January monthly members newsletter


Dear *|FNAME1|*,

An Optimistic start to 2021

We suspect that most will be happy to see the end of 2020. Our problems were minor compared with many but it was a year of frustration for the Society: from the cancellation of talks and other events to the continuing battle with vandalism and the often slow progress towards achieving our aims to renovate some of Ramsgate’s iconic structures.

However, we start 2021 with optimism and in this January newsletter recognise three Civic Champions who are helping to alleviate local hardship and remind you that our plans for the Clock House and Maritime Museum are still alive and could get the go-ahead this year. We are also pleased to welcome 59 new members who joined since last Summer, whether aided by lockdown or despite it.

Terry Prue,
Ramsgate Society Communications Lead

The Civic Champion Awards 2020

The Ramsgate Society Civic Champion Awards are given to local people who, in the opinion of the Society’s Executive Committee, have made an exceptional contribution to the quality of life in the town. In this Covid year there have been some extraordinary examples of people who, by their unselfish efforts, have made a huge difference to a lot of local lives. We have selected three individuals, but each one has told me that they would have been unable to do any of this without the teams of volunteers who support them, and in accepting the awards they do so for their teams as much as for themselves.

Cara Thorpe for her work at the Newington Community Centre.

Photo: Cara Thorpe with Nova Marshall

Carl Whitewood for his work at the Salvation Army Foodbank.

Photo Carl Whitewood (credit Cllr Becky Wing)

Sharon Goodyear for her work at Our Kitchen

Photo: Sharon Goodyear

As soon as the Covid Restrictions allow we will be arranging an event at which the Awards will be presented by the Mayor of Ramsgate Cllr. Raushan Ara.

John Walker


Ramsgate Port and Harbour Feasibility Study & The Clock House

Image © Francis Philips Architects from the 2016 concept document by Houghton Kneale Design Ltd for Destination Makers and The Ramsgate Society. The full document can be downloaded from our website.

The consultation period on the WSP Feasibility report commissioned by Thanet District Council is now over and in the new year TDC will be considering its next steps.

The Ramsgate Society responded to this consultation at some length and a copy of this response was posted in our November Newsletter. One of our key recommendations was that the restoration of the Clock House, the most iconic building in the Royal Harbour, should be accepted as an early priority. This proposal was identified as a possible Phase 1 of the regeneration of the Royal Harbour, as distinct from the redevelopment of the Port, which would need a much longer timescale.

The Society completed a Clock House feasibility study in 2016, which cost £25,000 and was funded by a grant from the Coastal Community Fund. The study included a condition survey of the building, architects plans for the restoration, a detailed business plan, quantity surveyors cost plans, a concept plan for the proposed Heritage Centre, and an engineer’s report from Arup’s on the Smeaton Dry Dock together with proposals for essential repairs.

At that time TDC declined to support our application to the Heritage Lottery Fund for a grant to carry out the project, even though HLF had indicated strong support for the scheme. The reasons for this were not stated but it was reasonable to assume the TDC were considering the possibility of the sale of the building to help cover the ongoing reductions in government grant to local authorities.

More recently however TDC have indicated its willingness to support the project. At a meeting with the Leader of the Council, Rick Everitt, and Chief Executive Madeleine Homer in February 2020 they stated that they would be prepared to support the project if it came through the WSP Feasibility Consultation as a preferred outcome.

The Leader of the Council has recently issued an update on the next steps with the Port and Harbour Consultation which can be read here. The Society remains ready and willing to work with TDC and other stakeholders in the community to bring this much needed project to fruition.

For up to date information on our proposals for a new Ramsgate Heritage Centre at the Clock House please visit our website

John Walker


New Treasurer

I’m very pleased to announce that we have a new Treasurer for The Ramsgate Society, Neville Redvers-Mutton, who took over from our previous Treasurer Beverley Perkins on 1st January this year.

The Treasurer is a Trustee and Officer of the Society so is a key player in the Society’s activities as well as being responsible for the oversight of the financial affairs of the organisation and ensuring they are legal, constitutional and within accepted accounting practice.

Neville is a Fine Art logistics professional with more than 30 years’ experience in planning complex artwork installations, both in public and private museums and galleries sector in the U.K. His clients range from the most celebrated artists, art galleries and institutions through to private individuals requiring seasoned and cost-efficient advice about how to move their highly valued artworks across the World. Neville and his wife Annette have lived in Ramsgate for about 10 years and Neville spent some time at the Turner Contemporary in Margate helping to set up the operation there.

At the same time as welcoming Neville to the committee I would like to take this opportunity to thank Beverley Perkins who has done an absolutely superb job has our Treasurer for the last 3 years. Not only has she been an excellent Treasurer but she has contributed enormously with her specialist fund raising skills and has organised a number of events, particularly the Van Gough Summer in 2019, which highlighted the connection Vincent Van Gough had with Ramsgate in the Summer of 1876 when he lived in Spencer Square and taught at the boys’ school in Royal Road.

Bev will now be concentrating on her role as Chair of the Friends of Ellington Park, which as many of you will know is in the middle of a £2million restoration funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. It was largely thanks to Bev’s hard work, that the HLF grant funding was secured and that this project is now on site and scheduled for completion in 2021. Fortunately, Bev has agreed to stay on as a Ramsgate Society Committee member and will focus on the management of our membership records which is an important area for us.

John Walker


Contact the Ramsgate Society

If you have any queries about or for the Society please get in touch

Members with events, workshops or news that you would like the Society to consider featuring in its newsletter please contact: news@ramsgate-society.org.uk

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