Monday, 2 December 2013

Mr Fone and Groovey Frog in Ramsgate.

A new phone shop in Harbour Street and the comic shop has moved to a larger premises in the high Street and added a café, here are the pictures.

 Not sure if this is the one that was opposite and has just closed or a different business. 

I don’t think Harbour Street in Ramsgate works as well as it should, it connects what in the current retail climate a fairly busy shopping centre with a fairly successful café culture and I think should be much more like Margate old town.

Café’s seem to flounder there, probably because you may as well go around the corner to Harbour Parade and enjoy the view of the harbour and the shops don’t seem to do as well as one would expect.

I think the indoor market being replaced by the Smith and Jones pub didn’t help and now the lager British Heart Foundation charity shop moving to the High Street leaves a big empty gap.  

The new Sweet Shoppe seems to be fairly busy.


I am still thinking about paint and glue and haven't had a chance to do any painting or drawing, I will endeavour to add to this post if I get the time.

124 comments:

  1. Now that is interesting as we were talking about the High Street and its demise. It seems Ramsgate is having a bit of a revival albeit slowly and some shops still seem to be closing it doesnt seem to be getting worse.

    As a bit of info Friends of Ramsgate Seafront (FORS) has announced on their Facebook page that they are going to become constituted. The Public meeting will be week commencing the 15th December 2013 at the Belgium Bar in Harbour Parade. All are welcome to attend

    ReplyDelete
  2. I wonder why the cafes in Harbour Street flounder while the cafes in Margate Old Town (also just around the corner of a sea view) thrive?

    Must confess I've never liked Ramsgate main shopping centre much, not sure why. I must check it out more often, though another thing that puts me off is that (when not cycling) I tend to visit towns by train and it's a long and tedious walk from the station. For that reason on a "lazy" day I'm more inclined to jump on a train to Broadstairs or Birchington instead.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Now there is another very good reason for rebuilding the train station on the Pleasurama site. I would agreed with Peter that the walk from that station is long and tedious, having done it many times down to Chatham Street as a schoolboy, whereas the walk up from the harbour, when travelling by bus, was infinitely better. On the cafes I think there are a far greater selection facing the Harbour in Ramsgate than on the sea front in Margate plus the Old Town has developed a unique character of its own. Harbour Street is just a through road to the town centre so needs some character. Maybe a book shop, Michael, some antique dealers, an art gallery, old clock repairer and a flea market. Already has a nice jeweller plus now a Sweet Shoppe so that's a start.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yes, I'd certainly visit more often if there was a station on the seafront! Buses take far too long for my liking (particularly as I live right beside Margate station), and besides it's much harder to move away from noisy kids or people with loud headphones than it is on a train.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I wonder how the people of Ramsgate would feel if the station was rebuilt on the Pleasurama site and the current station closed... and Manston Parkway opened? Can't see it ever happening, but I think it would be an excellent idea myself (and of course it solves the problem of the derelict seafront site).

    ReplyDelete
  6. That is possibly the silliest suggestion I have ever heard, Peter. Have you any idea how much that would cost to implement?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Never mind that, would you support it if it was proposed?

      Delete
    2. Joe, I recall people saying the same thing about "The Turner Centre" when it was first proposed. It still happened, at a cost of over 17 million pounds, despite arguably being a far sillier idea than Peter's suggestion. Certainly a seafront station would do more for Ramsgate than the TC has done for Margate (it would also make the port a far more attractive proposition for ferry companies).

      Delete
    3. Would I support reopening a train line that last operated 86 years ago and had two major crashes due to the weight of the trains and the slope? No of course not, Peter. Nobody in their right mind would either. And don't give me this 'never mind the cost' nonsense.

      Anon, reopening miles of line through a tunnel which has not been used for 40 years would require laying track on a line that has not been open for 86 years. The costs would obviously be many times that required to build the Turner Contemporary. If you think Southeastern has that kind of money (never mind the time for the planning malarky it would have to pass), you are off your trolley.

      Delete
    4. Damn, there goes me visiting the shops in Ramsgate more often then.

      Delete
    5. Peter, you can have a trip through the Ramsgate Tunnel next June, unfortunately it will have to be by foot.

      Delete
    6. Joe, Peter is being ironic he knows it is a non starter

      Delete
    7. Would it be South Eastern's money or Railtrack's or, most likely, ours? Nice idea, not insurmountable from an engineering view point, but it is not going to happen.

      Delete
    8. I wasn't being ironic at all Barry, but as I said "Can't see it ever happening"...

      Perhaps we should start a petition / campaign for a seafront station INSTEAD of Manston Parkway though? Even though Joe won't use it in case it crashes in the tunnel.

      Delete
    9. Well let us imagine a scenario where a Ramsgate Harbour station somehow replaced the current Ramsgate station and linked up with the line at Manston so that the industrial port traffic could use the line. Explain to me how you could do that without destroying the harbour and rebuilding the port road. That would be a massive project.

      Your suggestion lacks any logic, Peter, even if it was technically possible for Southeastern to run bullet trains down the tunnel, which is highly unlikely.

      Delete
    10. Also there are houses built on the former line between the end of the original tunnel and Broadstairs.

      Delete
    11. Good idea cheggers, perhaps we could extend the idea, and dig a tunnel to Ostend, thus creating a further transport link for Ramsgate to take advantage of....

      Turner, there are no houses over the old track bed where the Ramsgate Sands branch leave the mainline, PLEASE try and get your facts right!

      Delete
    12. Really. Where exactly do you think the line went between the tunnel and Broadstairs when it closed in 1926? show me the path of the track bed.

      Delete
    13. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    14. There originally were two lines, one from Broadstairs to Ramsgate Harbour down the tunnel and one to Ramsgate Town station on a different line from Margate. A new piece of line was built, with two new stations in 1926. Ramsgate Harbour station was never on a branch.

      Delete
    15. And which one prey tell linked to Ramsgate Sands station my boy ;) You are aware where the tunnel portal is right...

      Delete
    16. Now you are gibbering. The line went from Broadstairs to Ramsgate Harbour station down the tunnel. It was the mainline.

      Delete
    17. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA SERIOUSLY! HAHAHAHAHAHA You are aware that the Ramsgate station that exists today replaced an earlier one, right, and you know that that and Ramsgate sands station aren't the same place right...

      Delete
    18. As I said above, there were two lines. The first went from Broadstairs down the tunnel to Ramsgate Harbour, the second went from Margate to a station called Ramsgate Town. Both were replaced in 1926.

      Learn to read.

      Delete
    19. Surely the tunnel that served the old Ramsgate sands station, continued in use for a light railway for many years after the closure of the main line. The start of that was in a small station adjacent to where the petrol garage now stands on Hereson Road and the line ran through a tunnel from there to the beach at Ramsgate. The sides of the track had some scenic model layouts to make the journey interesting as a visitor attraction. Presumably that tunnel is still there.
      Maybe even the light railway could be re-activated if commercially viable.

      No doubt Michael knows more of this, but I certainly recall travelling on that little train as a child.

      Delete
    20. The key here William is that when the two railway lines from London to Thanet were unified this meant that instead of both lines terminating at Ramsgate at different stations, the railway became a loop part of which passed through the new station at Ramsgate. For a time the problem of getting holiday makers from the train toe beach was solved by using a narrow gauge shuttle from Dumpton Park Station through the tunnel to the beach. Terminating the main line on the beach or building another tunnel to complete the loop are not options.

      Delete
    21. That's right, William, a small train operated down part of a new tunnel built behind what is now a garage on the other side of the road to Dumpton Park station and continued down part of the original train track to the seafront station (which was apparently called various things) until it closed in the 1960s.

      The original rail tunnel emerged somewhere behind what is now the garden centre and headed towards Broadstairs.

      If you imagine a line that went in that direction from the track at Dumpton we see today, it is fairly obvious that the original track bed has been built over.

      Obviously the small tunnel used for the tunnel railway is not going to be suitable for the Southeastern bullet-train and the original 1926 railway track bed has been built over. The idea is obviously not a starter, no matter how much disinformation is supplied by those who have limited knowledge of the area. It is not possible to run modern trains down the tunnel from Broadstairs - totally impossible. End of.

      Delete
    22. And I understand that the proper name of the station on the seafront was Ramsgate Harbour, first Ramsgate then renamed Ramsgate and St Lawrence-on-sea, finally Ramsgate Harbour.

      The Merrie England tunnel railway station on the seafront had various names including Sands.

      Delete
    23. They can make the tunnel bigger. End of.

      As for Michael's "problem" with trains terminating there, trains from London Victoria already terminate in Ramsgate so it's no big deal. I'm not suggesting through trains (ie Margate to St Pancras) go there too.

      If "Manston Parkway" is possible, then so is this.

      Delete
    24. Joe, I was not suggesting running mainline trains, but something in the style of the old light railway, partly as a tourist attraction and as access to the beach for those travelling down by train, as it is but a short walk from Dumpton Park Station to where the old light railway commenced. I did also qualify it by talking of viability. It was merely a suggestion to add to Ramsgate's attractions. Loved the 'End of' in your usually debating style.

      Delete
    25. William, see Peter and Hamilton's posts above. They're not talking about reviving the Merrie England train, but making the seafront station a replacement for the main Ramsgate station. I agree it is slightly more feasible to think of reinstating the pleasure train, albeit highly unlikely.

      No, Peter, stop talking rot. I'm not going to waste any more time pointing out to you why your idea is obviously unworkable.

      Delete
    26. William, I was thinking a little bigger than that. A main seafront station would be a very attractive proposition for potential ferry operators (trains haven't gone to Dover docks since the early 90s, so Ramsgate would have a big advantage over Dover).

      Jolly Joe, perhaps they can keep both stations then?

      Delete
    27. I'm sure Ralph Holt has much history at his fingertips and I believe there is a fimshow in the Belgium tomorrow night

      Delete
    28. Turner my boy, the portal into the heavy rail tunnel that leads to the location of the old Ramsgate sands station in directly under Salisbury Avenue, just south of where it joined to the mainline, completely free of houses ;)

      I think you need to get out a little more and understand your local area, it might stop you being humiliated with such ease, end off ;)

      I'm not talking about reviving the station at all William, I would never be daft enough to think that was viable (unlike Turner who actually believed it was a proposal until I corrected him sometime ago). The best use for the tunnel is as an attraction, one that is already underway, and I look forward to visiting. I believe I read somewhere that they are doing at last tours through there next year? Saves the grief I used to go through years back getting in there lol.

      Delete
    29. It's not fair, Ramsgate gets it's tunnel reopened yet TDC won't reopen Margate Caves! Sounds like a deliberate ploy to run down Margate for political reasons! ; )

      Delete
    30. The railway came up in Salisbury Avenue and then joined the mainline, and funny the straight line from there to rail line goes thru the Cemetery?

      Delete
    31. lol @ Cheggers! Perhaps we could get points re-instated in the mainline, and Turner can go and wave at the trains with his mummy :)

      Delete
    32. I suppose thats like you waiting at the bus stop holding mommys hand ready for a trip to the shops. You haven/t grown up much from that hamster

      Delete
    33. The tunnel is directly under a road, there are plenty of other houses between there and the current rail line, never mind the road. And it was never called Ramsgate Sands. Learn to read.

      Delete
    34. The rail line is right in front of you you muppet! Turner you REALLY need to get out more boy! Oh you give me the best laughs of anyone on any blog! I may have to post a google earth picture on my blog to prove just how laughably inept you really are my boy.

      Delete
    35. OK Hamiltoon as you are someone who lives in the area you meed to be clear where in Thanet you are talking about. Of course if you did know the area you would make in clear which Salisbury Ave you mean but of course google maps will not tell you there are more than one in quite a small area.

      Delete
  7. Harbour Street properties are still considered to be prime trading sites and so the rents are high. Unfortunately repeated cafe owners have found to their cost that the rent is higher than the trade, hence they regularly open and close again. In my view there are relatively few spaces in Ramsgate town centre where the risks associated with taking on a shop lease are worth the expected returns, and hence in the main the only shops that survive are those which have been trading a long time (ie started when the costs were much lower).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not many leases, Joe, have a total absence of rent reviews so costs do tend to catch up. Really a case of negotiation, for most commercial property owners would prefer some rent and buildings occupied rather than producing nothing other than costs.

      Delete
    2. This is what one would think, although I have been told that this isn't actually the case and that rents in Thanet are being kept higher than the market can stand.

      Delete
    3. What are your figures and explanation for such a situation Turner?

      Delete
  8. Well said Joe, It is the reduction of rents and rates which is the key to High Street revival in Thanet and probably throughout the UK.

    Westwood Cross devalued High St properties in the Old Town Centres but landlords and the valuation office are in denial.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Good point Readit and rates reduction should probably go along with increased parking charges at WC and reduced parking in town centres for a more level playing field. TDC seem to have been funding WC and destroying the towns. A rates boycott should help them improve things more promptly. And why are we paying Mcgonigal £110k plus pension etc?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who's going to start organizing this rates boycott? Or will it get no further than suggestions made anonymously on blogs (again)?

      Delete
    2. Ah the rates, assuming anon doesn’t mean council tax and does mean rates, then I guess this is down to me as a business ratepayer, bit of a snag here, my business has a rateable value of less than £12,000. (The rateable value being what the inland revenue calculate as being what a current rent would be.) This means that up until 31st March 2014 my business qualifies for full business rates relief. Assuming that I filled in the right forms, which I did, then I am not actually paying any rates at the moment, so I don’t think anyone would notice if I didn’t pay them.

      The key underlying problem though is town centre rents and the way they effect non food retail because of internet prices. With me, trading in mostly secondhand books, the prices of books in my shop peaked in about 1992 as did my sales value and profit. Now to compete with prices of the same books on the internet my prices have gone back to the levels they were in about 1982 as have my sales and profit. In that same 20 years the value of buildings has increased enormously, back in 1982 I did a book clearance from a Wellington Crescent house that had just sold for £40,000, the whole house that is.

      Figures from the Halifax show that the cost of the average home had risen from just £29,993 in 1983 to £121,742 at the end of last year.

      So if you have a shop building that was worth £29,993 in 1983 and is worth £121,742 now, residential and commercial property prices are related because one can be converted into the other, then a rent of 10% of the property value would have meant a rent of about £60 per week that now becomes a rent of about £250 per week.

      Or in the town centre a rent of £120 per week becomes a rent of £500 per week, no business rates relief at this level and rates of about £300 per week, add on heat light phone internet insurance and you are looking at £1,000 per week before you have paid any wages, back in 1992 this would have been more like £300 per week.

      Delete
    3. My observation is that the rates are less of a problem than the rent, which always seems to increase despite the trading conditions.

      I understand this is because the rateable value of property is used as an indication of the value of an owner's property portfolio, hence decreasing rent could adversely affect the value of the landlord's business. Hence better to keep spaces empty than have tenants paying less.

      Michael, I'm guessing your situation is not as bad as others in Ramsgate (with regard to the rent paid) given the location of your shop. The turnover of shops in some streets suggests that many new shops are not properly considering the full costs and potential demand in Ramsgate.

      Delete
    4. Sorry I've just re-read your last paragraph, Michael, and that is what you were saying..

      Delete
    5. Sorry back in 1982 not 1992 last parra typo, but yes the problem is a tricky one and I don’t see any real way out of it.

      The new book world of retail, which I do understand fairly well, is now W H Smith and Waterstones and at the moment they hardly have any new books that aren’t cheaper online including the postage.

      Of course using books as example, the ideal state of affairs would be to have a mixture of interesting shops and cafés, you drink your coffee which costs about £3 and costs the café about 20p in ingredients, then you go into a bookshop to buy the latest paperback cost price about £3 to the supermarkets who are selling it for around £3.50 with Amazon selling it for even less and paying less for it.

      The new bookshop paying more than Amazon or the Supermarket and selling it for more…

      Delete
    6. I think in general people in Ramsgate are buying on price too (I mean in general, not just books), hence it is hard to succeed with a product that costs more. And so if there is a coffee at 50p and another at £2.50, the former cafe will do better than the latter - even if the coffee is a poor instant compared to a capaccino.

      It doesn't always work with coffee, as we see the Cafe Nero apparently doing reasonably well. I guess there is just a limit on the number of more-expensive-coffees that people will buy in Ramsgate, and they generally go for the bigger 'brands' rather than the independents.

      I don't know what to say about your book business, Michael, other than to sympathise. External forces appear to be acting against you.

      Delete
    7. The biggest factor for me when shopping is the actual service I get. A nice smile and a polite "hello, please and thank you" are generally the make-or-break factors for me, particularly in smaller businesses.

      Delete
    8. Incidentally, I believe the lack of a decent service was a major part in the decline of Woolworths. I don't mean rudeness, but the fact that they were notorious for being poorly laid out and lacking staff. Consequently people could never find what they were looking for.

      Where is everyone today? Hopefully they're taking my advice and are getting out more (myself I'm having a lazy day, though I did spend a hour or so browsing the Broadstairs charity shops earlier).

      Delete
    9. Frankly as I said we are not doing that badly mainly because of being cheaper than the internet I would say that a major problem is the contraction of the town centre.

      I guess the problem of running understaffed with poor pay and not much friendliness isn’t an issue for online sellers.

      Personally my real grump is what do you do when you go shopping, my pleasures were, bookshops, record shops, artists materials shops, camera shops and so on, frankly I don’t take much pleasure in browsing the remaining shops. Pointing the mobile phone’s camera at the barcode and buying it cheaper online.

      Obviously favourite would be to find what you want and buy it on the spot in reasonable confidence that you haven’t paid way over the odds.

      Delete
    10. It depends how much "over the odds" really. I wouldn't grumble over paying £12 for something I could obtain instantly in a local store if the saving on Amazon or ebay was only £2 and I had to wait several days for it.

      Delete
  10. I have to admit that at first, this thread really was merely another opportunity to laugh at Turner as he comes to the earth shattering conclusions that, despite his earlier protestations, a station at Ramsgate sands is unlikely, shops that fail are often run by people who don;t realise they won;t make more than they have to pay out, people choose where to shop dictated by price (you left out convenience ;) ), and his stunning idea that property businesses are valued by rateable value! Turner, you have a value, and you give everyone a hearty laugh everytime you rock up, don;t change ;)

    Anyway, to talk to adults now.

    I think it's simply a sign of changing trading patterns that the cost to run a small retail outlet now outstrips the income that can be derived from it. Just accepting your figures at face value Michael, a 5x rent increase over 30 years is not really that surprising, given property values, and the increasing demand for housing.

    That siomple truth would usually dictate the increase in prices of good to match that of retail outlets. But what has made such huge inroads is the change in retail trends that has been SO prevelvant over the last 30 years. In your case, then end of the bookselling cartel that dictated prices meant that the supermarkets and huge multiples could wade in, and attack the margins, that the economies of scale allowed them to do. Then comes the internet!

    The internet has driven consumers to shop in the way THEY wish to, from home, cheaply. Few retail sectors have escaped that trend, or been able to keep prices at a level that means a High Street (as opposed to OOT sheds) presence is practical. Niche shops such as 2nd hand book shops, the odd Ironmonger, butcher, greengrocer etc will survive, but have to be run by people who really know their trade.

    The succession of people who think they can run cafe's or small shops in Harbour street, and find out in short order that they have no idea how to make a profit is sadly more a comment on the fact that money is available to borrow, or that not enough sensible heads stopped people wasting their redundancy trying to re-invent the wheel, much like all those who think they can run Spanish bars, buy one, and return to UK, bankrupt 2 years later, people just like Turner in fact.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I'm sure that to an extent you're right that some people simply don't know how to run cafes and bars, but also there's two other main reasons why they don't succeed there (a) Satuation point, there's simply too many of them, & (b) As others have pointed out. there's a better location just around the corner. This why I have to laugh at the anti-Arlington Tesco mob who suggest cafes and bars under the shadow of a crumbling tower block, something that didn't even succeed in the 60s & 70s!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hmmmm, I really really want to sit and look at the Arlington slum whilst supping a lovely cup of coffee! That's one of the thing that makes me laugh at the nimby's pictures of what they claim Tesco's will look like from the beach. I have NEVER yet seen anyone sitting facing the shore enjoying the sun, and NEVER seen them forgoing the view of the sea, harbour, passing ships etc, to admire the Arlington slum...

    Fact is, people think because they can make coffee at home, think they can charge £3 when it costs 20p to make, then they will soon be multi millionaires, and can open where ever they choose, they have a Maxwell House provided license to print money. Reality and bills proves that somewhat mistaken.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Made me laugh how all these anti Tesco brigade wanted coffee shops but in the 30 years that the Arlington Parade has been like a slum they never put their money where their mouth is and opened one up. It would have failed is the reason. You need foot fall and some of these locations do not get enough people to survive even if the rent and rates were suddenly to revert to 1982 levels

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's the actual reality Don, something which doesn't trouble their argument as we know.

      Delete
  14. I have never owned a bar in Spain nor ever opened a cafe on Harbour Street. Just for your information, spammy hammy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guessed as much Turner, you'd have had to have left school first.

      Delete
    2. I'm not sure where you get this erroneous idea of my age from, but I can assure you that I left school decades ago.

      Delete
    3. Because your poss reflect the "knowledge" of a 5th form project, stunningly naive, and lacking in any factual basis, but full of childlike views of what you think should be the case, as opposed to what actually happens in the real world. If you did leave school decades ago, then I genuinely pity you, you need to either get out more, and learn how the real world works my boy.

      Delete
    4. Many people who comment here know my age because they've met me. Unlike you, I actually live here, etc.

      Delete
    5. I'm sure Turner, I bet they pat you on the head, and tell you to work hard aswell ;) That might stop you making such laughable claims that only show how little you know ;)

      Delete
  15. And it isn't obvious why owners leave shops empty rather than rent them at a lower rent, hence the comment about rateable value. And clearly not everyone buys on price - try going to Covent Garden or even Canterbury.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hmmmm, did I say ALL shopping decisions are made on price my boy? Think you'll find that the likes of Covent Garden and Canterbury have little to do with shopping, and a lot more to do tourism ;)

    How entertaining that the actually think the landlord should take a hit, and rent property at a loss simply to have someone in the property, even assuming that the people attracted would last longer than a week, when they are bankrupted by all the other costs of doing business come home to roost. You continue to amuse with your failure to understand that the rateable value of a property has no bearing whatsoever on the worth of a business that owns that property. Are you doing property as a school project or something?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Spamilton rather than parade your aggressive demeaning character traits on Michael's Blog why don't you run back to your mommy and grow up. It is possible to have a proper discussion without your condescending attitude, so why don't your go away until you learn some manners

      Delete
    2. Joe a complicated issue, essentially the owners don’t get any business rates relief and when their buildings are empty have to pay the rates after the first 6 months.

      It’s partly for this reason that there are so many charity shops and short term occupations, with some owners even paying for short term occupation to get breaks in paying the rates.

      Most of the older shop leases weren’t written to take into account aspects of the today’s more complex problems and worked well over the last 150 years as towns tended to do better products went up and so did rents.

      Delete
    3. Hamilton - I didn't say that you did. I believe more people buy on price in Ramsgate than in other places.

      Rateable value does have an impact on businesses that own property. That is exactly the point and the reason why some landlords do not reduce the rent prices. And why some owners would rather keep shops empty by offering them at impossible rents than reduce the rent and get someone in them. Do try to keep up.

      Delete
    4. Thank you for your kind comments Farnie, when I need the advice of a fool, you'll be the 1st I come to, promise ;)

      Delete
    5. Michael, you are right that some owners also see the advantage in having shops occupied (which common sense would suggest would be sensible). But I understand that businesses which own a lot of property are concerned about the effect on their business value if they reduced the rent across the board, and hence some landlords would rather have empty shops than full ones. I have also heard suggested that some owners now believe that the majority of empty shops in Thanet will never now be used for retail again, and are holding out for a future situation where they are allowed to turn them into housing.

      Delete
    6. Hence why they goto WC, and have deserted the High Street, I have told you that already ;)

      What are you talking about Turner! As the landlord has to pay business rates on empty property, they would be a lot more likely to try to rent it (as Michael demonstrates) that to leave it empty. You really don;t seem to understand the impact of business rates, business valuations or indeed business Turner. DO try and keep up, you might learn something boy ;)

      Delete
    7. Think whatever you like, Hamilton, I'm not bothered. Well just chalk this up as another issue that you know nothing about and which you still insist on rubbishing others who know more than you do. Some landlords purposely keep shops empty even though they are paying rates. Just a fact.

      Delete
    8. PITA spamilton the sooner you are gone from the scene the sooner some sensible debate can occur. Even simon is having problems with trolls on ECR for the same reason. I presume tuesday is your day off, go and spend it with your mommy she might take you shopping or even as a treat the local airport so you can do some plane spotting

      Delete
    9. So lets see Turner, Business owns 10 shops business rates £10k per year

      A, 10 empty = £100,000 to be paid in business rates = £100,000 loss business making a loss = business worth negligible

      B, 10 occupied shops @ £500 per month = income of £600,000 per year

      Now lets see Turner, which property business would be worth more do you think boy A or B ;)

      (I'll give you a clue, it's not A ;) )

      Delete
    10. It is a simple thing to understand, even for someone with as feeble a brain as yours, Hamilton. The property portfolio of a landlord is valued on its rentable value. So there is a pressure to keep rents high. If there are not enough potential shopkeepers who can pay the rent, in some scenarios it is better to keep the rent high than to let it out at a lower rent.

      Delete
    11. No Turner, just yet another subject on which you have been found SORELY wanting, Have a chat with your business studies teacher, I'm sure he/she will help you work out where you have gone wrong on this particular subject ;)

      Farnie, pop over to B&Q, i'm sure they will have some more turps for you to sup, your best off when your drunk and unconscious ;)

      Delete
    12. If you have money in property which is said to have a rentable value of £500k but in the end you actually achieve only £200k, that affects the value of your assets and the value of your business.

      Delete
    13. It is actually better to keep the theoretical rentable value at £500k even if you actually achieve £0. That is the way it works for some property portfolios.

      Delete
    14. Sadly not Turner you clown, it's based on income or property value ;) Unrented rental property that business rates are being paid on is a liability keep up :) I could list my house as a rental and list the rent at £1,000,000 a week, guess what, if it's not rented, it makes not a shred of difference what I list the rental value as ;)

      You need to speak to your business studies teacher boy ;)

      Delete
    15. oh dear you continue to prove you don't live here B&Q shut a while ago maybe you need to sort out your time zones spamilton

      Delete
    16. Think whatever you like, Hamilton, that is the way it works with retail property portfolios.

      Delete
    17. spammy you do rent your house out, 3 students last time I looked

      Delete
    18. Sadly not Turner, but lets hope I've taught you something and that next time you won't humiliate yourself as you have today, and when you swore that Flexistowe was a small container terminal ;)

      I'm sure turps will be available somewhere farnie, maybe some antifreeze would do at a pinch, why not go and share a bottle with a homeless person, that is about your level ;)

      Delete
    19. as normal speaking from experience again spamilton

      Delete
    20. Rail freight terminal. You can't even lie convincingly, Hamilton.

      Delete
    21. Ah that's right, Felixtowe, the "small" rail freight terminal....

      Wonder how big Felixstowe is...

      "The Port of Felixstowe, in Felixstowe, Suffolk is the United Kingdom's busiest container port,[1] dealing with over 40% of Britain's containerised trade."

      Poor tiny lil Felixstowe HAHAHAHAHA.

      Delete
    22. "If you have money in property which is said to have a rentable value of £500k but in the end you actually achieve only £200k, that affects the value of your assets and the value of your business"

      Oh dear, I wonder how much it effects the value of the business to have a building empty, costing business rates, as opposed to generating £200k ;)

      Keep up boy ;)

      Delete
    23. Rail freight terminal. The largest is not in Felixstowe, but in Birmingham.

      Delete
    24. You need to go and look up the term portfolio.

      Delete
    25. So because Birmingham is the biggest, that means that Felixtowe is small, that's your "logic" is it?

      port·fo·li·o (pôrt-fl-, prt-)
      n. pl. port·fo·li·os
      1.
      a. A portable case for holding material, such as loose papers, photographs, or drawings.
      b. The materials collected in such a case, especially when representative of a person's work: a photographer's portfolio; an artist's portfolio of drawings.
      2. The office or post of a cabinet member or minister of state.
      3. A group of investments held by an investor, investment company, or financial institution.

      Ah ok, so perhaps you think that having several properties making a loss makes a portfolio more valuable..... HAHAHAHAHA Oh Turner, i feel almost guilty humiliating you with such ease!

      Delete
    26. Good. So now you know the difference between capital investment and income. If the rental values go down it decreases the capital value. That you may have some income is not necessarily a good thing if you are concerned with the overall capital value of your portfolio.

      Delete
    27. Felixstowe is a smaller rail freight terminal. You seem to believe that because it is the largest container port, it must also have a large rail freight terminal. Not so.

      Delete
    28. No easy answers to the town centre problem, very close to my shop there are several commercial properties in a state of long term emptiness, it seems most likely that that this is the result of land banking or land banking gone wrong.

      One closed – went bust about eight years ago – sold for about £80k, then for £160k and goes on and off the market for about £250k. I guess a more proactive local authority would do something about it.

      Another it seems likely that the owner would like to demolish but can’t get permission, so it remains a great empty derry.

      I think part of the problem is that the area is neither commercial nor is it residential, on one hand you have takeaways licensed until 4am while on the other you have shops that have been converted to residential. Obviously the sort of tenant who is prepared to live in a flat facing on to the pavement where people arrive drunk in the early hours of the morning for a takeaway brings another set of problems.

      I would think that the type of commercial tenant who will take on a long lease, say 25 years and expect to trade in a shop for that length of time pretty much no longer exists.

      I think the key problem for our towns and cities is a social one, lose the shops and you wind up with what is essentially a housing estate with nice architecture, eventually the associated problems.

      In America where small shop closures happened earlier they have developed the situation where the centres of some small towns are no go areas.

      Another aspect is the environmental one related to the number of journeys, either in terms of individual deliveries or driving to out of town shopping centres, this may have limited sustainability probably related to fuel costs.

      Delete
    29. I really find it hard to believe some of the garbage spouted here about commercial property values. Realistically, what is the value of a property that has stood empty for years, needs a major capital investment to bring it just back to useable condition and is producing no income. Portfolios are regularly re-valued in the light of market conditions so there is really no point on sitting on empty property, banking excluded, in some ill conceived notion that it's value would reflect the rental income it might have once enjoyed. Excluding the possibility that some real amateur property speculators may have done so, most professional property portfolio managers would be looking to either off load loss leaders or generate some income pending a change in market conditions.

      Delete
    30. William selling a going concern depends on 2 things the yearly revenue (and therefore profit) it generates and the value of the property on the books.
      what owning any property has shown recently it is only worth what it achieves at the point it is sold and as such is unknown. Professional property valuers will tell anyone that what they give as a value is their professional opinion it is not reality.
      However when a business is valued before disposal it is up to the buyer to get their own appraisal as many sellers will value their way. I believe "Caveat Emptor" is very relevant in those circumstances.

      Delete
    31. William, I was really talking about empty commercial property as opposed to businesses as a going concern. For your info, I am well aware that a value is what the market will stand whilst values for lenders are based on an estimate of forced sale value in event of foreclosure. Carrying out property valuations was part of my role prior to retirement.

      Delete
    32. I agree that it doesn't seem to make much sense to the rest of us, but I am assured by those involved that this is the reason why empty shops are offered at unrealistic rents in Thanet. If you choose not to believe it, then that is your lookout.

      Delete
    33. Empty shops at unrealistic rents are not unique to Thanet, Joe, being a problem of our time, but charities manage to pick them up a lot cheaper because realistic landlords would often rather have them occupied and looked after than standing deteriorating. If one is seriously interested in finding shop premises it is always worth trying an offer.

      Not sure why you have to conclude "If you choose not to believe it, then that is your lookout" but perhaps confrontation is how you get your kicks. If it makes you feel good about yourself, then why not!

      Delete
    34. Joe's style certainly is confrontable. Chill out with a cup of tea, a banana sandwich and some Showaddywaddy Joe!

      Delete
    35. I'm not arguing with you any more, William. I have given you an explanation as to why shops remain empty and are offered at unrealistic rents that was explained to me be a property professional. If you don't like the explanation, that is your problem.

      It is not a unique problem to Thanet, but we have a lot more empty shops than many other places.

      Delete
    36. Joe, I did not realise we were arguing and since I was also a property professional, why is your source anymore expert than me. Actually, I do not have a problem and you are most unlikely to give me one. I shall now take Peter's advice and go and have a nice cup of tea, leaving you to gain more expert information from your property professional, Joe. Sad really!

      Delete
    37. what a pathetic, sad bunch you all are.

      Delete
    38. Incidentally, the real Farnie Barnard returned to RSA a month ago. Doubt if he is commenting from there and, if he was, he could hardly accuse Hammy of not living locally. Bit hypocritical.

      Delete
    39. "Excluding the possibility that some real amateur property speculators may have done so, most professional property portfolio managers would be looking to either off load loss leaders or generate some income pending a change in market conditions"

      that sums it up nicely.

      I think what we have to bear in mind is that William and myself clearly know what we're talking about, and Turner believes what he's told by someone clearly as clueless as he is.

      Oh Felixstowe, a small railfreight terminal? Lets see, It's the largest container port in the country, moves a quater of it's containers by rail, and has just doubled it's capacity. So turner my boy, apart from Birmingham, would you like to suggest another railfreight terminal that's larger that Felixstowe...

      How does it go, oh yes, END OFF HAHAHAHAHA

      Delete
    40. so hamilton William has explained where his knowledge comes from would you care to espouse on your experience or did you check wiki?

      Delete
  17. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  18. If the tunnel is to be reopened, perhaps someone could paint a likeness of John Hamilton over the tunnel entrance? I'm just unsure whether he should be face forwards or backwards.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. or even upside down so he can talk thru his a**e. be more true to life

      Delete
  19. Guess who have had their facebook page taken down due to their rude manners...

    http://ct11rag.wordpress.com/2013/12/04/conspiracy-theories-here/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. anon please explain "rude manners" as the site was used by locals to get action from TDC over litter, graffiti, dumped cars and dog faeces. The site was appreciated by locals (assuming you do not live in CT11) and had put pressure on TDC to do the job and get the above cleaned up.

      Delete
    2. FB said someone had reported it as a fake page

      Delete
    3. Perhaps there are enough sites run by people incessantly whining about Thanet...

      Delete
    4. spamalot I thought you had got a real job seems you have too much time on your hands. CT11RAG was at least providing a service for the people of Ramsgate unlike you.
      aren't C2 Tactical missing you or have you been sacked again like Tesco got rid of you in 2009

      Delete
    5. seems FB has apologised and reinstated the group

      Delete

Please note comments that may be libellous, comments that may be construed as offensive, anonymous derogatory comments about real people, comments baiting internet trolls, comments saying that an anonymous comment was made by a named real person, boring comments and spam comments, comments in CAPs will be deleted. Playground stuff like calling real people by their time stamp or surname alone, referring to groups as gangs, old duffers and so on will result in deletion. Comment that may be construed as offensive to minority groups is not allowed here either, so think before you write it, remember that the internet is a public place, that it is very difficult to be truly anonymous and that everyone who uses it leaves a trail of some sort. Also note the facility to leave anonymous comment will be turned of during periods when I am unable to monitor comment, this will not affect people commenting who are signed on to their blogger accounts. When things are particularly difficult on the commercial spam front I may turn comment moderation on for periods.

If you feel that someone has left a comment that is offensive and directed at you personally please email me (link on the sidebar) asking to have it removed, you will need to tell which post and the date and timestamp of the offending comment. Please do not reply to the offending comment as I will assume you continuing the dialogue as meaning that you want the comments left there.