Fathers Day, celebrated in the UK on 19th June this year and honoured  around the world to recognise the contribution that fathers and father figures make to the lives of their children is a day that recognises the contribution that dads make around the world and celebrates fatherhood and male parenting.

The History of Fathers Day

Unlike Mothers Day, which is a traditional Christian holiday in the UK known as Mothering Sunday’, the premise behind Fathers day is a lot more modern. It also took a lot longer to become acknowledged. 

The first ever Fathers Day happened in 1908 when a West Virginian Church held a special sermon honouring fathers after 362 men were killed in a mining accident. Parishioners gave out flowers, both red and white, to honour the living and the dead in commemoration of all that our fathers do for us.

However, the church community here didn’t celebrate it again and it seems that it was more linked to the mining accident than a serious attempt at a national holiday.

Sonora Smart Dodd

In 1909, the year after the ‘Fathers Day’ in West Virginia, a woman called Sonora Smart Dodd made it her mission to set up a national Fathers Day. She was upset by the fact that there was a Mother’s Day, but no corresponding day for fathers. 

Dodd petitioned her local community and government to change this. Originally she wanted Fathers Day to be on June 5th, which was her own father’s birthday, as a way of honouring him. He was a Civil War veteran who had raised six children on his own after his wife died during childbirth.

Washington state celebrated its first Fathers Day in June 1910, although it was delayed until June 16th.

Fathers Day slowly spread to other states however it was never really as popular as Mothers Day. This is partly due to women seeming to be more sentimental, and so therefore more appreciative of gifts and expressions of thanks. Ideas such as this seem totally outdated to us now but it was what many men thought and the day didn’t always go over well.

WWII and Nixon

That all seemed to change in World War II when advertisers grabbed an opportunity to use Fathers Day to boost morale for the troops out on the field. By the time the war was over, Fathers Day was a national institution.   In 1966 President Lyndon Johnson signed an executive order that the holiday be celebrated on the third Sunday in June.

Richard Nixon finally declared Fathers Day a national holiday in 1972 when he signed it into law in the middle of his re-election campaign. By 1972 the UK had already followed suit and we were celebrating on this day too.

Fathers Day


Our Dad – Norman Kennish

As many of you know, Kentra Training was established by Norman in February 1997 and is still a family run business 25 years later.    Norman’s career progressed from Warehouse manager and in-house instructor to being head hunted by a Training company based in Croydon.  From 1989 to 1996 Norman continued to increase his training portfolio and progressed to Training Director however, being away from home so much did not have the work life balance he craved.  So in 1997 Norman took the plunge and Kentra was born!

Norman’s wife Tricia quickly came onboard to manage the paperwork and office admin with my brother John joining the company in 2004 as an additional instructor and myself in 2005, to take over the accounts and help with the admin.   We have seen a few more staff, instructor changes and a new Training centre over the years and Norman has held us all together and steered us on the right path.

He’s still here, loving the training as much as ever and as his daughter I can not express how incredibly proud of him I am and all he has achieved.

Well done Dad with all our love on Fathers Day from Emma and John  xx


Fathers Day


Fathers Day


Happy Fathers Day from the Kentra Training family.


Fathers Day

Training dads since 1997

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Awarding Body – NPORS