On Sunday 23 June 2019, Keith “Lofty” Bunyon was inaugurated as the 70th President of Tonbridge Lions Club. Outgoing President, Tom Simmons, presented Keith with the chain of office at a luncheon at the Boat House Bistro, Bewl Water, Lamberhurst.

Keith has been in Tonbridge since the age of 8 when he was at Woodlands School. He played cricket for local clubs and has been active in Tonbridge Scouting for nearly 50 years, as a member of Cubs, Scouts & Venture Scouts and now as an adult leader for over 40 years. Keith and his wife Joan were Friends of Tonbridge Lions for a couple of years before Keith joined as a member in 2008 and he has played a full and active part in the Club’s many and varied service & fundraising activities.

Keith says it is an absolute honour to be trusted to represent the oldest and one of the largest Lions Clubs in the country in its 70th year and is looking forward to meeting many special & interesting people during his year as President.

Photo: Outgoing President Tom Simmons congratulated new President Keith "Lofty" Bunyon.

Photo: President Keith "Lofty " Bunyon with his wife, Joan.

THE CLUB IN 2018/19

The current membership stands at 53 and meets twice per month, a business and dinner meeting, in addition to both the wide a varied programme of service, fund raising and social activities. These range from running a nationally recognised triathlon and the town carnival to Christmas barrel organ collections, a fun day for the disabled, quiz nights and numerous other events.

Tom Simmons  becomes new President of Tonbridge Lions Club.

On Sunday 24th June Tom Simmons was inaugurated as the sixty-ninth President of Tonbridge Lions Club.  Outgoing President, Gordon Hill, presented Tom with the chain of office at a luncheon at Hever Castle Golf Club.


Tom has lived and worked in Tonbridge all of his life.  He met his wife Vanessa at Hugh Christie School and married in September 1977 at the Parish Church.  Tom and Vanessa have two married daughters, Nicky and Becky, who both live in Tonbridge, and five grandchildren.  Recently retired from a career in law after more than 40 years, Tom worked in a Tonbridge based law firm and he is very well known in the business community and locally.


In addition to his involvement with the Lions, Tom’s interests include reading, studying military history, military modelling and war-gaming, gardening and spending time with Vanessa touring in their motor home. Tom and Vanessa are looking forward to the coming year and continuing the tradition in representing the Tonbridge Lions Club in its 69th year, raising funds for local causes.



 Tonbridge Lion Club’s new President Tom Simmons and his wife Vanessa


 Board of Directors 2019/20                         

President Lion Lofty Bunyon
Secretary Lion Ian McGill
Treasurer Lion Peter Godsall
Greeter Lion Tom Simmons
First Vice President Lion Keith Bourne
Second Vice President Lion Richard Hill
Minutes Secretary Lion Gordon Hill
Director (1 year) Lion Jon Wenzel
Director (2 year) Lion Trevor Prockter
Activities Chairman Lion Dominic Keast
Tail Twister Lion Barrie Bromley
Lion Tamer Lion Phil Jesson
Activities Secretary Lion Mike Stout



The summer of 1949 saw the beginnings of Tonbridge Lions Club.


During the 1939/45 war a Tonbridge hairdresser CWH Addy was often in touch with servicemen from the United States and Canada. He heard many stories about the Lions and the aims and objectives of Lions Clubs, and decided he would try to organize a club in Tonbridge.


In 1947 he wrote to the headquarters office of Lions International for advice and as a consequence was able to advise that office in 1949 that he was in contact with enough interested men in Tonbridge to form a Lions Club.


The official formation of Tonbridge Lions Club followed on the 9th February 1950, though it had been operating as a club for some months prior to that date.