Your Comments

The Save Dreamland Campaign is now acting on behalf of over 13,000 people who want to see Margate's biggest tourist attraction and its most famous ride saved. We have had literally hundreds of emails, letters and telephone calls. Here are just a few of the comments of the people who have joined our campaign.

"As someone who owns and runs a tourist attraction in Margate, I am utterly dismayed at Dreamland's proposed closure. It's true to say that the current state of the Park leaves much to be desired, but demolition is not the answer. Tourism is vital to the economy of Margate and Dreamland is an important element of our tourism product. Last summer, at the request of Thanet District Council, Arkenford undertook a comprehensive visitor survey across the three Thanet towns of Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate. It showed that over a quarter of visitors to Margate had visited Dreamland, and over 10% of visitors to Thanet as a whole had been to the attraction. Dreamland is easily the most popular visitor attraction in this part of East Kent and to replace it with a supermarket and a very ordinary range of leisure facilities would signal disaster for our industry." 
Sarah Vickery
The Shell Grotto 

"A considerable number of our members, including myself, have many happy memories of riding the Scenic Railway. This is truly sad news and everyone I have spoken to has agreed that something must be done. The European Coaster Club is 100% behind this campaign and we are all crossing our fingers hoping that we will be able to ride the Scenic Railway for many more years to come."
Richard Foster
European Coaster Club

"The American Coaster Enthusiasts (ACE), as the world's largest club of amusement park fans, with over 8,000 members worldwide, fully supports the effort to preserve the Scenic Railway. It is the fifth oldest operating roller coaster in the World, and one of only nine scenic railways left in the World. One of ACE's primary goals is the preservation of historic roller coasters, and we feel that the Scenic Railway easily meets the criteria as a valuable piece of the history of amusement parks and as such should be saved."
Matt Crowther
Preservation Director,
American Coaster Enthusiasts

"I work in a gift shop on Margate sea front and have seen the decline of Dreamland since Jimmy Godden took over...The best we can hope for is some theme park owner to take it on. I'm sure the Council would welcome this."
Roger Carpenter
Margate resident

"In 1988 when The Roller Coaster Club of Great Britain was formed one of the main aims was to preserve existing roller coasters.  Ironically the Club made a visit in that first year to Dreamland, Margate, and we were fortunate to have our first ever exclusive ride session (ERS) on the Scenic Railway.  What was then a small group, enjoyed the historic ride many times in the glorious sunshine and a highlight for me was actually being able to take the control of the ride and take the group round with me as ‘brakeman’.  One of the most ‘nervous’ rides of my life and a chance very few people would ever be able to experience. By today’s standards the coaster is not a major ‘white knuckle’ ride but it does hold its own as a FUN ride.  And in an industry where the importance is based on FUN, the Scenic Railway still delivers. Since its first ride back in the '20s millions of people have enjoyed this coaster and I am sure that for many it was their first ever ‘big coaster’. Too many times we have lost these great pieces of architecture, and for what? Certainly not progress! Do we really need another supermarket, another multiplex or another retail complex? No! Do we need somewhere for people to go and have a good time, share precious moments with their children and have a day filled with FUN? Yes we do. The Kursaal at Southend became a housing estate and bowling alley, Frontierland at Morecambe became a shopping complex, Battersea Fun Fair just became a open space! All homes of classic roller coasters that gave pleasure to millions – all gone forever.  We must not let this happen to the Scenic Railway – one of the last few surviving rides of its type in the world.  Dreamland may not be able to compete with the likes of Alton Towers for modern day thrills, but don’t it forget the great British tradition of a FUN day out at the seaside!"
Andy Hine 
The Roller Coaster Club of Great Britain

"Without Dreamland, Margate will become a very ordinary resort with nothing to distinguish it from all its competitors. At a time when all resorts are struggling to attract tourists, it makes no sense whatsoever to take away the one thing that makes Margate stand out from the rest. And all presumably in aid of a quick profit by the current owner. Forget the quick profit Mr Godden - think about the long term damage this will do to the resort."
Dave Lawrence
Margate holidaymaker

"The Scenic Railway at Margate clearly defines the essence of the perfect amusement ride. For the families, it is a fun yet thrilling adventure that everyone can enjoy and share. For the roller coaster lovers, it is a superb representative of the Golden Age of 'Woodies'. For all of us, it is the king of the amusement park. Now that we have entered the Third Millennium, our minds are set towards the future and the latest technologies help us create bigger and more exciting rides, one must not forget our treasures from the past. Losing the Scenic Railway, in a country with such a strong cultural and historical heritage, would mean losing one of the finest jewels of our treasure."
Jean-Marc Toussaint 
Concept Designer 
International Amusement Alliance

"Society goes to great lengths to preserve the past. Museums, village recreations from centuries past, and private collections are devoted to this. However, amusement devices seem to slip through the cracks, even
though they represent great moments in many persons' pasts - moments which bring smiles to most. The "Scenic Railway" roller coaster was king from the late 1880's through the first few decades of the twentieth century, and hundreds were made world wide. Now we are in danger of losing one of the few remaining examples of such an amusement device. The "Scenic Railway" at Dreamland Pleasure Park was one of the last such models built and is now one of the last such models in existence - not just in The United Kingdom, but in the world. Given its great popularity in our grand and great- grand parents' pasts, it deserves a spot on the preservation lists of the world so that future generations may enjoy a working model of something once so ubiquitous in most amusement parks of days gone by. The world needs to be made aware of such loses so that these devices will be preserved along with other such museum pieces of the past."
Richard Bonner
Managing Director
The Coaster Enthusiasts of Canada

"The Scenic Railway is the crowning piece in our rapidly disappearing seaside amusement park history. Surely, it is time to start celebrating this past instead of just tearing it down."
Adam Flack
YRM Architects

"I am a roller coaster enthusiast (from America) who has ridden over 600 different roller coasters around the world. The Scenic Railway at Margate holds a special place in my heart because it was the first "Scenic Railway" I had ever ridden. It is the oldest coaster in England and even though it was built in 1920, it is still a joy to ride. This beautiful ride is a national treasure which must be preserved for future generations to experience."
Jeff Graham
roller coaster enthusiast from the USA

"Surely, listing something offers it some level of protection under the law. The government, or the local council at the very least, must be obliged to look after something that has effectively been put into their care. Mr Godden may see this as an inconvenience, but there it is."
Dave Page

"Dreamland and the Scenic Railway both represent important and significant pieces of heritage and are as important, if not more so, than they were over eighty years ago. Not only are these as important as any museum exhibit, they're still relevant in today's society, and continue to form an integral part of historic seaside fun like they were nearly a century ago. Losing such fundamental exhibits of the early 20th century simply is not an option. The Scenic Railway beautifully exhibits the level of engineering capabilities eighty years ago and how people have used amusement devices for fun and escapism for generations."
Marcus Sheen
Coaster Kingdom

"All my family are local to Margate and following my father's redundancy in 1974, we returned to Thanet. My father - a surveyor and architect, was unable to gain employment in his profession and ended up working at Dreamland for several years.  When I was a child any employee of Dreamland would get a free quota of tickets in any season, and therefore one night, as a highlight of our summer holiday my father would take us around the park riding on the River Caves, the Spinx, the Wall of Death, the Water Chute and of course the Scenic Railway. Many happy hours were spent here. I was upset having moved away to London and returning earlier this year, to see the dreary shell that Dreamland has become. Most of the rides have been sold off and those remaining look decrepit and grey.  What is Thanet Council thinking of by letting one of the main tourist draws disintegrate into this condition?  Not only that, but I understand that the owner has been given a certain amount of grants to plough money back into the site?  Where has this money gone to? I think another hotel will add nothing to the area (just look at the Nayland Rock) and please for God's sake lets not have another pub or club on the site. With the Turner Centre coming to Margate, there was a slight chink of light on the horizon - something different!!! Let's save the scenic railway and think carefully as to what will aid the re-generation of Margate and last for another 80 years."
Heather Sawney
Local resident

"I am personally very shocked at the recent developments and especially disappointed at Thanet District Council's lack of vision. Godden seems to have TDC wrapped round his  little finger. This will certainly not help Margate's  regeneration.  Replacing Dreamland with a Casino is truly selling out. It is gambling  with Margate's future."
Paul Hazelton 

"SAVE Britain's Heritage wholly supports the efforts of the Save Dreamland Campaign to retain and reuse Margate's 1920 roller coaster, the oldest in the UK. Although structures such as this represent an important part of the country's social history, as well as being thoroughly delightful, they are little cared for and their interest and importance little understood. It is vital that this roller coaster is saved for not only its great interest, but also for the pleasure it has yet to give so many."
Adam Wilkinson
SAVE Britain's Heritage

"I feel just like the thousands of others that have shown an interest in this campaign. Working together, we have got to stop this because Dreamland is Margate and no one wants to see it go."
Mick Tomlinson
Margate Events Group

"The news that Margate's Dreamland Park will soon be no more if the current and pending owners get their way, with the blessing, of course, of our oh so reliably feckless local authority, is not only immensely sad but deplorable. True, the Park is no longer the happy traditional funfair of old, but whose fault is that? Asset stripping has seen the most popularly enduring family-friendly rides and features vanish, to be replaced by a cold, bleak tarmac desert with a few white knuckle rides aimed at teenagers, totally alienating those family groups to whom Dreamland was once a mecca. Could it be saved? Most certainly. All over this country traditional fairgrounds under the right ownership are doing good business, and many enthusiasts are restoring wonderful old fairground equipment to serviceable condition. Surely, a down-sized Dreamland Park, centred by our unique and historic Scenic Railway, an important and priceless part of not only Margate's but the country's heritage, would be the right environment to recapture that old family-friendly spirit and to display working funfair heritage. Other towns have catered for their tourists and funfairs thrive. If they can do it, why not Margate? If we intend to remain as any kind of family resort we must fight to save the Scenic Railway. If we don't, we might as well face the fact that we are finished, and poor old Margate has lost too much already to let that happen."
Mick Twyman
Margate Historical Society

"Felt I just had to leave a comment. I have lived in Thanet all my life and ever since my mother first took me to Dreamland I have always had a fascination for coasters and amusement park rides in general. I am now a regular visitor to Florida and enjoy many parks and attractions it has to offer. I also visit Alton Towers once a year to enjoy their park. My point is that Dreamland has deteriorated to such an extent that the fun factor left the place many years ago. What happened? The park is half full of rides that are dirty and look unsafe. What is on offer has been taken from other parks and erected on wooden planks here there and anywhere. If only somebody could have upgraded the park on a seasonal basis, kept it tidy, and given the park some sort of direction, I and many others would not be fearing the worst for its future."
Lee Gillman

"I support the campaign to save Dreamland unequivocally. An amusement park is far more important to Margate than another development or hotel. The needs of Margate should be respected more than filling the pockets of a greedy developer.
Roger Lloyd Pack
Actor ('Trigger' in Only Fools and Horses)

"Oh what wonderful delusions this council suffer. Didn't Jimmy Godden once own the Pleasurama site as well and the council allowed development to take place? What do we have in its place? Hotel, casino, shopping development. My, doesn't it look lovely now! This is where I have a very poor understanding of how our so-called council work. How can they let people like this take our heritage away from us?  When I was little my Dad took me to Dreamland and on the Scenic Railway. I remember gripping on to his arm with my eyes squeezed tightly closed, but what fond memories. I now have 3 children of my own and to be able to take them to the same place as I went and for my 6 year old daughter to be gripping hold of her dad's arm on the same ride that has brought so much joy to so many children is wonderful. One of the unfortunate things about Dreamland is that when it was taken over by Jimmy Godden from Bembom Brothers there was a rapid decline in quality and staffing. Every year we have turned up to find less and less attractions, more and more concrete. Two years ago we turned up in the summer holidays to find the majority of the rides shut down and staff having to operate two to three rides at a time. So, Thanet District Council and Jimmy Godden, you only have yourselves to blame for this rapid decline in tourist numbers. I can't see how you can say this is not viable anymore as you only get out of what you put in. So please don't destroy this amusement park because we haven't anything else in Thanet and it would be criminal not to allow new generations to experience the 'whoops' of the last 83 years. The Council has to realise that we have no other major attractions in Thanet and we live in the top 20% of deprivation/poverty. Where do we get the money from to all go to these casinos and stay in these hotels? Haven't we already got proposals for casinos at various other places already? Come on TDC, please get real, listen to the people of Thanet and give them what they want (just for a change)."
Mrs Temple

"Several years ago we travelled to the UK for many different reasons.  At the end of our trip we had one full day out of Windsor before we went home to Omaha, Nebraska.  We decided to visit both Rotunda and Dreamland.  To our dismay the coaster at Rotunda was under maintenance (although we found out that some American Coaster Enthusiast  people were there riding the previous day), but we did get to ride the mouse with the rotating cars.  This was such a unique park!  We hurried over to Dreamland and, to our pleasant surprise, the Scenic Railway was running.  It was our first ride on any coaster that had a brakeman.  What a treat!  We have a video of our experience that we cherish - and show to our Coaster-loving friends.  Since then we have gone out of our way to ride the Railway in Melbourne Australia - also a wonderful experience. Perhaps short sighted people don't sense a need to preserve attractions such as this.  For my money, I would rather have ridden this ride than many of the newer record holding rides that have been recently built.  An example has been set here in the United States when our people spoke out to save our oldest roller coaster in Altoona, Pennsylvania.  Short and sweet, people don't design and build rides such as these anymore.  They are on the verge of extinction.  As the cliché goes, although prices can be set on the booming computer designed roller coaster rides of the modern era, but our ride on the Scenic Railway will always be considered 'Priceless'."
Jerry and Betty Golmanavich
Omaha, Nebraska

"I am a walks leader for the Margate Guided Walks Service and the Ramblers' Association.  We seek to encourage walking in Margate for leisure, communication and the sheer pleasure of interacting at firsthand with the environment and exploring its heritage and the opportunities it offers. Structured walks are an important part of the raft of attractions that Margate should be offering to residents and visitors alike. Other major components will be the Turner Centre, the regenerated Old Town and Museum, and the excellent sands themselves. What gives all of this a special character is the major leisure and tourism element on the Dreamland site.  This must be a defining moment for updating what is on offer to a quality offering which blends the best of the traditional with some new all weather leisure activities for the 21st Century." 
Colin W. Bridge

Ramblers' Association

"Isn't it ironic ? When Bembom Brothers took over Dreamland in the early eighties they effectively tore the soul out of it. Most of the permanent rides and buildings were removed - the river caves, the miniature railway, the ghost train - the rides that set an amusement park apart from a travelling fair. Bembom's policy of pay-one-price, no readmission and no evening opening have all had a detrimental effect on Margate's other attractions and the town as a whole. We were definitely relieved when Jimmy Godden took over the park, it seemed like a new era had dawned for Dreamland, but what little remaining soul the park had retained, Jimmy Godden has managed to put a stake through. I remember at its reopening, the general manager of the park saying to us that Mr. Godden had only bought it for the land and that grants would enable him to make a "killing" within the next five years. I, at the time, thought this cynical. But what of Margate itself, what has it done to help itself? On visiting Margate yesterday (22 Feb), which was a glorious school holiday Saturday, we could not find one cafe or restaurant on the seafront open at 2pm. In contrast, visit Southend, and I guarantee that you will find 99% of it's attractions open all year round -and that has always been the case. The survival of Dreamland must be as a complete Amusement Park on its entire site. It cannot survive as a one ride attraction with only the Scenic Railway, but it needs the support of other businesses and attractions in Margate to ensure a complete day out at the seaside."
Kevin, Veronica, Niall and Ainsley James
Maldon, Essex

"I was born in Margate and lived there for 14 years.  We had to move away as my father would have been made redundant from his job. I return to Margate very often as we have family in Canterbury and I just like to go back to my hometown every now and then to keep in touch.  My mother and I always go to the Walpole Bay Hotel in Cliftonville as it is a lovely homely place, which is popular with all my family. Last summer we went to Margate and were surprised to find the Looping Star had finally made a comeback after the pathetic replica which took root there a few years ago, with its name sprayed onto corrugated iron. This really made our day. We also noticed there were a lot more holiday makers on the beach. It really was like the old times and I so wanted to capture that again this year. Having read that they want to close Dreamland, I am appalled to think that a leisure park which gives so much enjoyment to both holiday makers and residents alike, is set to close.  I can only say that once this happens, tourism in Margate will be virtually nil.  How on earth can it compete with the likes of Bournemouth , Brighton and Blackpool if they take away a major feature, just to build houses?"
Victoria Adcock
Former Margate resident  

“Dreamland at Margate is a central part of our funfair and amusement heritage; it is a place where there has always been the great mix of traditional and innovative attractions in its long history. We feel that it is important that it survives to bring pleasure to new generations along with an insight to the development of great rides, with the finest example, the Scenic Railway at its centre. We fully support the campaign to ensure that Dreamland, with its great past and its present hope, has a future”
Desmond Fitzgerald
Fairground Association of Great Britain

"I have been visiting Dreamland since I was a small child (I'm nearly 37). I remember the double hooped big wheel. And later the original and best looping star. Dreamland has an advantage over much larger theme parks, as you have a beautiful clean beach (a tourist attraction alone). I now bring my two young children to Dreamland, and they too have trouble sleeping the night before as I used to all them years ago. I admit Dreamland in recent years has looked a little unloved, but a few more interesting rides would bring it into the millennium. As would a few more reasonably priced food outlets, and good picnic areas. If Dreamland goes, so will the livelihoods of the seafront outlets, B&Bs and Dreamland employees. I wish you much luck with your campaign, and just hope that the powers that be see sense."
Elaine Farrance 

"I'm horrified that they are planning on closing Dreamland. It just cant happen. I was looking forward to visiting the park on a yearly basis again now, as flights are so cheap to London and it only take 45 mins. I'm not going to visit Margate to see a few shops on the Dreamland site...We cant stand by and watch this happen... If someone takes the time and effort to rebuild the park it will succeed. I can remember the park being so packed that I had to wait over an hour to get on the Looping Star in the mid 1980s. And that was with both cars running. I really hope some major park operator takes the site over and puts it back on the map...I'm furious and deeply upset that they are even contemplating doing this."
Rik Crayford

"All my life my family and I would visit Dreamland in the summer holidays and have a great time. The next day we would all talk about the great day we had. Dreamland was my and my mum's favourite fun park. Knowing Dreamland is going to be demolished, the Scenic Railway too, and be replaced with some other development; the feeling is terrible. Can I just say to the person who is going to make this happen: 'how can you do this'? Do you not have feelings for the campaigners who are spending a lot of time trying to save it? Do you really want everyone to be upset while you carry on with all the profit you are making? Do you not have a heart for the people who will miss Dreamland, people like me? It's not fair and it's not right. If I were you I would reconsider and rebuild the park. My feelings are the same for Rotunda. I for sure will never visit Margate again to see a few shops and this and that on the Dreamland site."
Sonia Aslam
A student in London, Manor Park

“If the plan is to build a hotel, supermarket, shops and a casino, on the Dreamland site, there will be no reason to bring our children to Margate. Margate will have nothing to offer families any more. The only rides available will be a supermarket trolley for the very young. What’s the point of a hotel if there are no attractions for guests? There are enough hotels and guesthouses in Margate. There are enough shops in the town. Who needs a casino except those with money to burn!  Many other seaside towns have less than Margate, but their fairs bring tourists. Take away Dreamland, and I will take my children elsewhere. Friends and family say the same.”
Elaine Farrance 

"I attended the Save Dreamland Convention on Sunday 1 June and I would like to say thanks to all involved in getting together the video footage and public speakers who put the importance across very well. I wanted to send this message in the hope that it can be displayed for others to read. I just want to say that as has already been pointed out Dreamland is definitely part of Margate's past, present and future. For this point I call upon all of Thanet's residents to join in with this campaign for the sake of everyone who lives here and who are very tired of Thanet being a mere shell of what it has been in the past. So often we see in the local papers political representatives from both the major parties making statements about what they have achieved for the people of Thanet and at the same time they also point to the fact that the opposition has achieved so little and that they are letting the people of Thanet down. So with these points in mind I say we use Dreamland - which is after all the key to Margate's regeneration - as a prime example to test the powers that be to showing us that they do listen and not just dictate how things are going to be by refusing planning consent to any developer who wants anything less than what's best for the future of Margate, its people and the rest of the Isle of Thanet. Keep up the good work. I am 100% for the cause."
Margate resident

"I have been visiting Dreamland on occasion since my early childhood (for nearly 40 years), having been born and bred in Kent. I am embarrassed to admit that the difficulties faced by the park have entirely escaped me and so was extremely disappointed when I took my children there this weekend. The park has been very much "run-down"; I note however that the park fees remain unchanged from what they were when the park was much larger and reasonably maintained. While the park is not the only entertainment within Margate its closing would certainly effect the frequency of my visits to the town; with two young sons I would be forced to consider other day-trip/weekend destinations where a more varied range of entertainments would be available. I doubt very much that I would be alone in this."
Dr Mark Appleton
Barnet, Hertfordshire

"My father was chief operator of the River Caves for  many years. His name was Maurice Berry; many will probably remember him. Sadly he passed away on the 27th July 2003. My father loved working for Dreamland; he even stayed on for another 3 years after his retirement. As well as being operator of the River Caves, he also did maintenance of the Scenic Railway and also other rides down there. After the River Caves was pulled down in the 80s my father was put in charge of the Looping Star which he also loved. I have a sister and a brother and the three of us enjoyed many years of fun and making lots of friend in Dreamland. Since Bemboms sold up the park has deteriorated and myself and family would not want to give the park the time of day now. It would be a shame if Dreamland closes not just for the locals but day trippers and holiday makers." 
Mrs Marissa Smith 

"I cannot remember my first visit to Dreamland, as I was too young, although it must have been a long trip from Birmingham ! Now years later with my in-laws in Maidstone I take my own kids to Dreamland every year, they love it and of course we spend a reasonable amount of money in the town too. Maybe I have misunderstood the Planning Department's stance regarding the site, but I don't think I will be visiting Margate if the site becomes a "Retail facility." The kids hate shopping, and I would have to drive past Milton Keynes, Thurrock and Bluewater to get to it. They want a British Holiday resort, not another shopping centre. If other people have the same attitude it can only lead to a decline in visitor numbers to Margate to the detriment of the whole town."
David Roberts


"I was mortified to hear of the possible demise of Dreamland - as a resident of Kent during my teenage years, Dreamland represented one of relatively few attractions that were appropriate in the region - school holidays routinely meant taking a rail rover up to Margate in order to visit. I consider that Kent as a whole would suffer from the loss of Dreamland."
Nigel May
Hitchin, Herts

"As a child we holidayed in Margate every year for about 10 years in the 1950s/60s. It was a major part of our holiday I still have some of the prizes I won on the picking up ducks stall!!   Although my first ride on the scenic railway was only last year! More recently as a leader of a youth group in West London we have travelled to Margate for a summer outing every other year for about 8 years or so. (The alternate year we go to Southend so I was interested in the report that Adventure Island wanted to develop Dreamland). We are very disappointed that Dreamland has now closed and are not sure where to go for our outing this summer as Margate won’t now offer enough attractions for a whole day out with 12 – 18 year olds. Margate was the best place to go to as it has easy links by train, the station is almost on the superb beach and there was Dreamland. We will miss it and sincerely hope it will be re-developed as a Theme park and restored to its former glory soon. Good Luck!"
Judy Hazelgrove
Denham, Buckinghamshire

"I was very sad to learn that Dreamland was closing on one of my visits last year. I have been going to Margate since I was a small child and my first experience of the roller coaster was thrilling and got me hooked ever since! I used to take my children to Dreamland at least four times a year come rain or hail! And they loved it. We would spend all day in Margate and on several occasions we would stay in B&Bs, in fact my children and I enjoyed Dreamland far more than a big theme park. We really loved it. It was a great day out for the whole family. Sadly, as it is no longer operating this half term we are now going to Adventure Island in Southend as it takes more than the beach to keep three kids of different ages entertained. I do hope you manage to keep Dreamland as I will be one of the first at the gates! Good luck with your campaign. 
Mr & Mrs Forrest
Welling, Kent

"Since I first visited Margate as a child, I have loved the place. Married and now with three grown up children - and a dog- we still all continue that love. We are so sad to see places that have been so good in the past sink into dereliction. The Lido now virtually empty, although nicely decorated. The awful shop on the corner of Zion place - a lick of paint on the ground floor but still terrible above. But then good moves on the seafront to improve it.  Lovely sands, smashing scenery, wonderful walks along the cliffs. Margate is always seen as a "kiss me quick" and fish and chips sort of resort but what is so bad about that? The Turner Centre might attract some but I cannot understand Thanet Council letting one of the greatest assets close. Dreamland, of course, and that fantastic scenic railway. Come on Thanet, please wake up before it is too late. You have so much going for you there but I have to say you seem to use the sands for digging your heads in! We are delighted to see the very positive moves made by the Bishop family at the Walpole Bay Hotel. Restoring this fine old building, inviting people to see their museum and attracting new visitors to the coast. (Shame someone like the Bishops with their enthusiasm and love for the area can't be overseeing Dreamland instead of property speculators.) Sadly, whilst we have stayed there we have heard comments from guests about the sad decline in some other parts of the town - especially Dreamland. We are not put off but sincerely hope that the campaigners will succeed in getting Dreamland revitalised and alive again and restoring it to the great attraction it once was.  Then the visitors will flock back to Margate I am sure."
Dennis Moor
West Wickham, Kent

"At 68 years old I remember Wonderful Dreamland when Mum and Dad took me and my sister for our two weeks summer holiday to Margate and Dreamland was the big draw to us Londoners. My favourite ride was the Grotto Water Chute riding in large tubs, getting soaking wet...oh such happy childhood memories one never forgets. We stayed at Mrs Arnolds Guesthouse about a mile away from Dreamland. Mrs A was a wonderful landlady and we could hear her up with the dawn at 5am smoking like an old chimney getting the breakfast ready for us guests...thinking back now it was not the most healthy way to prepare grub but then everyone smoked even in the kitchen! In those days every day was hot sunshine and golden sands. I do remember a pier of sorts; I think it was square shaped but I loved the evenings spent with Mum and Dad playing the (Old Penny) machines on the seafront with candyfloss and all those bright lights flashing and lighting up the seafront. Margate was pure magic then and when we returned to our Guesthouse we would have sandwiches sitting on our beds and planning the next day's fun. Dad would save £100.00 or more for our special yearly Margate two weeks, a small fortune in those days and it would take Dad a whole year to save it from his tradesman's wages of £12.00 a week. God bless you Mum and Dad. We even spent Christmas one year at Margate at dear Mrs Arnolds Guesthouse and it was so cold the sea froze over. We still have pictures of our stay with Mrs Arnold all sitting on the steps of the Guesthouse in black and white...the pictures that is not us! It's funny now as I think back on dear old Margate and all that fun because I've lived in Brighton Sussex since 1960. Because Dad was Brighton born, we all moved down here then but I often think of Margate and wonderful, wonderful Dreamland. And if it can be brought back to life that would be great and I know Mrs Arnold would be pleased too."
Brighton, Sussex

If you would like to join the campaign to save Dreamland and the Scenic Railway, email Nick Laister.

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