Sir Edward Cazalet
On Sunday 10 February 2019 there was a Service of Thanksgiving at St Giles during which the choir sang a special anthem as a tribute to Sir Edward Cazalet. This was followed by a lunch to bid him farewell as our Patron of many years standing. Our new Patron, Francis Read, and the Rector thanked him in their speeches after lunch for all that he and his family had done for our village over so many years. Sir Edward in his reply recalled his family's long association with, and affection for, Fairlawne, St Giles' Church and the village.
Shipbourne Farmers' Market was the winner of the Best Farmers' Market category at the 2018 Kent Food and Drinks Awards. The Farmers' Market has also reached the finals in the Best Farmers' Market category in the Farm Retail Association Awards 2019.
A Remembrance Service was held at Shipbourne Church on Sunday 11 November 2018, marking precisely 100 years since the Armistice took effect on 11 November 1918. The service began beside the War Memorial, before moving inside the church. Shazia Khan-Bourne sounded the Last Post and the Reveille and Mrs Libby Cohen read out the Roll of Honour of those from Shipbourne who lost their lives in the Great War and in the war in Afghanistan. Rev. Peter Flynn led the service and gave the address.
St Giles Fair 2018
The St Giles Summer Fete took place on Shipbourne Green, by kind permission of the Fairlawne Estate, on Bank Holiday Monday 27 August 2018. Mr James Swartz of Fairlawne welcomed visitors and opened the fete. The Tonbridge and Sevenoaks Training Band played a variety of great music throughout the afternoon and the popular dog show included some extra fun classes. Visitors enjoyed the various sideshows and produce and other stalls. Quality sausages and burgers at the barbecue came from the Shipbourne Farmers' Market and a beer keg was kindly donated by Jon at the Rifleman. Kathy and her team were offering tea and cakes were in the Village Hall. The fete raised £2,794 for St Giles.
Warmest thanks to all the numerous people who helped with energy and enthusiasm in running the stalls, setting up or clearing away, or who contributed prizes or produce, and in particular to Lindsay Miles and Viv Packer who organised the fete and made it such a successful day.
Harvest Supper 2018
The Barn of the Fairlawne Home Farm was the magnificent setting on Friday 28 September for the Benefice Harvest Supper, to celebrate the Harvest Festival. Long trestle tables were adorned with apples from the estate and straw bales provided rustic seating. Guests arrived to the sounds of English folk tunes played on various accordions by Alan Austin and Linda Smith provided vocal accompaniment. We all sung two harvest hymns, accompanied by John Young, Kate provided a quiz and our Rector devised some anagrams, and acted as our Master of Ceremonies.
Our thanks to the Fairlawne Estate for generously allowing us the the use of the barn; to James Sheldrick and his team for clearing and setting up the barn with tables and straw bales for us to sit on; to all those who provided shepherd's pies, apple crumbles and salads, and apple juice; to the many people who set up on the day, helped with the serving and clearing up afterwards and helped with the bar. Particular thanks for the generosity of local businesses and individuals who donated prizes for our raffle. Over £1,500 was raised for the benefice.
Special thanks also go to our organisers, Kate Symonds and Andy Doughty for such a wonderful evening.
The Roux's return
Albert Roux and Michel Roux Jr returned to Shipbourne on Tuesday 5 June 2018 for the Roux Two dinner, five years after their last dinner here in Shipbourne, this time to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Shipbourne Farmers' Market. This black tie event started with a champagne reception in the Church Room of the Chaser Inn, followed by dinner in a marquee in the garden.
Profits made from the Roux Two Dinner were split between the following good causes:
- St Giles Church, Shipbourne: the restoration of the wall paintings in the church
- The Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institute (R.A.B.I.), supporting farmers in England and Wales who are struggling financially
- Shipbourne Farmers’ Market Click and Collect project
- Nourish Community Foodbank