Rotary Club of Romney Marsh newsletter NOVEMBER 2021

Welcome to our November Newsletter, we had a quiet September with many of us being away on holiday, but things picked up in October and all is pretty much back to normal now.

“My Job Talk”- Suru

Suru Patel gave a moving and enlightening “My Job” talk, speaking passionately about his life. He was born in Nairobi, one of four siblings in a family which he described as ‘ordinary’. After leaving school he moved to India where he studied Agriculture, obtaining a degree in 1972. He then wished to continue in this vein to take a Masters degree but, due to family circumstances and difficult political situations, he had to return home. He then commenced working with his extended family in their farming business, becoming publicly well known for excellent farming. He continued working in this area for several years which he enjoyed.

In 1977 Suru married Hash and during the late seventies and eighties he changed direction professionally several times. Firstly he commenced working with his brother in an engineering firm and, although initially successful, this enterprise stumbled upon some problems and the situation, together with his wife and children moving to the UK, prompted Suru to change course. In 1983 he flew to the UK and commenced living and working in North London. Eventually he rented in Southend a corner shop which he successfully developed and expanded. When an opportunity arose to buy the Lydd post office Suru took this challenge on, slowly developing and expanding the store. He recounted many stories about working in this environment. In 1987 he became sub postmaster and he spoke about the various changes and new systems being put in place in the 90s. In 2003 he took on a new initiative, assisting in an outreach service for other post office sites trying to grapple with the new government systems. Although enjoyable at times, this became increasingly demanding and in 2016 Suru decided to retire, selling his business in Lydd and moving with his family to West Hythe to enjoy family life and a well-earned rest.

Partners’ Evening

Our partners’ evening held at The Warren GC was well attended and enjoyed by all. Great company, companionship and banter and an opportunity to catch up with partners, and guests especially Jean and Pauline. A big thank you to Mark for organising the event and to Kevin and his team for the food.


The laptops appeal closed at the end of September having received approximately 60 laptops together with chargers and cases, plus an extremely generous donation that was used for the purchase of 2 more. We are grateful for the help provided by Alison and Dave and their team at ‘The Computer Company’ in Church Approach, New Romney, for donating their time and expertise in refurbishing and reprogramming many of them; a marvellous gesture on their part for which our Club is extremely grateful.

Turning to our mobile phones appeal, the first 27 phones and chargers were handed over to Georgia Cook of Porchlight on 27th October, and they will soon be distributed to the homeless people who need them. It is also great to be able to report that following the publication of our appeal in the Rotary District 1120 Magazine, we are also receiving support from the Rotary Club of Chatham and may also have help from clubs in Maidstone, Medway and Gravesham which is very much appreciated and demonstrates the enormous fellowship of Rotarians working together. The appeal will close at the end of November so if you still have an unused but working mobile phone that you no longer need, please see our website – for details of your nearest ‘drop off’ point.

The club has once again been asked by the Salvation Army in Hythe to invite donations of toys for Christmas presents to support the less fortunate children on the Marsh so if you are able to help with this please contact Gill Singfield who will be coordinating the club’s response.

Patrick is doing a sterling job getting the Santa Sleigh preparations in place for December. We have taken delivery of a new generator and purchased new Charity collection buckets to make us compliant with government guidelines and recommended good practice for street collections. We have here to sing the praises of ‘Care Fundraising Supplies’. We placed an order with them for 16 buckets and they duly arrived within a few days but about a week later a second delivery of a further 16 buckets landed on the doorstep. We contacted the company and offered to return them but they said “Please accept the extra buckets as our donation to your organisation with our compliments” which was very pleasing and much appreciated.

The Schedule of dates for the Sleigh Runs has now been drafted and will soon be available on our website.

Forthcoming Events


Ø 16th Rye cultural visit

Ø 18th Young Chef Awards

Ø 29th Sleigh Runs commence – Look out for details in the local press later this month


Ø 10th Lantern Parade New Romney

Ø 11th High Street collection outside Rolfe’s, New Romney

Ø 11th Haywardians concert at St Mary’s Bay Village Hall, in support of Last Chance Animal Rescue

Ø 16th Partners Night

Ø 18th Sleigh collection outside Sainsbury’s New Romney – contactless donations welcome

Birthdays coming up in November:

Happy birthday to Stephen Hagues and Roger Joynes

The club sends its best wishes to Spencer Buck for a continued recovery.

So what do I do if I want to join?

We’ll be delighted to welcome new Members to the club. If you are interested in joining us, get in touch via email or check out our website – where you can also find out a little more about who we are and what we do,

‘Reg’d charity no 281361’

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