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Aylesham celebrates 90th anniversary in style with an event that marks the best of the village

By Mercury reporter

Bumper celebrations marked a special anniversary for a mining village.

Aylesham partied its way through its 90th birthday festivities on Saturday and Sunday with a wealth of events and activities showcasing the best of the village.

There was a stage in Market Place boasting acts including Aylesham Primary School choir, KC’s Dancers, who gave a rhythmical presentation depicting the village through the years, and other acts included Tropical Heatwave Caribbean Steel Band, Sheila & Co performers, KISMET singer and guitarist and soloist Ryan Sart, who headlined.

Aylesham celebrates ninety years. Nine year-old Jake Walford, spends time with the village firefighters

Aylesham celebrates ninety years. Nine year-old Jake Walford, spends time with the village firefighters

Three churches held events on Saturday including puppets at Aylesham Baptist Church garden and live gospel music with band Echo.

There was a memory wall at St Peter’s Church as well as inflatable activities for kids, refreshments, a licensed bar and a disco.

Meanwhile Armed Forces displays were on show on the green outside St Finbarr’s Church in the Market Place. It was among the area named The Fair on the Square where military vehicles, armour and equipment were laid out in an authentic Gulf War setting.

 Aylesham celebrates ninety years. Brady King and Jadon Knott both aged eight

Aylesham celebrates ninety years. Brady King and Jadon Knott both aged eight

Serving and ex-military personnel shared their stories with each other while free goody bags were handed to those with military service.

The celebrations were organised by the chairman of Aylesham Parish Council, Joanne Cartledge, Aylesham Community Workshop Trust’s Derek Garrity and the manager of Aylesham Welfare & Leisure Centre, Rhianne O’Neil.

Aylesham celebrates ninety years. Elsie Claringbold aged seven

Aylesham celebrates ninety years. Elsie Claringbold aged seven

Many groups and societies also played a part in organising and hosting the celebrations which marked 90 years since the first mining families from Snowdown Colliery occupied the newly built pit houses in 1927.

These groups included Aylesham Baptist, St Peter’s and St Finbarr’s Churches, Snowdown Male Voice Choir, Aylesham Ladies’ Choir and Aylesham and District Amateur Boxing Club.

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