Monday, 21 January 2013

Royal Sands Development on the Pleasurama Site Ramsgate new FaceBook Group and protest movement

A new group has got together to attempt to do something about the Pleasurama fiasco in Ramsgate their internet presence being   

First I wish them good luck with their endeavours and hope they have more success than I have.

I am very tied up at the moment and hope to get a chance to write some more on this subject later on. 


  1. You have not done so bad so far Michael with exposing the mess to the public and giving cllr Driver the chance to reach many many people. The message is finally getting through to the council and the chances of a cover up have now diminished.

  2. this is the time for ramgate to tell tdc we dont want the rich kids flats we want visitor attractions plus usage for local residence

  3. Part 1
    A moat, a drawbridge and a tunnel idea versus flats or sheep pens

    - a plot from the days of Merrie England?

    Headline news for 14/12/2012 concerned the development and proposed sale of the freehold for the site previously occupied by Pleasurama on Ramsgate seafront. Below is an idea that shows some alternative thinking for the area. Your input is requested in reading the article, then if you believe that the unique and valuable asset should not be sold completely, but kept for the creation of a community asset with the potential for more local jobs - then please contact (by phone is recommended because of the short time left) your Thanet District Council (TDC) representative. or phone 01843 577502 for councillor details

    Ramsgate needs, and deserves, an attraction or events to bring back some life and fun. Also the much needed local jobs that accompany a higher footfall of people. We have trains and boats and planes (then buses) connecting Thanet to “elsewhere” but getting people to come and perhaps stay requires a draw of some kind, advertising going with it - like the national Big L (Radio London) ads of the sixties even better. Somehow the likelihood of “celebrity flats” and a handful of shops adjacent to them will not do this.

    An aquatic leisure pool, a gig venue, a bingo hall, an exhibition or show floor, an indoor hockey venue are some examples of the pastimes that could utilise this site, but alone financially - it’s dubious. But as a multi-use venue with a fast change ability the concept could. Utilising the time factor for when these activities are busy could be the key. Industrial exhibitions are scarce during school holidays, swimming pools though are busy; rock concerts tend to be evening shows and not when an exhibition has taken days to set up somewhere and occupies the venue for a while - day and night. Maximum usage of the resource needs to happen for success. A “draw” feature, meeting the timescales, and keeping people happy are just some of the commercial needs. Being accessible is getting easier in Ramsgate’s favour though.

    How can this be possible at Ramsgate and where does the local job(s) creation come into play? Simply put, the answer may be a moat, a drawbridge and a tunnel! Sounds like a plot from days of old and Merrie England – close.

    Take the moat to be a swimming pool running alongside the cliff, the drawbridge as a platform or floor that’s lowered down from the cliff face when the pool needs to be covered to stage events, and the tunnel (already there) as a storage/build marshalling area for pre-prepared stands or staging, ready to be rolled out/back for the fast changeover aspect.

    Short term jobs come from the engineering and building needed to create the amenity. Long term jobs would come from support activities to event organising like designers, planners, production/ manufacturing, buyers, international liaison staff, sales personnel, marshals, lifeguards, bar staff, cleaning operatives etc. Versus the flat element of the current proposal which could be for a few domestic support staff. You could perhaps include some tour guides for celebrity spotters, and if the worst comes to the worst a - few shepherds.

    Part 2 follows

    1. Part 2 of 2
      Some of the other considerations taken into account include:-

      The pool being salt water and heated via sun tracking, vertically mounted panels on the cliff face by Augusta steps; thus buoyancy, warmth and health benefits being provided.

      The exhibition stands, stage sets, displays being made up on flat bed railway trucks so that they can use the Dumpton Park end of the tunnel en-route to sidings at Minster, Ramsgate or Margate for additional work as required, plus this re-connection to the main line would allow further UK and European destinations to be used with the same product. A direct export or marketing tool assembled in Thanet perhaps – don’t forget the plug about where they come from.

      A higher second “drawbridge” perhaps with an inflatable transparent dome covering such that two floors may be offered at the same time whilst still allowing sea views from the bandstand, and consideration of an easy connection (Loop bus or other) for pedestrians or wheelchair users.

      Links to the Granville and the Westcliff Theatres for holding seminars associated with the exhibition.

      Ramsgate’s version of the Earls Court boat show – stands at the exhibition and full demonstrations just a short stroll away in the Royal harbour.

      Storm tide surges would be catered for with the lowest part being the pool, and the next floor being easily cleared (if lowered) of the rolling stock in case of unpredicted flooding.

      While there must be some negatives, probably surmountable, the worst coming to mind at the moment is that Estate Agents won’t have an additional base of 107 flats to sell from, year on year with the consequence of however many jobs not being created.

      This is just an alternative idea at this time, hopefully being viewed as trying to do something better for Ramsgate and the generations downstream of now. Please remember that to keep Ramsgate “alive” a chat with your councillor and not complacency is required and soon. There is a Cabinet meeting at TDC on 22/01/2013, of course the deal selling the freehold rather than closing the saga and starting again might already have happened. TDCs’ telephone number is 01843 577502.

      If there is a will, a way will be found!

    2. Anon I think the point here is that TDC already agreed to sell the site to the developer subject to the developer being able to prove they have the money, today's cabinet meeting wasn't to decide whether or not to sell the site, but to see if cabinet wanted to discus Cllr Driver's motion that the council voted not to discuss at their previous meeting.

      The gist of his motion was “Council recommends to Cabinet that if SFP Ventures (UK) Ltd are unable to provide the information requested by the Council in A) and B) above by 31 January 2013 that Cabinet refuses to agree any new terms with this company and will robustly enforce the existing agreement including taking back the leasehold of the Royal Sands development if necessary.”

  4. Michael - a sincere thank you for starting this Facebook thread. Possibly this is where "out of the box" thinking will have an airing to stand a chance for Ramsgate (not profit) to succeed and for genuine residents - now and in the future - to have something keeping a worthy town alive and interesting.

    1. not me 5.30 I didn't set it up and have only commented there like you have here.

  5. Very Good Anonymous.....So you've got the ideas, assume you've got the support of local residents, town and district council and last but not least the funding!


  6. I think the anons have no idea of the tenacity and volume of work required to promote an idea or fight an issue. There is one anon who constantly wants to get in the police. Even if the copper is generous and asks the Chinese Civil Service entrance exam question. "Tell me all you know". What is Anon going to say before being laughed out of the nick.

    A trick question like "What is your crime complaint" would confuse him.

    When a case file is written assembled to post to Court or IPCC etc I think anon would be surprised to know how much the postage amounts to after the parcels of the cumulative, indexed, paginated case file are weighed. Appendices of evidence. Affidavits and sworn,sealed exhibit reports.

    Then especially as a layman against lawyers the latter have numerous ways to mess you round. If you actually get a hearing you will get a half hundredweight of documents through the post about a week before the hearing which is the lawyers' "Disclosure". In that forest there may be one tree of evidence you want. But you gotta read it just about 24/7 to find out what they have hidden in there.

    Having vastly complicated issues the opposing solicitor will instruct a barrister who turns up and blames the layman for complicating the issues. The barrister will then propose to the judge that the issues are essentially simple and, by a fortuitous coincidence, actually exactly match an "Authority" (a stated case which has become case law)

    So then you have to convince the judge (who probably wants to get away to lunch) that the barrister has re=written the issues so as to match the authority most to his liking. An authority that enables the Judge to be away to lunch at the golf club.

  7. Does no one else think that rather than spend the next 5 years trying to raise funding/get agreement on pie in the sky ides; the simpler thing to do would actually to just allow SPF to build the proposed scheme. Which would of course have a positive impact on the town of Ramsgate and the region of Thanet as a whole?

    1. Resoleros I guess the answer there is that SFP in the first instance need to sort themselves out and develop some sort of reasonable communication with local people.

      I think after ten years of involvement in this development a good start would be some sort of company website, perhaps explaining what other projects they have been involved with and how they hope to resolve the particular difficulties posed by this very difficult site.

      All us locals have to go on is ten years of considerable economic damage to the town, £1m out of our council tax and work on the site that makes no sense, shallow foundations sitting on the beach behind an unaccredited 150 year old sea defence.

      Over the years there have been very valid issues about the height, 7 sets of planning changes to attempt to resolve this but not a single mock up photo to explain how it will look to the locals from above.

      The developers contractor produced a report showing serious defects to the cliff façade, no follow through and public information about this, as there has been no work on it one can only assume they still think it has the defects.

      The EA asked for a flood risk assessment, no explanation as to why one hasn’t occurred.

      The truth here is the developers has got peoples backs up and now they have had enough.

      More than anything this is about confidence and communication, begging the question, what would the confidence and communication situation be like if it ever got built.


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.