Author Archives: Faversham Creek Trust

The Faversham Creek Trust entertains The Mayor

Thirty guests came to the Faversham Creek Trust Charity Lunch to learn about the Trust and what it is doing for Faversham.
They were given guided tours and saw the two boats being built, one under the apprentice scheme run by Simon Grillet and the other in preparation for the Trust’s enterprising ‘Boat Camp’ project for young people run by Alan Thorne.IMG_0365
The lunch was held by the FCT as part of the Mayors’, Mrs Shiel Campbell, wonderful support for the Trust as her principal charity for the year. Also present was a Deputy Lieutenant of Kent, Barry Duffield.IMG_0377
The Chairman, Mrs Sue Akhurst, addressed the gathering emphasising the Trust’s objectives of conservation and regeneration of Faversham’s maritime heritage and the training and education of young people to give them skills, especially maritime and shipwrighting skills, to help them gain employment.IMG_0367
An excellent lunch was provided by Jenny Glenesk ( Creative Catering – ), Kim Barnicott ( very kindly donated the flowers and Peter Smith ( ) photographed the proceedings.IMG_0361


The Sun shone on the Nautical Festival again

Another wonderful weekend, with a creek full of boats and barges and steam tugs and pirates and the Brents and Town Quay full of music and all sorts of food.

The Mayor of Faversham Cllr Shiel Campbell opened with a short speech and then toured the Festival on both sides of the Creek. Later she took lunch at the Purifier, hosted by the Trust.

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BOAT CAMP a new project

This is what we’re about and we think that you’ll be pleased to hear about our new project – Boat Camp! We’ve reached a stage where we can get local young people building boats!

Ten lucky students from Faversham’s Abbey School will take part in the BoatCamp fortnight to build 2 wooden rowing boats. 

The Boat Camp will be run in the Creek Trust’s Purifier Building during the holidays. The project is headed by Alan Thorne and his team – they recently trained local back-to-work groups to build a small fleet of mouse-boats and also the Kingfisher punt, now used to clear rubbish from Stonebridge Pond.

Here’s a line-up of the Creek Trust’s BoatCamp team: Linda Thomas, Trust chairman Sue Akhurst, boat-builder & course tutor Alan Thorne, James Rubinstein and Gulliver Imminck.  IMG_1320

However, the team need £8000 to run the course, and the Trust is now fundraising to pay for this course, and you can show your support by going to

This online donation website has been set up by Alan who completed the round-the-Isle-of-Wight sailing race at the weekend to help raise money for the BoatCamp. All the money raised from sponsoring him in that race will go towards the Boat Camp. He has successfully used this method in previous years to help finance sailing-training for disadvantaged young people.

We are of course also fundraising from other sources, and are happy to accept direct donations for this project. We are sure our members will want to help support this marvellous opportunity which exactly matches our objectives…. to train new shipwrights and get people more involved with the Creek.

This is an excellent starter project which has taken a long time to set up, working with the staff and students of the school, and the local shipwrights, and the boat designer – a New Zealander! Maybe in future we’ll have some home-grown boat-designers to help spread this idea round the world.

Please do give us your support. .

Fundraising Dinner at Brents Tavern Sat 2nd July

If you were lucky enough to have one of only 32 tickets for last year’s Swing the Bridge Dinner at the Brents Tavern

You won’t want to miss this year’s Summer Dinner!

Brents Dinner 2016 Poster

SWALE REGATTA 17 – 19 June

For full details and entry, go to the Regatta website at


Time to shake more hands

Last week, Councillor Shiel Campbell was appointed the new Mayor of Faversham, and a very popular Mayor she will be, judging by the reception she received, especially for her speech.
In her speech she highlighted three things that she wants to promote in her Mayoral year and the first is reprinted here;

– “to build on and extend the levels of communication and co-operation with town residents and businesses. It is a natural progression of the digital age that we live in that information can be quickly and easily sourced via websites and I would like to see this encouraging more people to come along to the Town Council meetings and take part, in a co-operative, collaborative way. I believe we can get much more done by working together and building bonds. So much more is achieved with a congenial conversation over a coffee than a correspondence clash via the local papers”.

This is especially important for this Trust because we have been in the centre of the debate over the Creek Neighbourhood Plan, along with the Brents Community Association, for the last four years. It could not be avoided.

During this time, we have carried out a policy of avoiding the use of the local press as the forum for debate, and keeping to the principal of constructive discussion; there have been challenging moments, and unfortunately this Trust has inevitably been associated with some of the more unpleasant events, even though they were absolutely outside our jurisdiction.

It was recognised a long time ago that, as Shiel said, much more is achieved over a cup of coffee, so a number of local people with different views in relation to the NP, but agreeing that more open discussion was needed than had been available, decided to meet on an informal basis to do just that.

These meetings were not secret, although they were by invitation, and without agenda, or minutes, but chaired by an acknowledged independent. The dialogue as it was referred to, was free ranging and allowed participants to speak their mind, and debate the issues surrounding the NP; it was not always without passion.

In that respect they were very successful even though there were no specific conclusions that directly affected the very formal NP meetings. How much people’s views were changed is not known but this author’s feeling is that some were; at the very least, people with opposing views were able to walk out smiling, together and not walk on opposite sides of the street.

So now we have a formal opportunity, with support from the Mayor, to mend bridges that were damaged and reach out and openly accept the compromise that the NP will be. It must be approved at Referendum, the consequences otherwise are unthinkable, so we must promote that.

The Trust and its many supporters also have the opportunity to benefit from the Mayor’s decision to make us her principal charity. The good work that has being going on all this time, not always realised by the Town Council and others, should get the recognition that it deserves, and that will go a long way to mending bridges and building new ones.

This Trust accepted the responsibility to raise £125,000 at short notice, in a short timescale, much from the people of the town, as affirmation of our commitment to the future of the Creek. We are all in this together now; Councillors at all levels, local representative groups and businesses; it is time to start shaking more hands.

Bob Telford, Trustee and Board member.

Chris Wright at the Fleur on Thursday 19th

Chris Wright on Space, Time and Faversham Creek

Thursday 19th May at 7.30 pm

in the Fleur Hall, Gatefield Lane