Endeavour MAT Newsletter 10th July

Posted on: 10/07/2020

Endeavour MAT Newsletter 10th July 2020  E


This year many of us have had to put our holiday plans on hold and can only dream of when and where we will be able to take our next holiday.  Those of us who are travelling overseas will no doubt have a holiday experience very different to the one we had planned prior to restrictions.  For those staying in the UK, we have been presented with the opportunity to be tourists from our own homes.  In Kent, we have an almost endless list of exciting things to do, see and experience.  We have breath-taking countryside, stunning coastline and world-famous attractions as well as the most delicious array of locally grown and produced foods and drinks .. all on our doorstep.

We are spoilt for choice with an abundance of historically rich buildings including around 30 castles.  Kent boasts 50 beaches which offer expanses of sand, pebbled beaches, dramatic cliffs and coastal walks as well as a wealth of rock pools to explore.  For budding naturalists there are 18 Zoos and wildlife centres and thrill seekers can take advantage of the 11 theme parks.  For those seeking a cultural experience there are 115 museums and art galleries to pick from.  If we do spend our summer holiday here, in the UK … we may not have exactly the weather we were hoping for, but we’ll certainly have plenty to enjoy, right on our doorstep.

The following activities and destinations represent a tiny taster of potential summer break days out - ideas for memorable family adventures and experiences.  Please do check with the locations for current opening regulations as you plan your visit (all are open at the time of sending this newsletter!)

1The Paddle House, Grove Ferry Picnic Site, Canterbury, Kent, CT3 4BP


Come to Canoe Wild for a fun and memorable experience on the River Stour! Whether you are looking for some fresh air or family fun, Canoe Wild is a great day out for everyone. They have a range of other experiences which include:

  • Young Paddlers Club – Raft Building, Paddleboarding, Kayaking and Canoeing!
  • Kayak and Paddleboard Taster Sessions – in the morning every Saturday and Sunday
  • Paddle Start, Discover and Explore Courses – British Canoeing recognised
  • Guided Tours, including our popular Evening Wildlife Sunset Safari and Early Bird Morning Paddle
  • Children’s Parties


3Eltham Palace, Court Yard, Eltham, London, SE9 5NP

Click here for the English Heritage website


Explore 19 acres of award-winning gardens, set against the backdrop of the historic Eltham Palace. Once a favoured medieval estate and then a Tudor royal residence, the palace and gardens were transformed into striking Art Deco style by eccentric millionnaires Stephen and Virginia Courtauld. Today, discover an intriguing mix of historical features as you stroll through the captivating grounds. Admire stunning herbaceous borders and planting and relax in the Rock Garden with its series of pools and cascades running down to the picturesque moat. Cross London's oldest working bridge, and enjoy a treat for the senses in the fragrant sunken rose garden. It’s the perfect place to relax and play on a summer’s day.


5Darent Valley Path

Marker St, Dartford



The Darent Valley Path currently runs for 19 miles between Dartford and Sevenoaks and is an important sustainable access artery. It provides visitors with a means to explore the Darent Valley and experience the area’s heritage and stunning landscapes.

Hugging the River Darent for much of it, the Darent Valley Path offers panoramic views through a mix of stunning landscapes of marshes, woodland and chalk grassland.

In addition, the North Downs Way National Trail passes through the upper Darent Valley (Kemsing, Otford and Chevening) and across the adjoining Surrey border at Tatsfield, providing further opportunities to explore and engage with the area’s natural and cultural heritage including the remains of a Roman Villa, two historic castles, lavender fields, plenty of good pubs, ancient churches and some really pretty villages.


 7Scotney Castle, Lamberhurst, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN3 8JB



Romantic garden with view of 14th century moated castle and the Victorian country mansion and - all in a beautiful wooded estate.  The gardens are extremely picturesque with the glorious backdrop of the fairytale castle and Victorian country mansion. Venture into the wonderful woodland and parkland with over 770 acres of beautiful parkland, woodland and hop gardens to enjoy.


9Birchwood Road, Wilmington, Dartford, Kent, DA2 7HD



Stanhill Farm pick your own is open!  They have strawberries, raspberries, courgettes, runner beans, dwarf French beans, beetroot, sweetcorn, mini cucumbers, sunflowers and tomatoes ripening over the summer holidays – please check their website before your visit to check availability.  The Farm shop is currently closed, but pre-paid orders can be collected.  Refreshments can be enjoyed from 'Berries & Beans' who are operating a takeaway service every day (except Monday) from 10:30am - 5:00pm, serving tea, coffee, cold drinks, toasties and ice creams


11Joyden’s Wood



The 135-hectare (333-acre) Joyden’s Wood is split into three areas: Joyden’s Wood which is the largest block, as well as Gattons Plantation and the more isolated Sands Spinney.  There are two main pedestrian entrances: one off Summerhouse Drive and another at the end of Ferndell Avenue

Joyden’s Wood is a tranquil, ancient woodland right on London’s doorstep. With its remarkable flora, abundant wildlife, and an intriguing history stretching back to Roman times, it’s a wonderful place to escape the hectic pace of city life.  It’s an ideal location for bike rides too!


13Castle Farm, Redmans Lane, Shoreham, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN14 7UB



Enjoy 45 minutes strolling through their famous field with the Lavender bench. Take a photo, enjoy the calming scent and walk to the top of the field to take in the spectacular views of the valley.  This award-winning farm shop has developed on from selling just dried flowers and floral decorations, and now also sells the farm’s own beef, apples, pumpkins, apple juice, hops, dried flowers, Kentish Lavender and honey, along with carefully selected gifts, cards, crafts, seasonal decorations, food hampers and local, traceable produce (such as asparagus, strawberries, cherries and raspberries).


15Port Lympne Reserve, Nr. Ashford, Kent, CT21 4PD



Port Lympne Reserve is Kent's largest wild animal park. It’s huge 600-acre site is home to more than 700 animals including the largest herd of black rhino in the UK, western lowland gorillas, Kent's largest tower of giraffe, tigers, lions, leopards, bears and so much more.  They offer special Experience Days and Activities where you can get hands-on with a range of animal experiences. Budding animal keepers can find out what it takes to care for some of the world’s most endangered animals on a keeper experience day or come face to face with some of our visitor favourites on a 30 minute animal encounter.


The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted our welfare, economy and sense of freedom.  Small or independent businesses are particularly vulnerable as they generally work to lower revenue levels and tighter margins than many large corporate businesses.  Visiting local businesses means supporting local people who directly contribute to the local community by the provision of local services and jobs.  Many small businesses have been forced to diversify or re-think their offering in order to survive.  One such business is the farm featured below.

At WGSG our Year 7 students are working on an Enterprise Assignment as part of their Enterprise and Finance curriculum.  Mrs Smith, Business Studies and Economics Teacher provided the following brief;

“Students should be as entrepreneurial as possible, and come up with an idea for a local business you could set up from your home.  You only need the idea, a catchy name, a logo and a brief description of what you would be selling.  Alternatively, try to find a local business that has had to adapt how it works during lockdown.  For instance, some pubs have been selling cooked meals and takeaway drinks.  A top restaurant in London decided to sell just takeaway burgers (very upmarket burgers of course) and actually made more money than they did normally”

Mrs Smith’s local case study – On my usual dog walk route is a small dairy farm which was struggling to sell their milk as their usual clients were mostly restaurants and pubs.  They decided to create a farm shop hut (took about two weeks), installed a large fridge and freezer, and started selling - - - -  ICE CREAM!  Their milk is sent to a local ice cream maker (Smudges), and it is absolutely delicious - I can highly recommend the salted caramel and honeycomb.  They sell two sizes £5 for a large pot and small individual pots with a wooden spoon for £2.50.  Since opening, they advertised locally on village Facebook pages, and have been so busy they regularly run out, and have had to improve the footpath there through the fields and woods.  There is a lovely old wishing well there with seating and shade, next to a picturesque old church.  Lots of families come for walks here now, there are cows, sheep, chicken and geese to see at the farm as well as the delicious ice cream.  Since opening, the hut also sells their raw fresh milk, strawberries and raspberries from another local farm (unbelievably good!), and local vegetables and eggs.  The farm shop hut is in a tiny hamlet called Ridley, near Ash in Kent and well worth a trip out for a lovely ice cream and the best strawberries you will ever taste.



Mrs Smith is looking forward to reading the students’ business proposals.  Charlotte S of 7A has already submitted this excellent ‘working from home’ idea.

Dream is a business that creates Headbands in the style of Mickey Mouse ears however, they can be whatever you want!  Each bespoke pair is handmade to the client’s own personal design.  They are priced £1.50 each or just £5.00 for four!  These stylish headbands are comfortable to wear and are a fun and practical addition to your wardrobe.


As well as these business logos designed by Jaime S (Cakey Bakey) and Keisha C-C (Garden Jewellery)


Congratulations to Livia of Y11 who came third in the Kent Schools Trampoline Finals back in March.  Livia will continue with her trampolining as part of her A Level course here at WG6.

We are delighted to announce that WGSG’s Niamh H of Y7 has been announced as this year’s winner of the coveted Wilmington’s Young Poet Laureate!  Niamh, is the winner of the aged 11-16 category as well as being the overall winner to be crowned Wilmington’s Poet Laureate 2020
Niamh’s brilliant winning entry .. 

‘A Stranger Love’ by Niamh H (Age 12)

Well, here we all are in COVID-19,
A stranger kind of love we need,
With all the sadness and anger we have seen We need to de-stress and sow a love seed.
And how about me in lockdown?
I really don’t know, I just can’t think, Frustrated, angry and anxious with a frown, The whole world shattered with a COVID-19 clink.
So, we are all finding self-love and self-esteem Through messaging friends and family Zooms, Walking in nature where the air seems clean Trying to forget that Coronavirus looms.
So many of us have gone beyond and above To make sure we grow a new kind of love.

We hope you all have a relaxing and enjoyable weekend … to finish, Dr Newson of WGSG’s weekly dose of fun!

A cheese factory exploded in France. Da brie is everywhere

I had a crazy dream last night! I was swimming in an ocean of orange soda. Luckily it turns out it was just a Fanta sea.


The other day I bought a thesaurus, but when I got home and opened it, all the pages were blank…I have no words to describe how angry I am.

The latest letters from our Head Teachers can be referenced on the Correspondence page of the school website here.  Please send any photos or stories for the newsletter to Grace Wellcoat at gwellcoat@endeavour-mat.co.uk


Very best wishes,


Mrs Lodge CEO Endeavour MAT, Mrs Lawson HT, WGSG, Mr Guthrie HT, WGSB and Mr Barnett HT, Stone Lodge School.

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