Nonington's History

For detailed history of Nonington visit Clive Webb's The Old Parish of Nonington.

Our Surroundings

The village is central to some excellent walks and heritage trails. Our own historic church was built over 900 years ago. FredvilleSt Albans Court and Knowlton Court cover much of the land surrounding the village. The villages of Barfrestone, Goodnestone - where Jane Austen used to stay, Eastry where Lord Nelson was a guest at Heronden House and Broome Park, the home of Lord Kitchener, are just a few miles away.



Nonington School

Link To Nonington School Website


Monthly Reports 2017/8


Spring Show

Nonington Garden Club held its first ever Spring Show on 25th March 2017. The event was open to everybody and it was very pleasing to see a good number of new faces amongst the many visitors and members. 
There were various classes to enter beside Spring Flowers, such as Garden Photographs, Cakes, Sloe gin and a ‘Garden on a Plate’ category for children, so there was something to suit most people. The total number of entries was 198 which was very impressive for a first Show
Certificates for the Best Exhibit in each class were presented by Peter Hobbs. Steph and Rob Orridge were the winners of Section 1 with the Best Small Cup Daffodils, Cheryl Henley won Section 2 with her  Arrangement of Spring Flowers in a Cup and Saucer and Andy Kennedy produced the best Sloe Gin in Section 3. Juliette Matharu was first in the Children’s Category with her Garden on a Plate.
Present at the Show was the President of the of the East Kent Federation of Horticultural Societies, Mr Dennis Vickers who said that he was very impressed with all the Exhibits and hoped that this was the first of many Spring Shows that the Club would host.

Visitors also enjoyed teas, sandwiches and cakes and a raffle. Nonington Garden Club meets on the second Wednesday of the month in the Village Hall and new members will be made very welcome. Please contact the Chairman Barry Rampton on 01304 849112 if you would like more information.



Nonington Garden Club celebrated its 3rd birthday on 12 April 2017 in the Village Hall. 

The Chairman opened the AGM by thanking all the members who have made the Garden Club such an enjoyable and thriving monthly event. All the existing Committee Members will serve for another year apart from Ian Williams who has sadly had to retire for health reasons. Ian is a founding member of the club and was a Vice-Chairman and his contribution to the success of the club is greatly appreciated. One new member, Carol Goodall was welcomed onto the Committee. 

The Treasurer gave her report stating that the club had 60 members and enjoyed a successful year.

The Secretary reported that the club had a full programme of speakers for the coming year.

The first Spring Show in March was a great success and photos were shown as some members were unable to attend on the day.

Wine and nibbles were enjoyed with a quick fire quiz.

The next meeting will be on 10 May and the Speaker will be Steve Edney on the Salutation Garden at Sandwich. Please bring ‘an arrangement of flowers in a wine glass’ for the monthly competition. Last year’s competition was won by Pauline Hales who received a gardening gift voucher.

For further information on the club please contact The Chairman Barry Rampton on 01304 849112

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Nonington Garden Club held its meeting on the 10th May and commenced with a Minute’s Silence for Ian Williams, a founding member of the club who recently sadly passed away.

The Speaker was Steve Edney from the Salutation Garden at Sandwich. He spoke about the disastrous flooding of the gardens in December 2013 and the loss of thousands of plants and earthworms and fish in the pond. The positive effect from the disaster was the opportunity to replant large areas of the garden and redesign the layout for the greenhouses and other working areas.

The monthly competition was ‘An Arrangement of Flowers in a Wine Glass’ and was won by Corliss Danstead with a lovely selection of spring flowers.

Next month’s meeting will be held on Wednesday 14th June and the speaker will be Mr Wiseman on ‘Vegetables on a Small Scale’. The competition will be ‘A Pot of 4 Herbs’. 

Volunteers are also needed to help with the Open Garden Weekend on 24th and 25th June and donations of plants and cakes are also requested please.

 For further information on the club please contact The Chairman Barry Rampton on 01304 849112

June's Gardening Club meeting was very well attended to hear Robert Wiseman give a very informative talk on "Vegetables on a Small Scale". 
Mr Wiseman showed members how easy it was to grow vegetables in pots, buckets, bags and raised beds. He certainly made the growing look very simple and informed members how economical it was to grow, for example, 4 lettuces every 2 weeks so that the salad the vegetables and salad foods were not wasted. He gave many tips on slug control, names of suitable varieties of suitable small vegetables and compost management.
July's meeting on the 19th a week later than usual will see a welcome return of Susan Scrivens from Saltwood talking about the Saltwood Summer The  Orchid Foxglove, which she developed.
Nonington Garden Festival 24th 25th June 2017
The committee wish to thank all those who participated in the recent Garden Festival, which proved to have been a great success. The weather was kind and the village played host to visitors from far and wide as well as local residents and everyone appeared to have had a great time.
All the Open gardens were shown at their best and the Quilting and Crafts in the Village hall extolled the accomplishments of some of our talented residents. The Art in the Church echoed this as well. For those not into gardening or craft work a small exhibition of Classic Cars were exhibited near the church.
The greatest success though was that it brought the village together and engendered a great feeling of village community. This was by far the best outcome of the weekend. Long may it last.
It was also financially successful with just over £800 being raised, which will be divided between the Village Hall, Friends of Nonington Church and the Gardening Club.
Once again, many thanks to all those who helped to make the weekend so successful. 
Now, please make a note in your diary for 2019 when we will again be holding a village Garden festival on Saturday and Sunday 22nd/23rd June from 11.00am until 5.00pm. 
For those who would like to open their garden in 2019, you now have plenty of time to plan your exhibit.




The Chairman opened the meeting by saying how saddened we all were at the sudden loss of our Vice Chairman, Alan Palmer and our sympathies were sent to Ann and her family. He will be greatly missed by the Club.
This month at the Gardening Club, Susan Scrivens told members the fascinating story of the Orchid Foxglove. This plant was a mutation found in her garden and as it was so beautiful she thought that it should be cultivated. As the flower did not set seed, Mrs Scrivens explained the difficulties of producing plants in the numbers that the large garden nurseries wanted. This beautiful plant was finally grown by Hilliers Nurseries in the thousands but it did take 12 years to get to that stage.
Members were shown slides of all the processes until the Orchid Foxglove was, The Plant, at the Chelsea Flower Show. The Queen and the Royal Family, Famous Plantsmen and women and everyone else were really impressed with this special flower. However, the story had a sad ending with the plant dying out and now doesn't  exist. 
It was a truly enjoyable evening and everyone was spellbound as the story unfolded and sorry that it did not have a happy ending.
The winner of the monthly competition was Mary Bowden.
The next meeting will be on Wednesday September 13th at 7.30pm in Nonington Village Hall when the speaker will be Caroline Halfpenny talking about The Principles of Garden Design.
There will be no meeting in August.

Nonington Garden Club held its meeting on 13th September and was well 

attended after the August break. Three new members were also 

welcomed to the club. 

The Speaker was Caroline Halfpenny who gave a very interesting talk on

‘The Principles of Garden Design’. She showed photographs of various 

famous gardens to get a feel for what sort of garden we enjoy and are 

more likely to have ourselves. The main principles are harmony, rhythm, 

balance, unity and style. Formal gardens have topiary, sculpture and 

structure whereas informal ones are more casual with loose planting.

The monthly competition was a photo of ‘an interesting garden structure’ 

and this was won by Pauline Hales with a photo of an obelisk with 


Next month’s meeting will be held on Wednesday 11thOctober and the 

speaker will be Colin Moat on ’50 Shades of Grey’ which may be 

different to what we imagine!

To ‘tie in’ with the talk the competition will be an ‘Exhibit of Grey Foliage’ 

and please do not exceed a size of 24’’ by 24’’ by 24’’.



Nonington Garden Club met as usual on the second Wednesday of the month on 11 October. Members enjoyed a talk, a raffle, a competition and some lovely tomato cake made by Barry and Barb Rampton.

The speaker was Colin Moat from Wrotham Heath on ’50 Greys of Shade’ giving us information on various plants that do well in shade. Plants can be bulbs or ground cover or long lasting ones depending on what effect you wish to achieve. He pointed out that white flowers are probably the best for display in shaded areas but there are lots of other colours available.

The monthly competition was an exhibit of grey foliage and there was a number of lovely entries with the first prize going to Janet Holness.

Next month’s meeting will be held on Wednesday 8th November and the speaker will be Lucy Adams on ‘The Gardens of Doddington Park’, which was visited by members last year. The competition will be ‘A Jar of Autumn Colour’

Members were reminded that there will be a Spring Show in March and that now is the time to be thinking about what you want to grow in time to exhibit at the show.




The Gardening Club's November 8th talk was presented by Lucy Adams, Head Gardener of Doddington Park. As the Club had visited the Park last year all the photographs and information were especially interesting.Lucy spoke about the gardening year at the Park, Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter and told us about all the hard work involved in keeping the gardens to such a high standard. Members were all amazed that they plant 10,000 tulip bulbs every year and thousands of annuals and other plants. All this with one other full time gardener and  a couple of part-timers.

All agreed that it was a very informative and enjoyable evening and Lucy was thanked by the Chairman.

The December meeting will be the Christmas Buffet and all members are really looking forward to it.



This year the Christmas Festivities were very relaxed with a fantastic buffet supplied by members. Members brains were tested with a table top quiz devised by Carol & Peter Goodall and to end the evening, members were led in a medaly of Christmas Carol singing by the chairman, Barry Rampton. Altogether, a very good start to the Christmas Season.






After a very short notice of cancellation from our arranged Speaker, due to unforseen circumstances, our  Chairman, Barry Rampton came to the club's rescue.

Barry and his wife Barbara had lived on the side of a mountain in North Wales for 17 years and Barry showed members how they had gardened there. As the grounds were approximately five and a half acres and had lots of different areas eg bog garden, vegetable garden, Mill pond, river and bluebell woods and it was interesting to see how they had created these different areas.

Barry explained how bridges were made, walkways built from their own timber, plants planted in rocky ground and boggy areas cultivated.

All together it was a very enjoyable evening considering the talk had to be put together at such short notice and he was thank profusely by all the members.

Next month's Speaker on the 14th February will be Mr GT Francis talking on "The Vegetable Garden. The meetings are held in Nonington Village Hall at 7.30pm and new prospective members are always welcome



Nonington Garden Club met on a wet and very windy St Valentine’s night and had an enjoyable evening nevertheless.

The speaker was Mr Francis from Aylesford and the topic was ‘The Vegetable Garden’ which was very interesting and he obviously enjoys growing vegetables for both showing and eating.

The monthly competition was ‘Any Handicraft Item’ which attracted a very large variety of items and it was very difficult for the judge to select the prize winners. Janet Craggy won first prize for her beautiful handmade waistcoat.

Next month’s meeting will be held on Wednesday14 March and Dr Mick Lynn will be pondering on ‘Which came first- the bee or the flower?’, The competition will be a Vase of 3 Spring Flowers’

The Spring Show will be on Saturday 24 March at 2pm in the Village Hall and newcomers as well as members are welcome to exhibit. The Show was very enjoyable and successful last year and hopefully will be again this year. Please contact The Chairman and Show Organiser Barry Rampton on 01304 849112 if you would like more information on the show or joining the club.



Nonington Garden Club met on Wednesday 14 March and Dr Mick Lynn gave members an informative talk on ‘Which came first- the bee or the flower?’ which gave us new insight into the important role of pollination. He was very entertaining as he ‘bumbled’ his way into his beekeeping outfit and displayed his collection of soft toy bees!

The competition was a Vase of 3 Spring Flowers which was won by Cheryl. There will not be a competition at next month’s meeting on Wednesday 11th April as it is the Annual General Meeting followed by a Members Evening. Drinks will be provided but please bring nibbles if you wish and your brains for the quiz!

Forthcoming visits include a trip to the Kent Garden Show at Detling in late May and a visit to a lovely private garden in Marshborough on 21 June.

Please contact The Chairman Barry Rampton on 01304 849112 if you would like more information on joining the club.



Spring Show Gallery



Nonington Garden Club Spring Show 2018

Nonington Garden Club held its second Spring Show on 24th March 2018, following on from last year’s very successful event. The Show was well attended and supported by members and new faces who were very welcome.

The judge said ‘the brilliant show’ was very impressive as he had expected it may be cancelled due to the recent cold weather which meant that the usual flowers were not available. Despite the weather problems the show attracted 196 exhibits which was only 2 down from last year. 

Certificates and trophies for the best exhibit in each class were presented by Brian Armstrong. The Chairman’s Cup was awarded to Corliss Danstead for a lovely orchid, Cheryl Henley won the Vice Chairmen’s Award for a beautiful basket of flowers and Pauline Hodding won the Nonington Garden Club Challenge Shield for her sloe gin. The Children’s Category produced some delightful animals made out of vegetables and Edward, Oscar and Freya were the prize winners.

Visitors also enjoyed teas and a wide selection of homemade cakes and a raffle. Nonington Garden Club meets on the second Wednesday of the month in the Village Hall and new members will be made very welcome. Please contact the Chairman Barry Rampton on 01304 849112 if you would like more information.


Nonington Garden Club celebrated its 4th birthday on 11 April 2018 in the Village Hall. 

The Chairman opened the AGM by remembering Ian Williams and Alan Palmer, two founding members of the Club who sadly passed away during the year. All the existing Committee Members will serve for another year and were thanked for their continuing hard work. Several new members were welcomed to the club as well.

There was a very successful Garden Festival in June 2017 and a slide show of lovely plants and flowers from the recent Spring Show was shown. Forthcoming events include trips to local private gardens. 

The Treasurer’s report said that the club membership remains the same at around 60 members and had enjoyed a successful year.

The Secretary reported that the club had a full programme of speakers for the coming year. Some of the speakers have visited before as the list of local speakers has now been exhausted, so if you know of any other speakers please let the club know.

Wine and nibbles were enjoyed with a quiz which provided a lot of hilarity.

The next meeting will be on 9th May and the Speaker will be Sue Buckingham talking about ‘The Thrill of Wild Orchids’ and if you have an indoor orchid plant please bring it along for the monthly competition. The overall winner of the monthly competitions was Pauline Hales with Janet Holness and Pauline Hodding in second and third places. They each won a garden voucher.

For further information on the club please contact The Chairman Barry Rampton on 01304 849112


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