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MARGATE autumn 2018



Modern-day Seaside Stories


dog special

Home-grown Heroes



Help is at hound with our dog guide

Meet Thanet’s hardworking food producers

Gig tips, vinyl picks and more

How immigration shaped the seaside


Great venue available for private birthday parties and special occasions Sunset dining from the only panoramic Harbour brasserie in Ramsgate

vegan dishes are available, and there is also a Children’s menu. Desserts include chocolate fondant, sticky toffee pudding, and ice cream and sorbet made by chef Adrian Mowl. The brasserie is the perfect location for Sunday lunch: A regular Sunday roast is £10.00, or you can indulge in a large roast for £12.50. For vegetarians, there is a homemade nutroast. craft beers and guest beers on tap, plus a selection of ciders and guest wines from independent, single-estate vineyards, along with an extensive range of cocktails.

We’re cooking with a charcoal Harrison oven


We have free park ing out s ide the premises & a large sun t errace E ast Pier, Royal Harbour, Ramsgat e, CT 11 8LS 01843 599 059 | royalharbourbras serie. co. uk



tunning views and a warm ambience awaits you at the Royal Harbour Brasserie. With its unrivalled position on the harbour arm in Ramsgate, offering a panorama of the sparkling marina, the jetty and out to sea, the restaurant recreates the relaxed style of the original Parisienne brasseries. Relax with a cup of freshly ground coffee, home-baked patisserie, or a meal, either inside, or on our terrace that allows you to enjoy the sunny days and glorious sunsets. You can even see France on a clear day! Open from 11am till late everyday, we do breakfast/ brunch with a vegetarian breakfast. The menu concentrates on simple dishes beautifully prepared, with the freshest of local seafood and Kentish ingredients. Seafood lovers can enjoy paella, or mussels. Vegetarian and


Margate Mercury

Contents 4 Contributors - meet our team 5

Portraits of Margate


The Scoop


Exhibition News Eggy Dave Encounters


Autumn Hotlist


Music News


Thanks for the Music - stories from Margate’s musicians


“Gritty, Edgy, Arty” - meet the founder of Margate’s film festival

18 Margate’s Silver Screens 20 Cut-out art poster ‘System Accumulation’ by Steve McPherson 21

Sculpting the Sea - modelmaker and sculptor James Griffiths

22 Time and Tides - how immigration shaped the seaside 24

Dog Special - help is at hound with our dog guide

27 Pooch People - meet local business moguls and dog owners 32 The Mutt Map - charting Margate’s dog-friendly hot spots 36 Hot Dogs - the hottest canine accessories 38 Food News 41 A Wing and a Prayer - birding escapades in Margate cemetery 43 The Home-Grown Heroes Thanet’s hardworking food producers 47 Recipe - Pear Tarte Tatin with Kentish Blue Cheese 48

Raising a Wreck - transforming a stately ship of a house


A Crescent Swoon - checking in with two hotel gurus


The Renovation Instagrammers the most inspirational renovation journeys to follow

Welcome to our autumn issue From the Founder & Publisher Clare Freeman

10 6

Photographer Grey Hutton


fter writing this issue’s dog guide (page 24) and meeting dog owners during our ‘Hot Dogs’ photo shoot (page 36) I’m pretty sure that if reincarnation does exist I would like to return as a Margate pooch. I’ve never lived anywhere that’s so canine-friendly. Beaches to roam, friendly groomers to keep you in trim, shops selling funky dog accessories and treats - this is the place to be if you are a hound. But it’s not just dogs that love the town. Margate is becoming ever-more attractive to new humans too. The pull from London only seems to be getting stronger, with the town awash with new faces. While exciting, I know from experience that moving here can also be lonely. Whilst it’s very easy to meet people at parties and events, making those I-can-call-up-to-borrow-a-screwdriver friends can take time. To try and help, we’ve set up a new project - Make Mates - with events and get togethers for new Margate residents. We hope it helps newcomers make new friends and settle here more quickly (margatemercury. com/makemates). And for a reminder that

almost everyone in Thanet was a newcomer once, check out our feature on the different communities that have settled here and contributed over the centuries (page 22). This October is the first Margate Film Festival, so in this issue we discover the fascinating history of cinema in Margate (page 18) and meet the founder of the festival, Kate Williamson (page 17). We also meet the hardworking farmers and people producing food locally in Thanet (page 43), go on a ghost hunt at the Theatre Royal (page 58) and get a humorous insight in to birdwatching in Margate cemetery (page 41). Happy howlaween all (that’s my last dog pun, promise). Clare x


@margatemercury Issue Ten, Autumn 2018 (September to November) Founder & Publisher Clare Freeman Design Lizzy Tweedale Sub-editor Ros Anderson Advertising Jen Brammer and Rose Stowell Intern Zoë Francis Front cover Beekeeper Holly Richards-Hall by Kat Green Print Mortons Print Advertising and distribution enquiries





55 The Secret Sunken Gardens 56 How to be Single-on-Sea - the plight of Margate’s lonely hearts

Section Editors & Contributors


The Spirit of the Stage - ghosthunting in the Theatre Royal

Property & Interiors, History  Ros Anderson


Hannah and Hanna return to Dreamland - Margate’s acclaimed theatre show returns to the stage

Theatre & Entertainment Daisy Buchanan


Short Stories - creative new fiction from local writers


Give Something Back to Margate

Food & Drink  Lisa Harris Charities & Current Affairs   Lucy Edematie

Art and Culture  Twinkle Troughton

Published by the Margate Mercury © All rights reserved Copyright 2018 Margate Mercury

Writers Andrew Mills Anna Bang Annie Nichols Carol Cooper Dan Thompson Dale Shaw Dave McKenna Francesca Wright Ian Allen Jessica Jordan-Wrench Jo Usmar Lauren Hill-Roger Seb Reilly Sophie Morris Tom Adams

Photographers Benjamin Eagle Caroline Dyal Kat Green Joel Knight Sam Wiles Illustrators Emma Falconer Eve Lloyd Knight Jade Spranklen Kavel Rafferty Martin Stirling Michael Goodson Stylist Issie Gibbons


Margate Mercury


Meet the Contributors

Our wealth of local talent, from writers to photographers, editors and researchers, all contribute to making the Margate Mercury a varied and attractive read each issue. Here we get the inside story on some of this issue’s key players

Annie Nichols

Jessica Jordan-Wrench

Michael Goodson

Annie Nichols is a leading cookery writer, and originally trained and worked as a chef internationally. She also studied Fine Art at Central Saint Martins College of Art, where she specialised in photography, video and conceptual art. Annie now runs innovative supper clubs that combine her love of food, art and performance. She is currently writing her sixth cookery book, due to be published in November 2018. Each issue Annie works with a local cook to produce our featured recipe (Pear Tarte Tatin with Kentish Blue Cheese, page 47).

Before moving to Margate, Jessica Jordan-Wrench worked as a music journalist, before running the Tom Thumb Theatre with Eoin Furbank for four years. Often in collaboration with Furbank, she now makes “noisy theatre, live and installation art” under the name Dot Dash. She has recently been selected for the Bloomberg New Contemporaries 18 exhibition of emerging artists. This issue we feature a Margate-set short story by Jessica, ‘Sunset Cheeks, Blue Skittle Eyes’ (page 59).

Michael Goodson is a freelance illustrator and designer, working on big brand projects and small personal drawings in Cliftonville. Originally trained at Goldsmiths University in London, his humorous, characterful work has been exhibited locally as part of the Festival of Cats at Viking Gallery and Best In Show at Lovelys Gallery, and prints are available to buy online. This issue Michael has provided the illustration to accompany Jessica’s short story (page 59).

et? r c t se l p e t-k thica liffs s e ’s b ndly, e s at C e t rga o-frie pstair d. a M ec n u Roa An salo own r hai orthd N on t Cu olour C hop ate g r a com 8 S M . , Rd gate 7188 n r ow ma 43 5 d h ort irling 018 N st 172

WerkHaus Margate

P h o t o g r a p h e r : M i ko l a i B e r g Model: Lily Brueur

modern utilitarian womenswear

WerkHaus Margate 30 High Street Margate CT9 1DS

Portraits of Margate

A photography project from Caroline Dyal, Portraits of Margate celebrates our diverse and interesting community with portraits of its people - each recommended by someone else living here.

As part of the Margate Festival, ‘Portraits of Margate’ will be on show at the Joseph Wales Exhibition and Event Space from 14 to 30 September. margate

Portrait: Falle Nioke Age: 30 Occupation: “I am a West African singer from Guinea. I have been singing and writing songs since 2002. I love music because it makes me cool down and is the way I can talk about what is going on.” What does Margate mean to you? “Margate is a beautiful place with more inspiration, which means more stories. And there are many artists around, the beach always gives me inspiration.” Aspirations: “My dream is to have the opportunity to do my music and live in peace. Make people happy always. Maybe become a big singer.” Icon: “Guinean singer Mory Kanté”

25 June 2018 Taken at The Sun Deck, Royal Crescent Promenade in Margate



ILLUSTRATION & PRINT FAIR Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th October

The Winter Gardens & Turner Contemporary FREE ADMISSION 110 exhibitors

an INK PAPER + PRINT event

11 - 5pm

image © Andy Tuohy with kind permission of the Lombard Street Gallery, Margate.

Margate Mercury



7 2


Scoop Courtesy of Dreamland Trust

You heard it here first




Clare Freeman

Farm shop to open on Northdown Road

Arts festival launches with NOW theme

New exhibition space to open at Dreamland

K.G. Winters, an urban farm shop, will be opening in late September at 68 Northdown Road. The shop is the brainchild of couple George and Kate who want to bring highquality Kent and British-based produce to the Margate community. “We will focus on selling great quality fruit and vegetables - with an organic selection available - alongside meat and dairy products, a bakery, homemade deli items, dry goods and provisions, as well as a small selection of cookware and homewares,” says George. “We also aim to set up a kitchen space at the rear of the store for demonstrations and talks on nutrition and food-related topics as well as tasting evenings.” The shop will be open Monday to Saturday 9am to 6pm and Sunday 10am to 3pm.

Following an open-call for ideas and events under the theme of ‘NOW’, this year’s multidisciplinary arts festival will see a plethora of interesting exhibitions and performances from local artists around town from 14 to 30 September. Exhibits on the agenda include a photographic exploration of people on their door stoops by Babe Studio at Hantverk & Found (28 to 30 September), a site-specific, promenade show re-imagining the 80s film ‘Xanadu’ in Margate (26 and 27 September), an immersive screening and live performance centering on the film ‘The Cabinet of Dr Caligari’ by musician Matt Harding at Gordon House (28 September), and a slow walk from Turner Contemporary to CRATE studios led by artist Hannah Tait (23 September).

The Dreamland Trust will be opening a new exhibition space at Dreamland this September showing photographs from the Trust’s archives dating back to the early 1900s as well as footage of Dreamland from the 1970s and 1980s in a viewing area. The free exhibition will enable visitors to find out how Dreamland was saved and more about the iconic Scenic Railway, built in 1920. “We are delighted to be able to open another exhibition space at Dreamland,” says Bernie Morgan, Chair of the Dreamland Trust. “The exhibition offers an opportunity for the public to find out more about the amusement park, the Trust and the part it played in saving Dreamland.” The exhibition will be open at weekends and selected days during the week until the end of September.

Music venue and shop to open off the High Street

Illustration and print fair comes to Margate

Margate Old Town Market returns

Ink Paper + Print, an organisation celebrating and promoting the work of new makers, illustrators and designers working in contemporary graphic arts and design, will be hosting their first fair in Margate on 27 and 28 October. The fair will showcase contemporary and vintage illustration and will be held in two venues, Turner Contemporary and the Winter Gardens, with over 100 exhibitors. “There will be linocuts, screenprints, handmade books, zines and cards, as well as niche books and vintage prints for sale,” says co-founder Joe Pearson. The event is free to attend. Stands start from only £30 and you can get a 20% discount if you quote ‘Margate Mercury’ when you apply. /

Wander into Margate’s Old Town on a Sunday this September and you’ll find it alive with market stalls selling arts, crafts, jewellery, clothes, vintage and more. The Margate Old Town Market - aka Margate Bazaar - is back every Sunday from 10am to 4pm in the market square. “The aim is to enrich the Old Town and increase the sense of community,” says Market Manager Jane Rawlings. “We’re hoping to create a fantastic atmosphere and introduce a few specific pitches for tradespeople like greengrocers, butchers and florists.” If you are interested in having a stall email Jane on margateoldtownmarket@gmail. com. There are three pitch sizes available starting from £15 for one-day only. facebook. com/MargateBazaarOldTownMarket



Sammy Clarke from Art’s Cool and Alex Barron and Ciaran Cliffe from Monkey Boy Records, a Canterbury-based online record store, label and promoter, are teaming up to open Elsewhere, a music venue and record shop off Margate High Street, opening in September. The ‘community-focused and inclusive space’ - previously a Carphone Warehouse shop - will house a music venue in the basement and a record store and bar/cafe on the ground floor featuring a second-hand vinyl section from Coast Vinyl (facebook. com/coastvinyl). It’s hoped that the venue will become an integral part of Margate’s thriving music scene with gigs from national touring bands as well as local Kent musicians.



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Margate Mercury


Autumn Exhibition News

ambitious scale of his painting and his fascination with colour can be explored, from 19 October to 7 January 2019. On the other side Writer of the Old Town, the Twinkle Troughton Liddicoat & Goldhill Project Space utumn in Margate ‘Too Many Takeaway Coffees’ by Mark Habisrittinger has two autumn brings a certain exhibitions coming serenity after the madness of the up, with A rose is a rose is a rose by summer months, and as dreamy Margate-based artist and gallerist Chiara colours of the season fall upon the town, you’ll Williams who is conceptually concerned find a celebration of colour takes centre stage with romanticism-versus-pragmatism in in two of Margate’s galleries. literature, cinema, architecture and design. Lombard Street Gallery in Margate’s After a short residency working in the space, Old Town will be displaying a vibrant an accompanying exhibition will launch on exhibition of decorative works from nationally Friday 7 September from 5 to 7pm, and then and internationally-acclaimed artists in runs until 6 October. Texture, Pattern & Colour, including The next exhibition is Framing Vision works by Elizabeth Cake, Claire Gill, Mark by Maria Chevska. Inspired by Duchamp’s Habisrittinger, Esther Mills and Margo Selby, Etant Donnes, Framing Vision presents both from 15 September to 4 November. painting and sculptural elements viewed Also delving into the world of colour, through two peepholes at head height that are Turner Contemporary will be exhibiting the cut into panels obscuring the work. Artists works of Patrick Heron, one of the most will be invited to perform alongside the significant British artists of the 20th century. exhibition through song, reading or alternative This retrospective spans over fifty years of live performance, launching on Friday 9 Heron’s work from 1943 to 1996, where the November (5-7pm) and then runs from 10



Dave McKenna


Jade Spranklen

A dose of Margate life from a local with an egg-shaped head


aving foolishly foretold, in this very publication, of a summer of sheltering in micro pubs and bemoaning the bastard British summer, I’ve spent the majority of this sensational sizzling summer overhearing snippets from the said sizzled. ‘Ain’t it hot?’ ‘Ohh it’s proper hot.’ ‘It’s a bit much init?’ ‘The hottest since 76 they say’. All these are wise words I overheard while herding teenage foreign students to various touristic attractions. This involved witnessing them

failing to quite understand our culture. For example they couldn’t believe how happy and drunk we were when we beat Sweden in the World Cup. ‘Why?’ their confused faces cried out. Not to mention their bemusement at the words ‘It’s coming home.’ My summer involved a lot of humouring their surprise at many a thing. ‘Oh we packed for rain and it’s hotter than Spain.’ As well as ‘Where is Big Ben?’ ‘It’s behind the scaffolding and if you stand in this spot for just half a decade more you’ll be able to see it.’ Other queries came just down the road from the covered clock. ‘Dave, why is there so much security with guns outside Downing Street?’ ‘Well,’ I began while shouting over the chorus of ‘bollocks to Brexit, bollocks to brexit’ chants coming from the thousands of protesters that had grossly plagued our walking tour, ‘there’s a few reasons the Prime Minister needs a lot of security.’ ‘Ok... Mr Dave what is bollocks?’ I’ll tell you what bollocks is. What is utter bollocks is most of the music that one is subjected to if you don’t actively seek out new sounds that aren't audibly atrocious. That musical minesweeping involves sieving through various online platforms and generally keeping up-to-date with things. I’d decided a long time ago that my musical palette is plenty, no room for current


November to 8 December. Over in Cliftonville, Urchin Wines on Northdown Road has a busy line-up of exhibitions. Parlour Noir and Poodle & Blonde are putting on a show together. Jemelia Elise Whitaker, founder of Parlour Noir, will be embroidering fabric toilet rolls inspired by religious shrine iconography, while Whinnie Williams will be showing her latest collection from her interior company Poodle & Blonde, from 7 September to 3 October. Margate’s Linocut Boy, artist and illustrator Nick Morley, will be exhibiting a collection of his prints from 5 to 31 October, and finally for the season, writer Jenefer Odell is curating a multimedia exhibition for which she is inviting artists, choreographers and film makers to respond to her poetry on the themes of sexuality and womanhood. September is also when the Margate Festival takes place, and this year artists have been asked to respond to the theme NOW. Led by Margate galleries and studios LIMBO, Resort and CRATE, and taking place in venues all over town, the programme will offer something for everyone and showcase the wealth of creativity we have along the Thanet Coast. Check the website for the full programme Enjoy all that Margate’s galleries have to offer this autumn and be sure to check ahead for opening times!

relevance in my world. That was until now. I’d been recruited to film a ‘dub’ night, the night being the same sodding night that England were to crumble to Croatia. But only after being reassured that it wasn’t a ‘dubstep’ affair, a sound I loathed during my university days when everyone else seemed to love the ‘sick drops’ and ‘filthy bass’. Upon arrival at the charming Tom Thumb Theatre I was deflated, the slowed sombre tune of ‘It’s Coming Home’ still churning in my boozed brain. The room was dark, the venue, like my enthusiasm for life, sparsely populated. There was a man on stage, Ghetto Priest his name. He spoke among the darkness, he preached the Rastafarian mantras. Initially I thought, what the bloody hell is this? I didn’t sign up to join a sect. However eventually his messages rang home and the music began. He was followed on stage by Trevor aka Passion and all of the good times were a’ coming. It was great. I’m not sure how, but all of a sudden I found myself nodding, then swaying, then smiling, then doing a creepy combination of all three. ‘Dub’ officially the antidote to football misery. Who would have thought it? And the sound known as ‘dub’, on that night, was coming home (literally - I bought a CD from Trevor aka Passion, lovely bloke, on the way out).

“I found myself nodding, then swaying, then smiling, then doing a creepy combination of all three”

Autumn Hotlist Compiled by Zoë Francis

SEPT Wheels and Fins Festival An eclectic, boutique, music and action sports festival located at Joss Bay 7 to 9 September Joss Bay

On the Decks with Bushwacka! An afternoon of dirty acid house music from Bushwacka!, an acclaimed electronic music DJ 16 September 2pm The Sun Deck thesundeckmargate

Roundabout Festival A unique, intimate pop-up theatre at Marine Gardens with award-winning shows 20 to 23 September

Margate Supper’s Secret Garden Party and Barbeque

Marine Gardens roundabout-margate

An outdoor feast with ice cold beers and summery drinks. Tickets are £35 and include entrance, food and drinks 8 September 5pm Secret location, Cliftonville

The Guitar and Other Machines An evening of contemporary instrumental music with Leo Abrahams, Adam Coney, Ross Downes and more 8 September 8pm Radio Margate

Burning Books A powerful and humorous look at an education system buckling under government cuts and targets 15 September 8pm Tom Thumb Theatre

Yoga for Teens A three-day workshop on how to teach yoga and mindfulness to teenagers and young people 22, 23 & 24 September 10am to 4pm Margate Yoga Den

The Margate Bookie

A weekend of jazz featuring the legend Courtney Pine 21 - 23 September Olby’s Soul Cafe

Elsewhere Music Venue Opening Celebrate the opening of Elsewhere’s music venue with drinks, live music and DJs 22 September 7.30pm Elsewhere

World of Dance Weekend Two days celebrating social dance styles from around the world

Friction with special guest Dimension

A wickedly twisted international hit tale with live music, performance and storytelling

Multi-award-winning drum and bass DJ Friction will be joined by special guests Dimension in Dreamland’s Hall by the Sea

5 October, 7.30pm 6 October, 3pm and 7.30pm Theatre Royal

A friendly lit fest by the sea with a poetry slam, workshops, events for children, talks and more. The Margate Bookshop will also be selling a curated selection of books 28 to 30 September Turner Contemporary and other venues in the Old Town

Turner & Pooch Dog Weekend

Margate Jazz Weekend

The Animals and Children Took to the Streets

A weekend of canine celebrations on Turner Contemporary’s terrace with toys, Frozzy’s doggy ice cream and a professional photographer to take portraits of your dog

Tim Vine - Sunset Milk Idiot Catch this English writer, actor, comedian and presenter telling new jokes, showing off new homemade props and singing some new daft ditties 9 October 8pm Margate Winter Gardens margatewintergardens.

OCT Margate Film Festival With the theme of ‘Outsiders’, Margate film festival will host a variety of events and film screenings across Margate which pay homage to the town 3 to 7 October Multiple venues in Margate

Festival of Rememberance

13 October 9pm

The Royal British Legion leads a ceremony to reflect on the sacrifices made by service men and women


2 November 7.15pm

Steeleye Span

Margate Winter Gardens margatewintergardens.

Folk-rock pioneers celebrate their 50th anniversary and 23rd studio album

Hannah & Hanna in Dreamland

14 October 7.30pm Theatre Royal

Screamland Immerse yourself in a frightening world of interactive scare mazes and sideshows as Dreamland mutates again into Screamland 13 to 31 October Dreamland screamland

29 and 30 September 11am Turner Contemporary


John Retallack’s awardwinning story of Hannah from Margate and Hanna from Kosovo returns to the Theatre Royal stage 3 November, 7.30pm 4 November, 3pm Theatre Royal

Art’s Cool Present: Kagoule Nottingham-based band Kagoule perform alongside special guests 7 November 7pm Tom Thumb Theatre

The Nutcracker

Phill Jupitus Juplicity Watch in delight and/or horror as experienced comedian Jupitus jokes about the chaos of his own life and the uncertain world that surrounds it 13 October 7.30pm Theatre Royal

The Margate Illustration and Print Fair A fair showcasing contemporary and vintage illustration with over 100 exhibitors in two venues 27 and 28 October 11am The Winter Gardens and Turner Contemporary

Vienna Festival ballet present one of the most famous classical ballets 14 November 7.30pm Margate Winter Gardens margatewintergardens.

Stewart Francis Into the Punset The ‘Mock the Week’ star embarks on his last tour ever! See him before he heads off ‘Into the Punset’

22 and 23 September

23 November 7.30pm


Theatre Royal


0 5 . 1 0 HEDKANDI




0 2 . 1 1 CHASE & STATUS


2 3 . 1 1 REEF





DREAMLAND.CO.UK Book tickets now

24HR Ancient Sounds - Modern Times


Thursdays at Union Yoga Studio, Margate. Private

Sessions available at The Chamomile Clinic, Margate and beyond….

'...tonight was divine. If you need to destress and let go of anxious or negative thoughts you should definitely go..' – Dove, Ramsgate / Insta @Solastasounds / 07779 347937 /




Weekly Candlelit Sound Bath Meditations 8.30pm


Book & Track using FaceBook Messenger Book on-line through or download our apps You can now pay in-car, simply request a chip & pin car


Margate Mercury


Image taken by Charlotte Patmore

Once half of the band Slow Club and now a solo artist, this musician parties at Tom Thumb, munches on chicken kebabs, and can’t stop listening to Rihanna My music is... Sexy psoriasis depression core. I listen to... The same Rihanna album over and over. My favourite Margate band is... Chas & Dave. I listen to music at... The Tom Thumb. I also throw up and make a fool of myself there. What’s on your Margate ‘to do’ list? Bomba Kebab chicken shish extra salad extra chilli sauce.


Emma Falconer

What made you move to Margate? An intense amount of stress and anxiety about my life / Stephen Bass said it would be a good idea. What’s your most memorable night out in Margate? Hahahahah. Oh god. I think I remember the last Cockles & Muscles and my band mate Kelli was down and we danced all night - like serious extreme dancing covered in sweat yelling about how much we loved each other. That was a good one.

Team Transmission New Strappings, Pt.1 Ice Baths

Be Seeing You! The Advisory Circle

Untitled Original 11383 (Take 1) John Coltrane

My Perfect Prisoner Dead Cross

It’s Not Just Me Let’s Eat Grandma

You Ought To Know Here Lies Man

Divers in the Water Ben Chatwin

How do you find being a solo artist? It’s extremely liberating and exciting to finally be able to put my exact self out there uncompromised. It is however a new kind of stressful because I have to be very sure of my gut feelings - on a good day I feel unsinkable but on a bad day I think oh god what have I done. Being a solo artist seems to just be swinging between the two which is as fun as it sounds mentally. How did the transition from working as part of a duo to working solo happen? For a few years both Charles and I were clearly wanting different things musically. We still found a place to collaborate but it was obvious we both needed to go and scratch our other itchy bits alone. Wow.

What’s your favourite Margate hangout? I love having a Foster’s with a lemonade top at Barnacles. I also do a lot of hanging out at Morrisons tbh.

“This playlist represents what Transmission is currently listening to in-store, ranging from the psychedelic Afrorock of Here Lies Man to the full-on sonic assault of Dead Cross and all points inbetween”

Upcoming projects in Margate? I am working on my album with Johan Karlberg at Electric Beach Studios. I’m also working on my beer belly and tan lines. If someone gave you the money to invest in Margate, how would you leave your mark? Great question. Some really big bins.


Death in Vegas

Is There No Peace Zendik

Put That Gun Down Amy Odell


Yellow Magic Orchestra

Now We Rise and We Are Everywhere Maine

Comme Des Pirates Le Matos

Happy Whistler (Edit) Group Listening

Black Hole Party

Thousand Foot Whale Claw

Listen to the Transmission playlist on Spotify here Transmission Records will be opening a bar on the ground-floor of its shop at 105 Northdown Road this autumn. For more information visit or

Margate Mercury



Ed Warren from cafe and record store Cliffs give us his top gig picks for the season

Time to give your personal playlist a post-summer shake up? Here four Margate vinyl sellers pick out their favourite record from their collection Ed Warren, Cliffs, 172 Northdown Road “My favourite record from our current stock is ‘Mr Universe’ by Gillian. I’ve never heard it and probably never will, but it’s got our staff members’ (Jimi and Tuli) dad-shredding guitar on it. All hail Bernie Tormé!” Kate Barber, Albion Stores, 27 Fort Road “Club Medusa is the most played record in our shop. It’s a wonderful compilation of music curated by the highly regarded record dealer Charles Bar. Spanning genres and eras, it encapsulates the varied sound and feel of ‘Balearic’ perfectly, with tracks like Gemini’s ‘Take a Chance’ and Eddy La Viny’s ‘Havan’ Hamac’. A must-have for anyone who likes a deeper groove.”

Spencer Hickman, Transmission Records, 105 Northdown Road “Sometimes you get a record in and it doesn’t leave your listening deck for weeks. Thousand Foot Whale Claw by Black Hole Party (Holodeck Records) is one of those records, an absolutely epic electronic record taking in elements of krautrock and koshmiche, to ambient and techno with nods to post-rock and Spacemen 3-style drone. One of the best records of 2018!” Luke O’Connor, Concept Store, 2 Dane Hill “This is the first release from Charlie Bones’ new record label, Do You Records! Charlie holds down the breakfast show on NTS Radio and is one of our favourite selectors — a DJ’s DJ, who also played at the last event we held back in London. This release features three tracks that reflect past, present and future spectrums including Bryce Hackford, Dog & Fox and Seiji Ono.”

02 / 09 Dreamland Introducing Final It’s a battle of the bands in which young musicians clash for the title of ‘inaugural Dreamland introducing winner’. Reminiscent of the big finale to Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, hopefully minus Death. 12 / 09 Prettiest Eyes at Tom Thumb Theatre Art’s Cool present another Castle Face Records collective. They are odd, they are catchy, they are energetic and they are sexy. 21 - 23 / 09 Margate Jazz Weekend, Olby’s Soul Cafe I’m not going to pretend to know about jazz, but I do know Courtney Pine is playing and he was once in a band called The Jazz Warriors. 22 / 09 Grooverider at Ramsgate Music Hall I’m not going to pretend I know about drum ‘n’ bass, but I do know Grooverider is to drum ‘n’ bass what Terry Nutkins is to the wild. 03 / 10 Wire at Ramsgate Music Hall The punk band that formed in 1976 broke all the rules, and are still getting away with it. This is my gig of the month. See you there. 06 / 10 Bo Ningen at Ramsgate Music Hall If you’re into astonishing Japanese noise rock, this is for you. Can meets Kraftwerk, Faust meets Fugazi. 14 / 10 Art School Girlfriend at Tom Thumb Theatre Margate’s own ethereall wunderkind, signed to Wolf Tone Records, and here to intoxicate you with her calm and chaos.

Jessica Jordan-Wrench gives us her take on Margate’s thriving, collaborative live music scene Eoin and I moved to Margate in the summer of 2012, to take the reigns of the Tom Thumb Theatre: a glorious 50-capacity sweatbox, with peeling flocked wallpaper and hand-me-down velvet seats. In a blaze of extraordinarily unlucky programming, our first show at the Tom Thumb clashed with the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. The audience started at six, dwindling to four by the interval. Happily, one of the dwindled few was Sammy Clarke from Art’s Cool. The conversation quickly turned to music, lamenting Margate’s slumbering scene. While wholeheartedly acknowledging notable exceptions – Hardcore

at the Westcoast Bar, Experimental Noise at CRATE – there were no regular DIY nights. No bring zines, form a band, write poetry, everyone is welcome home-from-home. No place for a community to incubate. So we began hatching plans. Fast forward six years (reel it forward with a biro, to save your batteries) and the landscape has changed beyond recognition – Venues! Promoters! BANDS! - but the climate that shapes it remains. Things feel possible in Margate. It feels buoyant. Margate is not a money-maker; there are no ready-made audiences and instant sell-outs are rare. Rather, the music scene here is an intimate one, overwhelmingly self-directed and deliciously DIY. They collaborate because it is fun. Community over competition. Long may that continue.

19 / 10 10CC at Margate Winter Gardens If you don’t like cricket, but in fact love it, come and check out the band who’s name is derived from the metric total of semen ejaculated by the average male. 30 / 10 Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs at Tom Thumb Theatre Presented by Art’s Cool and Connect Nothing With Nothing. One of The Guardian’s bands to watch in 2018, with an Iggy-esque drive to dementia, Sabbath-esque squalor and Motörhead-style dirt. The ceiling will shake. 13 / 11 The Australian Pink Floyd at Margate Winter Gardens It goes without saying that this should be an aural and visual spectacular. I’ll be disappointed if they’re not all wearing board shorts and those hats with corks dangling off them.

Thanks for the music Writer & Photographer Ian Allen

Margate’s musical history is best captured by the people and musicians who have played, danced and listened to music here for decades. Here two such people tell us their stories

The Templars

Flyer from the Sunshine Rooms

Mark Minter

Sean Bicknell

“I was given my first banjo, a Uke, by my uncle in the 1950s at about the age of six. Then I started playing the banjo - which was a Christmas gift from mum and dad and cost £5 in 1957 - before moving on to the guitar when I was about twelve. I then formed a band called The Templars with school friends from The Roan School, Blackheath, where I knew Albert Hammond and Mike Hazlewood, song writers known for ‘It Never Rains In Southern California,’ and ‘Little Arrows.’ The band was named after Templars Grill Bar which is now Wetherspoons in Aldgate, London. We played as far away as Manchester, the California Ballroom at Dunstable, and also on boats on the River Thames. We also supported The Who at Westminster College. At an audition in London in 1964, a musician called Jerry Dorsey asked if he could borrow our equipment. We let him, and he said that he owed us a favour. He went on to become Engelbert Humperdinck, and I did see him again, but did not ask for any favour in return! I moved to the Isle Of Sheppey in 1971 and formed a new band called Burnt Ice with Alan, Dave and Ken, our old bass player with The Templars, and played all over Medway. In 1976 I released a single ‘Oh! Mr Brown’ as Micky Mint on Pinnacle Records, which was recorded at the CBS Studios in London. In 2004 I appeared on The Generation Game with Burnt Ice. I came to Margate in 1976 and ran The Orb on Ramsgate Road for eighteen years. I still play music as a soloist in Thanet.”

“I was born in Ramsgate and attended Holy Trinity Infants and Juniors school, before going to King Ethelbert’s secondary school in Westgate, where I was in the same year as Tracey Emin. I stayed on there until the sixth form and then joined a youth training scheme for a year to learn archeology. I first got into the punk scene while working in a summer holiday job in 1978 at The Rumpy Bar, situated opposite Margate Clock Tower. Trains and coach-loads of punks came to Margate to see the punk bands at the Sunshine Rooms, which was part of the Dreamland complex. After making friends with these punks, I started going to see bands there. Even though it was an over-18 venue and I was 15, I used to get in with other punks by saying that I was the same age as them. I used to wear a PVC bomber jacket with a fur collar, skin-tight PVC trousers and leather boots with red and black uppers from BOY on the Kings Road. The first band I saw at the Sunshine Rooms was Chelsea, with The Police supporting, in 1978. It was a whole new world of exhilaration and intrigue. After that I saw Adam and the Ants who were very energetic. The next band I saw was Siouxsie and the Banshees who were also highly charged. Other well-known punk bands that played there were 999 and Generation X, as well as many lesser known outfits. In 1980 at the end of the punk era I became interested in the post-punk, electro and indie scene featuring Soft Cell and The Smiths.”

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For people who love independent film

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Margate Mercury

“Gritty, Edgy, Arty” Writer

Jo Usmar



“This festival is for everyone, no matter how long they’ve lived here”

Photographer Joel Knight

Founder Kate Williamson explains what to expect at this year’s first ever Margate Film Festival

I think moving to Margate last year was one of the healthiest things I’ve ever done,” Kate Williamson says, leaning back in her chair. “Part of the reason I started this film festival was to meet people – which I’ve definitely done – but also to feel centred in this place, to feel like there’s a reason I’m here.” Margate’s inaugural Film Festival will run from 3 to 7 October, bringing local filmmakers, musicians, actors and artists together to pay homage in various ways to our town. “The festival is a representation of the people living in Margate. Some of that is through the subject of the films, or a link to a person living here, or a link to the landscape,” Kate says. “It’s a little bit gritty, a little bit edgy, a little bit arty. The overarching theme is ‘Outsiders’. A lot of the films are about outsiders, and I thought about my own experience of moving to a new town, how you notice all the cliques and can wonder ‘where are my people?’ There’s a consciousness here that a lot of people have moved down from London - but we are locals, we’re not segregated. No one is unwelcome. This festival is for everyone, no matter how long they’ve lived here.” Having run film festivals in London, and programmed and commissioned short films through her company Short Sighted Cinema, Kate was surprised by how few film-related events there were in Margate. “Apart from the film club at Tom Thumb every week – which is great – there’s nothing else going on. There isn’t even a cinema anymore - although Margate has a rich history of cinemas (see pg 18). Someone suggested I put on a film festival and I thought about it, and was like, ‘That’s a really good idea’. What’s interesting is there’s almost nothing about Margate on film. There are loads of music videos though, which is interesting. We’re taking an experimental approach, putting on films about the sea, films locals have contributed to, original performances of film scores, short films, music videos, and even an installation using documentary footage and electronic music inspired by the tidal pool.” The festival will host about 15 events at the Tom Thumb Theatre, Cliffs and Theatre

Royal, (with Tom Thumb being the ‘hub’ of the action). The schedule will include film screenings on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evenings, then three events each day on Saturday and Sunday. “We’ve also partnered up with 1927, the theatre production company who did Golem last year, for their new show The Animals and Children Took to the Streets, which will be showing at Theatre Royal.” Kate’s been surprised and grateful for the support offered and enthusiasm shown for the festival. “We didn’t get any funding for this. It’s an entirely voluntary effort. People are interested and excited about it. There are some things we wanted to do that we can’t because we don’t have enough money, but that’s nice in a way – it allows us to be quite experimental. This year is the pilot project – I want to see how

it’s received and what the feedback is. If it’s good hopefully we’ll be able to fundraise for it and then eventually be able to commission films about Margate. There are just so many interesting things and people here – so many stories to tell. And these stories will get lost if we don’t archive them. This is an opportunity to be ambitious, to do a bit of everything and to get everyone involved.” To find out more visit

The Silver Screens of Margate

Hippodrome 1898-1958


Seb Reilly Built as the New Grand Theatre in 1898 and retitled the Hippodrome, films were screened in the early 1900s as part of a variety programme. After being equipped with a sound system in 1929, it was renamed the Hippodrome Cinema, and in 1931 was taken over by the County Cinemas chain, later returning to use as a theatre until 1940. Having survived the bombings of WWII, the Hippodrome reopened in 1946 and remained in use until the late-50s. It was demolished in the mid-60s and is now the site of Margate Library.

Whilst there are many cinemas throughout Thanet, Margate has been without a screen for over a decade. This year the Margate Film Festival is bringing the movies back to Margate, so writer Seb Reilly has looked through the old reels to find the stories of Margate’s former cinemas

8 1898–195

Parade Cinema 1911-1981

Clifton Cinema 1903-1924

Images Courtesy of: Hippodrome (Granola) Cameo, Astoria and Regal (Buffer) Plaza (Len Gazzard) Clifton, Variety and Dreamland (Anthony Lee)

Purpose-built, the Parade Cinema had a sliding roof for ventilation and single-floor seating when it opened in 1911 opposite Margate Pier. It was renovated in 1937, taken over by the Classic Cinemas chain in 1952, and renamed Classic Repertory Cinema. In 1963 it closed and became a Vogue Bingo Club until 1979, when it was renamed the New Parade Cinema and screened uncensored pornography for two years as a 16mm cinema club. The building was then repurposed into a snooker club, then a social club, and is now the Old Kent Market.

@OldKentMarket Parade Cinema

Having been initially constructed well before the first moving pictures, the Clifton Baths had a drill hall built by Thomas Dalby Reeve, a former Mayor of Margate who founded the Hall by the Sea with George Sanger and after whom Dalby Square is named. In 1903 a cinema was installed in the drill hall, bringing visitors to the area. It closed in 1924, and two years later the site was remodelled into a seaside complex set on several levels, with an open-air swimming pool projecting into the sea. This site was later renamed the Cliftonville Lido.

Cameo Cinema 1912-1969

First opened as the Lounge Picture Salon, this cinema on Northdown Road in Cliftonville was converted from a boarding house and advertised as ‘cool and comfy’ with 550 seats. In 1935 it was renamed the Cameo News Theatre, though it closed a few years later due to the War. In 1944 it reopened as the Cameo Cinema and was used to display wartime news. It had a 404seat capacity and was run by local cinema entrepreneur Lou Morris. It closed at the end of 1969 and was demolished and replaced by three shop units, now the site of Ladbrokes.

Plaza Cinema 1915-1984

The 422-capacity Cinema de Luxe opened on Margate High Street in 1915 to show silent films, and sound was not installed until 1930 after it was rebranded Plaza Cinema. By 1944 it had been taken over by Lou Morris and remained in operation for forty years. In 1984 it became an adult cinema for a few months, then returned to screening mainstream films, though only for the summer seasons, from 1985 to 1987. It found new life as a church for several years and was then taken over by the Salvation Army. It is currently empty.

Variety Cinema 1923-1933

Astoria Cinema 1934-1940

Regal Cinema 1934-1941

The Regal Cinema was built next door to the Hippodrome for the County Cinemas chain, who owned both. It was opened in 1934 and contained a café along with an extensive auditorium with stalls and balcony levels. A Conacher 4Manual/12Rank theatre organ was designed for the cinema by notable organist Reginald Foort. In 1939, County Cinemas was taken over by Oscar Deutsch Odeon Theatre Ltd. but the cinema closed in 1941, midway through a screening of ‘Kipps’, due to an air raid. A large military audience was evacuated and moments later the cinema was destroyed.

Originally the Dreamland Ballroom, the Dreamland Variety Theatre opened 1923 and was later renamed Variety Cinema. It was a single-storey, single-screen cinema which showed matinee and two nightly screenings, but due to competition from other local cinemas was demolished in 1933 to be replaced by the iconic Dreamland Cinema.

Converted from the Palladium Garage by noted architect EA Stone, the Astoria Cinema on Northdown Road was opened to great fanfare in 1934 with a screening of the film ‘Evergreen’ starring Jessie Matthews, who attended in-person with her husband Sonnie Hale. The cinema was the largest in Margate at the time, with 1035 seats. It was acquired by the Association of British Cinemas in 1937 but was closed in 1940 due to heavy bombing of the area. Later that year the cinema was destroyed by bombing. It is now the site of a petrol station.

Dreamland Cinema 1935-2007

Built on the site of the Variety Cinema, the new Dreamland Super Cinema opened in 1935 and was the final joint project by architects Julian Rudolph Leathart and W.F. Granger. The enormous building and auditorium dwarfed the competition, with the cinema itself containing 1328 seats in the stalls alone, plus 722 in the balcony. Dreamland Cinema was closed for the early 40s due to the Second World War, but reopened and remained in place until 1973 when the auditorium was split into two screens. In the early 80s a third screen was added when the Bembom Brothers took over the site. It then transferred to Reeltime Cinemas until the cinema closed in 2007. The exterior of the building has since been restored, and the iconic sign once again lights up Margate’s seafront.

System Accumulation, 2011 Steve McPherson

Margate Mercury


Sculpting the Sea



Twinkle Troughton


Sheradon Dublin

James Griffiths Sculptor


argate modelmaker and sculptor James Griffiths makes bejewelled resin casts of the weird and wonderful creatures that fill our oceans. Having studied modelmaking and sculpture at UCA Rochester, James currently works for a leading modelmaking company in the UK and is now turning his hand to a creative life in his own studio. James often works directly with clients on commissions bringing their ideas to life, while keeping the ocean and environment at the forefront of his creations. Tell us about what you do: “It’s funny because at the moment I live a double-sided life as an artist. By day I am an Architectural Modelmaker, and by night and at weekends I am a sculptor. The two styles are poles apart but both require the same skills, and I find them equally fascinating - whether that be making a model of a new development in Dubai, or making a mould for one of my sculptures. Future plans for my work will include all of these mediums, and that’s exciting as I never like to conform to any one style or direction.” How does life in Margate influence what you make? “Life here definitely influences me! I am currently working on a piece based on the Lido chimney in Margate. This is where the modelmaking comes in. It will be a 3D relief of the tower and its surrounds, featuring characters of a certain decade. And of course, there are the people here, other local artists who I am proud to exhibit with and bounce around ideas with.” What goes on during a typical day in your studio? “In my sculpture studio, a job usually starts out very well-planned and organised, but then as I work through the process I find that the typical artist in me comes to the fore and before long the studio is a mess as I work fast and with a lot of passion. The modelmaking side is very different; a clinical and pinpoint accuracy is needed to produce the high levels of detail and realism I always strive for.”

Courtesy of James Griffiths

How does your awareness of environmental issues impact what you create? “I am very aware of how what any of us does impacts the environment, and so I am very careful with what products I use. I don’t use

anything that would have been tested on animals, and they have to be recyclable. I only use organic resin for example. I am currently planning another large seahorse which will encase by-products of the beach. I mean, why not make rubbish work as an art form?” Where can people see your work? “At the moment I am developing a website which will feature the three areas of my work. I am currently working very hard on a number of projects and will be exhibiting locally next year. However, I am taking commissions as of now.”


Margate Mercury


Time and Tides Writer

Dan Thompson


Caroline Dyal

Images courtesy of

From Margate's earliest history time and tides have brought immigration to the town. Dan Thompson examines how different cultures have positively contributed to our town’s shared history


he Isle of Thanet is ancient and layered with different cultures, complex histories, and halfremembered stories. People were settled here by the Iron Age. Their graves, and the remains of their settlements, have been found scattered across the Isle. And those first residents may have welcomed visitors. Local historians Mick Twyman and Alf Beeching believe Margate’s Shell Grotto was built by the ancient Greeks. The historians mapped a network of Greek trading posts along the English Channel to prove that there would have been one here, where the Greeks traded with the Isle’s Iron Age residents. Twyman and Beeching found that the Grotto’s position in the landscape and its plan both match known Greek temples to the sun. And while the Grotto’s origins are contested, not least because a bit of mystery makes good business sense, we can be absolutely certain the Romans stopped here a little later. They left forts at Richborough and Reculver, and the remains of villas and farms, like one found in Tivoli Park. The Romans brought African soldiers, so there were black people here before the ‘English’ arrived. English comes from Angles, and the Angles and the Saxons came here from what is now modern-day Germany as migrant labour, when brothers Hengist and Horsa arrived on the Isle of Thanet at the invitation of Vortigern, the King of the Britons. They brought an army with them - the Saxons who populated Essex, Sussex, Middlesex and Wessex, the Jutes who took Kent, and the Angles. The seaside, then, has always been somewhere exotic, outward-looking, and

Celebrating peace in the summer after WWI on Margate Main Sands

somehow different to the rest of the country. Just physically, think of the Orientalism of English piers, or the influence of Indian architecture on seaside shelters. While Margate may not have anything as obvious as Brighton’s Royal Pavilion, it does have India House on Hawley Street. The home of Captain John Gould, a tea-planter from India recognised as the earliest recorded example of someone retiring to the seaside, India House is a copy of his home in Calcutta. The seafront shelter where TS Eliot wrote part of The Waste Land shows a clear oriental influence, too, with its decorative cast iron and fancy canopy valances. It’s no accident that it was here that Eliot wove together the Thames, Buddhism, the Holy Grail, Hindu Upanishads, and ancient Greek myths.

park in 1919, renamed it Dreamland, and added rides from the US including the Scenic Railway. And in 1933 Iles added the Dreamland Cinema, heavily influenced by German architecture of the time. But it’s not just seaside architecture that’s foreign. Search Instagram for photos of Margate, and two things stand out: pictures of fish and chips, and shots of hands holding ice cream. Neither started at the seaside, and neither is English. Fried fish was introduced to the UK by Portuguese Jews in the 16th century. Chipped potatoes are Irish. They came to Margate from London’s East End because working class trippers wanted the food they were used to. And ice cream, too, followed the same journey. Ice cream was first made at the Italian and French courts, before becoming fashionable at London’s Pleasure Gardens.

“The seaside has always been somewhere exotic, outward-looking, and somehow different to the rest of the country” Just across the road from Eliot’s shelter is the amusment park Dreamland. It was founded as the Hall By The Sea by travelling showman Lord Sanger. Among Sanger’s Margate company was Alicamousa, a famous lion tamer who was born in the Caribbean. Generations of showmen followed Sanger’s lead and settled here. Sanger was active in protecting the rights of travellers, and was the president of the Van-Dwellers Protection Association. John Henry Iles bought the

Blessing of the Seas image taken by Frank Leppard


Modern-day Migrant Stories

“I was born in a Communist country and I grew up in a Communist country. I originally came to England for three months to make some money for my wife, but she left me after I came. I was middle-aged, divorced and although my town Debrecen is the second biggest city in Hungary, it’s like a village. I decided to stay in London and choose life! My sister was living in London already, running an art gallery in Clapham. So I had family here. My parents are still in Hungary. I went home at the beginning of July, turned on the radio, and they were saying the same rubbish about migrants as here. Stupid things, hate-mongering. Blaming everyone else for everything. My parents believe it - ‘these migrants…’ they say, and I say, ‘Me! I am one - I came to another country!’ The hardest thing is to see how people in my country went a different way, after we grew up together but split. I came to Margate two years ago, on Easter Monday. From my point of view I’m finding what I want. I don’t want to know about negative things. I have the beach and my dog, two points in my life. You get there at some point in your life, choosing what’s important. For me - it’s peace, love, and harmony.”

The mid-1800s saw a wave of Italian migration to the UK. Poor, they worked as travelling musicians, performers, and ice cream traders. In 1850 Carlo Gatti, a SwissItalian, was selling ices to Holborn’s large Italian and Irish communities. Within 15 years, he had boys selling from barrows across London. They followed the Londoners to the seaside. Italian names still dominate the seaside ice cream trade. Morelli’s in Broadstairs have been selling ice cream for five generations, using a 1907 recipe. Back then, Giuseppe Morelli was selling it from the back of his bicycle. So just as the English seaside is a very muddled affair, from its architecture to its ice cream, so Margate and Thanet has also been home to many different communities. In 1847, Sir Moses Montefiore laid the foundation stone for a synagogue in Ramsgate, establishing a Jewish community in the town, but it wasn’t until 1928 that Margate’s was built. By 1910, there were enough Jewish trippers to the town for kosher goods to be laid on, and in 1914 Grasmere Lodge in Edgar Road was in use as a synagogue. By the early 1920s, the community had grown and they bought the house next door, giving them enough land to build the synagogue which still stands today. The population continued to grow, reaching a peak in the mid-1970s. By then, the town was a fashionable place for Jewish visitors, and

“I came to live permanently in the UK from Nigeria aged 11 in 1987 to start secondary school. We moved to Bristol as my mum's sister lived there. My Geordie grandma had met my Nigerian grandad when they were both undergraduates at Durham university. My grandparents were both very pioneering and courageous. I feel that has always affected my view of the world: you need to overcome and transcend obstacles in order to create a positive change. I met my husband in Wales, we moved to Margate where he had grown up. I struggled in Margate at first - it was a complete culture shock! I found people's attitudes very closed and narrow. There was a 'friendly faced' racism which I had never encountered having grown up in Bristol. After a couple of years I could hardly recognise myself and had become anxious and fearful. Other people's negativity can be infectious and insidious. It's possible to slide into the darkness of limitation, and lack of opportunity can keep you there. So I started creating the life for myself that I wanted, through events, arts, projects and community. And it amplified my confidence! I started to remember strengths rather than being constrained or impacted by other people's views.”

there were shops, cafes and hotels advertising kosher food. The synagogue is just one of Margate’s diverse places of worship. There’s a Greek Orthodox Church in Westbrook, who also run a Greek school and a community centre. British rule of Cyprus has driven refugees to the UK - the Greek-Cypriots who attend the Greek Orthodox Church, and the TurkishCypriot diaspora. Margate’s famous daughter Tracey Emin has a Romany mother and a Turkish-Cypriot father. There’s an Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church in the former St Stephen's Methodist Church on Northdown Road in Cliftonville. The Congregational Church in Union Crescent is now the Al-Birr Community Centre, or Margate Mosque. And the old Forester’s Hall in the same road now houses a noisy Czech-Roma Salvation Army congregation. The Roma are European Gypsies, distinct from the English or Welsh Romany Gypsies, who are themselves distinct from Lord Sanger and the travelling showmen. After the Second World War, Margate was run down and while


other seaside towns invested in building new hotels and modern entertainments, Margate traded on past glories. By the 1970s, the area’s hotels and guesthouses were hideously out of fashion, and respectable families stayed away. The hotels and guesthouses started to close, and were converted to provide cheap and poorly-regulated bedsits, and accommodation for local authorities moving families out of London. By the turn of the millennium, Kent Police said there were 1500 refugees in the town - Afghanis fleeing the Taliban, Kurds, Iranians, and Kosovars and Albanians from the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and the Roma. While refugees were nothing new (Margate housed Basque children, fleeing the Spanish Civil War in 1936), this time it happened as Margate had reached the bottom of its post-war decline. Margate didn’t decline because of the refugees, instead its decline made their arrival possible. The truth is, Margate has always been a place that moves and flexes, that welcomes shifting communities, and where cultures collide and change each other. Nobody finds it remarkable that each year the Greek Orthodox community gather for the Ceremony of the Blessing of the Seas, and the dive of the Holy Cross: it’s as likely a thing to happen here as the ancient Greeks building a temple to the sun. But it happens, because the seaside town is a foreign country. We do things differently here, and always have done.


Margate Mercury




“Watch out for palm oil on Thanet’s beaches. A few years ago a ship containing palm oil sank and it gets washed up sometimes onto the beaches. It’s soft and waxy and it stinks. It’s especially toxic for dogs and can be fatal. If you want to practice your recall with a dog take it to a local tennis court (ask m a ri permission first of course) or there is a self-contained field at Quex Park which costs £15 per hour to hire. Also look for parks with sectioned-off areas for dogs like at Manston Park.”

“If you want to buy a large amount of dog food - or just don’t want the hassle of carrying it home - Gladwells Pet & Country Store in Cliftonville ( Margate) offer free home delivery. You can also buy dog food online from Thanet Pet Food who offer free delivery throughout Thanet with no minimum order ( Woods are lovely places to walk a dog. I like Curtis Wood Park and Wildwood Trust, both in Herne Bay.”

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Like dogs and vinyl? Make sure to follow @transmissionrecordshop on Instagram for their adorable pics of dogs with records!

Ramsay & Williams in the Old Town will be introducing a lactose-free, low calorie frozen yoghurt for dogs this season in their store. A doggie dairy delight! instagram. com/ramsayandwilliams

Head to the new Milkwood shop at 9 Love Lane for their Hound Wash, a gentle plant-based cleanser made with essential oils, handmade in the UK.

Compiled and written by Clare Freeman


Martin Stirling



Artisans & Adventurers

Eagle Vets

Nestled in the Old Town, this ethical lifestyle store also sells products from Hiro + Wolf, including dog collars, leads, bandanas, bow ties and stylish leather ‘poo pouches’ for carrying your necessary dog poop bags. Products can be bought in-store or via their website.

This veterinary practice, located in Birchington and Minster, comes highly recommended by many dog owners. With high-tech equipment, including digital X-ray facilities, laser therapy and an ultrasound scanner, the centres can also perform specialised surgical procedures - including dog hip and knee replacements - alongside a plethora of other treatments and services like teeth polishing, vaccinations and specialised services for older dogs, puppies or those with behavioural issues.

Bailey Paws

DOG DAY / NIGHT CARE Barking Mad Dog Care Based in Herne Bay this awardwinning organisation will arrange for your dog to stay with a host family while you are away, giving your pooch all the comforts of home. They will also collect and drop off your dog, send you photographs of your dog and even send you a pooch postcard.

iDogz Based in Ramsgate, this company offers home boarding and day care plus walking. They often meet up with other local dog walkers while on their walks, giving your dog plenty of opportunity to socialise and play.

RESCUE CENTRES Angels4dogs This family-run, non-profit charity based in Thanet is run by Michelle with her daughter Yasmin. As well as visiting your home and meeting you in person, they offer a two-week trial period with a dog and are always on hand to give you support and advice. The organisation is grateful for any donations large or small which can be made through their website.

Jen’s Happy Hounds Based in Broadstairs, this service is run by Jenny who offers a range of services to look after your dog, including dog boarding (£23 for a 24 hour period), day care, walking and a dog taxi service. Nosey Dogs This popular dog sitting and dog walking service, based in Margate, is run by Abbey and Simon. They offer a free pick-up and drop-off for your pooch if you’re based in Margate and - to give you complete peace of mind - even set up a WhatsApp group for you so you can get regular ‘pupdates’ and pics!

The Howliday Inn This dog day care and home also offers dog walking, house sitting and home visits, basic training and dog grooming. TheHowlidayInnMargate

WALKER Canine Care This service - run by Liz James - offers one-to-one dog walks for 30 minutes to one hour from Monday to Friday and covers all of Thanet. Prices start at only £7 for a 30-minute walk and they also offer a ‘30-minute pop-in’ service if you’re away to give your dog food, company and cuddles. facebook. com/caninecarek9

Guardian Angels Dog Rescue Formed in 2014 by Ros Bane and Christine Recton, this not-for-profit organisation hosts many fundraising events and has a new ‘doggie lottery’ in which you can win up to £100 every month. They are urgently looking for dog foster carers so head to their website if you can help.

RSPCA Kent Isle of Thanet Branch Based in Birchington, this charity is run by volunteers and rehomes dogs as well as cats, rabbits and other animals. They also offer lower cost neutering services for people with low or no income. The charity is run entirely by the income from their shops throughout Thanet and donations, open every day from 11.30am to 2pm except Wednesdays.

Tag Pet Rescue Founded in 1988, this is the oldest and largest rescue centre in Thanet. As well as looking after dogs, they help cats and small pets, including rabbits and birds. All dogs are neutered/spayed and treated for fleas and worms before being re-homed, and they’ll visit you if you want to rehome a pet. The charity is funded entirely by donations, so make sure to visit one of their shops in Birchington or Broadstairs - or donate via their website - to keep this rescue going.

Based in Westbrook Bay near Margate this company handmakes dog collars, harnesses, leads, bows and bandanas. All products can be bought via their website and 20% of all profits from their ‘Animal Charity Collection’ is donated to Retreat Animal Rescue Centre, an animal rescue organisation in Ashford.

Thanet Vets

Alongside their dog treats and accessories, this pet shop also sells frozen raw food and food suitable for dogs with allergies. 40 Station Road,

With branches in Margate, Birchington and Westgate Thanet Vets offers a range of services including a delivery service so you can get your dog’s food, medication - or even accessories - delivered to your door every Tuesday or Thursday for free. We canine believe it.


Doggy Apparel

Vet 2 U

Run by Jo and Becca - two passionate dog lovers with fashion industry backgrounds - this duo, based in Ramsgate, produce handmade, stylish and durable leads, harnesses, dog beds, toys and accessories, luxury dog biscuits - and soon also coats and jumpers. All products can be bought via their website.

Can’t take your pooch to the vet? This service, based in Ramsgate and run by Kate Higgs and Kerry Storey, brings a veterinary service to your door, saving you and your dog the stress of driving to your regular practice. The service covers all of Thanet and includes dentistry, vaccinations and even end of life care.

Birchington Pet Shop

Hobynoo This small family-run business - founder Chiara designs and illustrates the products, her husband manufacturers them and motherin-law packs them - was founded in 2012 and is based in Manston Park. They produce a super range of poochie products - including dog ID tags, bowls, cushions, mugs and even Christmas decorations - most of which can be personalised with the dog’s name.


Calmer Canine Behaviour Services

Beauty & The Paw

Is your mutt playing up? Jane Wade - a graduate of the British College of Canine Studies - offers behaviour consultations and one-to-one and group training to get your dog back in line. She also offers pet sitting and dog walking. 07887 382998 / calmerk9@

Get your hair or nails done and treat your dog to a groom too at this beauty parlour which also offers dog grooming. They are said to be great, even with hard-to-pamper dogs.

Enve Canine Services This dog training club comes highly recommend by many dog owners. Founders Ve and Emma have nearly 40 years of dog training experience between them and they have training centres in Minster, St Nicholas-atWade and Woodchurch, all a short drive from Margate. As well as group and puppy training they also offer bespoke one-to-one dog training and physiotherapy.

12 The Centre, Margate CT9 1JG

Benji’s Groom Room Situated in Monkton near Ramsgate this doggie grooming salon is open seven days a week and offers a range of grooming services, including nail clipping and ear cleaning.

Caroline’s Pet Care Services This lady can visit your home to clip your dog’s nails or give it a groom. She also offers dog sitting and walking. 07891 917425 /

Undergraduate School for Dogs

Kay’s Mobile Microchipping

Run by experienced dog trainer Rose, this service offers a nineweek dog training course with classes every Thursday evening in Cliftonville, Margate. She also offers one-to-one training sessions and behaviour consultations for dogs with severe behaviour problems which can be carried out in your home.

This lady can visit your home to microchip your dog for only £10.

Check out the Facebook group Thanet Bulldogs for bulldog owners and lovers. They meet up every month for group walks and post pictures and chat about their beloved dogs.

Lost or found a dog? Head to the Missing Dogs and Strays in Thanet Facebook group run by Dog Warden Simon Betts and a team of volunteers who have access to equipment to help track, trap and search for a missing dog. 01843 577000. Also check out Harvey’s Army South (

or DogLost (

DOGTASTIC DATES 1 September Cliftonville Dog Show Bring along your pooch to the Cliftonville Games and enter fun competitions including ‘Waggiest Tail’ and ‘Best Trick’. Entry is £2 per dog. Oval Lawns, Eastern Esplanade CT9 2HL, 1-3 pm.


Love bulldogs? / 07779 444621

Oh My Dog Needs Grooming Only a short drive from Margate this popular groomers is already fully booked until November, so early booking is advised. ohmydogneedsgrooming / 01843 446671

15 & 16 September Paws in the Park An hour’s drive from Margate, this fun dog show is the largest indoor and outdoor dog show in the UK with a jam-packed schedule of indoor dog shows, competitions and dog stands selling everything you need to spoil your pooch. There are also over 15 activities and games to do with your dog including ‘Dash ‘N’ Splash in which dogs compete to jump the furthest into a pool to retrieve a toy and a ‘Dogstable Course’ with tunnels and obstacles. Kent Showground, Detling. 28 & 29 September Turner & Pooch Hosted on the terrace of Turner Contemporary, this free event invites all dog owners and their pooches to a weekend of canine celebrations. As well as toys and Frozzy’s doggy ice cream available in the cafe, there will also be a photographer on site, Heather Tait, to take your doggie’s portrait, and - in case you want to peruse the latest Animals & Us exhibition - Abbey from Nosey Dogs will be on hand to look after your hound for free. The RNLI will also be giving out free tennis balls to the first 20 dog owners on the Sunday who visit them for coastal safety advice.

27 October Halloween Dog Parade Dress up your pooch in its ghouliest gear for this year’s Halloween pooch parade. There will be prizes from Hiro + Wolfe for the best dressed. 5.30pm in the Market Square, Old Town


Margate Mercury


Dog Owners: Take the Lead!


Andrew Mills

While beautiful, our coastline also presents many extra dangers for our canine friends - and ourselves. Here Andrew Mills, a Volunteer Community Safety Officer for the RNLI, gives us his tips on how to keep safe by the coast

The RNLI and HM Coastguard are regularly called out to dogs that have either fallen off cliffs, gone for a rather longer swim than anticipated or got stuck in mud. Often owners become panicked and enter the very cold coastal waters or ascend down steep rocks in an attempt to try and save their beloved doggie. This is a totally natural thing to do. As a huge dog lover myself I know that they are an integral part of the family and it’s your natural instinct to want to save them. However, in many cases the dog will self-rescue or extract themself to a relatively safe place. On numerous occasions sadly the owner gets into difficulty and loses their life and their dog is fine. One incident in

June saw a lady in Lincolnshire attempt the rescue of her dog from a river which resulted in her losing her life and the dog escaped unharmed. Our advice if you are ever in any doubt that your dog is in danger is to call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard. The RNLI and HM Coastguard would rather be called out on a false alarm than to be called when it’s too late! In 2015 the RNLI carried out 132 launches to dog walker incidents and 119 dog walkers were rescued*. It’s important to keep yourself safe when you walk your dog. Please remember to keep your dog on a lead if you are close to cliff edges or fast-flowing rivers. Also, if your dog goes into the water or gets stuck in mud, don’t go after them. Move to a place that they can get to safely and call their name they will probably get out by themselves. I also recommend checking the weather and tide times before you head out, taking a means of calling for help with you and - if you do have to enter the water unexpectedly - fight the urge to swim and float on your back to catch your breath and prevent the perils of cold water shock and possible drowning.”

*(Source: RNLI website lifeboat service returns UK and ROI)

Margate Mercury


Boasting spacious parks and a Blue-Flag beach, Margate is undoubtedly a great place to have a dog (and be one!). We caught up with a few Margate business moguls - and dogowners - to find out about their pooches and their favourite dog-friendly spots in the town

Pooch People

Henry and Boe from Mar Mar “We have a Romanian street dog called Diego and we got him two years ago when he was six months old from a charity called A Better Life Dog Rescue. I don’t know his breed – he’s definitely got some German Shepherd in there, but he is a complete mixture! We’ve noticed that Romanian dogs all have a look about them, they’re quite strangely proportioned. He’s an excellent shop dog. People come into Mar Mar to see him and he likes to welcome everyone and play with the dogs that visit. We love going to the beach, and Botany Bay is our favourite dog spot.” 80 Northdown Road, CT9 2RE

Lydia from Lydia’s Studio “We have a Dalmatian called Parker and he’s just turned two. We moved down from London, which is lovely with its parks, but you just can’t beat living in Margate and being able to walk to the beach where it looks different every day. There are loads of dog owners here too so it’s great for the dogs to play together. We live near The Bus Café and we love to walk Parker towards Westgate. Palm Bay is another good spot we like.” 60 High Street, CT9 1DT


Francesca Wright

Photography Sam Wiles



Margate Mercury


Harriet from Ruskin “Our rescue dog is called Freya. She is a Lurcher and she’s about three years old. I got her from a friend who I used to work with. We love having a dog in Margate because it pushes you to go out on to the beaches and the early morning sunrises can be amazing. It’s also been great meeting people with dogs – it’s a really nice community. Our favourite places at the moment are Palm Bay, the main dog spot in the summer, and Blean Woods near Canterbury which is also nice as it’s cooler.” 39-41 High Street, CT9 1DX

Harriet pictured with husband Hughie

Polly from Little Bit “My dog is called Dude. He’s a Cockapoo and Cavapoo mix and he’s two-and-a-half years old. I had real social anxiety and my mum suggested getting a dog. So I got Dude and having him spurred me on to move to Margate. Within the first few days of arriving, I’d met all of my neighbours because everybody had a dog, and he gave me the confidence to talk to them - I had a reason to. We like to walk to the Antony Gormley sculpture. It’s very close to the shop and we go there every morning and evening, tide dependent.” 1-3 Broad Street, CT9 1EW

Polly pictured with partner Jim

Amy and Bee from Artisans & Adventurers A: “We’ve got one dog each, both boys who are six years old. Wolf is a Patterdale Jack Russell cross, and Hero is a Shiba Inu. The dogs absolutely love it here. As soon as we get off the train, they’re pulling towards the beach, or whenever we drive back, when we are a few miles away, they start to wake up and sniff the air” B: “Palm Bay is a favourite spot, because it’s so dog friendly. There are always loads of dogs there so it’s nice for them to socialise together.” 34 King Street, CT9 1DA

Marcus from HB Smith Antiques “Our dog is called Fifi. She’s a YorkiePomeranian cross and is a proper little terrier – very feisty! She’s six years old now and we rescued her when she was 12 months from a Yorkshire Terrier and Toy Breed Rescue Society. She goes everywhere with us, so lots of auction websites have photos of her in attendance! We like to walk along the stretch of beach behind Turner Contemporary up to Walpole Bay. We’ve made many friends because of her – we have a dog walking group, and we’ll often meet up in the evenings and have a drink somewhere where dogs are allowed.” 30 King Street, CT9 1DA Photo of Marcus and Fifi taken by Caroline Dyal


Margate Mercury


Steve from S&J Shoe Repairs “We have a French Bulldog called Bruce. We got him from a friend-of-a-friend who got a new job and was going to have to leave him on his own. He became ours very quickly. He’s become part of the business now - there are people now who just come in to see him! He sits in the window and watches the world go by and people come up and talk to him. We go to Westbrook seafront every night for a walk. It’s a very pleasant place to be in the evenings.” 128 High Street, CT9 1JW 01843 290 047

Polly from Penny Rope “We have two rescue greyhounds – Beatrice is 12 and is a little Whippet and Sydney is a Saluki cross Collie and is three-and-a-half. They’re such companionable creatures, it’s just lovely to have them in your life. In the winter we have the most wonderful places to walk them but in the summer it can be more difficult as we can’t walk them on some beaches. Our favourite spot to walk them is just behind the Winter Gardens and the Turner Contemporary.” 12 Caroline Square, CT9 1SS

Draft Local Plan to 2031 The final version of the Plan is now available for you to view and comment You can access the document and provide your comment online at from Thursday 23 August until 5pm on 4 October 2018. You will also find copies of the plan at any of the following locations: - The Gateway, Margate

- Pierremont Hall, Broadstairs

- Custom House, Ramsgate

- Any library in the district

What is the pre-submission stage? - The Local Plan has now been approved by the council. - Any feedback you give will be sent to the Planning Inspector, who could invite you to speak at the public examination. - Previous feedback you may have already submitted is not carried over. If you want the Planning Inspector to see your comments, you must provide them at this stage. - Your comments must be based on evidence.

Feedback must be in by 5pm on 4 October 2018

Turn the page to discover which places are dog-friendly!


Margate Mercury


Hot s g o D

Dixie wears:

Custom-made collar by Shopfloor Whore Dixie is a Boston Terrier owned by Charlotte Townsend

It’s time to spruce up your four-legged friend with our pick of the hottest canine accessories made or available to buy in Margate Dude




Compiled by

Clare Freeman and Issie Gibbons

Collar and bandana by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers

Collar and harness by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers Bowtie by R’n’D Paws Designs exclusively at Epple Bay webbing lead by Doggie Apparel

Church is an Akita owned by Sam O’Keefe and Paul White

Dude is a Cockapoo owned by Polly Donger and Jim Biddulph


Benjamin Eagle

Images taken at


Issie Gibbons



Epple Bay webbing collar and lead by Doggie Apparel

Harness and bowtie by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers


Joseph Wales Studios


Wolf is a mix of terriers owned by Bee Friedmann

Beetroot is a Beagle owned by Charlie Mayhew



Bowtie, collar and harness by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers

Collar and bandana by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers


Hiro is a Shiba Inu owned by Amy Fleuriot and Freddy Reade


Diego is a Romanian rescue dog owned by Boe Holder and Henry Buckle

Margate Mercury




Collar, bowtie and harness by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers

Collar & bowtie by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers King Street webbing lead by Doggie Apparel



Jarvis is a Pug owned by Leanne and Matt Walsh

Hudson is a Hungarian Vizsla owned by Megan Bradley and Harriet Jordan-Wrench



Collar and bowtie by R’n’D Paws Designs exclusively at

Arlington collar by Doggie Apparel, and bandana by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans and Adventurers

Freddie is a Springer Spaniel owned by Annie Nichols

Sid is a Jack-A-Poo owned by Issie Gibbons and Oliver Archibald



Stockist Info: Doggie Apparel Hiro + Wolf

Hoobynoo Shopfloor Whore

lydia wood-power

60 High Street, Margate, CT9 1DT



Collar by R’n’D Paws Designs exclusively at Flower and harness by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers

Dreamland collar by Doggie Apparel Flower by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers

FiFi is a Yorkie-Pom owned by Marcus Kenny

Luna is a Rhodesian Ridgeback owned by Ben Eagle





Collar by Fetch & Follow at Lydia Wood-Power Lead by Doggie Apparel

Bandana by Hiro + Wolf at Artisans & Adventurers


Parker is a Dalmatian owned by Lydia Wood-Power


Stan is a Minature Schnauzer owned by Matt Verity and Rachel Ward



Margate Mercury


Compiled and written by Lisa Harris

Food News

Croissant illustration by Megan Metcalf

Everything you need to know about food in Margate this season

Cliftonville Farmers’ Market celebrates its 17th birthday on Sunday 30 September. Run by June Chadband (pictured) and the Cliftonville Residents Association, the multi award-winning market started with six stalls in 2001. It now has over 20 local producers, including Dickie Ovenden’s farm stall which has been at the market since the beginning. June says “It’s a great event that brings the community together, and we’re so proud to be the oldest farmers’ market in Kent.” Open all year, the last Sunday of the month 10am-1pm. Oval Lawns, Eastern Esplanade, CT9 2HL Croissant Delivery


eat one

th in


.. .

If yo

Joyce’s now delivers freshly-made croissants to your door every Saturday and Sunday from 8-10am. They’re delicious. Order early to secure your breakfast, or by 7pm on Friday at the latest via @JoycesMargate on Instagram or

ly on

free Cookery Lessons and Lunch

You say Tomato

Happy Birthday Cliftonville Farmers’ Market

Limoncello Drizzle Cake Gluten-free and utterly delicious, we can’t stop eating Never Mind the Cupcakes’ boozy take on a lemon drizzle. Now available at Cliffs or Cliftonville Farmers’ Market.

Pick up a jar of this season’s tomato sauce from Bottega Caruso. It’s handmade by Simona’s family. We love the sugo del Vesuvio sauce made with Piennolo tomatoes. So now you can make pasta and sauce for dinner and still feel sophisticated. 2-4 Broad Street, CT9 1EW Dinner Time Cliffs is now open for dinner on Friday nights from 14 September 6 to 10pm. ‘Fish Fridays’ is a collaboration with Margate Supper featuring a three-course meal for £15 per person. Using locallycaught fish, it will be an accessible and affordable evening where you can pop in for a quick meal or for a special occasion. Expect delicious food and good tunes with it. Just turn up or email contact@ to book a table. 172 Northdown Road CT9 2QN

Learn how to cook with Bags of Taste, a not-for-profit organisation that helps people struggling with food costs or living in isolation eat healthily for less. Annie Nichols is running the group from 21 September at Cliftonville Community Centre, every Friday 11am1.30pm for four weeks. It will then run every other month at different locations. Students cook recipes for £1 per portion, enjoy a free lunch together, and go home with ingredients to cook four more meals. Annie is looking for volunteers and students. Contact or visit drink up Hantverk & Found has expanded its wine list to over 50 bins, specialising in small producers and natural wines from the Loire. Try the Chablis Colette Gros, which is excellent with locally-caught dressed crab. 16-18 King Street, CT9 1DA

The KitchenCT9 A community food waste cafe will open at 3 Cliff Terrace this autumn. Run by Thanet Iceberg Project (TIP), The KitchenCT9 will serve an affordable Mediterranean menu using food surplus donated by FareShare Kent, local restaurants and supermarkets. They’ll host a community fridge from

the Hubbub Community Fridge Network, so anyone can donate or pick up surplus food. The cafe is open to all and will also host TIP mentors who offer community support. Follow @TheKitchenCT9 on Facebook or Instagram or visit to donate or volunteer.

Margate Coffee Shed Get your caffeine hit on the seafront at this new coffee shop, also serving brunch, lunch and cream teas. 12-13 The Parade, CT9 1EY

Urchin Your favourite wine bar is now serving lunch through dinner from Wednesday to Sundays.It’s a pop-up kitchen with different guest chefs each month. Follow @UrchinWinesMargate on Instagram for details. 235 Northdown Rd, CT9 2PJ

the Post Office The new-look Post Office is now serving small plates and grills, including KFCstyle baby squid, glazed short ribs and veggie options. Check out their bagel deli salad box for a quick take-away lunch. 22-23 Cecil Square, CT9 1BA

39 ..

Flavours by Kumar Following their popular Indian restaurant in Ramsgate, Flavours is an award-winning restaurant from the ex-head chef of The Ambrette. 176 Canterbury Road, CT9 5JW


is one askin y r


what’s new

Pasha A delicious Lebanese food and BYO restaurant with a covered courtyard out the back. We love the hot mezza and kafta meshwi lamb skewers. 182 Northdown Road, CT9 2QN


Margate Mercury

“Where can I get a roast dinner in Margate?”

Best for sea views

Broccoli Beetroot Parsnips Blackberries Damsons Plums Elderberries Cobnuts



Apples Pears Quince Kale Celeriac Leeks Pumpkin Wild mushrooms






Potatoes Red cabbage Brussel sprouts Swede Jerusalem artichokes Turnips Chestnuts Medlars






You can’t beat Buoy and Oyster’s rib of beef and Bloody Mary with oysters and bacon. Cinque Ports and BeBeached are top-rated by locals, and serve huge plates of good quality ingredients with seasonal veg. Captain Digby also does a good roast with sea views.

Buoy and Oyster If the question is ‘shall we get the seafood platter?’, then the answer is always Y E S at Margate’s Buoy and Oyster restaurant. Sat on their balcony, watching the sun set over Main Sands, there really isn’t a better place to eat fresh seafood, with smoked salmon, Broadstairs crab, local winkles, oysters, and a pint of prawns piled onto a three-tiered silver tray, like a cream tea from the sea. If you’re still hungry, the mains are generous and include buttery John Dory with gnocchi, perfectly seared tuna, or meatier options like short rib and local salt marsh lamb rump. The view and flourishes on the food make the restaurant feel special, but the friendly service and killer cocktails make everyone feel welcome. We’d come here for a datenight, a meetup with friends, or just to celebrate life.

In the Old Town Olby’s serves a delicious Calypso chicken and jerk ribeye roast. Ministry of Pies serves three meat and three vegan roasts (all gluten-free) 12-4pm and 6-8.30pm, and there’s a midweek roast on Tuesdays and Wednesdays if you’re over 55. The Ambrette, now at Fort Hill, serves a beautiful roast with unlimited potatoes and Yorkshire puddings.

For a bargain Fill your boots with a roast at Giorgio’s (£7.95) or The Britannia (£7), and Sundowners does an all-day roast from 12-7pm (£6.50). Taddy’s Barn is our favourite in East Northdown Garden Nursery (£7.50), and you can pick up house plants at the same time. Dalby Cafe serves an epic roast every day of the week (£6.20), but go on a Sunday if you want all the trimmings.

Staying over Guests and visitors can dig into the great roasts at Sands Hotel or The Walpole Bay Hotel (with live music on the 1908 pianola), or enjoy the carvery and a walk along the beach at Botany Bay Hotel.

BF_ADVERT_A4_AW.indd 1

16/07/2018 16:54

Margate Mercury



A Wing and a Prayer Birding in Margate Cemetery Writer

Dale Shaw

There’s much more to Thanet birdlife than bully-boy seagulls, as one twitcher discovers when he goes birding in Margate Cemetery


’ve always had a penchant for bogstandard birds. Which, I’m quite sure, makes me the worst sort of birder to more dedicated twitchers - the sort who merrily sprint to the furthest reaches of the Hebrides to catch a glimpse of a passing shorelark. My favourite bird is the blackbird. That’s the equivalent of declaring yourself a gearhead and then announcing that your favourite car is the Fiat Uno. It’s almost shameful to admit. Take wagtails for instance. I love wagtails. Their coastal ubiquitousness feels like a symbol for saucy seaside fun. And I’m still stabbed with unfettered excitement catching a glimpse of a jay. I’ve never been concerned with ticking off rare species like some kind of avian laundry list - I’m fascinated by the mystery and majesty of the birds that live alongside us. Our Thanet coast coughs up some wonderful water and wading birds such as sanderlings, turnstones, plovers and egrets. But frankly, they’re all far too exciting for me.


Martin Stirling

I need to go where the lack of action is. A location far more suited to my basic birdiness. Margate Cemetery never attempts to reach the tourist-baiting heights of Dreamland or the Turner. It’s inconveniently nestled next to the dump and a stone’s throw from the Westwood Industrial Estate. It is, however, glorious and the perfect place to spot non-pulseraising birds. Set over 35 acres of woods, wildflowers and habitat growth, it’s a haven for foxes, hedgehogs, rabbits, butterflies, dragonflies and even hares. There’s also a family of albino squirrels (or, as I prefer to think of them ‘ghost squirrels’!) which can often be found around the old part of the cemetery. And then there are the monuments. For fans of mourning horses, there’s a colossal one adorning the grave of famed Victorian circus impresario John Sanger. Then there’s a whole host of astonishing maritime memorials such as the one remembering the nine men who died when the Margate Surf Boat, A Friend to All Nations, sank while trying to save the ship Persian Empire in 1897. I settled on a promising, droppingstrewn bench near this edifice to start the uninspiring bird hunt. Ring-necked parakeets (the original DFLs, who have migrated down from south London), surprisingly quiet for once (I’d like to think out of respect), swooped overhead. In a nearby copse (where a man emerged buttoning up his shirt - no idea what was going on there) I watched an extraordinary stand-off between a gang of gulls and a murder of crows. The crows flew silently at grave height towards their foe, who, wisely, retreated. Not sure if this was part of the skirmish, but I nearly tripped over the corpse of a large carrion crow resting in front of the grave of someone called Louisa Greycraft. One for the goths there. In the new part of the cemetery, a clutch of swallows danced over the meadow where ashes are scattered.

“I’m fascinated by the mystery and majesty of the birds that live alongside us” Nearby pied and grey wagtails bobbed on the path as three magpies conspired on the final resting place of Charles Lemon Frazer Daniell. Then I heard a woodpecker (green and great spotted varieties have been seen here) and while I clambered through the undergrowth a bird of prey, possibly a kestrel or a sparrowhawk, glided overhead. Far more fascinating birds (including the violently rare dusky thrush - surely a drag name waiting for someone) have been documented in the area and I certainly plan to revisit. But for now, I’m happy with my bogstandard birds in the hidden oasis of calm that is Margate Cemetery.


Friday 28th to Sunday 30th September 2018 Sponsored by:




Margate Mercury


Sophie Morris

The Home-grown Heroes

Geoffrey Philpott, Elmwood Farm, Broadstairs

Photography Kat Green

Kent might be the Garden of England, but what’s the score in our own back garden? Sophie Morris investigates

The highest point of Geoffrey Philpott’s farm looks out over Joss Bay from below the North Foreland Lighthouse. He plants his winter cauliflowers here because they’re surrounded by the sea on three sides, and protected from the sharper frosts that strike inland. Plus the brassicas like the alkaline, chalky soil. Philpott plants 120 varieties over the summer, which means he can harvest them from the middle of October through to June. That’s around 3 million plants over 220 acres. He sells some produce to supermarkets and wholesale markets, but most are destined for his impressive produce shop, Rose Farm Shop, on Haine Road, behind the Westwood Cross Sainsbury’s. GG Philpott & Son is a family business. Geoffrey’s grandfather farmed in the area, and his nephew Dominic is next in line. “Rose Farm was Dad’s first farm and he used to put cauliflower on a pallet with a little tin box,” he says. “It was 10p a cauli.”


few decades ago, Thanet was home to around 30 farmers, while the nearby Stour Valley was bursting with orchards. Today there are only half a dozen farmers left. We talked to four local producers about farming life, and why it’s not an easy job, with rising costs, falling prices, extreme weather incidents, and an uncertain labour market ahead. Yet, in spite of the difficulties, producers like these mean we still have our pick of the crop near Margate. So use it or lose it.

Buy Local

Where to get the best fruit & veg

Meat, fish & dairy

Cliftonville Farmers’ Market Oval Lawns, Eastern Esplanade, last Sunday of the month

Rose Farm Shop Haine Rd, CT12 5AG

Chef & Butcher 69 High St, Broadstairs CT10 1NQ

Thanet Quality Foods 113 Northdown Rd, CT9 2QY

DWG Meat ‘n’ Pies 141 Northdown Rd CT9 2RA

Days Newsagents 109-111 Northdown Rd, CT9 2QY

The Garden Gate Project Northdown Park Rd, CT9 3TP

Fruits de Mer 10 The Broadway, Broadstairs CT10 2AD

Dierdre’s fruit & veg shop 268 Northdown Rd, CT9 2PX

The Grain Grocer 95-97 Northdown Rdm, CT9 2QY

MB Farms & Stour Valley Game at Cliftonville Farmers-Market

Nash Farm Nash Road, CT9 4LB (veg box delivery only)

Windmill Community Gardens Dane Valley Rd, CT9 2SH

Quex Barn Quex View Rd, Birchington CT7 0BB

Nethergong Nurseries Upstreet, Canterbury, CT3 4DN


RC Wale & Son 62 Station Rd, Birchington CT7 9RA

Holly RichardsHall, Beekeeper, Thanet Holly Richards-Hall got her first hives when she was in her late twenties, after having a baby. Three years on she is the proud owner of 29 hives spread across Thanet. Holly says she’s been lucky to learn from two other local producers, Kevin Flynn and Richard Blight, whose honey you can find at Rose Farm Shop. Holly currently sells from her Ramsgate allotment and through Facebook. The honey tastes different according to the seasons, she explains. In the spring the bees have been collecting pollen from the oilseed rape, which makes a light honey. The summer honey comes from a variety of flowers and is darker but still runny, while the autumn crop comes from ivy flowers, and is dark and dense. “You don’t really earn anything off the honey,” she explains. “But it pays for the hives.” Her plan is to make candles and lip balm from the wax, to start selling her bees, and to pass on her knowledge to other young keepers.

Margate Mercury



Richard Burt, Sunrise Fruits, Stourmouth Richard Burt dreams of selling his cherries from a barrow outside his Westbrook beach hut. For the time being, the council won’t permit it, but you can buy his cherries, apricots, plums, raspberries and gooseberries from Quex Park, Monty’s of Birchington and J Prentis in Broadstairs. “I used to supply supermarkets,” he says. “But it’s not right for a small grower. You’re not in control of your fruit.” Richard, 59, has been growing fruit in the rich loam soil of Stourmouth, 10 miles south-west of Margate, for almost 40 years. He employs 14 pickers from eastern Europe who work through the summer months and return season after season. “I have enough workers this year, but I can’t be sure about next,” he says. His gooseberries come first, in April, May and June, then the apricots and cherries. You’ll find his raspberries and plums in some of the shops listed on page 43 through to the end of September.

Richard Ash, JP Ash & Sons, Margate Richard Ash crouches down to part the plant’s green leaves and reveals two baby pumpkins, each the size of a grapefruit. Come October, his field on the Ramsgate Road will be a riot of huge, orange globes, ready for buyers to come and choose their own for Halloween, or for soup or a pie. They’ll be sold by size from as little as £1. “We hopefully get two per plant,” he says. “But they’re under huge stress at the moment.” This is because of the summer heatwave, which has left farmers nervous about the autumn harvest. Ash started helping out in the fields when he was 12, and says his main challenges are extremes of weather, both wet and dry, and the fact people aren’t cooking or eating fresh food like they used to. “Supermarkets haven’t helped,” he says. He also grows cauliflower, new potatoes, and harvests fields of wheat behind Westwood Cross.

“A balanced diet is having a cupcake in each hand!”

Taste the delights of The Curious Cupcake Café in the historic old town of Margate Open 7-days-a-week for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea, our wonderful café is renowned for great service and delicious food.

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The Curious Cupcake Cafe 4-5 Market Place, Old Town, Margate. CT9 1EN 01843 231598

THE VERY BE S T THAT KE NT HAS TO OFFER! H A ND-PI CK YO U R GO O DS AN D L E T US CR EAT E YOU T HE PE RFECT GIF T F O R CH R IS TMA S WI T H OU R BESPO KE H A MP E R S ! F ULL R ANGE OF BE AU T IFU L WIC KE R HA MPE RS TO CHO O SE FR O M. A brand new shop in the eclectic old town of Margate selling the finest artisan products sourced only from Kent. Wines - confectionery – cheeses – coffees and teas From ‘Curiously Kentish’ pickles, chutneys, jams & salamis ‘Romney Marsh Wool’ goods – male grooming products from ‘Beard Juice’ –Hand made pottery ENJOY A GREAT COFFEE AND PASTRY IN OUR COFFEE SHOP GIFT VOUCHERS AVAILABLE | OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK

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Margate Mercury



Pear Tarte Tatin with Kentish Blue Cheese Cooked by

Corina Karanasis

Writer & photographer Annie Nichols


he joyous and friendly Corina Karanasis is originally from Bucharest, married to a Greek man, and came to live in Margate ten years ago. She used to run the deli counter at Quex Barn farm shop, but she has now combined her experience as a talented European cook with her knowledge of all things Kentish to create the Old Town Deli on Hawley Street. Ninety percent of the artisan cheeses on sale in the Old Town Deli are made in Kent and sit alongside a good selection of deli meats, pâtÊs, rillettes and homemade chutneys. Sandwiches are made to order and Corina also makes sharing platters to eat in or take away, with a selection of Kentish wines, beer and cider, which are perfect for lunch or a beach picnic. Corina also makes a hot daily special, serving up Romanian and Greek specialities. Corina showed me how to make her sweet and sticky pear tarte tatin, which she tops with Kentish Blue cheese and sells in the shop.

Old Town Deli 26 Hawley Street Old Town Margate CT9 1QA



100g caster sugar

Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/Gas 6. Sprinkle the sugar in an even layer onto the base of a 20cm deep pie dish and bake in the oven until the sugar has melted and is lightly golden, stirring once in a while. Alternatively sprinkle the sugar into a large frying pan with an oven-proof handle, and place over a low-medium heat to the same effect.

100g unsalted butter

01843 319 553

5 pears, peeled, halved and cored 500g puff pastry, defrosted if frozen 125g Kentish Blue or other blue cheese



Stir the butter into the sugar until melted, then slide in the pear halves cut-side up and continue to cook for a further 5-10 minutes or until a deep golden colour and the pears are tender - be careful not to burn them! Remove from the heat and set aside.

3 4

Roll out the pastry thinly and cut out a 23cm circle. Lift the pastry over the top of the pears in the pan and tuck in the edges.

Prick the top with a fork, place in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden. Leave to cool for five minutes, then very carefully invert it out onto a large plate. Serve warm, sprinkled with half of the crumbled blue cheese on top, and the remainder on the side.

Image courtesy of Old Town Deli


Margate Mercury


Raising a Wreck Writer

Ros Anderson

Gordon House is being reborn as a haven for visiting artists. We meet the woman with the vision for restoring this ‘stately galleon’ of a home


t is rare to hear a house referred to as ‘she’, but entering the spacious, gracious home of Lucy Lyons, it seems entirely appropriate. “My initial thought was that the house reminded me of a stately galleon,” Lucy says, “a beautiful ship that had been shipwrecked. I felt I’d really like to get her to the state where she could sail again.” Lucy – along with her husband and daughter – moved into Margate’s Gordon House a year ago. Backing onto Hawley Square, this double-fronted giantess of a house dates from the late 1790s, and has been through many different incarnations, including a children’s home and a Ragged School. For Lucy it was a story of love at first sight. An artist herself, Lucy immediately saw the potential for a space that could accommodate both family life and other visiting artists. “It looked like it was begging to have people making things in it and using the space,” she says. First, however, the house requires renovation. After 25 years as home to the same family, many of its original features, including beams salvaged from ships, are hidden beneath 80s wallpaper and swirly carpets. The extraordinary proportions, including elegant arches linking the rooms, have been concealed with stud walls, and all of the plumbing and electrics need replacing. But beneath all this is a building ripe for being brought back to life. “She’s as solid as can be. She’s got great cheekbones! She’s going to be beautiful,” Lucy says. One of the most interesting features of the house, and something Lucy is particularly attached to, are the caves. The house sits on an already generous footprint, but below ground level, chambers and cellars spread out under the street like tree roots. Hawley Square is well known for its tunnels, and Lucy hopes that more may be revealed as work commences. “Prostitutes would come through them from the Theatre Royal, to gentleman’s houses,” she explains. “So although there were caves dug out for smuggling, Hawley Square had extra tunnels for the ladies.”

“All the weird uniqueness of the house is really inspiring, and I felt it would inspire others” Aware of the huge task ahead, Lucy has held off doing any work until all approvals are in place. Working with local architects Ratliff/ Landells – “they totally understand the local buildings” – Lucy is preparing for work to

begin this autumn. “We’ve been really lucky – the council were so supportive,” she explains. “We decided to build a relationship with the council and the conservation officer from the beginning. We invited them over before we moved in to have a look.” Even though not a panel of textured wallpaper has yet been removed, Lucy has already started on a programme of artist’s residencies. Duncan Bullen, Head of Fine Art at Brighton University, has been drawing in the attic, and Russian photographer Alia Zapparova has taken a series of photographs documenting walls that will be ripped down. “All the weird uniqueness of the house is really inspiring, and I felt it would inspire others,” Lucy says. “It’s the structure, the quirkiness of the spaces, and the fabrics of the building.” Lucy hopes to extend the programme, with dedicated places for artists to work and stay included in the renovation plans. Philosopher Anna Weston has been invited to be ‘philosopher in residence’ and Lucy has even had a request from someone to come and read books for a week. “A reader in residence! How wonderful.” The generosity of keeping an open house – especially after months of building work – seems extraordinary, but it is this mix that Lucy thrives on, speaking of embracing ‘soft boundaries’ between domestic and artistic space. “A house like this would have been full of people,” she reasons. “The idea then that people can come and be creative in it, well that’s the next phase for her. I wouldn’t waste her just on us!”

Follow progress and exhibitions at

As part of the Margate Festival, Matt Harding is hosting an installation at Gordon House. A private view and screening with live performance is on 28 September, 6.30 to 9.30pm. The installation will be open on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 from 11 am to 5 pm.


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Margate Mercury

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Margate Mercury



A Crescent Swoon Writer

Anna Bang


Courtesy of Crescent Victoria Hotel

The Crescent Victoria hotel on Fort Crescent is the brainchild of Kassem Shakarchi and Farid Faisal, long-time friends and, although very different, united in their passion for what makes a truly great place to stay. Kassem bought the property in 2007 and when he retired five years later, decided to turn what was a downat-heel B&B into a spectacular boutique hotel


assem, originally from Iraq and head of a property empire based in London, comes from a family of artists, architects and interior designers and, seeing the regeneration Turner Contemporary brought to our town, quickly realised Margate was headed in the right direction. “My instinct told me to choose this location,” he says. “Sea views are always a good investment – human nature has an affinity towards water. It was in a very bad state. We whittled 22 rooms spread over two buildings down to 14, which I wanted to be decorated in a classical modern standard.” They succeeded, despite the restraints necessary, as the whole of Fort Crescent is grade II listed, so he had to work with both the local council and the Heritage Lottery Fund. It took two years to finish as every detail had to be perfect. The portraits in the corridors all reflect the Victorian influence on Margate, which Kassem has researched carefully. I asked his views on Airbnb, which is so prolific in Margate. “It’s competition. But it shows people the coast initially – then, when they return, they want to stay in a property with beautiful views and superior service. We want ‘staycationers’ anyway, not just people who stay for one night, so we can keep costs down while maintaining a wonderful service and the right ambiance. And we have a huge amount of return bookings.” Farid, originally from Oman, is a masterful teller of tales. I now know more about the staffing situation at Clarence House than most civilians and a couple of juicy stories (but that will have to stay hush-hush for now). Besides studying medicine for nine years and dance

“Sea views are always a good investment – human nature has an affinity towards water” laugh at work, but make no mistake – I take it seriously.” Kassem admits to being more private. “I like to make sure our members of staff are on point. I grease the wheels,” he says. So there you have it. Great hospitality, charming hosts, attention to detail. All those elements contained in a beautifully restored setting, making Crescent Victoria the sort of boutique hotel that resonates so perfectly with a blossoming Margate. Crescent Victoria, 25 - 26 Fort Crescent, Margate

Kassem (left) and Farid (right)

with the fabulous Arlene Phillips for five years, Farid worked for Marlboro in the US, as an under-butler for the late Queen Mother and as a Functions Director at St Paul’s Cathedral, again heavily used by the QM and other royals. He is clearly a natural at hospitality and relishes being front of house. “I always talk to people, they like to be included. I do it because I want people staying here to get the best out of their environment. I like to have a

The hotel’s shisha tent is popular with visitors and locals


Margate Mercury


The Rennovation Instagrammers Compiled by

Clare Freeman

Margate is awash with people sharing their rollercoaster renovation journeys on Instagram. Here’s a few of our favourites to follow

Moving to marvellous Margate Our expert lawyers know the area inside out and will gladly share their local knowledge with you and support you on your journey to your new home. In 2017 we won five trophies at the national ESTAS Conveyancing Awards, including best solicitors in Kent; accolades purely based on ratings by our clients.

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Prospect House, 44 High Street, Broadstairs, Kent, CT10 1JT


£20,000 PA

Good sized and well positioned lock-up former coffee-shop premises overlooking the Main Sands. The premises would be suitable for a number of uses subject to Landlord’s consent and any appropriate planning permission. The premises offers 111m2 (1200sqft) at ground floor level. No premium and a starting rental of £20,000 per annum. Eleven years remaining of a fifteen year lease.



This two bedroom ground floor flat has recently been refurbished to a high standard and benefits from have a private courtyard garden and allocated off-street parking. The building sits adjacent to the sea front and boasts sea views across Westbrook Bay. The property also features a spacious open plan kitchen-living room, bathroom/W.C. and benefits from a good sized private cellar. This property would in our opinion make the perfect weekend retreat or retirement home.

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This substantial former hotel, pub & more recently a restaurant is situated on a prominent corner position adjacent to Margate’s Old Town and within 500 metres of the Turner Contemporary and sea front. With approx. 381m2 (4100sqft) of accommodation over three floors the property could now lend itself to a number of potential uses, subject to the appropriate planning and listed building consents.

This spacious modern end of terrace town house offers generous size living accommodation arranged over three floors. On the ground floor there is a well-appointed kitchen/diner, dining room and cloakroom/w.c. On the remaining two floors is the lounge, family bathroom and three double bedrooms including the master bedroom which features an en-suite shower room. Externally this home offers a 41’8” rear garden and a block paved driveway to the front of the property.






Set within historic Hawley Square, with views over the green is this substantial five storey Grade II Listed building. The property has been granted planning consent for conversion into three substantial apartments to include a roof terrace and parking. The property currently offers in excess of 387m2 (4170sqft) of accommodation and may be suitable for conversion into an alternative residential arrangement, or suit a variation of commercial uses, all subject to any necessary planning consents.

TRIPLE GARAGE IN THE HEART OF MARGATE! This block of three garages is ideal as an investment, or for storage or parking. The garages are currently open plan allowing potential purchasers the option to use them as storage or as parking with room to work on vehicles. Sub-division can be easily achieved to provide three separate garages.


£22,500 PA



This deceptively spacious lock-up shop unit is located in the lower High Street within a few hundred yards of the Old Town and Turner Centre and with sea views. The double fronted shop unit offers over 1554sqft (144m2) of retail and office space at ground floor plus a substantial lower ground floor and basement of over 1431sqft (133m2). The premises are to be offered with a new lease at a commencing rental of £22,500 per annum plus VAT, with terms to be agreed.

Situated in the heart of Margate is this two bedroomed semidetached cottage currently under construction and having been sympathetically designed to fit into its surroundings with attractive design detailing. The property is located within a quarter of a mile of the town shops and Main Sands at Margate. Accommodation comprises a courtyard, a spacious living and dining area with stairs leading to the first floor, downstairs cloakroom/w.c. and a fitted kitchen. On the first floor are two bedrooms and a shower room/w.c.

The Chamomile Clinic 60 Harold Road, Cliftonville, Margate, CT9 2HS 01843 299439 • 07814 430 690 •

“the heart of Margate’s healing scene” Metro, August 2018

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Margate Mercury

The Secret Sunken Gardens Writer & Photographer Dave McKenna

This hidden green space on the seafront had fallen into disrepair. Now a group of volunteers is restoring it to former glories


he ‘Secret Sunken Gardens’ sounds like the kind of place you might find people indulging in shady affairs, dogging or worse. However it’s probably in the best interests of you and certainly the gardens itself that I don’t rebrand the regal Victorian-style community space as a sleazy sex pit where the only seeds planted are, well… Anyway, the Sunken Gardens - described by many as an oasis between Westbrook and Westgate - is exactly that, a secret sunken space that breaks up the walk along the Royal Esplanade. First built in 1931, and designed in a regal Victorian style, the garden has been a staple of many families’ summer holidays and a green alternative to the beach ever since. It’s perfect for the whole family - grandparents can descend the ramps into the foliage, mums and dads can lay in the shade, kids can run riot, dogs can run free. It’s a hell of a destination. However in recent years it has, along with so many public spaces, suffered grossly from the effects of government cutbacks. The gardens were described by one keyboard warrior on Trip Advisor as ‘AWFUL’. Gary A (which sounds like a die-hard dogger’s alias if I’ve ever heard one) wrote the following damming review: ‘Place looks a complete mess.... litter, cans, dogs mess. This place used to be beautiful and nice to sit in now it is nothing more than an overgrown tip.’ Gary A is actually right in some respects. The gardens did used to be beautiful, they were a spectacle.

I spent a fair share of my youth in the gardens intoxicated and being a general menace. It was a haven then for an army of underage drinkers, and is a haven today for the same drinkers - now fat and balding and full of nostalgia and memories. It’s also the place where my best friend and his beloved have their memorial bench, a place that has brought some peace through a horrendous time. So when I heard that someone was starting a community gardening group named ‘Sunken Garden Society’ I was keen to get involved. I messaged the society and got in touch with a man called Peter Hasted. When we met it became apparent quite early on just how knowledgeable and passionate he was, a local lad who had fled Thanet to get educated and who now earns his living in London working on ‘living walls’. An expert in every sense of the word, he has educated a fleet of volunteers on everything from Osteospermum (aka African daisies) to Kniphofias (aka red hot pokers - we’re back to dogging again). In a short space of time he’s been able to convince many locals to give up a few hours of their Sunday, as well as establishing a good relationship with the council. He’s also now planning to form a committee to ensure that the work continues. Peter first came across the Sunken Gardens on a bitterly cold February morning when the Beast from the East swept across Thanet. Peter and 15 volunteers The Sunken Gardens in the 1940s / 50s were tasked with planting some

trees along the Westbrook promenade, just below the gardens, for the BBCT (Bumble Bee Conservation Trust) who work alongside NEKMPA Coastal Wardens (North East Kent Marine Protected Area). The plan stated the group should ‘liaise with the ‘friends of ’ the Sunken Gardens to implement a new planting plan’, but after some keyboard wizardry it became clear that there was no such society. The gardens were, in fact, a ‘Billy-no-mates’. Peter saw this as the perfect opportunity to exercise his new-found skills as a land manager to create a community group. The response was very good as a lot of people have happy memories of the Sunken Gardens. Peter himself talks fondly of how he used to bring his daughter to play in the Griselinia hedges,

“I spent a fair share of my youth in the gardens intoxicated and being a general menace” where she would attempt to catch butterflies with a fishing net. If you’ve visited the gardens on almost any weekend since the Beast from the East you will have noticed a flurry of activity, youthful individuals sweeping the paths and Thanetians of all ages planting new life and buzzing around the place. We are the Sunken Gardens Society. The mantra Peter is imprinting on this project is ‘by the community, for the community’ and he is grateful to his regular volunteers, especially the society’s own Master Baker Chris who waters, prunes and litter-picks at least five days a week. If you’re interested in gardening and fancy helping out and learning some new skills, please make contact via Thanet Botanics or Sunken Garden Society on Facebook or email them on “We will be having regular task days every month and look forward to meeting you.” says Peter. Visit the Sunken Gardens at Royal Esplanade, Margate, CT9 5EJ


Margate Mercury


How to be Single-on-Sea Writer

Carol Cooper


Eve Lloyd Knight

Dating and mating can be tough in a small town. One writer takes a wry look at the plight of Margate’s lonely hearts


ou’re perched on the steps of the Turner watching the free daily spectacle that is a Margate sunset. The daytrippers and tides have receded to reveal an expanse of glistening sand patterned by sensual swirls and curves. As a coral sun sinks into the mercury sea, you note how the harbour curls around the bay like a lover’s arm draped around your shoulder. Thing is, you can barely recall what a lover’s arm – or any other body part – feels like. It’s been a while. Yep, once again, it’s a Saturday night and you’re on your Jack Jones in front of an impossibly romantic view made for two. Even Tracey Emin’s neon on Droit House briefly lost that loving feeling (see below) and you feel lonelier than Gormley’s chump, standing knee-deep in an ocean of regrets and broken dreams… Could be worse, you could be single in London, which according to a 2017 survey by Time Out magazine, is the world’s loneliest

city, with 55 percent of Londoners saying they feel isolated. The Isle of Thanet, by contrast, is famously friendly, everyone chats to anyone, creatives are busy connecting and Margate in particular has a village-y feel that, along with affordable accommodation, continues to lure the DFL diaspora. So it’s easy to find chums here, but love matches can be elusive, which seems to be down to two problems. Firstly: people moving here are already in couples. Priced out of London, they come to build love-nests to fill with babies/lapdogs/ mid-century furnishings/upcycled, retro doodads. Secondly, the downside of Margate’s chummy small-town vibe is that lovers – not just furnishings – are in danger of being overrecycled. Libby, a textile designer, who I meet bouncing around The Sun Deck with her new beau Simon, a teacher, agrees it’s not easy to hook up with people here. “The fact everyone knows everyone means it’s harder to just slink away after a fling.” Paradoxically, however, she thinks that can work for lasting relationships. “If you’re going to get with someone there is more investment in making it work,” she says. Libby feels that the area’s magical atmosphere can also aid the course of love, “people are more relaxed here, more open, and if you are more able to reveal the real you

and connect honestly with people, there is less game-playing, it’s a healthier foundation for a relationship.” She and Simon met on Tinder. “I spent a year trying to find someone,” says Simon, “then Libby came along, she was the first one to take a ‘bite’ and look at her she’s perfect!” So what of the LGBTQA+ scene? Is finding love on Planet Thanet any easier in the rainbow world? Not really says artist/designer Alex Noble who agrees with the consensus. “A lot of people are coupled up when they move here and also it’s such a small pond that when great people show up it’s almost easier to be friends then have small-town awkwardness post ‘you know what’. It’s hard to meet gay men to date in the area.” He also notes that Margate is very closeted – after all Sundowners is the only gay club in the village. He’s hopeful that this is changing and he’s doing his best to support moves to increase diversity. This July he co-hosted The Sex Show, a gloriously raucous event that put the ‘fun’ in fundraiser and raised monies for Margate Pride with artworks and performances celebrating sexual identity and freedom. But whatever type of love you’re seeking, the hunt can be a challenge, luckily we’re here with a few helpful suggestions…

Margate Mercury


Things to Do in Thanet if You’re Single



Commune with nature


The hide at Pegwell Bay Country Park is the perfect place for quiet reflection as you gaze out and look for wildlife – from kestrels to seals. Meditating on nature can make you feel less lonely and more at one with yourself, which in turn can make you easier to love. Plus, there are Highland cattle there that will look at you with those moist eyes that seem to say, ‘We know, we too have loved and lost.’

Share workspace

A 2016 report by the TUC found that one in five people meet their partners at work. Not so good for freelancers home alone. Luckily, Thanet is one of the best places to find a shared workspace. Try Resort Studios, Bon Volks, CRATE, Limbo or Marine Studios - or Ramsgate’s ArcoBarco. And of course cafés such as Cliffs or The Storeroom are friendly places for working. There are also a host of local initiatives and charitable ventures where you’ll meet like-minded folk (check page 62).



De-clutter your head

Writing is another meditative, healing practice. TS Eliot recovered from a breakdown by sitting at Nayland Rock shelter gazing at Margate sands while writing The Wasteland. Join Thanet Writers ( and go to one of their many events or read The Artist’s Way (Pan Macmillan, £16.99), which advises spending 20 minutes a day doing the ‘morning pages’. This means writing down whatever bilge/rants/whimsies pop into your brain on waking. It’s a psychic brain dump that’ll help you access your creativity rather than worrying about what you ain’t got.


If you’ve got to the stage where you are so hungry for love you’ll consider anyone with a pulse and most of their own teeth, it’s probably time you put on your gladrags, grabbed a wingman and went on the prowl. To make it easier, Cliffs is introducing a ‘Girls and Boys’ singles night on 19 October with dinner and drinks for people looking for love. Or head to Fez, The SunDeck or to a gig at Tom Thumb - all good spots to meet people.


Don’t panic!

Follow the advice of my wise neighbour Ziggy, a make-up artist for film and TV, who can’t see how anyone can be lonely here. She advocates just chilling and enjoying all the love and joy in the town. If you’re a broody woman desperate to start baby-making she recommends the appliance of science… “Don’t rush into a relationship and ‘settle’ for someone not quite right, just freeze your eggs!”

The Crescent Crescent Victoria Victoria Hotel The Hotel The Crescent Victoria Hotel Open toCrescent the Public Public ~~Victoria All Day~ Every Day The Hotel Open to the All Day~ Every Day Open to the Public ~ All Day~ Every Day

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The Crescent Victoria is a Beautiful, Sea Front, Boutique Hotel, situated just a 2 minute walk Margate’s popular Town. This restoredHotel, ‘Listed’ Building isEvents forwalk its Bar Victoria ▪from ▪justjust The Crescent isisOld a aBeautiful, Sea Front, Boutique Hotel, situated 2 minute The Crescent Victoria Beautiful, SeaLovingly Front, Boutique situated a renowned 2a minute walk eye catching Style and Cleanliness, with many of the rooms offering glorious Sea views. Margate’s popularOld OldTown. Town. This This Lovingly Lovingly restored renowned for for its its fromfrom Margate’s popular restored‘Listed’ ‘Listed’Building Buildingis is renowned The Crescent Victoria is Cleanliness, a Beautiful, Sea Front, Hotel, situated justSea a 2 views. minute walk eye catching Style and withand many ofBoutique the glorious eye catching Style and Cleanliness, with many the rooms roomsoffering offering glorious Sea views. There is a Beautiful Moroccan Marquee a Bar/Restaurant serving exquisite British Fayre from Margate’s popular Old Town. This Lovingly restored ‘Listed’ Building is renowned for its with aisContemporary Twist.. Perfect for that Mealserving before you just cross the road There a BeautifulMoroccan Moroccan Marquee andPre-Theatre Bar/Restaurant exquisite British Fayre There aisBeautiful Marquee aa Bar/Restaurant serving exquisite British Fayreto eye catching Style and Cleanliness, withand many of the rooms offering glorious Sea views. thewith Winter Gardens.. Or evenPerfect after show Cocktails.. a Contemporary Twist.. for that Pre-Theatre Meal before you just cross the road to to with a Contemporary Twist.. Perfect for that Pre-Theatre Meal before you just cross the road There is a Beautiful Moroccan Marquee and a Bar/Restaurant serving exquisite British Fayre the Winter Gardens.. Or even after show Cocktails.. the Winter Gardens.. Or even after show Cocktails.. with a Contemporary Twist.. Perfect for that Pre-Theatre Meal before you just cross the road to the Winter Gardens.. Or even after show Cocktails..

Tel: 01843 230375 230375 Tel: 01843 Tel: 01843 230375 Tel: 01843 230375




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Spirit of the

Stage With tales of mysterious hauntings and strange sightings, Margate’s Theatre Royal is thought to be one of the most haunted theatres in the UK. We set out on a ghost tour to discover the truth behind the tales of terror…


f you die of fright tonight, we are not responsible.” It’s certainly not a sentiment I usually hear on a Saturday night out, but this is no ordinary occasion. Paranormal investigator Andy Ayres of Ghost Hunter Tours is leading me into the bowels of Margate’s Theatre Royal. It’s 10pm, and pitch black. By their very nature, theatres lend themselves to the fantastical and the otherworldly. The Theatre Royal, tucked just behind Hawley Square, is Britain’s second oldest theatre, just behind Bristol’s Old Vic. The colourful tapestry of the theatre’s history since its 1786 opening run parallel with a darker past of paranormal goings on and shadowy sightings. Andy tells me that several ghost hunters have felt dizzy in the dressing rooms, which were formally the stables of a public house, and others have experienced a burning sensation in the prop room under the stage. There was a fire at the theatre in 1799, although the majority of the interior hails from its 1874 reconstruction and expansion, when it was transformed from a Georgian playhouse to a grand Victorian Theatre. Their most notorious spectre, and the true ‘spirit of the theatre’, is thought to be the old manageress, Sarah Thorne, a trailblazing and formidable actress who contributed immeasurably to the theatre’s success in the Victorian era. Sarah was a renowned actress in the 19th century, succeeding her father as leasee in 1867. The phantom actress’s favourite


Lauren Hill-Roger


Courtesy of Theatre Royal and Ghost Hunter Tours

chair is known to flip back our reflection, and if a ghost is and forth, and previous ghost present, they will take it upon hunters have heard laughter themselves to distort our faces and footsteps near to her to look like their own. Members portrait. of our group reported that their Back to the present and own reflections had distorted I find myself volunteering into something more sinister to ensconce myself on Miss and ‘clown like’. Thorne’s seat. Among our At 1am, we descend into the Manageress Sarah Thorne ghost-hunting goodies is darkness under the stage. On an Ovilus Spirit Box – a device thought to be the way we pass a plaque and picture of a lady manipulated by a ghosts’ energy in order for known as ‘Auntie Pat’. Betty Marie Patricia them to communicate with us through words Whitcomb was a local woman, a writer, and a and phrases. trustee of the theatre who requested to have Andy asks Sarah if she is aware I’ve nabbed her chair. “Headstone!” the machine spouts in a blood-curdling voice. I have to remind myself that it’s a horror movie cliché, just to stop myself from screaming with fright. Sarah is believed to share the auditorium with another resident revenant, an actor who commited suicide after throwing himself from a box into the orchestral pit during a performance in the her ashes buried at the side of the stage, so early 1900s. she would always retain ‘the best seat in the The phantom of a fellow house’. The theatre’s Programme Manager, blighted actor has also been Pam Hardiman, explains how the stage crew, found to make his presence adhering to superstition, never cover the area known through a supernatural with props, for fear that Pat will wreak havoc method known as ‘scrying’ on the performance if she cannot see. – using a reflective surface The tour ends all too quickly. It’s been a to conjure apparitions of the pleasure to spend the night learning more future, or to channel any about Margate’s fascinating theatrical past, spirits present. Our group use although I admit to feeling relieved when the the mirrors in the dressing lights come back on. Whether you’re a sceptic room. Perhaps it’s just the or a fan of all things spooky, the Theatre Royal omnipresent darkness, but ghost tour is a great way to break up your usual with creaking wooden beams, weekend routine and support the theatre itself, sparse décor, and a musty which is on the Theatre Buildings at Risk scent, there is a distinct register. Tours run throughout the year. To feeling of uneasiness. We are discover when the next tour is taking place, told to stare, unblinking, at visit you dare.

“With creaking wooden beams, sparse décor, and a musty scent, there is a distinct feeling of uneasiness”






13TH - 31ST OCTOBER Tickets include unlimited access to the rides, mazes and entertainment






20 TH – 28 TH OCTOBER 2018


Join us this half term for a spooktacular time with activities, entertainment and your favourite rides every day.


01843 269 431 50 Marine Terrace, Margate, CT9 1XJ



Margate Mercury


Hannah and Hanna Return to Dreamland Writer

Lucy Edematie

Photographer Nat Jones

Seventeen years after its Margate debut, John Retallack’s award-winning story of Hannah from Margate and Hanna from Kosovo returns to the Theatre Royal stage “I am sixteen. I have lived in Margate all my life. I hate it!” Hannah (Lisa Payne) complains. A refugee from Kosovo, Hanna (Celia Meiras) reflects, “I am sixteen. I have lived in Margate for three days. I love it!” It is the summer of 1999. Hannah is adamant that she does not want to share her name or her hometown with an asylum seeker. Nonetheless, the teens find common ground and bond over their shared love of karaoke. The development of their friendship was first explored to critical acclaim in awardwinning writer/director John Retallack’s play Hannah and Hanna. Winner of the Herald Angel Award, it premiered at Theatre Royal Margate in 2001. After successful runs in Edinburgh and London, the production did three extensive UK tours, and visited countries including India, the Philippines, Malaysia, Sweden, France, Germany and Belgium. Hannah and Hanna has been translated into eight languages, and broadcast on the World Service. The play ends when Hanna reluctantly returns to Kosovo, meaning the namesakes must part. In Retallack’s new work, Hannah and Hanna in Dreamland, the story of Hannah and Hanna becomes the first act in a play of two parts - good news for previous audiences, and for anyone who missed the production’s first staging. The teens are separated at the end of act one. In act two, we are brought forward to Margate 2015 where we witness the reunion of the friends and discover how their lives have changed. Celia Meiras, Hanna in the 2001 production explains: “With a character you really love, you always wonder and dream up what might happen next. With Hannah and Hanna in Dreamland, Lisa and I have had the opportunity to investigate the possibilities of that with the writer”. Like the original production, Hannah and Hanna in Dreamland explores powerful

“At the heart of the play I see something about belonging” themes of contemporary relevance - notably examining challenges affecting coastal towns, and addressing issues of migration, integration and prejudice at a time when the world is experiencing the largest displacement of people since WWII. Lisa Payne, starring as Hannah, explains: “At the heart of the play, I see something about belonging. About how we treat those who come to a place - whether that is the new wave of people coming from London to Margate, migrant workers from the EU, or those in peril seeking asylum. About how we feel ourselves about where we belong.” Also like the original, Hannah and Hanna in Dreamland augments narrative with movement, music and visuals. Punctuated with songs from the nineties to the noughties,

Hannah and Hanna in Dreamland “shows how two sixteen year old girls who essentially have nothing, can do something incredible,” Payne observes. It also charts the development of a sixteen-year friendship, a subject with elements that engage a broad audience. Meiras recalls: “When it was originally performed in 2001 at the Theatre Royal Margate, everyone in that audience had a connection with that play - from off-duty policemen, to old age pensioners. The atmosphere was electric.” During its tour, key themes from the play will be explored through workshops with school and community groups, who will be involved in making a short film that reflects how migration has impacted their lives. One performance in each location will be followed by a post-show discussion with the actors and screening of the film. Hannah and Hanna in Dreamland comes to Theatre Royal Margate on Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 November seventeen years after the friends’ story first appeared on its stage. The play is a co-production between UK Arts International, the Marlowe, Canterbury and the Lighthouse, Poole, and supported by Quarterhouse Folkestone, Theatre Royal Margate and Looping the Loop. Its development has been funded by Arts Council England, House Theatre and Thanet District Council. Arts Council England and Kent County Council support the 2018 production.

For further information visit: or @hannahandhannaindreamland

Margate Mercury

Sunset Cheeks, Blue Skittle Eyes Writer

Jessica Jordan-Wrench


Michael Goodson

Twinned Writer

Tom Adams Decisions were made quickly and someone in an office put a pin in a map of France and twinned Margate with a small town by the sea. Getting the wrong end of the stick, that same someone also made plans for the entire population of Margate, including the council, to be moved to that small French town and for their population to come here. It was September 1964. Arlington House had just been completed. The town had had a fantastic summer. Adam Faith had melted hearts at the Winter Gardens. The economy was healthy. It was now time to promote our good relations and shared interests with those abroad. Why not organise a town twinning? And since Ramsgate had pulled off a mighty coup with Saint-Malo, Margate council felt pissed off.



There is a small child running through Morrisons, screaming through gritted teeth. A tattered doll hangs from her mouth. She shakes it, like a dog worrying a chew toy. The doll is of the old fashioned, fabric-limbsplastic-face variety. Only the seam of the left foot is gripped by the girl’s teeth, so the arms and head swing freely, the eyelashes fluttering with each shake the child makes. The mother does not seem bothered, as she checks some tins a few feet behind. Margate is buzzing with the spirit of Halloween. Last night in London someone locked their bike to mine. I didn’t know what to do. I waited. I went into a shop, borrowed some tools, failed to free my bike. I waited some more. I missed my meeting, wandered into the local pubs to see if I could find the owner. Eventually I went to the police station in search of bolt cutters. I had my first ride in a police car. As the Police Officer was trying to cut the lock the owner returned, cheeks glowing red as the situation dawned on him. Police Officer [angrily]: “You’ve really inconvenienced this lady. What do you have to say?” Him [stumbling over his words]: “I’m sorry I ruined your night. All I can do is apologise!” Me [trying to soften his stumbles]: “It’s fine, don’t worry, it was obviously a mistake.” The Police Officer leaves.

Me: “I am sorry he was so short.” Him: “The silly thing is, I only locked my bike by yours as it reminded me of my wife’s. I thought our bikes could be friends.” I agreed that they looked good together. Back by the beach, I am pushing my bike through Cliftonville, looking for a spot to lock it. I see a child possessed. Dressed in a fat suit and tutu, he is around 5ft squared. He wears a Transformers mask, that obscures all but his blue-Skittles-bat-shit eyes. Leaping on the spot beneath the glow of the Lido sign, thrusting a plastic sword into the air, hollering at cars. A witch and a butterfly stand coyly to the side, swinging plastic cauldrons brimming with his next fix. The water is perhaps the farthest out I have seen it, quietly backing away from the town. A shy tide, shrouded in afternoon mist. The sky is blazing behind a criss-cross of vapour trails. The colours are not dissimilar to the bike man’s face. The air is still, turning the rock pools into burning windows. A seagull smashes his beak into the glass, which bends rather than cracks, his entire head buried into the folds. He returns to the surface treat-less, but shrugs it off with a nonchalant wiggle. It’s 4:46 when I pass a man on a weary wander. His gaze is undecided, but he clutches a Heineken with intent. I smile and the corner of his mouth twitches in return. I find a post to lock my bike. It’s a good spot. She can watch the sunset from here. I wonder if her friend is watching the sunset too.

So, on 15 October 1964, everyone in Margate got into coaches hired from across Kent and caught a ferry to the mainland. I was the only Margate resident left behind as I worked for the council, spoke a little French and had no significant other. It was my job to greet the new French residents, assign them their houses and invite them to the first town meeting. I had one night to myself in an empty Margate to wander the streets. I did this for about forty five minutes, then got a bit scared along the Northdown Road. I went back home and made myself some lamb chops with new potatoes and green beans. I could have popped out to the shops to get some gravy as all the keys to every property were now in my possession, but it was far too dark now. The next morning, one coach arrived, half an hour late into Trinity Square Car Park. Is this everyone? Pardon? Est-ce tout le monde? Oui, Madame. C’est toute la ville. Population de cinquante-trois. Cinquantetrois! Margate a une population de quarante milles!! Oui madame. Quelle surprise.

Comment vous appelez-vous? Jean-Baptiste, madame. Bonjour, Jean-Baptiste, mon nom est Margaret. Enchanté, Jean. One week later and the French residents were very happy with their new town. Yes, every street in Margate was empty apart from the one they were on but they liked Dreamland and the arcades. Five weeks later, I read a confidential report that Margate residents were sleeping twelve to a room with no funds to return home. Some had given up and dispersed further into Europe. Some were keeping their spirits up with Bingo and Morris Dancing. To obfuscate the debacle, Kent County Council twinned Margate with eight different towns all over Europe. Split, Croatia Larnaca, Cyprus Idar-Oberstein, Germany Astana, Kazakhstan Kosovo Malmö, Sweden Yalta, Crimea, and blamed the fact that Margate was so empty on cheap flights abroad. To be honest, for me, I’m glad it all happened this way. I met my husband, Jean-Baptiste during this time and he is just wonderful.

Compiled and written by Lucy Edematie

From helping to create a wildlife area at a forest school, to styling a shop window, or buying a tote bag, find ways to give something back to the Thanet community this autumn

Age UK Thanet

Kent Association for the Blind

Age UK Thanet aims to improve later life for everyone in Thanet. How you can help: They are seeking an experienced financial professional to undertake the role of voluntary Trustee Treasurer. Knowledge of charity finances would be desirable, along with experience of bookkeeping and financial business management. Travel expenses and training for development will be reimbursed. To find out more visit their website at For an informal chat, contact Vanessa Wood, Chief Officer on 01843 223881 or email vanessa@

KAB is a local charity that supports those living with a visual impairment to lead independent lives. How you can help: KAB is urgently seeking volunteers to help with a range of activities, including assisting at their social clubs, and visiting isolated individuals in their own homes. Volunteers may also accompany people on visits or appointments, or help with reading personal correspondence. A DBS check, volunteer training, and on-going support will be provided. For more information, contact Madeleine Gray on 01227 763366 or on madeleine.

Mondays | 10am - 12 noon

2 September | 9am - 5pm

One to One Support for Volunteering and Older Peoples’ Services

Thanet Volunteer Bureau Information Stand

Thanet Volunteer Bureau and Thanet Community Support Partnership provide weekly information sessions at local libraries. Drop in for guidance on support services in Thanet, or for advice about volunteering. Contact Referrals Coordinator Caroline on caroline.palmer@thanet or 01843 609337. Westgate Library, first Monday of the month. Cliftonville Library, second Monday of the month. Birchington Library, third Monday of the month

2 September | 9.30 am

Races from Thanet Roadrunners AC Three races (an Alan Green 10-mile memorial race, leaving from Westgate Pavillion CT8 8QW, and a marathon and a half marathon leaving from Palm Bay CT9 3PP.) At least £1 from each entry fee will be donated to The British Heart Foundation. For further information, email the race Directors Terry Brightwell and Spencer Hoult marathonrace@

Pilgrims Hospices

Pilgrims Hospices provide support to those with life-limiting illnesses and their families. They offer a range of services, including a wellbeing and social programme to help people live well and stay independent. How you can help: Visit Mountain Warehouse in Westwood Cross to buy one of their eye-catching and practical charity bags, only £1.99 and available in five colourful prints. The charity will receive 100% of the profit from each bag sold. The money will be used to help raise vital funds for Pilgrims Hospices.

Oasis Domestic Abuse Service

Oasis has been supporting families experiencing domestic abuse since 1994. Covering the Dover and Thanet area, they provide refuge, community support and services for children and young people. How you can help: Calling all creatives! The Oasis Shop on Northdown Road invites you to style their windows for a week as part of an exciting new project. Put your stamp on their shop, make it look fabulous and tell them why you wanted to be involved (on camera if you wish to). To find out more, email karen.klarkeson-day@

Dates for your Diary

Find out about the many volunteering opportunities available in Thanet, from one off events to regular posts. For more information, contact Outreach Assistant Paul Gibbons on Paul.gibbons@ or call 01843 609338.

5 September | 1pm - 3.15pm

28 September | 3 - 5pm

Afternoon Tea Dance

3 September, 1 and 5 November

Voluntary Avengers Information Sessions

Age UK, Zion Place, Margate CT9 1RP

On Air Support - Preventing Loneliness and Finding Help for Older People in Thanet Thanet’s Central Referrals Coordinator for older people will be ‘on air’ to help you, your family, friends and neighbours find the support you need. Tune in to 107.8 Academy FM at 11.10am on the first Monday of the month. For more information contact Caroline.palmer@ or 01843 609337

Get dressed up for an afternoon of tea and ballroom dancing.

19 September | 1.30 4.30pm

TOFFs Forum Meeting Speaker Robinson Alfree will provide information about issues including Lasting Power of Attorney and Wills. Ged Timson from the NHS Thanet Clinical Commissioning Group will describe the new NHS England changes. The Gap Centre, Queens Road, Broadstairs

22 September | 7pm

A Night to Shine Join a 3 - 6 mile sponsored walk in support of Pilgrims Hospices. Enjoy music and a warm-up session, before setting off at 7pm amid a sea of lantern light.

The Voluntary Avengers are a team of volunteers at Age UK Thanet. They offer information sessions on the last Friday of the month. Visitors can ask questions and seek advice about any issues of concern. Age UK, Zion Place, Margate CT9 1RP

30 September, 28 October, 25 November | 10am - 1pm

Dane Valley Woodland Action Days Meet at 10am at the Dane Valley Woods HQ. You will help with a range of tasks. Visit for the precise location and keep an eye on their Twitter and Facebook pages for specific details nearer the time.

Thanet Community Forest School CIO

Thanet Community Forest School aims to provide an affordable forest school that is accessible to all regardless of age or ability. How you can help: They are looking for volunteers to help them create the wildlife areas on their site, and to assist with two projects starting in September: The first is a mosaics and jammaking course to be held on Friday afternoons. The second is a potterymaking course on Friday mornings at Clayspace. For more information, visit thanetcommunity or email Sally Parrett at thanetcommunity

7 October | 12 noon - 4pm

12 November

Silver Sunday

TOFFs visit to Parliament

An event to connect Thanet’s older residents to leisure, social, educational and volunteering opportunities, while showcasing the iconic ‘heartbeat of Margate’ that is Dreamland. There will be information on services and activities from across all sectors in Thanet. For more details, contact Claire.singleton@ or call 01843 609336. Dreamland, Marine Terrace, Margate, CT9 1XJ

Sunday 21 October

5K Colour Run Run through brightly coloured powder paint clouds in support of Pilgrims Hospices. Register online, or contact Karen Kenward on 10843 233 934, or Karen.kenward@

4 November | 10am - 3pm

Ageless Thanet 50+ Festival The festival will showcase what Thanet has to offer those who are 50+. The Ageless Thanet Team and Academy FM will be present. There will be over 30 stalls, free workshops on dementia, and wellbeing activities such as Tai chi. For more information, contact Tina Lovelock on T.lovelock@ St George’s School, Broadstairs

Join Thanet Over Fifties Forum on a day trip to the Houses of Parliament . For more information please speak to Pauline on 01843 609337 or email toffs@

Tuesday 20 November 10.30am to 12.30pm

TOFFs Forum Meeting The meeting will include speeches by Chief Inspector of Thanet Sharon Adley, and local historian Laura Probert - author of Women in Kent Rally to the Cause. Custom House, Harbour Parade, Ramsgate CT11 8LP

Thursday 29 November 1 to 3pm

Junk to Funk East Kent Mencap will combine media, music and fashion to showcase the sessions that people with a learning disability have been participating in at their Thanet Resource Centres in the last year. The show is themed around being ecofriendly and thinking about the planet. To book tickets email info@ or phone 01843 224482 St Paul’s Church, Northdown Road, Cliftonville, CT9 2RD

Margate Mercury

WEEKLY EXHIBITIONS Pop in to see what's on or hire the space yourself FIND US AT 5-9 Broad Street Margate Old Town CT9 1EW 01843 294 175



Margate Mercury

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