This photo, after the San Clue fire in 1928 but before the massive cliff collapse of 1937 that caused the arch faced concrete cliff wall to be built behind the funfair part of what is now known as Pleasurama.
Initial information goes something like this; the council while still wanting to proceed with the development have withdrawn the offer to sell the developer the site freehold prior to the completion of the development.
I think this photo between 1937 when the arched faced cliff façade and 1940 as the sands were pretty much closed for WW2 and the part of the Granville that was destroyed by a bomb in WW2 is still there.
This is from, Friends of Ramsgate Seafront.
Kandy, Terry, and Janet asked for a meeting with Sue McGonigal, Clive Hart, Mark Seed, Alan Poole and Harvey Patterson. to discuss the Pleasurama site.
We are happy to report they agreed!
We went to see them yesterdays, the headlines are that although they confirm they're key objective remains in getting this proposal built and they still believe there is no alternative.
The good news is that there seems to be movement on the issue of selling the freehold, where TDC now accept that there would not be enough protection against land-banking.
this is REALLY good news, they estimate the costs of requiring the leaseholders as around £5 million in buying back the leasehold and accumulated legal costs.
This photo was after 1947 because of the advertising board for the Granville Theatre that was built then.
I sent that information to the cabinet member in charge Alan Poole; asking him what it meant and here is his reply.
Yes, we had a meeting yeasterday. The trio asked various questions regarding the Royal Sands development.........I'm not sure they agreed with all the answers provided but we did our best!
We are now looking at retaining the 'freehold' until the development is completed.
We explained that SFP are not currently in breach of the development agreement and to regain possession of the site via the courts would be a very expensive operation.
We still believe that completing the development is the best way forward.
My guess at dating this photo is that it was just post war, I think the donkey called PG 49 is a reference to the WW escape at PG 49 Fontanellato an I reckon the hairstyles look about right for around 1950.
I phoned the council for clarification this morning, but all of the officers concerned are in a meeting and I am told that one of them will phone me this afternoon, I also phoned Terrance Painter, he unfortunately was out but I have a promise that he will phone me back when he gets in, I also phoned Cardy Construction and was tols someone will phone me back tomorrow.
My hope was to get a bit more clarification before publishing this information and if or when I get any I will add it below.
I have now discussed the issue with one of the senior council officers and have confirmation that the above is substantively correct.
The council now intends to stick with the terms of the variation to the development agreement made in 2009.
This document can be found at http://michaelsbookshop.com/pda/id17.htm when you get to this page you will find links at the top of it to the associated documents, original agreement and associated leases.
This means that the council are no longer considering offering to sell the freehold to the developer prior to completion of the development, which is what the developer asked for about a year ago.
The council has no plans to start litigation to regain the leasehold interest at this stage.
Update Terrance Painter was kind enough to phone me up this morning and give me an update from the developer’s point of view.
The essential gist of it being, that it is very difficult to raise development finance outside of the M25 loop at the moment, but they are doing their best and hope to have put something viable together soon, so that work on the development can restart.
I did put to him that the general level of dereliction in the area, The Pleasurama site, The Pavillion and now The Godden Amusement Arcade, had a detrimental effect on the area and I asked him about getting some temporary use there while negotiations were ongoing.
He said he would look into the issue, but wasn’t very hopeful, both because of health and safety issues and because of piles of earth on the site being needed in a later stage of the construction.
I also put to him that SFP needed to publish a website, both to explain aspects of the development to local people and to keep people up to date on any progress.
He said he would see what discuss this with the directors of SFP.
The recent site history goes something like this, back in January 2004 I first heard about this development, looked at the plans, realised that the proposed development was higher than the distance between the top of the sea wall and the top of the cliff.
I tried to object to the planning application on the grounds that the development didn’t fit in the space available, but the council said it was too late to object and passed the plans on the 28th January 2004.
Over the initial period after the plans were passed I realised that there were serious problems related to the developer’s lack of experience, most notably he hadn’t taken into account the fundamental constrains of the site; the unsupported chalk cliff on one side and the sea on the other.
As no cliff condition assessment or flood risk assessment had been done or was planned as part of the preliminary work for building on this site I endeavoured to get these to occur. I also questioned the psv access to the development via the Marina Road viaduct.
None of these issues have really been satisfactorily resolved, at the moment the cliff needs substantial works, the EA have recommended a fra which hasn’t occurred http://michaelsbookshop.com/ea/id2.htm
The council entered into a development agreement with the developer in 2006 but no work started on site, in 2009 the developer came to the council asking for a time extension and relaxed financial guarantees, which the council granted them.
After this some work did occur on the site, this involving three men and digger on site pouring ready mixed concrete foundations for about nine months and not the pile boring that was anticipated.
About a year ago the developer came back to the council asking the council to release the freehold to them so that the developer could use it to guarantee the construction loan, the council agreed to this in principle, on the understanding that the loan had to be available.
Now it looks as though the developer hasn’t managed to find anyone who will provide a construction loan and the council have called time.