Soggy bulb planting

It was a soggy start to the day for some of our Lions helping Knowle Society plant bulbs on the verges by Knowle Doctors.

We thank them for their tireless work every year making our village look beautiful and can’t wait for Spring to see our hard work pay off!

It was a fun morning for Lion Claire Barlett & her daughter

If you would like to volunteer to help there is still nearly 10,000 bulbs to plant you can contact us or Knowle Society direct to see when the next ‘plantathon’ takes place

Posted in News

Another great tea party

Once again we invited all local older persons to join us for a superb tea party at the Knowle Royal British Legion this October with fantastic entertainment from Sisters in Song – Rebecca  & Julia

Some of the 100 party goers, get some exercise

Watch last year’s video for some key messages about some of the projects we have been working on from our former President Bob Thurtle

Chairman Bob told the audience about some of the projects we have been working on. If you have any suggestions let us know, we are always interested to hear the community's views about what we need. What do you think we could spend some of the donations on?

Posted by Knowle and Dorridge Lions on Saturday, 13 October 2018

Posted in News, Older persons

Lions Festive Walk

Friday 27 December 2019

Baddesley Clinton National Trust House B93 0DQ and Hay Woods, Hay Wood Lane B93 0DG (5 miles from junction 5 M42) (Map)

WELCOME to our 27th annual Festive Walk. It’s a great opportunity to ‘walk off the Christmas pudding’, explore the Warwickshire countryside and enjoy the fresh air with the great atmosphere generated by walkers who join us every year as part of their traditional post Boxing Day exercise.

UPDATE:  In view of the unprecedented rain and water table levels we have been forced to curtail all walks re-routing some sections of the walks to public roads to avoid heavily-mudded areas. Whilst the maps will not reflect this, all route arrows will be correct. All changes will be advised by our marshals at both registration locations. We  recommend walkers wear Wellington boots as parts of the walks are very muddy

PLEASE note: Arrangements will be different to previous years. We ask those walking the Medium (6 miles)  & Long (10 miles) routes to go straight to Hay Woods to park where there will be full registration arrangements

ENTRY: You do not have to enter in advance, please print and complete an entry form for your group and bring it with you, to help speed up the start.

Entry as always is FREE. We would appreciate a donation for our partner charities

with half of all the funds generated retainedfestive lion for Lions locally determined causes

Parking: There will be 2 signposted car parks:

  • Hay Wood for those tackling the longer walks &
  • Baddesley Clinton House for those on the short & mini routes.
  • Maps will be available at the starts. All walkers must return by 15:45. NB The gates to Hay Wood will be locked at 15:45.

Walkers can help us best by

  • appointing a driver to drop them off,
  • filling their cars with family and friends,
  • or walking to the starts.

Routes: You may choose from:

  • Long – 10 miles from Hay Woods. Please arrive early from 8:30. We do not recommend starting this after 10:30.
  • Medium – 6 miles from Hay Woods.
  • Short – 3 miles. Start past Baddesley Church
  • Mini – 1 mile. Start in front of Baddesley House
  • As to be expected in December the routes will be wet and muddy in places. Waterproof footwear/wellies are strongly recommended. Some of the stiles although usable, are in a poor state of repair and caution is advised.
  • the choice of routes should suit most levels of fitness, age and ability but are unsuitable for buggies or wheelchairs, sorry
  • dogs of all shapes and sizes are welcome provided they keep their considerate owners on a lead. Seriously, there will be sheep in fields and not all dogs mix, so please keep your dog on a lead at all times.
  • all sign-posted circular routes along country lanes, canal tow-paths and public footpaths, some with stiles, the long & medium routes passing close to a pub or two, and
  • all returning to Baddesley Clinton House quadrangle where there will be hot mince pies and mulled wine to enjoy with the Lions, you can collect your well-deserved certificate of achievement and then
  • remove your muddy boots and visit the House and Gardens FREE, and the restaurant will be happy to serve refreshments.

Every £ donated will go to charity, when all our costs have been more than covered by our generous sponsors.

Why not get your efforts sponsored for our partner charities or designate your own special worthy cause – download a sponsorship form or use Virgin Money Giving to make a donation or ask your friends to sponsor your walk.

You can help to make this event a success by displaying a poster at your work, club, local shop or perhaps send it to those you know may be interested. Please download a flyer

If you have any queries or would like to help the Lions organising this fundraising event please get in touch today

Watch the 2018 video

If you are still unsure if you are joining us for this year’s Festive Walks take a look at this short video of last year’s event to see what it’s all about…. It’s such a great way to support your local community while spending time with your friends and family 👍 Thank you to James Nicholas for supporting us and creating this amazing video! It really captures the essence of the day.

Lion Santa Paul Wheatley met up with partner charities: Elaine Griffin (CLIC Sargent) & Justine Davy (Solihull Hospital) outside Baddesley Clinton House


As with all our events we try to cover the costs of running them through sponsorship from local businesses so as much money as possible will go to our charities. At this time we have one or two vacancies for sponsors. If your company would like to help us by supporting any of our fundraising events we would love to hear from you, so please get in touch now.

We are very grateful to following businesses and organisations for their generous support


Posted in Festive Walk, News

Celebrations for 2018-19

We celebrated a challenging year last month when we held our annual presentation evening at the Greswolde Hotel in Knowle.

Welcoming supporters and sponsors former President Lion Bob Thurtle announced that the Club had raised nearly £50,000 for charity over the past 12 months, primarily through its Knowle Fun Run, Festive Walk and Heart of England Bike Ride. He thanked all sponsors & volunteers saying ‘It’s great for our Club of only 20 Lions to celebrate such success again, but without the help from sponsors like yourselves our events would never realise so much for charity.’ He emphasised how his Club needed more active Lions if it is going to sustain this tremendous fundraising and community support programme in future years.

“The Lions year started last December with its 26th Festive Walk from Baddesley Clinton National Trust House where ideal weather but muddy walking conditions welcomed record numbers of over 2,000 walkers who donated over £11,000 for SoLO Life Opportunities and the UK Sepsis Trust our two Partner Charities, as well as local causes too.”

Paul Wheatley, Chair of the Club’s Community Services Committee, explained the aims of the Club’s Youth Travel Bursary and introduced presentations prepared by winners from the past 2 years: Nicola Falkland who undertook Community Projects in Tanzania, Hannah Bull Environmental work and Conservation in British Columbia, Canada and Jack Bailey teaching in Guyana. For more information visit

Lion Paul Wheatley with (l-r) Hannah Bull, Jack Bailey & Nicola Frankland

During the year Paul’s committee had spent over £26,000 on a variety of local and not so local projects as well as those for youth and elderly. A full list of organisations supported this year and how to nominate a local cause please visit

Bob then presented a cheque for £11,880 to SoLO Life Opportunities, and later at our Club meeting Richard presented Ron Daniels CEO of UK Sepsis Trust with their cheque for a similar amount, who in turn thanked the Lions for their fantastic fundraising efforts

Bob presents cheque to SoLO

Richard presents cheque to Sepsis

New President Richard then welcomed Justine Davy from Solihull Hospital Charities and Elaine Griffin from CLIC Sargent who briefly thanked the Lions for choosing as the Partner Charities for the next Festive Walk on Friday 27 December and Knowle Fun Run on 17 May 2020

Richard introduces fundraisers from CLIC Sargent and Solihull Hospital Charity

Posted in Charities, News, Where the money goes

Older persons make it to Ledbury (and back)

Once again this September 3 coachloads of Knowle and Dorridge older residents were taken on a free day trip, this year to Ledbury

Next up its our Tea Party at the Royal British Legion in Knowle on Saturday 12 October

Next September the coaches are going to Chester

On the coach waiting for a couple of seats to be filled

Johnson’s coaches driver waits for Mum and friends

Is it coming on to rain, here looks good for shelter

Waiting for the coach home?


Posted in News, Older persons

Youth Travel Bursary 2020

Students are reminded that the deadline for applications for this year’s K&D Lions Youth Travel Bursary must be submitted by the end of March.

Over the years a number of excellent applicants have been successful in gaining grants sufficient to complete their fundraising required to fund their travels.

The Lions have increased the total amount available to £3,500. To stand a chance of gaining a bursary of up to £1,750 your trip must qualify. Be sure to read rules and complete the Application form

Do not leave it until the deadline has passed.

jenny hawkin1

Posted in News, Youth, Youth Travel Bursary

Partner charities 2019-2020

This year we have selected 2 worthy charities to partner our Festive Walk and Fun Run fundraising, whilst we retain half of all proceeds for Lions locally determined causes:

Solihull Hospital Charity is one of four hospitals within the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust. 

The hospital charity exists to support the patients and staff within the hospital by providing items that are over and above those that the NHS can provide.  Be it support for cutting edge medical equipment, research, refurbishment of existing buildings to provide a more comfortable space for patients during their stay or activities for patients with dementia.  With your help and with the help of the Knowle and Dorridge Lions we can raise funds that directly benefit locals in the area. 

All the money raised from the events held by the Knowle and Dorridge Lions will be donated to Solihull Hospital Charity will be spent on services that enhance the stay of both our younger patients by way of the transformation of the Children’s Outpatients area and also towards providing an Older Persons Activities Coordinator. 

We would like to thank you in advance for your support of these events and in turn supporting Solihull Hospital Charity.

For more details visit their website


CLIC Sargent – Young Lives vs Cancer are the UK’s leading charity for children and young people (under the age of 25) with cancer. We provide emotional, practical and financial support to children, young people and their families to try and limit the damage that cancer causes, outside of to their health. CLIC Sargent currently supports 413 children, young people and their families from across the West Midlands at our bases at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Birmingham Children’s Hospital. Across the Midlands, our incredible team of social workers, play specialists and nurse educators are on hand to do everything from talking to schools, employers and mortgage providers to make sure families are in the best position possible, to providing counselling and financial support and advice. On average the cost of living for a family goes up by £600 per month when a child is diagnosed with cancer, one way CLIC Sargent supports is by providing diagnosis, essentials and hardship grants to try and provide some stability when families are struggling. Last year the CLIC Sargent support team based in Birmingham enabled 440 grants for families in the West Midlands, totalling £88,140 to help ease the financial burden on families dealing with childhood cancer in our community.

For more details visit their website

At the same time we shall retain 50% of the net proceeds for Lions locally determined causes. For examples please click

If you know of a local cause you believe worthy of our fundraising no matter what size or location please get in touch

Posted in Charities, News, Where the money goes

Where the money went 2018/19

Here are just some of the disbursements over the last 12 months:

Partner charities:

  • The UK Sepsis Trust                                       £11,951
  • SoLO – Solihull Life Opportunities                  £11,901


  • Pensioner Outing
  • Older Folks Tea Party
  • Presentation Evening
  • Christmas distribution
  • Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal


 Lions International causes:

  • Indonesia appeal
  • Mozambique appeal
  • Various other District projects
  • Youth Award


Community Services

  • Youth Travel Bursary & young people
  • Arden Academy (Prince William Award)
  • Arden Academy (Schitsdrift Grant)
  • Berrow Homes – Kitchen
  • Knowle Society (Knot Garden)
  • ReCOM Ltd
  • Knowle Royal British Legion
  • Fast Aid
  • Spinal Muscular Atrophy
  • Sparkbrook Foodbank
  • Marie Curie Men’s Shed (Zone project)
  • Niemann-Pick
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Garden project
  • Partner Charities
  • Meningitis NOW                                                                


  Total                                                                        £51,990

The donations to partner charities include funds raised at the 14th Heart of England Bike Ride on 8th July 2019

The other payments were made from funds raised in the year ended 30th June 2018.

A further £23,427 has been set aside for future locally determined donations

If you wish to nominate a local worthy cause please get in touch

Posted in Charities, News, Where the money goes

Jack’s year in Guyana; An Adventure into The Unknown

On the 23rd of August 2018 I embarked on a journey that would take me across the world to Guyana (a country I knew little idea about), to volunteer as a teacher (an occupation I had little experience in) and live independently for the first time. This was a huge leap of faith, but one year on I’m home again, having learnt a huge amount about myself, the people I was living with and the world.

I moved to Sand Creek, South Central, Region #9, Guyana. A village positioned in between the expansive savannah and the impressive jungles. A place impacted by colonialism and more obviously, by Christianity. My school, Sand Creek Secondary School, was one of 4 schools in the region and served the surrounding villages. There were 250 students from years 7 to 11, with students in year 11 sitting their CXC’s (GCSE equivalent). In terms of their teaching staff, there were about 20 teachers, but quantity is pushed above quality. Students who failed 1/more of their CXC’s are now teachers in the same subjects. Therefore, with both GCSE’s and A Levels I was more qualified than most, that’s not to say it was easy at all. The school environment is very much different, corporal punishment is still legal and very much used (and more commonly threatened). Teachers commonly have very little patience and teaching methods tend to include reading from a textbook for students to copy, or writing on the chalkboard, again for students to copy. So, the idea for me was to show the students how to enjoy school and learn whilst having fun.

In terms of communication, there is a village radio to contact nearby villages. The radio operates on solar and was patchy at best, the WiFi situation was similar. The school had free, government provided WiFi, although it only worked when the sun was shining and even then ‘worked’ is generous. So, communication with family was done via WhatsApp, with phone calls a handful of times throughout the year.

As a teacher, I was involved in teaching students in year 7, 9 and 10 maths, science and geography. Maths and science were the ‘easy’ subjects as they were common in the school with resources and teachers to ask for help. On the other hand, geography was brand new, introduced for the first time by yours truly. The school had 4 CXC textbooks as well as some British A level resources but no curriculum or guide for teaching it. So, I wrote my own. I found this hugely enjoyable as I choose subjects that gave the students a view of the world around them, their impacts on it and how it’s changing (areas that I am passionate about).

A memorable moment for me was whilst teaching students about the world’s continents, a student stopped me to ask “Sir, how do you know all of this information?”. These students are disconnected from what is going on around the world and for me to be able to stand in front of them and answer all their questions about the animals that live in Europe, what the temperatures are like in Australia or even the languages spoken across the Americas boggles their minds. I found all my teaching hugely rewarding, especially with the younger students who would sometimes be the sunshine in your day, and other days they would be the hardest class. They ended up teaching me a lot about patience and perseverance (it’s not just the students that learn in school). For science, I taught at year 9 level and in Guyana they have a national exam at this level. I was responsible for coaching 42 students through coursework and how to answer the exam questions. A challenging experience when some students don’t want to help themselves, but together we got through it and I’m just as nervous for the results as they are.

At the end of a year of teaching, both my students and I had been on a journey. From my first day teaching to my last and from their first day in secondary school and still many more to go. My time there was short at only a year, but I would hope to have left a lasting memory with my students, of perseverance, of learning from mistakes, and of having fun and working hard.

Although teaching was a large part of my year, I was also living amongst an indigenous Amerindian community. A community below the poverty line, but regardless get on and live their lives. They work on their farms to provide vegetables and provisions for their community. They train as cowboys to herd their horses and cattle in order to earn some money. This is a place where laziness isn’t allowed, as it doesn’t put food on the table. That is the day to day struggle, what will we eat today? Where will it come from? Through their struggle they are the most generous and kind people I have known. Everyone knows everyone, says hello to everyone and helps when they’re in need.

To exemplify generosity, I will tell a little story. There was a time that I visited my friend’s house, they are a family of about 12. I stayed for a while and chatted and played with their children. When I get up to leave, they hand me half a bunch of bananas. Half of their last bunch. They don’t know when they will next get fruit, fruit that is their breakfast and snack. If I was to politely refuse, they would be offended, they are offering, and I must accept. Can you imagine your friend turning around and offering you a similar proportion of their monthly salary?

I have to say, my experiences in Guyana have had a profound impact on me. I have jumped into the deep end of the deepest pool I know and not drowned but thrived. I made lifelong friends, I helped shape the futures of my students and I gained memories that will never fade.

Finally I would like to extend a huge thank you to the Knowle and Dorridge Lions, without their invaluable support through the Youth Travel Bursary Programme I am not sure how I would have raised all my funds (£6,200 in total!). I hope that they continue to offer this amazing support to young people who are hoping to embark on the journey of a lifetime. To any young people reading this, I can whole heartedly recommend travelling out of your comfort zone, not just as a tourist, but live in a new, exciting and diverse place.

Jack Bailey – August 2019

Posted in News, Youth Travel Bursary

Aston Hall visit

Lions, partners and friends were warned to look out for Unicorns, secret doors, cannon balls and maybe a ghost or two when they visited Aston Hall in late August. Fortunately no ghosts were spotted but we did experience the splendour of one of the last great house built in the Jacobean style. Our experience was completed by a fine lunch in the nearby Aston Tavern.

Posted in Membership, News

Calendar of Events

Sun 12 July Heart of England Bike Ride

Now re-arranged for Sun 11 October  37th Knowle Fun Run 

Sun 27 Dec 28th Lions Festive Walk t.b.c.


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