Kent Life Diary of events: July 2012

PUBLISHED: 23:01 30 June 2012 | UPDATED: 21:34 20 February 2013

Kent Life Diary of events: July 2012

Kent Life Diary of events: July 2012

All the must-see and do events in Kent this month

Kent Life Diary of events: July 2012


1) The Hop Farm Festival, Hop Farm, Paddock Wood

2) Lavender Festival, Castle Farm, Sevenoaks

3) Fun day with Thomas, KESR, Tenterden and RHDR, Hythe

4) Summer Jousting, Hever Castle, Hever

5) The Proms in Dunorlan Park, Tunbridge Wells


Independent Booksellers Week

30 Jun to 7 July

Tickets: Free

Ashgreen Book Company, The Bookshop, Longfield

Nickel Books, Sittingbourne,

Sevenoaks Bookshop, Sevenoaks

Kelly Bradford, The Beckenham Bookshop, Beckenham,

The Edenbridge Bookshop, Edenbridge,

University Bookseller, Canterbury Christ Church University, Canterbury

Bookshops across Kent, including the ones listed above will be taking part in the Independent Booksellers Week. This celebration of independent bookshops is designed to showcase how the indies offer a distinctive, personal service for book lovers, and the unique role they play in their communities. Some of the exciting events range from literary lunches and author readings to creative writing workshops, and childrens parties.

The Pantiles in July

30 Jun and 1 Jul (Fashion Festival)

28 and 29 Jul (Vintage Fair)

Tickets: Free

The Pantiles, Tunbridge Wells

Local fashionista Lady M will be hosting the second Pantiles Fashion Festival, with sartorial splendour on offer for all the family. Lady M will be championing new designers, exciting brands and local retailers, with catwalk shows and style workshops. In addition, The Vintage Fair also makes a welcome return to The Pantiles, and, coinciding with the start of the Olympic Games in the capital, contains A Vintage Olympics. Entertainment on the bandstand includes Gypsy John's Cinque Ports Lindy Hoppers and The Swinging Little Big Band.

Workwear Week

2 to 8 July

Tel: 01233 895900

Ashford Designer Outlet, Ashford

McArthurGlens Ashford Designer Outlet will be joining forces with womens charity Dress For Success London to launch the UKs first-ever official Workwear Week.

There will be a pop-up panel, including expert recruitment advisors from the Huntress Group, style consultant, Deborah Eastlake, and Dress For Success London volunteers. Local women can visit the panel in confidence and the exclusive pop-up services are entirely complimentary.

Hythe and Dymchurch Railway

2 Jul (wildlife excursion)

5 Jul (Backstage with the general manager)

7 Jul (Evening dinner train)

Tel: 01797 362353

Tickets: Varies

The Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, Hythe

As part of this years Hythe Festival, Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway are laying on a series of events to celebrate all that the railway and surrounding area have to offer. Events include a wildlife excursion, the opportunity to spend a day with the Railways general manager, learning about what goes on out of the public eye and the history behind this attraction. Also, visitors can book their place on and evening dinner car. Guests will take their seats on one of the Heritage Carriages for a steam train journey across the Romney Marsh to Dungeness. On the menu will be the famous platter of fish and chips, served with a glass of wine or locally brewed beer, followed by dessert and a hot beverage.

Open Houses

7 Jul, 14 Jul, 21 Jul

Tickets: 7.50

Tel: 01795 534542

Various venues, Faversham

More than 20 fascinating properties will open their doors to the public this year as part of the Open House Scheme 2012.This popular annual event offers a unique opportunity to visit historic and interesting houses not normally open to the public in the historic town of Faversham. New properties are introduced every year by the organisers, Faversham Society.

Lavender Festival

14 and 15 July

Tickets: 4 (tours)

Tel: 01959 523219

Castle Farm, Shoreham, Sevenoaks

Castle Farm grows more than 120 miles of lavender hedges, which will be in full flower in July. And to celebrate this fact, the farm will be staging a lavender festival that will demonstrate the myriad of ways this flower can be used, from bunches of flowers to creating high-grade Kentish Lavender Oils, which are sold all over the world for perfumes and toiletries as well as being made into soaps, sleep remedies, candles and room scents.

The War and Peace Show

18 to 22 July

Tickets: 17.20 to 63.30

Tel: 01622 872068

The Hop Farm, Paddock Wood

The War and Peace Show will be celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. What started off with a display of just 100 military vehicles, now welcomes nearly 5,000. To mark the anniversary, organisers have tried to track down those original exhibitors and extended an invitation to this years show. As well as a fabulous display of vehicles, there will also be special presentations and plenty of Q&A sessions.

Celebrate the Olympic Flame

19 July

Tickets: 210 (per couple); 445 (dinner and battlement bedroom per couple); 505 (dinner and state bedroom per couple)

Tel: 01622 765400

Leeds Castle, Maidstone

Watch history being made at Leeds Castle, as the Olympic Torch passes through the estate on its journey around the UK. After the torch arrival, you'll have a private guided tour of the Castle and dinner in the impressive Banqueting Hall. Plus, you could always make a break of it, and stay in the castle.

Fun Day with Thomas and Friends

21 and 23 July

Tickets: 10.50 (child up to 15 years) and 18.50 (adult) KESR; 7.50-39.50 RHDR

Tel: 01580 765155 (KESR); 01797 362353 (RHDR)

Kent & East Sussex Railway, Tenterden

Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, Hythe

Come and meet everyones favourite steam train, Thomas, and some of his best friends such as Sir Topham Hatt, the Fat Controller, and the carriages, Annie and Clarabel. At the RHDR, visitors can help the Fat Controller organise trains at the station, while at the KESR, Uncle Myles and Charlie the Clown will entertain visitors.

Summer Jousting

21 and 22 July; 27 to 29 July

Tickets: 8.30 to 37.30

Tel: 01732 865224

Hever Castle, Hever

Visitors will be treated to an exciting display of action, stunts, falls and fights as the Knights of Royal England bring the medieval sport of jousting to life in this former castle of Kings. Also, spectators can see Sir Samuel Hever knighted by the King, Henry VIII as well. There will also be falconry demonstrations and medieval warfare demos.

The Hop Farm Festival

29 Jun to 1 Jul

Tickets: Varies

Tel: 0844 249 1000

The Hop Farm, Paddock Wood

No sponsorship, no corporate kow-towing, just great music from some legendary names. The Hop Farm Festival has built its reputation on being about music and music alone. Past stars include artists of the calibre of the Purple One himself, Prince, and this years line-up continues that exemplary tradition - reformed indie rockers Suede, Peter Gabriel and Bob Dylan will all be performing at the festival along with a myriad of other acts.

Summer events at Charlton Park

3 July (A Midsummer Nights Dream)

10 July (HMS Pinafore)

18 July (Camp Fire Sing-a-Long)

Tickets: Varies

Tel: 01227 831355

Charlton Park, Canterbury

There is truly something for everyone this summer at Charlton Park. First up is the dynamic Castle Theatre group with its version of the magical Shakespearean tale, A Midsummer Nights Dream. Hot on the hells of this, visitors can experience a life at sea with acclaimed theatre company Illyrias take on the Gilbert & Sullivan classic HMS Pinafore. And for those who love the great outdoors, there will be a Camp Fire Sing-Song in the woods at Charlton Park, led by Trish Vella-Burrows with guitar accompaniment. Dont miss out.

The Get Happy Show

Throughout July

Tickets: 12

Tel: 01843 296111

Queens Hall, Winter Gardens, Margate

The Get Happy Show will be for three days a week throughout July. Starring Radio Kent presenter and comedian Paul James and his singing partner Gary O'Connor, and father and son comedy double act Simmons and Simmons, it promises to be a fabulous way to spend an afternoon or evening. Add into the mix the sensational violinist Victoria Yellop; the great singing voice of Victoria Scott and the vivacious ladies of the Thanet Stage School of Performing Arts and you have a show not to be missed. Bringing old school variety entertainment back to Margate.


5 July (A Sporting Chance with Onyx Brass)

6 July (Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment/The Hythe)

7 July (Choral music)

Tickets: Varies

St Leonards Church, Hythe and St Nicholas Church

JAM returns once again with a trio of inspiring concerts. The first, A Sporting Chance with Onyx Brass, will combine sport and music together, and will feature composer and conductor Bob Chilcott and a group of nine and 10-year-old children from Hythe Bay CofE Primary School. Experience sprinting trumpets, a football rap, an ice skating trombone and a weight-lifting tuba. The second has the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment visiting, and will include the Judith Binghams The Hythe piece, which was inspired by her visit to the town of Hythe last year. And the final concert will be staged to celebrate the Queens Diamond Jubilee. It will be a feast of choral music, including heart-stirring Zadok the Priest (Handel), I Was Glad (Parry), Coronation Gloria (Stanford) and Paul Mealors chart-topping Now Sleeps The Crimson Petal. This concert will be given by the Chapel Choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge, Onyx Brass, Simon Hogan (organ scholar at St Pauls Cathedral), and conducted by Kent-born Nicholas Cleobury. Dont forget to read Kent Lifes feature on the town of Hythe on PXX.

Grimm Fairy Tales

7 Jul (Godinton House)

19 Jul (Hall Place & Gardens)

Tickets: Varies

Tel: 01233 643854 (Godinton House); 01322 621238 (Hall Place & Gardens)

Godinton House, Ashford; Hall Place & Gardens, Bexley

Grimm Fairy Tales will be funnier than they have ever been before, thanks to the renowned travelling theatre group the madcap Pantaloons. Retaining the dark and mysterious aspect of some of the tales, though, The Pantaloons have also injected their own unique blend of humour, madcap physical theatre and dazzling puppet work.

Our House

12 to 14 July

Tickets: 12 to 50

Tel: 01732 450175

The Stag Theatre, Sevenoaks

Written by Tim Firth and featuring songs by two-tone, self-confessed nutty boys, Madness, Our House is an ambitious production to undertake, but fresh from their triumphant Guys & Dolls production, The Sevenoaks Entertainers are attempting it. With some rousing musical numbers, catchy chart hits and some energetic dancing, this production promises audiences will not go home disappointed.

The Glass Slipper

14 and 15 Jul

Tickets: contact venue

Tel: 01227 787787

The Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury

Dance Warehouse presents its take on an enchanting and timeless story. Its 2012, Britain is hosting the Olympics and the Queen is celebrating her Diamond Jubilee. Her majesty announces that she would like her grandson to choose a bride. And what better way to do it than by staging The Cinderella Factor. Timely nods to whats the popular medium of entertainment will ensure audiences can relate perfectly to whats happening on stage.

Mari Wilson

20 July

Tickets: 15

Tel: 01304 370220

The Astor Theatre, Deal

Join The Neasden Queen of Soul Mari Wilson for an evening of hits old and new as she fills The Astor Theatre in Deal with her enchanting voice and arrangements. Performing tracks from her latest album Cover Stories, audience members will be taken on a musical journey thanks to her surprising and diverse mix of classic and contemporary pieces.

The Proms in Donorlan Park

28 Jul

Tickets: 15 (child); 20 (adult)

Tel: 01892 530613/01892 532072 (Assembly Hall)

Donora Park, Tunbridge Wells

Pomp and circumstance will permeate the Park this summer as Donora Park plays host to the first Proms event to be held there. Popular classics and patriotic proms pieces will meet in one evening; there will be rousing popular classics and iconic contemporary favourites with a fusion twist that will culminate in a finale of Proms favourites. This is guaranteed to be a unique night out, and what better way to celebrate both the Olympic Games and the Queens Diamond Jubilee.

Sound Island Festival

29 July

Tickets: varies

Tel: 0844 888 9991/ 0871 220 0260

Quex Park, nr Margate

X-Factor graduate Olly Murs will be headlining the Sound Island Festival this year. He will be joined by dynamic duo Rizzle Kicks. So, not only will your heart skip an beat, but you will also be able to get down with the trumpets as well. Expect all the chart-bothering choons from both acts unleashed in a beautiful summery setting. Expect more top-name acts to be announced before the festival gets underway.

La Boheme

3 Aug

Tickets: Varies

Tel: 01892 891115

Bayham Abbey, Lamberhurst

This event is being organised by Lamberhurst Music Festival and is the showpiece event of their calendar. La Boheme is probably one of Puccinis most well-known works and tells the emotionally charged story of two star-crossed lovers in a community of artists in Paris in 1830. Tickets can be purchased from the Lamberhurst Post Office or by calling the above number.


Hugh Laurie

2 Jul

Tickets: 40

Tel: 020 8563 3800

Hammersmith Apollo

Hugh Laurie and the Copper Bottom Band return to the UK to perform their biggest headline shows to date. Following some more intimate dates at the end of last year, Laurie and his band of blues aficionados have taken the step up to bigger venues in support of the critically acclaimed album Let Them Talk, which was recorded in New Orleans and boasts guest stars such as Tom Jones, Allen Toussaint and Irma Thomas.

Shakespeare: Staging the World

19 Jul to 25 Nov

Tickets: 14

Tel: 020 7323 8181

British Museum

Part of the World Shakespeare Festival, this exhibition provides a new and unique insight into the emerging role of London as a world city four hundred years ago, interpreted through the innovative perspective of William Shakespeares plays. The exhibition features more than 190 objects, and creates a unique dialogue between an extraordinary array of items from great paintings and rare manuscripts to modest, everyday items of the time and the plays and characters that have had a richer cultural legacy than any other in the western world.

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