Thursday, 31 January 2013

Ian Chatfield Our New High Street Butcher

Tomorrow is 'the' big day for Ian Chatfield, our new independent High Street butcher, as the family business will be opening their doors to the public for the first time.

The new shop is situated next to MacDonalds, at the southern end of the High Street, and is looking really smart inside and out.  Although the interior of the shop is obscured by temporary paper, whilst the team are busily getting all things ready for tomorrow's grand opening, I did venture inside to see how they were getting on.

Ian Chatfield Master Butcher

The shop smelt divine as Frank Hewitt from Rowcliffe was setting out the deli counter. Rowcliffe specialise in quality cheese amongst other things, and I did think to myself that I needed to look no further to fuel my slight obsession with the beautiful stuff. But it's not all about cheese as the deli counter is extensive, and will be filled with local and continental meat, homemade meat pies, pasties, sausage rolls and a large selection of pastries and bread prepared and baked daily. I think I spotted olives and various other delights too. There will also be freshly baked baguettes filled to order.

Frank Hewitt

Ian Chatfield is a Master Butcher having completed his training in the 1970's with a butcher in Tonbridge High Street.  He told me that as far as he knew there were once six butchers on our High Street, and he was proud to be bringing one back to Tonbridge again.  Gone is the sawdust of the past, as this interior is clean and contemporary, and the team will provide all the services of a traditional butcher shop but with a modern style. On offer is old fashioned, grass fed, free range beef and lamb, outdoor reared pork and free range chickens, all selected from the best stock that's allowed to grow slowly and naturally from local farms. All incredibly positive to my ears.

Butchers Mike and Ian
Ready to be filled for tomorrow's grand opening

It's been a long long time since we've been able to shop at a High Street butchers and to have a new delicatessen too is a bonus. Tonbridge seems pretty excited to welcome Ian Chatfield. This is just what our town needs. I for one will certainly be supporting this new local business, and wish them every luck - it's been a long time coming. This could be the start of something very good.

Read more about Ian Chatfield on

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #159 - Charlton Terrace

Tonbridge Daily Snippet

On Boxing night in 1908, two men who had sampled far too much Christmas spirit from a cargo of Schnapps were pulled out of the dark, cold and murky River Medway in Tonbridge and saved from drowning.

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Tonbridge Angels Charity Sponsored Walk

This morning I received an update on how we can help the lovely people who have volunteered to
take part in the Tonbridge Angels Football Club sponsored walk.

Dear All,
The charity sponsored walk by our supporters to Bath, and back, starts in less than 2 weeks on Monday 11th February, departing from the ground at circa 07.30 for our 300 odd mile walk in this pleasant weather we are currently experiencing, so it should be nice and cosy sleeping in tents! 
If you wish to sponsor us you can do so in several ways. There are sponsor forms at the club in both bars, Susan Adams in the High Street also has a form available. 
You can also with your details and I will happily add you to my form, then contact you on our return. 
You can sponsor online through justgiving at the site I have set up by going to This will go directly to the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Thanks for your support.

Darren Apps
07952 908716

K College in Pictures

Something Fishy Going On In Tonbridge

We're all looking forward to Tonbridge Farmers Market being back in the town on February 10. That's just a couple of weeks away, and it's always a great place to buy fresh local produce and taste foods that are new to us, yet produced on our doorstep.

This time of the year, with the cold water around our fabulous coastline, there's no better time to try the local sea food. With this in mind, and in conjunction with Enterprise Fisheries, Tonbridge Farmers Market are bringing a Scallop Special to our town.

Gary Copeland from Enterprise said 'although most people are aware of the fabulous seafood we have, it amazes me how few have cooked or eaten this fantastic Mollusca'. So to start the new season Gary will have an extra stall, as well as his normal stall, selling and giving advice about this local delicacy.

The Market Kitchen will focus on all things fishy and demonstrate mouthwatering seafood dishes.Tasters are always handed out but you have to stay to the end.

Tonbridge Farmers Market is now the largest In Kent and has become a huge success. Not only is it an opportunity to buy local produce, but the covered Market Eatery (known as The Eat and Meet) has become a monthly meeting place for locals to catch up and enjoy the hot food on offer.

Opening times are 9.30am to 1.30pm in the Sovereign Way Car Park. See you there.

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #158 - Castle Valves

Tonbridge Daily Snippet

c1800 Tonbridge is described as 'now in a flourishing state' with 'many houses' and 'persons of genteel fortune'

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #157 - K College

Tonbridge Daily Snippet

In 1887 a fire broke out a Knole House in Sevenoaks. Tonbridge Fire Brigade were summoned by telegram to the scene, but as they had no horses available to pull the steam pump, the captain in desperation stopped a funeral and took the horses from the hearse and two mourners coaches. 

Monday, 28 January 2013

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo # 156 - Barden Lake

Tonbridge Daily Snippet

In 1823 William Cobbett describes Tonbridge as 'but a common country town, though very clean, and the people looking very well'

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Recognising Tonbridge Recognised

Recognising Tonbridge feature
Former Wesleyan Mission Chapel

There were a few recognitions of the Recognising Tonbridge feature and the stone inscribed with the words 'Infant School'. It is high on one of the apexes of the former Wesleyan Mission Chapel and school situated on the corner of Danvers Road and Barden Road.  The former Methodist school and sunday school was built in 1869.

Dave Morvan also recognised the building via Twitter.

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #155 - Barden Lake

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Monday, 21 January 2013

Summer and Winter ??

Peter Ellis of Tonbridge Community Films sent in a panorama of Tonbridge Castle after seeing my snowy version.  They have both been taken this January. One would think they were summer and winter shots.


Panorama of Tonbridge Castle in Snow

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #152 - The Leaning Tree of Tonbridge in Snow

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Cool Guy

This cool type was hanging about on a park bench in Tonbridge today.

Tonbridge Daily Photos

Here are some peaceful photos of a snowy Tonbridge Country Park taken today by Tonbridge Tweeter, Tontweet @tontweet, who has kindly allowed me to add them to the blog.

Barden Lake
Barden Lake

Tonbridge Sportsground

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #151  - Feeding time at Barden Lake

Tonbridge Daily Snippet

In September 1986 whilst parishioners attended Sunday morning mass the old Fisher Hall in Lyons Crescent mysteriously caught fire. Rumours still surround the blaze.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Women's Suffrage Campaigners

Women's Suffrage campaigners march through Tonbridge en route to London rally 1913
Shared by Ian Beavis of TWBC Museum via Twitter

Barden Lake

Moody cold scene at Barden Lake this afternoon

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #149

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Recognising Tonbridge

Looking up at a building that has a history of little feet coming through its doorway.
Where am I today?

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #148

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Recognising Tonbridge Recognised

Recognising Tonbridge Feature
The small shield bearing the Invicta symbol can be found under the central first floor window of The Medway School of Dancing, Tonbridge High Street and was spotted by Helen Oldroyd @heleno1234 via Twitter.

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #147

Monday, 14 January 2013

Tonbridge Triathlon

Following on from the recent pledge of £25,000 over ten years by Lions Clubs in SE England to KSS Air Ambulance to help fund Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance’s night flight plans, Tonbridge Lions Club has invited the life-saving charity to find sponsored competitors for the Tonbridge Triathlon that will be held on Bank Holiday Monday, 6 June 2013.

The triathlon event, swimming, cycling and running was started by Tonbridge Lions over 25 years ago and is recognised by the British Triathlon Federation who referee and sanction all triathlons. Competitors have a choice of completing the Sprint, a 400m swim, then a 25km cycle ride, ending with a 5km run or the Standard event that is double the distance for all three disciplines. Start and finish are at Tonbridge School Sport Centre.

Chairman of the organising committee, Lion Bob Bartlett said, “It is viewed as a challenging route by those taking part, particularly by the standard route competitors who have to do it twice. We are pleased to be able to assist KSS Air Ambulance in their fund raising and hope that they find plenty of volunteers willing to find sponsors for this popular event in the Tonbridge sporting calendar.”

Since 2000 the Tonbridge Triathlon has raised over £85,000 which Tonbridge Lions have user to support to various charitable causes.

It currently costs £5 million a year to keep both helicopters flying during daylight hours from their bases at Marden in Kent and Redhill in Surrey.

To book a place visit and follow the link to Triathlon 2013.

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #146
Building development of new homes on former carparks and media block at K College. This site is massive.

Sunday, 13 January 2013


The appeal below was received from Darren Apps of TAFC. 

Hi All

With the walk to Bath and back now just over 4 weeks away from starting the walkers have encountered a problem with our arrangements and are appealing for help. Due to unforeseen circumstances we currently do not have any support crew to assist us with the transportation of clothing and tents etc. The walk departs Tonbridge on Monday 11 February and will return on Friday  February 22. 

If anybody is willing to help during this period and is able to commit for 1 or more days please contact Darren Apps on 07952 908716 or  
as soon as possible. You won’t be required to walk, although you could join us for a while if you wish, just to “babysit” the walkers by looking after our kit and ensuring that we have dry clothing to wear each day and generally making sure everything is ok.

Walking circa 30 miles each day in February will be a challenge itself, it is imperative that we have dry clothing at the start and finish of each day. Whilst the walk itself will be physically challenging we will try to make it as much fun for all those involved. 

This event is being undertaken in order to raise funds for TAFC and for multiple sclerosis, it is hoped that a substantial sum of money can be raised for both causes. If you would like to support us by sponsoring one of the team a sponsor form is available from Darren.

Friday, 11 January 2013

Woodland Walk

A Fields in Trust plaque has appeared at each end of Woodland Walk in North Tonbridge.  Apparently this area has now become a protected space as part of a nationwide challenge to conserve outdoor recreational spaces in the communty as a permanent living legacy of the Jubilee and the London 2012 Olympics.

I had no idea that this had happened in Tonbridge until I was sent a photograph, and asked if I knew anything about it. So if anyone can fill in the gaps as to what the council have pledged to do with Woodland Walk, we would all love to know.

Tonbridge Daily Photo

Tonbridge Daily Photo #144 - K College

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

New Computer Shop for Tonbridge

There's a new place on The Botany, next to Waitrose, that deals with everything to do with computers.The sign states that Computers4Less (C4L) buys, sells and repairs computers.

It's good to see the space now taken with a new Tonbridge business as the unit has been empty for some time now since the carpet and flooring centre moved out.

All the best of luck to them!!!!!!!!