BBC to feature Folkestone (again)

Folkestone’s importance at the heart of troop embarkations during the First World War will again be emphasised in a BBC ‘docudrama’ being broadcast on Monday 2 June.

Entitled The Spies Who Loved Folkestone, the film will be broadcast on BBC One (South East) at 7.30pm and will then be available to watch on iPlayer for a week.

The 30-minute film features interviews with Step Short Trustee, historian and author Michael George and uncovers a fascinating side of Folkestone during the 1914-18 conflict.

The BBC’s own curtain-raiser for the programme explains: “As Folkestone became a hotbed of espionage, writer Anthony Horowitz discovers the remarkable men, women and children who risked their lives operating as spooks during the First World War.”

Help fill our time capsule and play a part in history!

Stake your claim to a place in history by contributing to our time capsule, which will be buried close to the commemorative arch being unveiled in the presence of HRH Prince Harry on 4 August.

The plan is that the capsule will stay hidden for the next 100 years before being opened in 2114 and what the people who open it find inside is down to you.

Organiser Ann Berry, Step Short’s vice-chairman, has written to 24 local schools inviting them to put forward items for inclusion, but other groups or individuals can also contribute.

Song lyrics, photographs, diary entries, poems, event programmes and stories about life in 2014 would all tell the people of 2114 a great deal about the world we live in today.

Small artefacts such as toys, key rings, jewellery and other items could also be placed in the time capsule, but the items must be wrapped carefully so that they do not deteriorate over the next century. They should also be clean and in good condition.

“We want everyone to get involved in submitting items and material for the time capsule,” said Ann. “Any written material needs to be no bigger than A4 and the other items should be small but interesting.”

The deadline for items to be submitted is Saturday 7 June. They should be sent to Ann at 35, Birkdale Drive, Folkestone CT19 5LP – or telephone 01303 278644 for more information.

The are lots of internet links about how to present and wrap material so that it will still look at its best in 100 years. One of the best places to look is the British Library site at Go to the FAQ section for advice.


Get close to the event as a volunteer marshal!

Organisers of the Step Short First World War commemorative event on Monday 4 August are looking for a few more volunteers to help make sure the day runs smoothly.

With His Royal Highness Prince Harry in town to dedicate the new Step Short arch on The Leas that day, it is vital that there are enough people to help with marshaling along the route.

Shepway District Council is  looking to recruit 200 marshals for the day and evening events taking place on The Leas and in the harbour area – and you could be just right for the job.

Marshals will have the task of ensuring that visitors to the town have a safe and enjoyable viewing experience during this ‘once in a lifetime’ event to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of the 1914 – 18 war. You will need to give information to visitors and help with event safety.

To find out more about the role and to apply to become a volunteer marshal for the event, visit or telephone the council’s customer services team on 01303 853498.

The deadline for applications is 9 June 2014. Please note that there will be a briefing on Sunday 13 July.