2003 the owner of Dreamland, Jimmy Godden, announced the closure of Dreamland.
The park is to be redeveloped as "leisure boxes, some retail and a supermarket".
Joyland Books will provide updates on the campaign to save Dreamland and its
internationally-important Scenic Railway ride.
Click here for the latest news
Thursday, 29 June 2006
ITV's Meridian News this evening
featured a lengthy piece on the future of Dreamland. Shot at both Margate and
Southend's Adventure Island, the item included an interview with Philip Miller,
who confirmed his interest in taking over "Drearyland", as he called it. Miller
stated that he is convinced that the park can be turned around and that the
trick is continuous "reinvestment". The report went on to say that the owners of
the park do not consider it to be viable.
The report noted that the park is currently
open for business (although added "but you wouldn't think it"!), with up-to-date
footage of Dreamland and Adventure Island showing the dramatic difference in the
way that the two parks are currently being operated.
You can view tonight's edition of
Meridian News by
clicking here. (When the Video Menu appears, click 'Meridian Tonight -
South East Thursday" and the item appears approximately 10 minutes into the
Today's Thanet Adscene has a small
piece on Dreamland:
Seaside fun park boss Phillip Miller has expressed an interest in taking
over Margate's Dreamland. The millionaire, who is credited with
transforming Southend's fun park, met with Thanet council leader Sandy
Ezekiel and cabinet members.
Mr Miller said: "Dreamland needs a
lot of money spent on it. Each day that passes means it is going to cost
Wednesday, 28 June 2006
Today's Thanet Times has a small
article on Dreamland:
Southend businessman Phillip Miller has
said he would be keen to take over Margate's Dreamland. The millionaire
owner of Adventure Island has met with Thanet council and says he has his
eye on the site.
He said: "It needs a lot of money spent
on it. It's hard to bring something back from the dead."
In other news, the Thanet Local Plan has now been
adopted by Thanet District Council. The Dreamland policy (T11) is contained in
Chapter 8 - Tourism, and states that it will resist proposals that reduce the
attractiveness, leisure or tourism potential of Dreamland, including
specifically requiring the retention of the Scenic Railway.
to download Chapter 8 from the TDC website.
Tuesday, 27 June 2006
Above (left to right): Mark Evans, Dave Collard, Nick
Laister and Ian Mansfield at the Preston Rally 2006.
The Save Dreamland Campaign enjoyed a
hugely successful weekend at the Preston Rally on Saturday and Sunday, 24
and 25 June 2006, the Campaign's second appearance at the annual event. The
Campaign stand proved a major draw for the weekend, with hundreds of new members
being signed up. To read more about the weekend and to view our Photo Gallery,
Monday, 26 June 2006
A full report of the Save Dreamland
Campaign's successful second visit to the Preston Rally will be online within
the next 24 hours.
Friday's Isle of Thanet Gazette
featured a front page news item about Philip Miller's attempts to acquire
Dreamland, including quotes from Philip and Save Dreamland Campaign leader Nick
Following our very
successful visit last year, the Save Dreamland Campaign will once again be at the
Preston Rally on Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 June 2005, 10am to 5pm at Preston Court Farm,
Preston-Next-Wingham, near Canterbury.
members will be at the Save Dreamland Campaign stand throughout the weekend.
Former Scenic Railway brakeman Dave Collard will be able to answer your
questions about the famous roller coaster, whilst campaigners Nick Laister and
Sarah Vickery will be recruiting new members.
Susan Marsh will be in charge of Campaign merchandise, including t-shirts,
baseball caps and bags all sporting the campaign logo. Button Badges will also
be available. All items new for 2006! There will also be an opportunity to buy
amusement park and fairground books from
and roller coaster enthusiast group Coaster Force will also be at the Campaign
stand selling their merchandise.
On Saturday night from 8pm there is ‘Party in the Barn’ in the
Kentish barn featuring ‘Ruff Justice’ accompanied and illuminated by a row of
mighty showmen’s engines. Tickets for the concert are available from the
organisers. The Fun Fair will also be operating in the evening on Saturday.
Save Dreamland Campaign members can get discounted entry to the
Rally by emailing
More information on the
Preston Steam Rally can be found at the
Rally Website or by calling
01843 588554 or 01227 722502. Admission is £6 for adults and £3 for children,
with free car parking.
Friday, 16 June
The Isle of Thanet Gazette had
extensive coverage of the Save Dreamland Campaign and Thanet District Council's
visit to Adventure Island, across several articles.
Monday, 12 June
Online roller coaster community
Coaster Force held a special 'Live' event
at Dreamland on Saturday, 10 June. Mark Evans, the event organiser, sent us this
|Upon arriving at the park in the
morning my initial reaction was that I wanted to burst
into tears and the thought was "What (the hell) have
they done?" Dreamland has become a mere scratch on the
surface of the once glorious memory it was before. But
nevertheless, I remembered that with any CoasterForce
event, we always manage to enjoy the day, regardless of
the setting and fun we had. Everyone eagerly awaited the
Scenic Railway being opened whilst they prepared the
Once we boarded the laughter and child like
enthusiasm began and everyone was really drawn into the
timeless classic that is the Scenic Railway.
Photograph courtesy: Ian Bell/Coaster Force
Everyone came away from the ride with a new found
passion and admiration for the ride. Something that is
definitely worth saving.
up the whole day, in my eyes, it was a tremendous
success. Getting to meet the Save Dreamland Members was
a highlight and in terms of our own documentary, talking
with Dave Collard about the campaign was a real
It has certainly left me with a new found passion for
Dreamland and a guilt for not joining the campaign a lot
lot sooner! I would like to thank Nick, Sarah, Dave,
Charlton Webb and all of his staff and the Save
Dreamland Campaign members who helped achieve this event
and make a classic success.
Coaster Force Manager, Ian Bell has also sent his comments through:
As it stands today,
Dreamland looks desolate, neglected and desperate. If a
little money was pumped in, Dreamland has the potential
to draw in thousands of visitors. There’s a perfect
existing infrastructure for passing trade with the train
station a few minutes walk away and the pull of
Margate’s beautiful beach.
glory is The Scenic Railway. I have been on 124 roller
coasters and none of them have the charm that The Scenic
Every member of
Coaster Force was impressed with the history and
experience of the ride. It’s a unique opportunity to see
a roller coaster being physically pushed out of the
station and having an operator working the brake on the
train. There is no other ride in the UK that offers such
a magical experience.
Click on the above photograph to see a view of
Dreamland in 2006 - a very sad sight.
Photograph courtesy: Matthew Hitch/Coaster Force
The short tour of
The Scenic Railway’s workshop showed to us how much love
and attention goes into the ride and how special it is
to the people that work there and to the people that
Many people from
Coaster Force feel that Dreamland depends heavily on The
Scenic Railway. Although the members that rode other
rides such as Chaos, the Big Wheel and Hellraiser
enjoyed them, they didn’t really offer enough diversity
to appeal to a day-long visit.
With so much
commercial potential as a bustling amusement park, it
would be a travesty to remove it and build tin shed
shops which would ultimately end up making Margate just
another run-of-the-mill town. Somebody somewhere to
needs to wake up and realise that investment in
Dreamland would not just satisfy amusement park
enthusiasts but would also give Margate something else
they could be proud of. Brighton Pier and Adventure
Island, Southend On Sea are similar areas to Margate and
look how successful they are!
On behalf of
Coaster Force, I would like to thank the staff at
Dreamland and the Save Dreamland Campaign for making us
feel extremely welcome. I really hope things work out
well for the future…and we’ll be right behind you all
Coaster Force Manager
For more photographs of
Dreamland in 2006 and the Coaster Force visit,
click here. View Coaster Force members' comments on the visit
included a short piece about today's visit by TDC councillors to Southend's
Adventure Island Theme Park.
Tuesday, 6 June 2006
Dreamland is now open for the
season, operated by
Webbs Amusements Limited, and is receiving some very positive reviews. Campaign Leader, Nick
Laister, commented on the feedback:
"We have received several messages commenting on
how well-presented the park is this year and how it is a vast improvement on
last year. The park is looking very clean, staff are wearing company uniforms
and are all friendly and helpful. There is a small but very smart selection of
rides and the Scenic Railway is up and running. I am sure that all our members
will join me in wishing George Webb and his sons the best of luck for the 2006
season. I hope that members will do their best to visit Dreamland this year - we
all need to show George our support."
The park is
currently open weekends only from 11am, and will be open every day in the school
If you have
taken any photographs of Dreamland this year, please send them to
we will add them to our Dreamland 2006
Several Save Dreamland Campaign members were at
the park on Sunday. Pictured below are Sarah Vickery, Dave Collard, Ian
Mansfield and Ian's mate, Leigh. See photographs of their fun day out below - click on a
thumbnail for a larger picture!
One of the
group is scared of heights. Can you guess who it is?
Sunday, 4 June 2006
The classic film 'O Dreamland'
(1953) will be shown in London later this month at a special film celebration of
the working class seaside holiday. As well as Lindsay Anderson's highly-regarded
documentary on Dreamland, the 1947 film 'Holiday Camp' (a comedy about the
seaside holiday camp, pitched at the time as a plug for Butlin's-style breaks)
will also be screened. 'Summer Holiday', as the event is called, also promises
more seaside shorts, possibly with Dreamland/Margate connections. This evening
of seaside films is being organised by London-based writer and Save Dreamland
Campaign member Iain Aitch, and
is on Wednesday 14 June at
The Horse Hospital,
Colonnade, London. Doors open at 7.30pm. For more details,
Friday, 2 June 2006
Today's Gazette reports
that Dreamland has opened for the summer.