Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Margate Football Club V Hartsdown Park

Another document in the saga of football v Margate has appeared on the council’s website today, the planning part of Thanet District Council’s website is a very bizarre site, something that makes it impossible to link to things on it.

To view the document, go to in the street name box click on the letter H, then click on Hartsdown Road and you will have all of the various planning documents that relate to this issue.

The batch of documents you want is 30 Mar 2011 F/TH/11/0224 and if you click on that link you will find one document called Other, this is a deed of variation changing the terms of an agreement between Thanet District Council and Hartsdown Development Company.

I should point out here that according Simon Mores in a rather bizarre thread on his blog, this document is to be deleted when their IT wizards work out how to do so, see

If you click on the plan above and then click on it again it should be big enough to follow, note the red bit in the middle of the park, my understanding is that the football club want to put an artificial pitch there and fence it off so that it cuts the park in half.

 They have already done this to the green bit.

Some people in Margate don’t like this idea and think that a public park is somewhere they should be able to walk across, others think that this will help the football club to survive.

And this map, the council’s planning site is like that, fuzzy images that you can’t decipher are quite common.

What the different looking plans and the deed of variation actually mean, in terms of the cutting the park up is a bit hard to tell, perhaps that they intend to cut it up in a different way.  


  1. Michael

    You dont appear to understand that UK planning is not run by Thanet Council it simply hosts and consolidates applications for Thanet as well as everyone else and I am told it has had a number of problems this week, one of these involving its scannnng output and another is an indexing problem which has transposed an old application with a new one, which is why the one you refer to has I am told reappeared!

    To be honest, im not happy with the output of the UK plannng portal but thats what we have and we have to make the bst of it until somethng better comes along. Complaining about its bizarre processes as if its a TDC problem which it normally is not, wont make it any better.

  2. Simon I can’t see how a variation agreement dated 10th August 2010 can have been previously published at some earlier time, I can’t find it, can you?

    I certainly agree with you that the council’s planning website is not good, my understanding was that this should have been moved to a TDC in house site by now, I have asked the council when it will be changed but haven’t had a reply, do you know when it will be changed?

    Sorry to say this but as the council continues to produce a series of errors, the last being the Dinah McNicol and Vicky Hamilton memorial service fracas featuring in today’s BBC news, my confidence in them has become somewhat limited.

  3. That would seem a very timely loss of confidence shortly before an election. Think your pink hue is showing through, Michael.

    Surely you do not seriously think that Messrs Hart and cronies would be any better.

  4. My confidence would stay with UK planning, even if they are having some problems, they serve many local authorities well throughout the UK.

    Any TDC "go it alone" scheme is likely to cost "more for less", their record on IT is hardly a shining example, a recent blog discussion on events publication comes to mind.

  5. 13.17 my loss of confidence with the council extends back to when I first attempted to find out what was going on with the Pleasurama development, I have been publishing details of this since 15th April 2004 on the internet, see I think you will find that since that time I have given both Labour and Conservative councillors fairly equal flack.

    However this is not so much a party political thing as just having a council that behaves in a peculiar fashion and as they act as our representatives, then this reflects on us badly.

    I think yesterday’s revelation about the Dinah McNicol and Vicky Hamilton memorial service is fairly typical of what I mean, messing people about until they reach a point of desperation, in this case the April fools date would seem to be an unparalleled feat of insensitivity.

    Odd things that I look into, the maritime museum, Pleasurama, the motor museum, the pavilion and so on have similar hallmarks, however it had never occurred to me that this sort of thing could be political motivated, unless perhaps the monster raving loony party is involved in Thanet in some way I don’t understand.

    Readit this is a case of the council saying for a number of years that they would deal with the most obvious failures it the way planning document are presented on line, hosting the documents in house are their solution to the problems, not mine.

    The main problems is that only part of the public domain planning file appears online, the document internet addresses keep changing so you can’t bookmark or link to them and the documents don’t have linier scales on, so you can’t determine the size of anything.

  6. I'm with Ken on this. Given that we have the world's number one IT expert and all round good egg on our council its cyber output is appalling. I've never had any real problems with the UKPlanning portal, but the TDC website.....
    And just remind me again who is the councillor in charge of communications...
    and of planning..

  7. I'm reliably informed that the new visitor info at Droit House has a map full of mistakes, has anyone here seen it?

  8. Andrew I don’t think my suggestion to resolve the main problem with the planning sheets published online went down that well with the council.

    The problem is that as these are scaled drawings, determining the size of anything is based on using a scale ruler on the paper sheet, obviously this won’t work when viewing the sheet on a monitor.

    I suggested that the council had a series of rubber stamps made for each scale showing the liner dimensions and stamped the sheets before sending them to UK Planning for scanning and publication. Not sure if this solution was too cheap or too easy for them.

    23.44 I will try and get over there next week and have a look, one wonders what the cost of moving across the road was, it seems to me all they have achieved out of this expense is another empty shop in Margate.


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