyns Community Woodland, CobhamFreeJoin the Ranger on a guided walk of this new 360 acreCommunity Woodland which opened in July 2007.Discover how the Forestry Commission has takeninspiration from the past to transform this former arablefarm into a public space with new woodlands, traditionalstyle orchards and wildflower meadows.Suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs, dogs welcome butowners asked to keep under control, children must beaccompanied by an adult. There are no toilets on the site.10.30am - 12.30pm£1 per personCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0015


Friday 23 MayTour of Meopham Valley VineyardNorway House, Wrotham Road,MeophamAlso on26 MayEnjoy a guided tour of Meopham Vineyard with tastingof different wines along the way, all produced from thevineyard itself. As you stroll, there will be an informal talkby the owner. Meet at the vineyard shop.Places are limited so book early. Not suitable for people withwalking difficulties. This is a long walk on uneven ground.3pm£1 per personThe Cold War BunkerWoodlands Park, GravesendAlso on30 MayWould you have lived through nuclear Armageddon?Find out by visiting the Cold War Bunker underWoodlands Park. Go below on a guided tour of its thirteenre-equipped rooms. Watch a film which will help youdecide whether you could have survived or perished.No access for wheelchairs.7.30pm - 9pm£3.50 per personAlso today and tomorrowSpecial opening of Gravesend Museum see page 15St George’s Church - see page 3 for details


Saturday 24 MaySt George’s Church Family Fun DayChurch Street, GravesendJoin St George’s church for some family fun. The day willbe packed with varied activities for all ages - river andcanal boat exhibition, face painting, bead braiding andmuch more. Refreshments available.10am - 3pmSailing Barge TripMeet at Gravesend Ferry Terminal, West StreetA three-hour trip from Tilbury which could go up riverto Barking Reach, or head down river past Tilbury Forttowards Southend. Cost of trip includes ferry crossing.No children under 12. Not accessible for people inwheelchairs or limited mobility. Suitable footwear andclothing is recommended.9.30am and 1pm (three hours sailing)The Chantry Heritage Centre Also on 26 MayFort Gardens, Gravesendand 1 JunePeek into the past at one Gravesham’s oldest buildings.With origins dating back to 1189, The Chantry HeritageCentre makes for an informative and enjoyable visit for allages.12pm - 5pmCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 00Free£20 per personFree17


Sunday 25 MaySpecial opening of St Mary’s ChurchChurch Street, Lower HighamA special opportunity to visit this flint and ragstonechurch founded pre-Norman conquest. The carved door,15th century rood screen and Norman font must be seen.On display will be an exhibition of old photographs of thevillage. There will be talks by Higham Village History Groupat 1pm and 3pm.Although free, donations are welcomed for the work ofthe Churches Conservation Trust and HighamVillage History Group. Car park available near-by.12pm - 4pmFreeAlso open todayChantry Heritage Centre - see page 17 for detailsSt Andrew’s Art Centre - see page 3 for details18


A Walk in Cobham WoodStarts at South Lodge, Lodge Lane, Cobham.Join the warden on an exploration of Cobham Wood, tofind out about the restoration and access works that havebeen taking place as part of the Cobham Park HeritageProject, including the renovation of the DarnleyMausoleum (now nearing completion).Places are limited to 20, so book early.Walk duration approximately 2-3 hours. Paths may bemuddy so suitable footwear should be worn. Not suitablefor wheelchairs or pushchairs.10am£1per personCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0019


Monday 26 MayTour of Cobham HallCobham Hall School adjacent to the A2/M2 betweenGravesend and RochesterCobham Hall is an outstandingly beautiful red brickmansion which seamlessly reflects Elizabethan, Jacobean,Carolean and 18th century styles. There is much ofinterest for students, lovers of art, architecture and history,as many famous names are associated with the Hall andits history, in particular James Wyatt, Humphry Repton andJohn Webb.Please meet the guide at the main reception. Tours last1hour 45 minutes and start every 15 minutes.11am - 12pm£5.50 per person20


Also open todayThe Chantry Heritage centre - see page 17Meopham Valley Vineyard Tour (pictured below)- see page 16St Andrew’s Art Centre (pictured below) - see page 3Call TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 00 21


Tuesday 27 MayGravesend – My TownTOWNCENTRIC St George’s Square,GravesendSecondsession29 MayA fun and imaginative approach to planning a town, thisworkshop will feature a mix of creativity, discussion andout and about research with photography. Suitable forchildren from 7 years with accompanying parent/guardian. The walk will last about 1.5 hours. The workshopincludes lunch, refreshments, certificates and prizes. Thesecond session takes place on 29 May.One parent or guardian to accompany a maximum of twochildren at all times. The course will be run by South EastPlanning Aid. Suitable outdoor clothing required for thefirst session.12pm - 4pm£3 per person for two sessions22


The Cold War Bunker - a family specialWoodlands Park, GravesendTwo special tours have been arranged for youngsters todiscover this fascinating world of the secret undergroundbunker. Children must be accompanied by an adult.Places are limited, so book early. No access for wheelchairs orpushchairs10.30am & 2.30pm £3.50 adult, £2.50 child or senior citizenAlso open todayCobham Heritage experience - see page 6 for detailsCanal Restoration - see page 11 for detailsSt George’s Church - see page 3 for detailsCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0023


Wednesday 28 MayHistory Comes to LifeShorne Wood Country ParkA fun family event, led by our Community Archaeologist.Costumed characters will reveal the park’s history on aguided walk. After the walk, refreshments will be providedin the visitor centre and children can make an historicartefact to take home.Walk is about 2km and steep in places, not suitable forpushchairs or wheelchairs.2pm - 4.30pm£4 per personor £15 family ticket(4 people, up to 3 children)24


Wildlife of Shorne MarshesMeet at Ship & Lobster Pub, Mark Lane, GravesendJoin the RSPB for a walk across Shorne Marshes reserve toShorne Fort, looking at the wildlife visiting this reserve inspringtime. Places are limited book early.2pm - 5pm£1 per personAlso open today -Guided tour of Gravesend and Milton Cemetery6pm - 8pm - see page 9 for detailsSt George’s Church - see page 3 for detailsCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0025


Thursday 29 MayLuddesdown Valley walk, visiting Dode ChurchMeet at Holly Hill car park (National Trust)Step back in time to visit the authentic 11th centurychurch set on the site of the ‘lost’ village of Dode in theremote valley of Luddesdown. Join the delightful walkthrough the historic valley with professional historianJohn Guy, learning about the various features of thesurrounding landscape on the way.The walk leaves at 10am, arriving at Dode Church at10.45am. There will be plenty of time at the church to takephotos before returning.The return walk to the car park is steep. Strong footwear isrecommended. Not suitable for people with walkingdifficulties. Places are limited.10am£4 adults, £2.50 children and senior citizensAlso open todayGravesend- My Town project (second day) -see page 22 for detailsGravesend Museum - see page 15 for detailsSt George’s Church - see page 3 for details26


Friday 30 MayVisit Gravesend’s new GurdwaraKhalsa Avenue, GravesendBe one of the few people to visit the Sikh temple beingbuilt in Khalsa Avenue. The temple’s design is inspired bythe famous temples of India and it is still inconstruction. You will be given the unique opportunityto visit the premises and discover what will become oneof the largest Sikh temples in the country. Visitors must beaware of the construction environment. Strong footwear isrecommended. Not suitable for people with mobilityproblems. Places are limited, so book early. There is no accessfrom the Gurdwara car park, please use Khalsa Avenue.12.30pm - 1.30pmAlso open today -Gravesend Museum - see page 15The Cold War Bunker - see page 16£2 per personCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0027


Friday 30 MayRoman pot making and coin pressing workshopThe Chantry Heritage Centre, Fort Gardens, GravesendCome and have a go at making your very own smallRoman clay pot and set of Roman coins. Create your owndesign or follow one of our templates.Suitable for ages 4+ with parental assistancePlaces are limited to 10 children per session so book early.Sessions at 12pm, 1pm, 2pm£2.50 per child28


Saturday 31 MayGravesend to Strood by CanalTOWNCENTRIC St George’s Square, GravesendThe Thames and Medway Canal Association will be givinga talk and slide presentation on the history of the canalwith a development and restoration update. Places arelimited so book early.11am - 12pm £3 per person including refreshmentsAlso open todayMeopham Windmill - see page 5 for detailsGravesend Museum - see page 15 for detailsSt Andrew’s Art Centre - see page 3 for detailsSt George’s Church - see page 3 for detailsCall TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 0029


Sunday 1 JuneTour of Gad’s Hill Place,Former home of Charles DickensGad’s Hill PlaceA unique opportunity to visit the former home of CharlesDickens. A school since 1924, Gads Hill Place was thehouse that Dickens aspired to own as a child andeventually purchased in 1855. He completed GreatExpectations and a Tale of Two Cities during his time atGads Hill, dying in his dining room in 1870 with his finalnovel The Mystery of Edwin Drood unfinished. Gad’s Hillschool is pleased to offer you a tour conducted by theexperts from The Dickens Fellowship followed by anafternoon tea in the grounds.Hourly tours from 10.30am - 3.30pm£5.50 per personAlso open todayMeopham Windmillsee page 5Chantry HeritageCentre - see page 15St Andrew’s ArtCentre - see page 3Call TOWNCENTRIC to book on 01474 33 76 00


Coming events21 March Churches Together -Good Friday procession12 April Vaisakhi Festival23 April St George’s Day celebrations31 May Children’s Day7 - 8 June Summer Regatta5 July Big Day Out and Northfleet Carnival5 - 6 July Powerboat Grand Prix5 - 6 July Town Regatta6 July Maritime Festival16 - 17 August New Shrimpers Regatta7 November Firework displaywww.discovergravesham.co.uk31

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