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Coronavirus Kent: Mum Vicky Thomas paints 32 paving slabs and leaves them around River near Dover to spread cheer

Thirty two brightly painted paving slabs have embellished a village to spread some cheer during the coronavirus crisis.

Vicky Thomas, 49, of River near Dover, started decorating her surplus garden tiles to occupy herself during the Easter break, and now she's even taking orders.

Vicky Thomas who has been painting surplus garden slabs to brighten up River during lockdown
Vicky Thomas who has been painting surplus garden slabs to brighten up River during lockdown

The mum to Millie, 13, Evie 11, said: "I took some time off work for Easter to spend with my daughters.

"We were walking round the village and looking at the rainbows that people are putting in the windows, but from our house you can't see the window.

"We've got a few old slabs so I though if I paint one of those the kids can see it as they walk up the road."

In a time such as lockdown, Mrs Thomas is limited with art supplies, so she used left over emulsion and acrylic paints and since sharing them on Facebook, her creations have inspired donations of more slabs for her to keep on painting.

She added: "I don't consider myself as being arty.

"I just use what I've got laying around."

One of her earliest was a slab for the NHS and she has since paid homage to businesses which help the community during the lock down.

These include Baby Basics, Katie's the greengrocers, and one for Lorna Nuttall who has been doing online fitness to keep people upbeat and well during lockdown.

There is also one outside the Post Office as a thank you for the hard work of postmen and women and Mrs Thomas is supporting both village pubs the Cricketers and the Royal Oak where they have been forced to shut down.

"The response has been fantastic.

"I don't consider myself as being arty..."

"Some people put slabs outside the house, some message me on FB to say they have some.

Of the 32 I've made, the one for the NHS is special, It was done right at the start when lockdown was hitting hard. It was to show support and tell people why we need to stay in.

"I really like my Cheshire cat which took ages too.

"The Parish council has offered to buy a selection of 10 at the end to put in the Rec on a permanent basis.

It would feel wrong to take payment for them but I was meant to be running the London Marathon yesterday (Sunday) and should be running it in October now and have asked if anyone wants to donate for the slabs they can donate to the NHS or Genetics UK which is who I am running the marathon for.

If you'd like to donate to Vicky Thomas' online fundraising page, click here.

For support, advice, events and all things to do with parenting in Kent, visit My Kent Family here.

Read more: All the latest news from Kent

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