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Latest Posts

The main hall of Smiths Hall was packed.  There were 12 in the choir, 48 in the audience as well as the impressario in his red tailcoat and Sam and Jake on the bar!


Here are a few pictures from a memorable night!  For the video version, see the Farleighs facebook page...





Driving Home for Christmas by Emily Hunter

Posted on 24th December, 2018


Well, if we’re being specific I actually got the train, but that just doesn’t sound as poetic. My point is, I’m going to write today about coming home to West Farleigh for Christmas. I’d like to start by apologising for taking so long to write another post – as some of you may know, I started university in September 2017. It has been over a year since then, and I am now at the end of the first semester of my second year. Let’s just say that I definitely wasn’t expecting it to be as intense and as full on as it turned out to be. Anyway, now that I’ve gotten myself settled in, I have time to write about what it’s like to return to the place I call home.


I always look forward to coming home, whether it’s just for a weekend or for a longer holiday. Obviously, a massive part of this is because I get to see my family again, who I am often away from for six to eight weeks at a time. However, it is also because West Farleigh is such a lovely place to come home to. Nothing shows this quite like Christmas time. Driving back from the train station on Saturday night, I can only explain the feeling as magical when we entered the village. The effort put in to light up the road clearly shows. It feels like a winter wonderland, and if that’s how I feel I can only imagine the joy it brings to children who live here or are even just passing through.


Not only does the village look amazing at this time of year, but beneath the lights and inflatable Santas lie such kind and generous people. I can honestly say that I can’t imagine experiencing such a sense of community anywhere else but here.     


I’ve lived here all my life (apart from when I’m at uni), and I can’t imagine living anywhere else. I know that there will come a time where I have to move on, but for now I couldn’t wish for a better village, and community, to call home. 



Flower arranging at All Saints

Posted on 21st April, 2018

Each week there are beautiful flowers on display at All Saints Church, all created by the talented hands of a dedicated group of volunteers. Sue O'Donnell, Ann Ayears, Deb Bailey and Tracy Ward rotate every 2 weeks to add colour, vibrancy and natural beauty to enjoy whilst the church is being used, whether by the congregation, Pilates classes, Little Angels toddler group or the sports club for quizzes.


There has been a long evolution of flower arrangers brightening our church, historically Margaret Evans (Court Farm Oast), Sue Day (Tutsham farm), Sue Morelock (Court Lodge), Joyce Morgan and many others too. Sue started when her children were young and they used to help out too. She went to classes, joined Wateringbury Flower Club, learnt from other volunteers and received good advice. Ann first started after a flower arranging demonstration at The Farleighs WI and they both were able to arrange the church flowers for their children’s weddings.


Every week of the year, except for Lent, they fill the church with flowers by either growing the flowers in their own gardens, receiving bouquets from other neighbours gardens or being donated bunches of flowers by people who want to celebrate the memory of a loved one at special times of the year. At Christmas they go to Whittingtons flower wholesaler in Rochester to enhance their displays. They aim not to use dark colours such as purple as these recede against the walls when viewed. They must also ensure that they enhance the collection of Christmas Trees that also decorate the church during Advent whilst leaving room for the choir and congregation!


This week they included Tulips, Carnations, Hebe, Heather, Skimmia, Eucalyptus, Palm leaves and Roses, many taken from Ann's own garden on Charlton Lane. The second display included an ornamental willow frame with gerberas creating a beautiful collection of pink and green.


They are also keen to hear from anyone interested in helping out with the displays, as ever drop an email to editor@TheFarleighs.co.uk if you would like to know more.

Lambing Day 2018

Posted on 17th March, 2018

Mothering Sunday, 11th March 2018 was the annual opening of Smiths Hill Farm on Hunt Street for their Lambing Day from 10am until 4pm.


This year Geoff, Candy and Oli had 2 cows in the pens, 3 horses in the stables, chickens in the coup as well as many sheep either heavily pregnant or nursing young lambs. 1 lamb had been born at 2am that morning and a further 2 came in the afternoon. There were 3 sets of triplets with 2 lambs being fostered by other sheep who only had one lamb.


The parish council ran a large, varied and very tasty cake stall:


Villagers donated to the Tombola, every ticket winning if ending in a 0 or a 5:


A hot dog stand was run by Larry Johnston, a former parish councillor and Mick Merritt sold beautifully crafted wooden bowls and vases from various kind of wood.


In total, £1,000 was raised for parish funds.


Many thanks once again to all involved for a memorable, informative and enyoyable day.


All Saints was full to capacity on Saturday night, celebrating the Village Harvest Supper. 


After a spectacular buffet laid on by the Friends of All Saints, Pete & Co struck up with a selection of old and new favourites.  "I've got a brand new combine harvester" so appealed to our churchwarden, Valeria Grainger that she and Hugh got up and danced (see clip below!).  Perhaps it's time for a barn dance in the village?  


In addition to the honey roast ham, fresh salmon (x3!) and a cornucopia of salads, the party was enhanced by a donation of home made cider and a case of wine from two generous parishioners.  Dessert was a delicious home made apple pie from the Ayears kitchen.


Pete, Roy and Linda played two 40 minutes sets.  The organisers rushed through the extensive raffle during the interval!  Raffle prizes included Sunday lunch for 2 at the Good Intent a fine bottle of whisky, two flagons of Polglase cider, a marvellous basket of fruit and many other delightful prizes. The raffle raised a record £224.


Val Grainger our churchwarden thanked the Friends at the end of the evening, and asked for would-be supporters of All Saints to contact Terry Ayears or Jacky Taylor to sign up!  One feature of the event was the number of newcomers to the village who came along - there were four or five new families, a welcome addition.


The event was - we think - enjoyed by all but also raised £895 pounds for the church, and another £110 for Pete & Co's Alzheimer's charity.  Someone caught these lovely moments on this short clip (click on the little square box below the image to see it full screen):   





Posted on 18th March, 2017

An amazing day at Smiths Hill Farm. Geoff, Candy and Ollie opened their farm to the public, to see the new lambs. The public flocked in (pun intended!).

Several were born during the time the public were there, an educational event for many.

Tea, coffee and cakes were served by the Parish Councillors. There was not even a broken biscuit left at the end of the afternoon. Everyone who went had a good time, the kids loved it.





Lower Road Temporary Closure in April

Posted on 21st February, 2017

B2010 Lower Road, East Farleigh – from 10 April 2017 for up to 8 days


There will be no access for through traffic between the junctions with Gallants Lane and Vicarage Lane.


The alternative route is via Dean Street, B2163 Heath Road/Ewell Lane, B2010 Lower Road and vice versa.


The closure is to enable link box replacement works to be carried out by UK Power Networks.

The Big Bang 2016 report by Chris Stockwell

Posted on 5th February, 2017

West Farleigh goes off with a bang!


(see full report with pictures, here)


It has to be said, that agains all odds, the 2016 Fireworks Spectacular was an unmitigated success!


After a day's steady rain, it seemed as though the venture was heading for a disaster, but, someone up there must have been in a good mood, because an hour before the event, it stopped raining! Astounding!


A huge thank you to the West Farleigh Sports club who organised the event again. It was evident that a lot of planning went into the event, and in the week leading up to it, there were many bodies in the Park preparing it for Friday. You did a fantastic job, and the village should acknowledge how well it reflects on us. 


As usual, there was food and drink a-plenty. I have to say I was particularly drawn to the mulled cider. Just to keep out the cold, you understand... Oh, and the cinnamon donuts. It was rude not to...


Brilliant live entertainment was provided by a fire juggler, The Old School Samba band - noisy, but compellingly rhythmic, guitarist and singer Nick Eve and the talented John & Jess band. Variety and quality assured. The entertainment included in the show is a real bonus.


The fireworks themselves were hugely enjoyed by the capacity audience. We all love whizzy bangs, flashes and sparkling showers of glittering colour. I just love a good, noisy show! Thanks again for providing the spectacle you promised.


And all the cars got off the Park safely!


Roll on next year!


                                                    Chris Stockwell





East Farleigh Village History launched

Posted on 5th February, 2017

East Farleigh booklet launched 

About 40 parisioners from both East and West Farleigh attended a presentation by John Wilson, David Hessein, Dr Simon Elliot and the Rt. Hon. Anne Widdicombe -  with a glass of wine and nibbles as an added incentive, to hear about the route leading to the production of the long-awaited publication.


An illustrated account of the event held at the East Farleigh Working Mens' Clube can be found by clicking here.

Harvest Supper 2016

Posted on 1st October, 2016

Harvest Supper 2016

We are very lucky in West Farleigh to have such a charming and accommodating old church in which we can celebrate occasions like the harvest festival.

Preparations to the venue were carried out by Ann and Terry Ayres, Jacky Taylor and her sister, Sue  O'Donnell, Samantha, Jill Morgan, David Fox, Brian  Cushing and Stephen Norman. The church never looked better or more welcoming.

Lashings  of delicious food was brought by parishioners (great pasta salad, Brian!). There was plenty to go round and seconds were enjoyed by many encouraged by Stephen Norman.

There was a quiz, but we were so well entertained by music and magic - well, mayhem, that the sheets were not marked (We got 14/20, by the way. Did anyone beat that?). We did miss the rather eclectic questions that had been set in the past by Tim Hill, but at least we understood all of the questions!

Musical entertainment was provided by the very accomplished and versatile Pete & Co, who revisited the 60s, giving the guests a chance to sing along to some very well known tunes. Great stuff, Pete!

The Great Thrombosis, came on and started with a magic act in which he managed to destroy Gabby King's watch. I'm not sure what the final outcome was. However, it has to be said that the highlight of his act was the fire-free fire eating. It looked chaotic, but it was so well presented. Swallowing a couple of LED torches was different.

On behalf of all the guests I'm going to say a big, big thank you to all those who contributed to the success of evening. Ann Ayres has already had a phone call booking seats for next year!

Thank you!

Chris Stockwell

Ann Ayres and Jacky Taylor, the main movers.

Clockwise from the left; Pat Ludgate, Elaine Rogers, Pam Bissenden, Marianne Valencia and Maureen Ludford

Gabby King, Diane Ward, Paul Bernhardt, Roy, Lyee and Peter King, aka Pete & Co.

Terry Baines, Peter Baggott, Yvonne Martin, Pam Smith, Jack Martin, Geraldine Baggott and Annie.


Brian Cushing, Terry, David Fox, Pat Lee and Wendy Stockwell.


Helen and David Swan, Tracy Ward, Caroloine, Tia, Amy Ward (nice shoes!0 and Darren Ward.


Feeding frenzy!

Tom Kerridge would have said the food was"Proper lush!" He would have been right.

Thanks again to all those who contributed.

Spenser Mills, Felicity Field, Peter Meddemmen, Amber, Cathryn, Mary Seymour and Stephen Norman, Jackie and Simon Ellis.

 Jill Morgan, Valeria Grainger, Peter and Pauline Mack, Brenda and Larry, Hugh Grainger and Sue O'Donnell.

Michael Taylor and his daughyer who had afabulous time! Samantha and Jake who was cool! Da..and Patricia Robinson.
Linda Wilson, Elizabeth Price and friend, John and Jackie Cooper, The Great Thrombosis, John Wilson.