NEW VENUE
FOR THE
HIGH STREET
NEW VENUE
FOR THE
HIGH STREET
Medway Little Theatre
Ribbons For Remembrance
Adam Fronteras with your stars
Anna Campbell enjoys a slower pace
Deborah Meaden on Dragons’ Den
ni h mo
See page 9
its theits the
LOCAL NEWS & SERVICES
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LIFESTYLE
COMMUNITY
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ARTS & EVENTS
LOCAL NEWS & SERVICES
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LIFESTYLE
COMMUNITY
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ARTS & EVENTS
Issue 11 | April 2021
www.itsthebiz.net
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Yr Meway maziYr Meway mazi
ReerReer
SPORTS CENTRE
STROOD
SPORTS CENTRE
STROOD
NO MORE CRASHING INTO
LIVING ROOM FURNITURE
Medway sports centres due to re-open 12 APRIL
medway.gov.uk/sport
Not only can you visit the gym, go for a swim or play racket
sports, we’ve even found a way to run fitness classes…
NEW Outdoor classes
All undercover – so come rain or shine – it’s on!
I’m writing this on 29 March
as the stay-at-home Covid
regulations come to an end and
nally we can meet friends and
family outside once more. A
small step towards normality!
In this issue we feature
some local hospitality venues
hoping to be serving customers
once again from 12 April as
restrictions lift a little further. On
this date, non-essential shops
will also be re-opening – and so
what better time for a chance to
win £25 in High Street
Vouchers – see page 5.
THIS MONTH 4-12
LIFESTYLE 18-21
COMMUNITY 22-24
BACK PAGES 25-27
ARTS & EVENTS 13-17
REMEMBRANCE
RIBBONS 7
MEDWAY LITTLE
THEATRE 14-15
Stanley blasts o under the ground
to discover the layers of the Earth
and the importance of embracing
your dierences.
Available on Etsy or via
@anauthorcalledanna
on Instagram
Email
anauthorcalledanna@gmail.com
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UPSIDE DOWN
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The Rochester City Centre Forum
will donate £1500 to three of
our local homeless charities who
help with rough sleepers and
homeless people. They tell us:
“Despite lockdown, people have
been very generous with their
money and donations. Some
people have given their winter
fuel allowance, and a local café
gave £500 which was money
raised from an afternoon tea sale.
Some essential shops have been
collecting money throughout
lockdown. We are really grateful
and want to thank the people of
Rochester and Medway who have
enabled us to give so much this
year, despite a dicult situation.
Pic shows the collection box at
Castle Food and Wine
£1500 raised for local
homeless charities
GIVEAWAY
WINNERS!
The winners of our Easter
Giveaway – run in conjunction
with The Curious Cocoa
Company – were drawn on
26 March. Congratulations
go to Tierney Harman from
Rochester and Stuart Anderson
from Gillingham, who were
the lucky winners of bespoke,
handcrafted Easter eggs.
£900 raised for
Medway Street Angels
The Spirit of Christmas was
a a virtual concert performed
in December 2020 by The KSL
Music Collective. It raised
nearly £900 for the Medway
Street Angels homeless charity,
while bringing seasonal cheer
to audiences far and wide. The
success of this concert has led
to their second virtual concert,
Music in Springtime, to be
streamed on 18th April 2021 in
support of the Young Minds
Trust for youth mental health.
More details about this event on
page 13.
Don’t forget: if you have news
or a story to share, please
email info@itsthebiz.net
The May issue will be out on
3 May, and the editorial
deadline is 22 April
.net
4
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Then make sure you’re following
the It’s The Biz Facebook and
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number will be revealed. Then,
when you have all ve numbers,
go to itsthebiz.net/prizecode,
enter the code plus your details.
All entries with the correct code
will be entered into the draw.
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an activation link for their
digital voucher via email, text or
messenger service.
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in just a few steps. It can be
spent in Argos, Sainsburys,
TK Maxx and many more (see
highstreetvouchers.com for
the full list of retailers).
Closing date for entries is 22 April.
With shops beginning to open up again, we’re
giving you the chance to win a £25 voucher to
spend in-store and online with selected retailers
5
Medways campaign to
be UK City of Culture
2025 has taken another
signicant step forward,
with the announcement
of the bid’s Board of
Trustees and community
Working Group Chairs
who will deliver the bid.
In the year that Medway submits
its application to be the UK’s next
City of Culture, the campaign has
announced the appointment of
twelve individuals to lead the bid,
which sits as part of Medways
new ten year cultural strategy.
Chaired by Jatin Patel and Deidre
Wells OBE, the Board of Trustees
brings together community
members with individuals from
business, education, creative,
local government and heritage
backgrounds from across Medway
and Kent to deliver Medway’s
ambition.
The development of the bid
will be supported by the Creative
Medway Cultural Compact, the
radical new community-led
delivery model for Medway’s
recently launched cultural
strategy. In addition, the bid
brings together over 60 people
of all ages from the area in
working groups supporting
the development of the bid’s
ambition, strategy and ideas.
The UK City of Culture 2025
competition is expected to be
announced later this year, with
the bid submission and judging
processes expected to take place
over the course of 2021.
THE TRUSTEES ARE:
Jatin Patel (Co-Chair)
Fashion designer, Creative
Director at Chatham-based Kalikas
Armour, a University College of
the Arts Rochester alumnus and
industry change-maker. Jatin has
also played a key role in shaping
Medway’s new cultural strategy.
Deirdre Wells OBE (Co-Chair)
CEO of Visit Kent, Chair of English
Tourism Week and Tourism
Society and Tourism Alliance
Board member. Deirdre brings
experience working on high-
prole projects including the
Millennium Dome, Liverpool
Capital of Culture 2008 and
the 2012 London Olympic and
Paralympic Games.
Keely Augustus
Artistic Director and CEO at Lyrici
Arts amplifying Black and diverse
stories in Medway.
Simon Cook
Principal and CEO of MidKent
College, Medway Place Board
Chair and former chef.
Bill Ferris OBE
Former CEO of Chatham Historic
Dockyard Trust, Visit Kent Chair
and National Heritage Lottery
Fund Committee Member.
Richard Hicks
Director of Place and Deputy
Chief Executive at Medway
Council.
Tina Lovey
CEO at Rivermead Inclusive Multi-
Academy Education Trust and
champion of young people.
Sir David Melville CBE
Former University of Kent Vice-
Chancellor, Policy Connect Board
Member and Higher Education
Commissioner.
Michael Olyar
Theatre student and hip-hop
artist.
David Sefton
University of Kent Institute of
Culture and Creative Industries
Director, former Artistic Director
of the Adelaide Festival.
Natasha Steer
Creative practitioner, founder of
Creatabot and social inclusion
champion.
Deborah Turner
Founder of Chartered Surveying
company Deborah Turner Ltd and
South East Policy Lead for the
Federation of Small Business and
their Policy Lead for Women in
Business.
The Board will be instrumental
in achieving the vision of the UK
City of Culture bid. Hosting in 2025
would be a real game-changer
for Medway, bringing a legacy of
opportunities, economic benets
and an innovative year-long series
of events to the area. The bid
is a major step in Medway’s ten
year cultural strategy, which aims
to see Medway internationally
recognised for its diverse,
collaborative and engaged cultural
sector, positively benetting the
lives of local people and bringing
people to the area.
Being recognised as UK City
of Culture would bring the title
to the South East for the rst
time in the competitions history
and have a profound impact on
the whole of the area. Previous
winners have seen a signicant
cultural and economic boost.
Hull saw 6 million visitors at a
value of £300 million over the
year and a signicant shift in local
pride and reputation.
Medway City of Culture 2025 bid
announces Board of Trustees and
community Working Group Chairs
.net
6
Ribbons for remembrance
at Rochester Cathedral
The ribbons are an act of
remembrance and a sign of hope,
and will remain on the railings
throughout Easter until the Feast
of Pentecost or Whitsun.
National Reection Day,
organised by Marie Curie and
supported by the Church of
England, marked a year since the
rst lockdown was imposed due
to Coronavirus. On 23 March,
people were asked to pause and
reect on the past year.
The idea for ribbons for
remembrance came from The
Dean of Rochester, The Very Rev’d
Philip Hesketh DL who writes…
The ribbon can be of any
National Reection Day took place in March, and
Rochester Cathedral is encouraging people to mark
it by tying a single ribbon on the railings outside the
Cathedral or those around the historic Catalpa tree.
colour – we are all beautifully
dierent and colours have
multiple meanings. The ribbon
is in memory of someone and
a sign of hope as we approach
Easter. Easter is all about hope
and Christians are people who
live in the light of resurrection
life and transformation. As we
emerge out of this winter of
despair, please do tie a single
ribbon on the railings in memory
and to mark the springtime of
new life. Easter lasts 50 days, until
the Feast of Pentecost – Whitsun.
So, there is plenty of time to come
and tie your ribbon as a special
act of remembrance and hope.
By Pentecost we should have a
wonderful rainbow of promise.
Tying ribbons to trees has a long
history, going back to at least
Celtic times. Dierent colours
have dierent meanings: green
for the environment, red for heart
disease, pink for breast cancer,
blue for bulling awareness, yellow
for armed forces, the white ribbon
most recently associated with the
campaign by men to end male
violence against women.
The picture below shows the
Bishop of Rochester, James
Langsta; The High Sheri of
Kent, Remony St John Millwater;
Philip Hesketh, Dean of Rochester;
and the Principal of King’s School
Rochester, Ben Charles.
In a short and tting ceremony
which followed the minute’s
silence on 23 March, The Dean
oered a prayer of reection on
the past year, and the rst ribbons
were then tied to the railings.
n Rochester Cathedral invites
people to come at quiet times to tie
their ribbon and have a moment of
reection for the past year.
7
Enter as a sranger,





WHY NOT
HIRE THE CANNON
PUB FOR YOUR
CELEBRATION?
leave as a
iend.
!

$

We have been recognised
as key supporters of our
community by the BII!
Over lockdown and beyond,
we made sure we looked after members
of our community while making sure our
business was Covid-secure.
@BIIandBIIAB @SkySportsPubs #HeartoftheCommunity
Last orders for
lockdown?
The Hospitality industry
was dealt a big blow in
December, being forced to
shut its doors to customers
for the third national
lockdown at what would
normally be one of the
busiest trading periods of
the year.
The hustle of busy venues fell
eerily silent as beer pumps sat
unused, with no hum to be heard
from the kitchen and the cheers
of merry revellers silenced.
While many have been
desperate to get to their local
and share a bottle of wine with
friends, the sta of these ghost
ships” have been anxious to return
and do what they love most –
provide a great atmosphere and
service for their many customers
and guests.
But now, at last, light has
appeared at the end of this long
tunnel, with the announcement
that venues with outside spaces
could trade for dining and
drinking outside as early as 12
April, with everywhere being able
to open fully from 17 May.
As we write this article, orders
are being placed, tables are
being booked and cleaning
has commenced, all to get your
favourite meeting places ready
for your return. With this in mind,
we have spoken to Rochester’s
newest addition Three Sheets
to the Wind (see facing page).
Meanwhile, Medway champions
of pub perseverance The Cannon
have weathered the lockdowns
with their Deliverance and
Cannon Ball Bingo. See right for
their details, and give them a call
to nd out what’s happening.
.net
8
Anglo-Austrian pub and
creative community space
173 High Street, Rochester
·
THREE
·
SHEETS
·
TO
·
THE
·
WIND
·
info@three-sheets-to-the-wind.co.uk !$ @threesheetspub
Three Sheets to the Wind is a
brand new family pub, opening
at 173 High Street Rochester
(the Star Hill end, at the address
previously occupied by Medieval
Days). It will be oering an Anglo-
Austrian twist and an exciting new
creative community space.
Its a business run by a close-
knit family of English, Irish and
Austrian heritage, made up of
three siblings, Patrick, Thomas and
Nina, with the help of their Mum,
Tracy and their Uncle Matt. And
the inspiration for the pub stems
from the stories and lives of their
parents and grandparents, who
descend from Austria, England
and Ireland.
CULTURAL FUSION
This family heritage forms a
unique venue that will fuse these
two cultures by serving beverages
Three Sheets
to the Wind
sails into
Rochester!
A brand new Anglo-
Austrian family pub is
opening in Rochester
High Street…
The Three Sheets family crew: Matthew Harrison, his sister Tracy Minhard, her sons Thomas and
Paddy, and daughter Nina. (Socially distanced because they don’t live together!)
from Austria and Germany, as
well as the UK. The pubs draught
beer, for example, is the delicious
Stiegl, which is brewed in the
region of Salzburg, Austria. Also
being served will be German beer
Augustiner Helles, and an Austrian
soft drink made from natural
herbs, Almdudler.
COMMUNITY SPACE
While the venue is a pub rst and
foremost, Nina Minhard has plans
to make it a creative community
space, open to everyone.
She says: “I plan on hosting
events of all kinds here, drama
and comedy workshops, poetry
nights, book club, knitting
circle, murder mystery and drag
shows…something for everyone!”
SECRET GARDEN
To the rear of the pub is a
delightful walled garden, shaded
by trees, which will be open from
Monday, 12th April, 1pm-11pm.
Booking is not necessary but
it is advised, to guarantee your
place! For more information you
can head to the Three Sheets to
the Wind social media pages on
Facebook and Instagram):
@threesheetspub.
9
Housed in the secure, bright
and colourful Chadlington
House, children thrive within
our interactive classrooms, cosy
reading hideaways and wide-
open playing elds, gymnasium
and swimming pool. A carefully-
balanced curriculum of work
and play is designed to nurture
curiosity and identify unique
talents and strengths and allows
little ones to grow in condence
and start to love learning.
At King’s Rochester Nursery we
oer boys and girls aged 3 and
Give your little one a head start
at King’s Rochester Nursery
e
Registration for September 2021 Nursery and Reception places is
now open. For further details please visit www.kings-rochester.co.uk
above, an early start to learning
before they join Reception.
Children are encouraged to
explore, to challenge themselves
and to develop skills in all areas of
the curriculum. At King’s they also
benet from specialist teaching
for both German and Music. Hours
of learning and play make up a
full day and includes fun sessions
in number, literacy and listening
activities, German, music,
computer fun, science, craft and
art, role play, outdoor play and
story-time.
Nestled in the heart of the Cathedral precinct,
King’s Rochester Nursery educates, challenges and
stimulates young children taking their rst steps
into the world of learning.
First Class Virtual Executive
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www.kings-rochester.co.uk
Register your child’s place at
King’s Rochester Nursery today!
Call 01634 888590 or visit our website for further details
*ISI Inspection Report 2020
Rated “excellent in all areas”
Find three more in this issue
and follow @ItsTheBizMedway
on Facebook and Instagram to
nd the fth and nal number!
April Prize Code – rst number
5
New outdoor
tness classes at
Medways sports
centres
Sports centres in Medway
are launching a programme
of outdoor tness classes as
they prepare to welcome back
customers.
Following feedback from
customers the council is
introducing outdoor tness classes
at Hoo and Strood Sports Centre
from Monday, 29 March. A wide
range of classes will be available
including spin, Pilates, kick boxing,
skip t, bootcamp, kettlebells and
aerobics. Classes must be booked
online in advance.
Medway Park in Gillingham
started oering outdoor tness
classes from Tuesday, 6 April
(booking online). The classes will
be held under an awning to allow
socially distanced classes to take
place undercover. Medway Sport
members can book classes online
from Monday, 22 March.
Football at Strood Soccer
Centre and club track sessions at
Medway Park also resumed from
Monday 29 March. Indoor facilities
including changing rooms
will remain closed, in line with
government guidance.
Plans are in place for the
reopening of Medway’s sports
centres on Monday, 12 April, in
line with government’s roadmap
for easing lockdown restrictions.
e For more information go to
medway.gov.uk/sport.
Council introduces
new ticketless
parking system at
Chatham car park
Medway Council introduced a
new ticketless parking system
at The Brook multi-storey car
park in Chatham on 29 March.
The upgraded parking system
reads visitors number plates as
they enter the car park, using
new automatic number plate
recognition (ANPR) cameras.
When motorists return to the
car park they will use one of four
new parking machines to enter
their registration details and will
be able to pay for their parking by
cash, card or by using contactless.
New ANPR cameras will then
automatically raise the barrier at
the car park’s exit.
Sports store
becomes fth NHS
Vaccination Centre
in Chatham
Chatham has become home
to another NHS Vaccination
Centre as the biggest vaccine
programme in health service
history gathers pace.
The centre opened its doors at
the former DW Sports store, in
Willmot Square in the Pentagon
Centre on Thursday 11 March.
As of 21 March, more than
865,000 people in Kent and
Medway have already received
their rst dose, with the Chatham
NHS Vaccination Centre joining
39 local vaccination services,
10 community pharmacies and
hospital hubs around the county.
People aged 50 and over
are receiving letters and text
messages inviting them to go
online to the national booking
service to arrange a jab at a time
and location that is convenient
for them. If they are not able to
go online, they can call 119 free
of charge.
Castle Concerts
return for 2021
Music will return to Rochester
Castle Gardens this summer,
after last year’s cancellation
due to Covid-19.
This year’s line up will be: The
Libertines on Thursday 8th July;
UB40 on Friday 9th; and The
Jacksons on Saturday 10th.
e Tickets available from
thecastleconcerts.co.uk.
.net
12
The concert is organised by
Arun Silva (organist and singer),
alumnus of the University of
Kent. The group includes several
musicians who have studied at
the university’s Historic
Dockyards campus.
The performance
will be streamed via
YouTube on 18th April
2021 at 5.30 p.m. and
will cover a variety of musical
styles, performed virtually by
singers and instrumentalists.
The aim of this
event is to bring
music and cheer to
audiences in any location, at
this time, when live
performances and
events have been
limited.
The group are keen
to continue to support
a charitable cause
through their events.
This concert is in aid of
the Young Minds Trust, a charity
that supports children and young
people’s mental health. Donations
can be made via the JustGiving
Virtual spring concert for charity
page. To access the
programme and receive a link to
view the concert, viewers should
register free via the Eventbrite
page or the Facebook event page.
All donations will go directly to
the Young Minds charity.
Young Minds provide young
people with tools to look after
their mental health. They give
them the space and condence to
get their voices heard and change
the world we live in. Coronavirus
has had a signicant impact
on the mental health of young
people. Whether they need a
reassuring conversation, specialist
mental health support, or simply
the knowledge that they are not
alone in how they are feeling,
Young Minds ensures that all
young people get support they
need as quickly as possible.
The KSL Music Collective are back with another
virtual music concert – Music in Springtime, with
performers from the Southeast, including several
alumni of the University of Kent.
e For further information
about the Young Minds Trust,
visit their website at
www.youngminds.org.uk
This event is produced and
promoted by Silva Media
www.silvamedia.net
Music in Springtime
A celebration
of spring
through music
13
Medway Little Theatre
Rochesters very own
theatre venue, located
on St Margaret’s Banks
and founded in 1958,
now looking forward
to reopening when the
Covid restrictions are
nally lifted…
Medway Little Theatre (MLT) is an
intimate, 96-seat theatre situated
at 256 High Street, Rochester
– on St Margaret’s Banks, just
opposite the site of the former
railway station. We have been
actively promoting theatre for all
ages since an intrepid group of
“pioneers converted what was
a disused building into the Little
Theatre you see today. Our rst
season was in 1958 and opened
with a production of Terence
Rattigan’s Separate Tables; our
62nd season was in full ow until
a nasty virus called Covid-19
stopped us in our tracks!
EARLY YEARS
MLT was founded at a time
when cinemas and professional
theatres were closing by the score
in the face of the new-fangled
thing called television, and was
considered by some to be a
somewhat foolhardy venture. A
lease was taken on a semi-derelict
18th century building which had
in its time been a wine merchants,
warehouse,
printing works
and toy shop.
With mainly
amateur labour
and an overdraft of just £100 the
company set about converting
the premises into the Little
Theatre complete, initially, with
a coee bar and, for a while,
portable loos!
MLT became known throughout
the Medway Towns and
beyond for providing the very
highest quality amateur drama
performances, our remit then
(and today) to present works by
a wide range of playwrights from
Shakespeare to Agatha Christie,
Alan Ayckbourn to Noël Coward,
Samuel Beckett to Alan Bleasdale
and so many more: this tradition
continues today, more than 60
years after our opening.
.net
14
VIRTUAL
MEDWAY
A view into the past:
Chatham town centre and
the dockyard from 1977,
courtesy of ThamesTV.
* tinyurl.com/dockyard77
From Rochester Cathedral,
learn about one of the oldest
doors in the country, made
for the original Norman
cathedral built by Bishop
Gundulph over 900 years ago.
* tinyurl.com/gundulph
Local life seen via YouTube
From Medway Digital,
Cllr Alan Jarrett, Leader of
Medway Council, speaks
about the National Day of
Reection which took place
on 23 March.
* tinyurl.com/cllrjarrett
PRODUCTIONS
As a busy group we present six
adult company productions
every season and were literally
days away from the opening
night in March 2020 of When the
Wind Blows by Raymond Briggs
(of The Snowman fame) when
we had to close. We also have
two thriving sections for our
younger people. Our Childrens
Workshop encourages those
youngsters aged 7-12, many
of whom move into our Youth
Company (ages 12-18). Indeed it
was for our Childrens Workshop
presentations on 6th and 7th
March 2020 that we were last able
to welcome an audience. We also
present an annual one-act play
festival, the Duncan Rand Festival,
named after one of our founders
and which attracts entries from far
and wide.
OPEN TO ALL
The summer of 1995 saw a
very considerable milestone.
We signed the deeds for the
purchase of the freehold of the
premises, made possible by
fund raising, generous support
from our patrons and the then
Rochester-upon-Medway City
Council. As an amateur company
we are reliant on continuous
fund raising and the loyalty of
our patrons and supporters. We
are a friendly theatre, open to all,
and look forward to welcoming
everyone back, whether long-
time supporters or rst-time
visitors. We always welcome new
members whether to act, direct,
help with set building, fund raise
or help behind the bar (yes, we
do have a lovely bar – within the
auditorium!).
REOPENING
With the gradual loosening
of government and Covid
restrictions we really can’t wait
to reopen and look forward to
welcoming everyone back as soon
as we possibly can.
256 High Street,
Rochester ME1 1HY
01634 400322 info@mlt.org.uk
www.mlt.org.uk
15
Hopes & Dreams lanterns
on display in the Pentagon
People in Medway have turned their plastic
shopping bags into art to bring their Hopes &
Dreams to life in The Pentagon Centre, Chatham…
Hopes & Dreams (as featured in
issue 9) is a project from local
arts organisation Ideas Test and
Rochester artist Xtina Lamb.
Families, artists and students
across Medway have created
these colourful lanterns from
plastic bags, and they are now
lighting up Chathams Pentagon
Shopping Centre.
The aims of the project were to
inspire people to look forward
to better times after recent
hardships, and to help people to
look twice at materials they would
normally consider as waste.
n You can see the lanterns
on display in The Pentagon
throughout April.
Arts Council funding
for Intra Arts
Intra Arts, at 337-341 Rochester
High Street, has been awarded an
Arts Council project grant, which
will be used for refurbishment and
improvement.
The front windows have been
retted as a gallery, with a new
lighting and hanging system.
The old Spemco sign is being
removed as part of additional
refurbishment by the landlord.
In addition, the money will
be used for research and
development on opening a
scrapstore (using items that would
otherwise be thrown away for
art and craft projects), and other
things to improve sustainability at
INTRA, plus activities linked to an
exhibition programme.
The rst exhibition in the
refurbished windows will be the
Pop Up Museum for Ebb & Flow
Festival, funded by HSHAZ – a
coming together of local projects.
Xtina Lamb, director of Intra
Arts, says:
“Its been uplifting to be able to
make these updates while closed.
When people come back they’ll
be able to see positive changes.
e Find out more at intraarts.org
or @intraarts on Facebook.
.net
16
This completely free programme
creates opportunities for its
members to work alongside and
co-create with a range of industry
professional throughout the year
by accessing masterclasses and
specialist projects. The platform
also oers specialist theatre-
based careers advice and project
management experience.
In addition, as part of forming
this important collective, you will
have the opportunity to take part
in programming decisions for the
overall Theatre31 programme
and the current Medway City
Theatre31’s Young Artist Collective has landed!
Creative freedom to become the theatre maker you dream of! A brand new exciting
and unique initiative, bringing young theatrical creatives together to create work.
of Culture festival – informing
us what we do and assisting us
shape how we serve other young
people in our local community.
Being part of the collective
is free! The groups run for ages
11-14 and 14-18. We have 10
spaces in each group and any
young person who is accepted
onto the programme will receive a
Young Artist Collective members
welcome pack to get you started!
ABOUT THEATRE31
Theatre31 is a new, two-year
programme, which launched at
the start of lockdown. Managed
by Icon Theatre and fully funded
by Arts Council England, this
theatre-based programme is for
the young people of Medway
and Sheppey and has a youth led
voice at the core of our mission.
H Looking to enhance your
creative and practical
understanding of the
Theatre industry?
H Want the opportunity to
bring your artistic visions
to life?
H Have a particular Theatre-
based skill that you want to
explore?
H Want to gain new skills,
make friends, and have fun –
whilst shaping your future?
H Develop your theatre skills
beyond lessons at school
H Gain the condence, skills
and tools to pursue your
personal creative projects
and dreams
H Professional guidance to
inspire and shape what
your future in the arts could
look like
H Totally FREE, this one-year
programme is a place where
you gain new skills, make
new friends and have fun!
H Weekly sessions
H Masterclasses with industry
professionals
H Individual projects
H Co-creation with peers in
group projects
H Opportunities to create and
feature in podcasts
and blogs
H Involvement in Medway City
of Culture 2025 bid
There are lots of amazing
opportunities for young
people to get involved with
Theatre31 through workshops,
youth theatres, performances,
productions, masterclasses, and
careers advice. We also run a
designated schools programme
specically tailoring our activity
for the classroom and curriculum
needs and requirements as well
as assisting school with achieving
Arts Mark and Arts Award training.
Most importantly, everything we
do is free, and we aim to engage
every part of our community,
especially those hard-to-reach
young people who might not
normally be able to access the
arts, for whatever reason.
HOW TO JOIN
Visit: www.theatre31.co.uk/take-part and complete our short
application form. Upon joining you’ll receive a FREE MEMBERSHIP PACK!
Follow us: @theatre31_ Email: hello@icontheatre.org.uk
Open to young people ages 11-18 living in Medway or Sheppey.
FREE
FUN & CREATIVE
THEATRE
PROGRAMME
FOR
11-18 YEAR OLDS
17
We all know the story of the
tortoise and the hare, an age-
old tale about how those with
a slower pace are not always
slower to succeed. However,
despite knowing (and frequently
preaching) this sentiment, we
seem to live in a world inherently
obsessed with getting stu done -
and getting it done quickly at that.
Our lives are hardwired by lists,
to-do lists, bucket lists, shopping
lists, Christmas lists. We sandwich
our lives between layers upon
layers of ‘must-do’s’ and ‘ASAPs’
and the concept of relaxation
seems acceptable only once these
lists have been cleared.
The ‘instant’ generation doesn’t
belong solely to Gen
Z and is instead
a lifestyle most modern citizens
now accommodate, particularly
those living in and around capital
cities such as London. The ever-
growing world of the internet has
bought with it a need for things
to be done faster and vaster, two
adjectives that don’t oer synergy
with a serene life.
The world, well
the western world
at least, seems to
have spiralled into a
constant tug-of-war
between producing
and consuming, everything from
our coees to content, leaving us
with very little time to just be.
Think about it. Why does no one
just do one thing anymore? Not
that long ago many activities we
Embrace the pace
Anna Campbe
now pay little or no attention to
were an event unto themselves.
Music was played on record
players and listeners made an
occasion of sitting down to relish
in it. Flying on a plane was a
reason to dress up and marvel
at the wonder of the skies. The
cinema was a luxury and a chance
to dissect the art of lmmaking.
Even a weekday dinner was
a reason to sit around a table
and discuss the unfoldings of
each persons day who found
themselves sat there. Now?
The idea of spending so much
concentrated time on one activity
seems uneconomical
or mundane. Why
just eat dinner when
you could also clear
your inbox? Why
just take your child
to the park when
you could also take calls on your
Bluetooth headphones? Why just
watch the lm when you could
also be scrolling Instagram? Why?
Because as Mahatma Gandhi so
perfectly put it, “there is more to
life than increasing its speed”.
The periods of lockdown
over the past year have taught
us all a lot about appreciating
our health. About paying extra
attention to the exercise we take
up, the food we consume and
revitalising basic health practices
like regularly washing our hands.
Its also shed a much-needed
light on the pace of our lives and
how many people were moving
at such unsustainable levels,
they didn’t even have the time to
realise it until they were forced
to be still. Forced to stay home
and to recognise the benets of
moving their minds and bodies at
a slower rate.
The 8th of March has come and gone and the hustle
and bustle of schools resuming and cars beeping
at the gates come 3pm is a comforting nod to the
gradual return to normality we have been promised.
However, in our hurry to get our lives back’ let me
leave you with a thought…
These tasty treats
are from The
Seaplane Works
at 132 High Street
Rochester.
There is more to
life than increasing
its speed”
Mahatma Gandhi
.net
18
Anna Campbe
I’m just as excited as the next
person to ramp things up a bit.
By nature we are social creatures,
not designed to live in isolation
but equally, we are human beings,
not designed to work harder, train
faster and socialise bigger all of
time. Our energy ebbs and ows
and we need to remind ourselves
to embrace that, to allow that. It’s
ok to be still, sometimes doing
nothing is the most productive
thing you can do.
So, as your calendar starts to ll
remember to schedule in some
time to embrace the slow pace.
Do some things with a bit of
ceremony. Make your coee in a
pot and use the nice beans. Sip
it, don’t swallow it. Poach your
eggs. Use that face mask. Stay in
your pyjamas a little longer than
normal. *Actually* buy the cake in
the bakery window instead of just
looking at it.
Life, just as it exists, is as much
to be felt as it is to be lled.
P
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Word search
Balance
Calmness
Composure
Contemplation
Hush
Meditation
Peacefulness
Quietness
Reection
Relaxation
Restfulness
Serenity
Stillness
Tranquillity
Undisturbed
In the grid above, nd these 15
words relating to mindfulness
u
Find three more in this issue
and follow @ItsTheBizMedway
on Facebook and Instagram to
nd the fth and nal number!
April Prize Code – second number
2
Solution on page 27
Mindfulness
19
What can you tell us about the
new series?
It was really interesting - although
this is probably the toughest
time that I’ve seen in business, it
has really brought out the best
in people. The entrepreneurs in
the den were clearly thinking
about the details of how their
businesses would work, not just
in the pandemic but beyond. So,
we weren’t seeing get rich quick
schemes, but products that have
a life beyond Covid, which was
absolutely brilliant.
There are still some people who
pitch and don’t get their numbers
right, which is so frustrating! I
get cross because they have an
amazing opportunity to stand
in front of ve serious business
people who want to invest, and
they come in without doing their
homework. You can’t wing it.
Will we see some erce
competition in the den
this year?
Oh yes, all the Dragons get on
really well, but we are competing
for businesses and that can get
heated. But we’re also grown-ups,
so what happens on tour stays on
tour. None of us hold back, but
we haven’t got to where we are in
life by being shrinking violets. It’s
never personal.
It was odd this series, because
we would normally all go out to
dinner together each night. We
tried it a couple of times, two
metres between each of us on
individual tables, and it really
wasn’t the same!
Have these strange economic
times aected you as an
investor?
The pandemic hasn’t made me
more or less likely to invest.
I’m always looking for good
businesses and it hasn’t shaken
my condence at all. What it has
done is to make me very aware of
how businesses have responded,
and how they are looking beyond
the current situation. I’ve got
19-20 live investments at the
moment, and the ones doing well
are all talking about life after the
pandemic. We can’t go backwards,
so we have to accept it will be
dierent as we go forward.
I think there was a moment
right at the very beginning when
everybody thought, “Oh my
goodness, what does this actually
mean for business?”. But we live
in a world of entrepreneurs and
they don’t see barriers, they just
see challenges to overcome.
I’m probably in the right place,
because every single one of my
businesses has told me they
Dragons’ Den returns for its eighteenth series – this
time in its new home on BBC One– with a new set of
eager entrepreneurs hoping to strike a life-changing
deal with the toughest titans of industry; Peter
Jones, Touker Suleyman, Tej Lalvani, Sara Davies and
Deborah Meaden, who talks about the series here…
rew
Deborah Meaden
BBC/Andrew Farrington
.net
20
rew
found something better about
themselves during this time, ways
of doing things better. That’s
what I’ve been looking for in the
den, people who are trying to do
things dierently.
Are you working from home
like the rest of us?
Absolutely, I actually think my
way of working has changed
forever. I used to travel a lot
and now I actually think that
I shouldn’t, for many reasons
including the environment. We’ve
all learned to speak the new
language and I don’t think theres
going to be anything lost in this
new world. It means more time
with the dogs too.
Could the pandemic
inspire a new generation of
entrepreneurs?
I think it will. Unfortunately,
the truth of the matter is that
businesses are going to have to
change the way they do things
in order to survive, and that can
mean job losses. Good people can
lose their jobs, and a lot of them
are going to look at starting their
own business. It’s actually easier
now, because of the internet - a
lot of stu has moved online.
You’ve still got to get it right, but
your access to starting a business
is much more readily available.
I think theres going to
be a whole new swathe of
entrepreneurs, not just because
of the pandemic, but because
of the security, exibility and
independence that having your
own business brings you.
That’s not to say that there aren’t
times when your business runs
you. It’s like having a small child
you have to really take care of.
What has being a Dragon
taught you about business?
I’ve learned a huge amount. It
can sound pretty trite but it’s
absolutely true - every time I think
I understand it all, I’m shown a
new way of doing things that
I hadn’t thought of. Business is
moving so fast and you’ve got
to keep moving with it, because
doing what you did ten years
ago isn’t going to work. I always
look for entrepreneurs in the den
who look ahead and stay open
minded.
Why do you think Dragons’
Den makes such good TV?
Its one of those lovely
programmes the whole family
can watch - grandparents can
discuss with grandchildren in the
front room and everyone has an
opinion. I think theres a little bit
of an entrepreneur in everybody
and Dragons’ Den demysties
the world of business. It’s made
people realise they can do this,
it’s not a magical world over
there that only other people
are involved with. Thats really
important, and its why I love
being part of the show.
Who would you like to see
replace Tej?
That’s not up to me! But if you
look back across the years,
we have a history of bringing
in unknown people, like me -
nobody ever knew me before I
stepped in the den. I was just a
businesswoman going about my
everyday life.
Dragons’ Den is showing
every Thursday at 8pm
on BBC One
“None of us hold back,
but we haven’t got to
where we are in life by
being shrinking violets.
BBC/Andrew Farrington
21
The local community organisation
originally began with just three
members of sta and a handful
of willing volunteers who wanted
to make a positive dierence to
people in their community. Over
the past ve years they have
grown to a team of eight sta
members, half of who work full
time tackling social isolation,
loneliness and health inequalities.
The team is hugely supported by
a wonderful group of volunteers,
many of who are locals of the
Peninsula villages. The volunteer
team currently has 60 volunteers
who are actively supporting
others in the ME3 postcode and of
whom have played a crucial part
wHoo Cares has been
supporting socially
isolated and vulnerable
people on the Hoo
Peninsula since they rst
opened their doors in
2016. The last year has
seen sta and volunteers
busier than ever,
providing support
to those in need
during the
pandemic.
in helping during the pandemic.
During normal times the team
of sta and volunteers would
provide such support as face to
face befriending either in the
home or out and about in the
community. If the pandemic
has taught us anything it is that
you can’t measure the power of
a cuppa and chat with a friend.
These social interactions are so
important to our overall health
and wellbeing and for someone
that is chronically lonely or
isolated from others it can be an
empowering experience.
Being a rural area of Medway,
currently with poor public
transport links, it is often hard for
some residents to access services
such as health appointments or
a major supermarket. So along
with face to face befrienders,
wHoo Cares has a wonderful
team of volunteer drivers that
are available to help people get
to where they need to be, with a
friendly face and a listening ear on
hand too.
wHoo Cares oer support to
socially isolated and vulnerable
people on the Hoo Peninsula
.net
22
Since the pandemic began last
year, volunteers and sta have
been supporting those in most
need. Although face to face
visits had to be suspended they
continued to support residents
through telephone befriending
and have made over 3,300 calls
to isolated or shielding people in
the last year. They have also been
providing a shop and drop service
to people who were unable to go
out for their groceries and have
been collecting and delivering
much needed prescriptions.
When guidelines have allowed
they have been supporting
people to get to those essential
health appointments too. Most
recently they have been providing
transport for people to get their
Covid 19 vaccination.
During the summer months
wHoo Cares hit the road with a
community van packed full of
activities from puzzles and books
to art and craft supplies. On
Christmas Day, in partnership
with the Medway Sunlight Rotary
Club and the Salvation Army they
delivered Christmas dinner, all the
trimmings and some special treats
to people who were on their own
for the day.
If you live in the ME3 postcode
and are in need of a bit of help
or support then please do get in
touch with them. If you would like
to volunteer then they would love
to hear from you too.
Call 01634 272138 or email
enquiries@whoocares.org.uk
For more information go to
www.whoocares.org.uk
Find three more in this issue
and follow @ItsTheBizMedway
on Facebook and Instagram to
nd the fth and nal number!
April Prize Code – third number
9
Over 90% of the food
distributed by foodbanks in
the Trussell Trust network is
donated by the public – that’s
why your food donations are
absolutely vital to our ability to
give everyone referred to us a
balanced and nutritious three
day supply of food.
Our shopping list below
shows the food items that we
need right now, in order of
greatest shortage.
n INSTANT MASH
n TINNED FISH
n SAUCE FOR PASTA/COOK-IN SAUCE
n PASSATA
n TINNED SPAGHETTI IN SAUCE
n MILK - UHT/LONG-LIFE
n SPREADS (eg JAM OR MEAT PASTE)
n
DESSERTS (eg ANGEL DELIGHT, JELLY)
n TINNED RICE PUDDING
n CUSTARD - READY MADE
n SPONGE PUDDINGS
n
INSTANT COFFEE (SMALL JARS/PACKS)
n BABY WIPES
n SHAMPOO
n TOOTHBRUSHES
n TOOTHPASTE
n RAZORS (MALE OR FEMALE)
n TOILET ROLLS
Medway Foodbank shopping list
PROMOTE YOUR COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES
FREE COVERAGE! Send in your news, articles, pictures and spread
the word about your club, group, charity or any non-prot activity.
Please email: neil@itsthebiz.net
We can’t accept donations in person yet, but we can collect
from you.
Call 01634 757057. Or you can download the
Spareable app to order online and the donation will be
delivered free to our warehouse. e
medway.foodbank.org.uk
23
WHEN:
Saturday 8th May 2021,
10am-11am
WHERE:
The comfort of your own
home – via Zoom
AGES:
5-11
To commemorate International
Nurses Day* and the 73rd
anniversary of the NHS,**
Medway Culture Club will be
spotlighting Mary Seacole; a
pioneering nurse of the 19th
century. This FREE interactive
workshop will explore her life and
highlight her achievements.
We will also touch on the origins
of the National Health Service
and celebrate those who have
contributed to its success, past
and present.
Medway Culture Club proudly present:
Mary Seacole; Medicine Woman
and the National Health Service
Pictured left is our special
guest, Del Del from Little Crowns
Storyhouse,^ will deliver a
vibrant educational puppetry
performance, engaging children
though song.
Book via website:
www.medwayculture.club
For more information and to
stay connected you can follow
Medway Culture Club on the
following social media sites:
c Facebook Group:
Medway Culture Club
d Twitter:
@MedwayCulture
f Instagram:
@medwayculture
* International Nurses Day is on 12th May
** The National Health Service was founded on the 5th July 1948
^ www.littlecrowns.co.uk
.net
24
Send in your recommendations to dan@itsthebiz.net or nd us
on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter: @ItsTheBizMedway
OUT &
ABOUT
WHAT
TO
WATCH
WHAT
TO
READ
in Rochester
Your editor shares more
springtime snaps of
Rochester, taken over
the past month…
Follow on Instagram
@ItsTheBizMedway
to see more photos,
and tag us with yours!
Das
Welcome to
St Barts
Blooming
One of the many
beautiful arrays
of daodils
– this one on
Borstal Road
The Rochester
sign on New
Road by Fort
Pi –more
das on view
The impreive
scaolding on the
St Bartholomew’s
development in
New Road
This lovely bloom
was snapped on
City Way nar
Jackson’s Field
LINE OF DUTY  SERIES 6
Weekly until Sunday 2 May,
9pm on BBC One and iPlayer
Vicky McClure, Adrian Dunbar and
Martin Compston return for the
sixth instalment of Line of Duty
with Shalom Brune-Franklin, a
new addition to the AC-12 team.
Kelly Macdonald makes her debut
as guest lead Detective Chief
Inspector Joanne Davidson, the
senior investigating ocer on
an unsolved murder case whose
suspicious conduct attracts the
attention of Anti-Corruption.
Series 1-5 available on BBC iPlayer
ASKING FOR A FRIEND
By Andi Osho
Harper Collins
Three best friends are
going to solve their
relationship woes
once and for all…
Forty-something
Jemimas life is on track
– well, sort of, she just
need to bat her niggly
ex away for good.
Twenty-something
Meagan is in the
midst of her ve-phase plan and
is nearly ready for phase three: a
relationship.
While thirty-something Simi
BBC/World Productions/Stean Hill/Geraint Williams
has had more it’s not yous than
any I dos.
These best friends decide it’s
time to ditch the dating apps
and play the love game by their
own rules. Theyre going to ask
people out in real
life…but only for each
other. What could
possibly go wrong?
Comedian Andi
Oshos hilarious and
uplifting debut novel
features her trademark
wit and is perfect for
fans of Candice Carty-
Williams, Lucy Diamond
and Mhairi McFarlane.
A mistressclass in
humour” Jo Brand
As hilarious as Andi’s stand-up
while feeling like a lively night out
with brilliant friends” Sara Pascoe
25
YOUR STARS
Find out what lies ahead in April
adamfronteras.net
Adam
Fronteras
You are the main man or woman
in your circle of friends this
month as you take o with new
ventures and ideas. You are full
of inspiration and this is allowing
you to discover and pursue new
goals. You are taking a supporting
cast along with you in this new
and exciting journey.
Leo
Jul 24 – Aug 23
Keeping everything under control
is key this month. You have been
a little worried lately especially
as the lack of travel has really
aected your mood. Suddenly
you are beginning to see some
opportunities about, but you
are nding it dicult to contain
yourself any longer.
Sagittarius
Nov 23 – Dec 21
It is important not to spend this
month in a dream-like state,
letting the world go by, because
time will y by and you will
not have completed what you
need to do. Emotionally though,
it is a very pleasant time and
relationships can show an extra
level of commitment.
Pisces
Feb 20 – March 20
Home is where the heart is, and
you do not want to dance so soon.
The Moon is in your sign at the
beginning of the month, and this
is holding you back – but not for
long. You do have some dreams
that you are trying to get of the
ground, but you must make sure
they are realistic.
Cancer
Jun 22 – Jul 23
You can be a bit obstinate at times
and you need to be wary of this
and make sure that you take on
board the views of other family
members. If you do, then this
could be the start of plans for a
major family celebration. It may
be far o, but you need to start
organising it now.
Scorpio
Oct 24 – Nov 22
A reective time this month as
you tend to investigate your
own inner soul. Your intuition is
strong this month, but you are
not wanting to say too much.
While somewhat happy to keep
to your own thoughts, you might
just feel that delaying is the right
approach for you.
Gemini
May 22 – Jun 21
The planets are really working
in your favour this month, so be
sure to work out your plans. You
will nd that as well as organising
yourself, you will have others that
you need to co-ordinate as well
– especially when chaos erupts
around the middle of the month
and you have to take control.
Aquarius
Jan 21 – Feb 19
There are new work opportunities
for you this month and you have
found yourself in a position to
get ahead with new projects.
If anything, there are too many
challenges for you to succeed in
them all, so choose wisely. If you
do you, will nd that this can be a
very rewarding time.
Capricorn
Dec 22 – Jan 20
Finances can be a bit erratic right
now, so avoid splashing out. Its
not a time for being extravagant
– as much as you are feeling the
need to spend. On a positive note,
romances are highlighted after
the middle of the month, so you
may well have an excuse to doll
yourself up at that point.
Taurus
Apr 21 – May 21
This is your time to shine! It’s
a new start for you and you’re
eager to get going, but your
projects will be delayed that little
bit longer. The key to getting
ahead is perseverance but you
are also going to need the help of
colleagues around you that can
share some of the burden.
Aries
Mar 21 – Apr 20
It has been a time of hard work
and dedication; but also one in
which you have felt closed o
from those that you need to talk
to. You’re in a very sensitive mood,
hurt by recent criticism. Someone
has spoken to your friends before
you have, and they may have got
the wrong end of the stick.
Virgo
Aug 24 – Sep 23
Life is strange and you are nding
being curtailed very dicult.
Listen to the wisdom of others
and take a calm approach – don’t
be too quick to say things that
you will later regret. You may
think you understand everything
but listening to someone else is
important this month.
Libra
Sep 24 – Oct 23
© Adam Fronteras
.net
26
It’s The Biz Rochester
Issue 11 | April 2021
Thanks to all the contributors
and advertisers in this issue.
IT’S THE BIZ – FOR BUSINESS
Promote your business with low
cost advertising in Rochester,
Strood or both editions. Prices
start at £24 for one month/one
edition or £46 for one month/two
editions – with sizes up to full or
double page, plus feature material.
IT’S THE BIZ – FOR COMMUNITY
Free promotion for your charity or
non-prot community group.
IT’S THE BIZ – FOR YOU
We welcome your comments,
photos, news and stories about
Rochester, Strood and Medway.
Next copy deadline: 22 April
ADVERTISE IN
If you’re reading this, so are
your potential customers!
Full colour display adverts in It’s The
Biz start from just £24. Take a larger
ad and include a related article to
support your message, or feature
oers, coupons and competitions.
Call Beverly on 07730 030735 or
email beverly@itsthebiz.net.
Gemma Bell sent this
brilliant pic of her adorable
four month old ginger kitten
Tilly practising her sele.
Good shot Tilly!
e
Send your adorable pet
pics and a short biog, for
publication in a future issue,
to neil@itsthebiz.net
info@itsthebiz.net
01634 470281
www.itsthebiz.net
@ItsTheBizMedway
@ItsTheBizMedway
@ItsTheBizMedway
c
d
f
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advertised, nor is it liable for loss or damage
arising from any omission or inaccuracy
contained within. Views expressed are not
necessarily those of the publisher.
Copyright © 2021 It’s The Biz Limited
All rights reserved. No material may be
reproduced without prior permission.
www.itsthebiz.net Company no: 12494839
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Word search
Heres the solution to the
wordsearch on page 19.
EDITOR: NEIL HUTCHINGS
01634 470281
neil@itsthebiz.net
ADVERTISING: BEVERLY JEPSON
07730 030735
beverly@itsthebiz.net
Adorable Pets
Find three more in this issue
and follow @ItsTheBizMedway
on Facebook and Instagram to
nd the fth and nal number!
April Prize Code – fourth number
1
Ncy
Knws
Nancy Charles helps
you to navigate
through everyday life
Nancy Charles will be back next
month – if youd like her to
help with one of your everyday
quandaries, use the form at
www.itsthebiz.net/nancy.
Or follow and contact Nancy on
Instagram @mrs_nancy_charles
27
hands face space
hands face space
hands face space
Enjoy Medway #TheRainbowEffect
10 creatives - outdoors and online
Commissions include textile hanging, lmography,
street art, superhero virtual events, musical clips,
free hand drawings, plus lots more.
To nd out more, visit:
medway.gov.uk/therainboweffect
KEEPING MEDWAY COVID-SAFE THROUGH PUBLIC ART