Picnic on the Green, 12 June

these people will be on the village green on June 12, will you be joining them?
It’s from 2-5pm on the village green. The pub is doing food and the WI are serving in the village hall but you can also bring your own picnic. There will also be music and games

Tessa and Sue exhibit for Open Studio in June


Tessa2aI know many of you in the village are busy making and creating. This year my friend Sue and I are opening with the annual South East Open Studios.
We both work in textiles and fused glass.
Find out more about us and other artists in the area at SEOS website: www.seos-art.org
Sue and I will be open at 13 Broke Farm Drive, BR6 7SH on:
4th/5th June, 12th June and 18/19th June between 11 and 4 each day, and Friday 10th June 6 to 8 pm.
We would love to see you! Refreshments in aid of Macmillan.

Tessa Knott

Alan Dimbleby inquest

Father-of-three Alan Dimbleby, 62, died from his injuries after being thrown from the sprayer at Warren Barn Farm in Woldingham on 24 July last year.

More than 40 tractor drivers formed a cortege in tribute to the popular agricultural worker when his funeral was held.

At the inquest into Alan’s death, jurors heard how he was spraying crops on land used for pheasant and partridge shooting.


Alan Dimbleby’s funeral

Penny Avann writes, “Alan’s funeral will be on Wednesday, 19th August. The service will be in two parts:

  1. Tunbridge Wells Crematorium at 10.45am
  2. Pratts Bottom Village Hall at 1.00pm, followed by a ploughman’s lunch in the hall.

While the family are happy for anyone to come to the crematorium, it is likely that most people locally will want to go to the village hall.  Phillip Southby will be at the hall and I will be in touch with him should there be any delay in us returning here with the tractor procession.

Gill has asked if people could wear bright colours. No flowers please, but there will be an opportunity, for those who would like to, to make a donation to charity (Marie Curie and an other which supports bereaved families in the farming community).

Please continue to remember the family in your prayers.”

A tribute to Alan Dimbleby

by Sue Short

Today, just before I left on my journey to Aylesford Priory, I heard that our good friend Alan had died. [It seems Alan died after an accident at work.]

He was a family man – loved by his wife and children. I first met Alan at a Residents’ Committee meeting. He greeted me with his wonderful broad grin – I immediately felt at ease.

He was kind and generous with his time. He took me on a tour of Charmwood Farm where he worked. He showed me the bat caves; the best place to view Norsted Manor and the banks and ditches – perhaps the work of a farmer-a farmer just like Alan.

Alan gave guided tours around Charmwood Farm – Pratts Bottom villagers could admire the fields and woods close to their village. He cheerfully showed us wild flowers; long lost footpaths; the new orchard he had planted – he smiled his lovely smile – he was proud – and so were we.

Alan always helped at village fairs, quizes and functions – stacking chairs and tables – he could be relied upon to get things done.

What happens now? Alan would know.

He was simply a lovely man – famous for cracking a corny joke; relied upon to help when help was needed. Within him was something special. Without him we are bereft.

Alan Dimbleby leading a walk on Charmwood Farm in 2008

Alan Dimbleby leading a walk on Charmwood Farm in 2008


That broad grin
Those corny jokes
That made us chuckle and smile
Always a gentle manner
Never abrasive or cruel
He was part of our village
That’s all – that’s all.

Chairs and tables stacked
Spaces cleared
Traffic directed
Tents erected
Part of our village community
That’s all – that’s all.

Bat caves revealed
Banks and ditches shown
Photographs taken
That broad grin again
Part of the fields
Part of the woods
Part of the countryside
That’s all – that’s all.

A family man
A good friend
A loyal worker
Not forgotten that broad grin
Those corny old jokes
Who will make us laugh now?
That’s all – that’s all.

Sue Short, 24 July 2015

Geoffrey Michael Smith – 37 years in Orchard Road

Pauline Gibbons sadly informs us that Mike/Geoff died last Friday after a heart operation. He had his 80th birthday while in hospital. Some of us knew him as Geoff, some as Mick and some as Mike, but he was well known to us all for his kindness, generosity and his wonderful sense of humour.  It was a privilege to have him as our next door neighbour and friend for so many years. He was always there at the Orchard Road work parties and well known locally, especially at the Bulls Head.
His funeral will take place at Eastbourne crematorium BN23 8AE at 4 pm on Tuesday 17 September.
Donations to Sussex Air Ambulance which covers Kent as well.