Thursday 12 December 2013

Macklands Arms Pub Outing (pre 1945)

Found the attached photo amongst my late Father's possessions.  My Father was William Blundy (third from the left back row).  I believe this is a pre-war photo of them going on an outing, probably arranged through the Macklands.  My Father's other brother, Sid Blundy is sitting at the front.  My Aunt also thinks the Moore family are also in this photo.  

My Grandparents lived in Station Road and we later lived at 54 William St 

Not sure but it may be Mr. & Mrs. Gillman, who ran the Macklands for many years
in the top right hand of the photo.

Monday 18 November 2013

Medway Services Access Road Opened - Fathing Corner Route Closure Averted

Following petitions raised in the area it has been revealed that local MP Rehman Chisti has met the Transport secretary and obtained agreement to keep the Farthing Corner access road open for local traffic to join the M2 motorway.

This is great news locally as it alleviates the bottlenecks that appear on the A278 junction 4 of the M2 motorway and enables traffic from the east of Gillingham/Rainham to have another route to join the motorway. The existing A278 and access roads are unable to cope with the volumes of traffic as has been shown whenever the Farthing Corner access road has been closed.

Saturday 26 October 2013

Great Storm Photos - Newspaper Headlines and Pictures of the 1987 Hurricane

With the impending storm approaching the UK I thought it would be interesting to see some of the headlines and photos from the Great Storm of 1987 that hit the UK on 16 October 1987. It was stated to be the worst storm to have reached the Uk for 300 years.

You can check the local weather conditions in Rainham here to see how the pressure is dropping as the storm comes in

More photos of the 1987 Hurricane or Great Storm in Kent

Hengist ferry blown aground at Folkestone Harbour 1987 during great storm or hurricane
Hengist ferry blown aground at Folkestone Harbour 1987 during great storm or hurricane

Tracking the path and direction of 1987 Great Storm across the UK
Tracking the path and direction of 1987 Great Storm across the UK

1987 storm hurricane damage to Lambeth tower block, London
1987 storm hurricane damage to Lambeth tower block, London

Electricity power cuts during Great storm 1987
Electricity power cuts during Great storm 1987

The electricity supply was interrupted with widespread power cuts across Kent and Sussex from the 1987 hurricane or great Storm. Dungeness power station went off line, the Channel Link supplying electricity from France was lost and Thameside power stations were isolated. The total loss of electricity capacity as a result was 4000MW from the 3 events caused by the Great Storm without even considering the damage to the power networks from trees bringing down power lines.

Wednesday 25 September 2013

History of Cozenton Park Rainham Kent

We've received this request for help about Cozenton Park Rainham,

I am researching the history of Cozenton Park for Kent Gardens Trust in conjunction with Medway Council. I can find remarkably little of use on the web and wonder if you could direct me to anyone who has any information about its formation and particularly any photographs taken of the area before and after the creation of the park which I think must have been in the 1960s.

If you can help please post comments below:

Monday 23 September 2013

Rainham Kent - Palm Tree in High Street/White Horse Pub

A little while ago there were a few questions here about a palm tree in the centre of Rainham behind the White Horse pub on Rainham High Street and next to the location of the former Co-op department store where the new NHS Health Centre is now located.

At the weekend when I was in town I thought I'd have a look and see if the palm tree was still in place. Remarkably despite all the development there is still a palm tree to the side of the White Horse pub and adjacent to the NHS centre in the middle of the footpath leading from Station Road to High Street. You can see Rainham church in the background with the NHS centre to the left and White Horse on right of the picture of the palm tree. Whether this is the original tree mentioned as being there in the 1980s I'm not sure but if not a new one has been replanted in a similar location.

Rainham Palm Tree High Street
Rainham Palm Tree High Street

Monday 9 September 2013

Action Forum September 2013 Added

Action Forum magazine added to site, click below for link. Cover is drawing of centre of Hempstead from around 1915 or so, prior to photo shown on August edition

Action Forum - September 2013

Tuesday 27 August 2013

Canterbury Archaeological Trust Day Schools

I thought some of the courses below might appeal to members of Rainham Historical Society and wondered if you could circulate this to them (or to anyone else you know of who may be interested). We’d be more than happy to discuss discounts for group bookings if several people from the Society were interested.
Many thanks,
Canterbury Archaeological Trust now offers a series of archaeology day schools. These courses are aimed at all levels, from the complete beginner to the experienced ‘old hand’. The tutors, drawn from the Trust’s staff of professional archaeologists, have years of field and specialist experience. The courses draw upon the Trust’s resources and extensive archives to provide ‘hands-on’ learning, rooted in a real-world, vocational, approach to archaeology. Whether someone is just starting out in archaeology, or seeking to develop specific skills or areas of interest, we have a course to suit.
The venue for most courses will be Canterbury Archaeological Trust, 92a Broad Street, Canterbury, CT1 2LU,  unless specified otherwise. The current programme of courses is listed below. Full details and booking instructions are available at
Saturday 31 August 2013.
Saturday 7 September 2013.
Saturday 21 September 2013.
This is a one day introductory course, repeated on the following dates: Saturday 28 September, Saturday 23 November 2013, Saturday 11 January, Saturday 15 March 2014.
Saturday 12 October 2013.
Saturday 26 October 2013.
Saturday 2 November 2013.
Saturday 9 November 2013.
Saturday 16 November 2013.
Saturday 18 January 2014.
8 February 2014.
(In partnership with Mark Harrison, Timescapes)
Saturday 15 February 2014.
(In partnership with AMTeC Co-Op & CSI:Sittingbourne)
Saturday 8 March 2014. Venue: CSI: Sittingbourne.
Andrew Richardson
t: 01227 825276
Twitter: @AFRatCAT

Monday 12 August 2013

Action Forum Free Magazine for Rainham Kent - July & August 2013 Issues online

Action forum is a free magazine delivered to the Rainham area. Each month we try to scan a copy and post to the site so that those who have moved away are still able to catch up with local news.

Unfortunately July got missed due to volume of other work on but both July and August issues have now been loaded to the Rainham History site.

Action Forum - August 2013

July 2013 Action forum Rainham

Monday 29 April 2013

Fred Rains Life in Rainham Kent

I currently researching the work of Fred Rains, an actor and film director of the 1920s. He is also the father of Claude Rains the Hollywood movie star. Someone has suggested to me that he was brought up in Rainham in the 1860's. Do you have any information relating to this


Fred Rains - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Frederick William Rains (generally known as Fred Rains) (1860-1945) was a British actor and film director.[1] He was the father of the actor Claude Rains.

Rochester Sweeps Festival Programme and schedule of events for 2013

The 2013 Sweeps Festival takes place in Rochester each year at the beginning of May. In 2013 it will be taking place from May 4th to 6th throughout the Bank Holiday weekend.

The events programme doesn't seem to be available on the Medway Council website listing the Sweeps Festival but the direct link to the full Rochester Sweeps festival 2013 programme is here

Rochester Sweeps Festival Programme and schedule of events for 2013
Rochester Sweeps Festival Programme and schedule of events for 2013
Click image or here for the Rochester Sweeps Festival Programme and schedule of events for 2013
Many Morris teams from around the UK (and from as far as Alaska) come to the Rochester Sweeps festival and join the parade along the High Street. In addition many musical events take place in different pubs and outdoor stages over the weekend. This video was shot in Man of Kent alehouse of the Truckstop Honeymoon gig in 2011 and this video of Truckstop Honeymoon was shot at the Gordon House Hotel beer festival.

This is a video of French band Sur Les Docks who are performing at the Sweeps festival again this year. This video of McManigan Academy of Irish Dancers performing Lord of the Dance was shot at the Gordon House Hotel in 2012.

Tuesday 23 April 2013

April 2013 Action Forum

Action Forum for April 2013 has now been added. You can view it here.

The cover features Rainham Cricket club photo from 1948.

Rainham Cricket club photo from 1948.
Rainham Cricket club photo from 1948.

Friday 22 March 2013

Ironmongers Johnsons of Rainham Shop Closes

Hardware store Johnsons of Rainham will be closing in April 2013. The shop has been open since 1944, originally run by Bob Johnson and then his son Russell who currently runs the hardware store in Station Road, Rainham, Kent.

It's a sad day for the area when a specialist local store like this closes, losing the personal touch and the wealth of advice that you could rely on to help you with any tools for DIY jobs.

Johnsons of Rainham Shop Closes, Russell Johnson in the shop
Johnsons of Rainham Shop Closes

Tuesday 1 January 2013

Womens Weekly Free Snowdog Knitting Pattern - Snowman Snow Dog Knitting

Womens Weekly published the popular Snow dog Knitting Pattern in the December 2012 copy of the magazine. The magazine sold out and the online version doesn't allow you to print the Snow Dog knitting pattern but annoyingly doesn't tell you before you pay for it!

If you are looking for a free copy of the snow dog knitting pattern then email as below and we can send a scanned PDF copy of the magazine article. Email to

If you find this useful please visit some of the advertisers around this article which help fund the running of this site.