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
Friday, 26 September 2008
|Scenic Railway clearance to
start next week
the fire-damaged parts of the Scenic Railway will
commence on 29 September.
Nick Dermott of Thanet
District Council met with Peter Beck of MTCRC, together with
representatives of Downfast Demolition and Bob Williamson of
Jacobs Manchester (representing MTCRC), at the Scenic
Railway yesterday morning. The object of meeting was to
agree the extent of the 'emergency' demolitions and
clearance after the fire. Nick told the Save Dreamland
"What was agreed was as
- The four burnt 'ends'
of the ride would be cut back to the first non-charred frame
in each instance, ie about 3 charred frames would be removed
in each case. Before any demolition took place, the burnt
parts would be photographed and heights, measured with a
laser level, marked on the photographs to the approval of
TDC. Any pulleys etc in these areas would also be
photographed and measured and then stored.
- The most damaged parts
of the station platform and roof - at the northern end -
would be removed after being photographed. The switch track
to the former workshop would be left in-situ.
- The charred debris in
the centre would be sifted through. All pieces that are
evidence, wheels, pulleys etc would be shown to English
Heritage and placed in agreed secure storage. Ditto signage.
The rest, together with the blockwork asbestos clad and
roofed shed would be cleared away."
Setting up works are to
commence on 29/9/2008. Nick will be inspecting on site at
Above: The fire-damaged Scenic Railway pictured in June
2008. Photograph: Nick Laister. (Click on image for higher
COMING SOON: More exclusive
photographs of the fire-damaged Scenic Railway
Photographs of Sanger's
has also sent the Campaign some photographs of the
recently-uncovered lion cages, which are temporarily
protected by a preservation notice pending potential
Nick Laister comments: "I
have spoken to a number of people involved in studying the
history of zoos in the UK. It appears that these are the
only surviving examples of their type in the country and
completely unique. We are compiling information on the
history of the Sanger relics and will be forwarding them to
Thanet District Council." If anybody has any
information on the structures, please contact
Thursday, 25 September 2008
A fascinating panoramic picture of
The Scenic Railway at Dreamland taken in June 2007 by photographer
and publisher Stuart Horner is now available for sale through the
Save Dreamland website.
A small version of the picture
appeared in Stuart and Sarah Horner's recent book 'So you think you
know the Isle of Thanet' which features over 400 colour pictures of
Thanet's hidden details, wonderful buildings and townscapes. The
book is now available in Waterstones Westwood Cross Branch
Stuart explained his connection
with this wonderful feature of Thanet.
"The whole concept behind our
recent book was to showcase Thanet's exceptional features and
buildings. The Scenic Railway was always on our list, but proved a
really difficult picture to take without being airborne! Now we hope
to use the picture to help save the building featured in it, not
something we had expected to be involved with.
"So a percentage of each sale will
be donated to the Save Dreamland fighting fund to help preserve
another part of our wonderful heritage which is now terrible
The colour picture shows the entire
length of the ride, before the devastating fire in 2008, and is
possibly the last picture taken of the historic ride in such a wide
The picture measures 25" x 6" (640
cm x 150 cm) including a shallow white boarder all the way around.
For commercial use larger versions are available if required, up a
size of 72" x 9" approximately, and possible on canvas. Please email
for more details.
These particular commemorative
pictures has been professionally reproduced in a limited run of only
The cost of the 25" x 6" colour
picture is £4.75 plus post and packing of £1.25
For more information and to order a
copy of this picture please contact Stuart or Sarah at the following
Sunday, 14 September 2008
Dreamland Campaign is pleased to confirm that the UK's only
surviving full-size Whip has been acquired for the proposed
Dreamland Heritage Amusement Park in Margate. The ride,
which has operated at Blackpool Pleasure Beach since at
least 1921, was manufactured by WF Mangels of Coney Island
and is identical to the Whip that once operated at
acquisition of the ride follows several months of
negotiation between Nick Laister, on behalf of the Dreamland
Trust, and the Pleasure Beach. The dismantling and transport
of the ride was funded by the Margate Town Centre
Regeneration Company (MTCRC).
for more details on the newly acquired ride and
for information on the rest of the rides acquired for the
heritage amusement park project. The Campaign would like to
thank MTCRC and Pleasure Beach Blackpool.
Above: the Whip in operation
at Blackpool Pleasure Beach in 2004. The ride has been
standing but not operating at the park since 2005. The
canopy has not been moved. Click for larger image.
Saturday, 13 September 2008
of security fencing around the Scenic Railway has been
completed. The fencing was installed by Thanet District
Council following an arson attack on the ride in April this
year. The 420m long barrier now completely encloses the ride
and it is hoped that the fencing will now secure the roller
coaster until repair work commences. Click on the image to
the right for a bigger version.
The fence as been covered by a
number of news sources over the past few weeks, including:
This is Kent.
Monday, 8 September 2008
preservation notice served on the recently uncovered remains
of 'Lord' George Sanger's menagerie at Dreamland (see news
below), Thanet District Council is now compiling as much
information as possible on the structures pending possible
listing. The main structure can be seen in the 2002
photograph to the right (click on the image for a larger
version - can you spot 'Gus the Ghost'?).
Dreamland Campaign has been asked to appeal for members of
the public to come forward with any information on these
Sanger relics to assist the Council in assembling a full
case to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS)
for statutory listing. If you send any information to
firstname.lastname@example.org, we will forward it to
Above: Is that 'Gus the Ghost'
in the window of the recently uncovered Sanger relic at
Dreamland? Click for bigger image.
In other listing news, members may be interested to note
that the DCMS has decided to list the remains of the Clifton
Baths at the Cliftonville Lido.
Click here to view the Listing Entry and
here to view the
Sunday, 7 September 2008
As reported yesterday, Thanet
District Council has served a preservation notice on
the recently uncovered remains of Sanger's menagerie at
Dreamland, which predate the opening of the amusement park.
The discovery is three animal cages and a 'tower'. One of
the structures can
be seen behind the roller coaster in the 1996 photograph to
the right (click on the photograph for a larger version, or
here for the full panorama showing the structures in
context). The preservation notice prevents the structures
being demolished for up to six months, allowing the
Department for Culture, Media and Sport to decide whether
they should be statutorily listed.
Former Scenic Railway brakeman
Dave Collard remembers the menagerie buildings being very
visible in the 1980s and 1990s:
Above: Remains of the Sanger
menagerie pictured in 1996, but only recently
'rediscovered'. (Photograph: Paul Handley)
"The cages in question have been there for many years and
were visible in the Bembom time (1982-1995) and could be
seen at the rear of the kids playground running alongside
the NCP car park near Arlington House. There used to be a
'Gus the Ghost' character in the building behind a curtain
that would appear if you put 20 pence in the machine on the
kids play area."
news of this 'discovery' was covered in the Isle of
Thanet Gazette on 5 September.
Saturday, 6 September 2008
Dreamland updates in the local press.
Firstly, from the Thanet Times on 2 September.
A similar report appeared in the
Thanet Adscene on 4 September.
here for the latest news
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