March monthly members newsletter


Dear *|FNAME1|*,

Scaffolding Heralds Urgent Repairs to the Clock House

(Photo Becky Wing)

Once more we begin a newsletter with a photograph of scaffolding. This time, it is a joy to record the start of the emergency work to make the Clock House safe from falling masonry and further internal rainwater damage. This has been made possible by the Society being successful in obtaining a grant of £22,812 from the Historic England Heritage at Risk Response Fund.

Hopefully it will not be long before we hear that the Clock House has been identified as a defined project in the WSP Report and Consultation on the Feasibility of the Ramsgate Port and Harbour. At that point we have been told that TDC will support our proposals for a new Ramsgate Maritime Heritage Centre in a fully renovated Clock House. By the end of this month we should also hear whether we have been successful in our nomination to TDC for the Clock House to be listed as an ‘Asset of Community Value’.

Our social media posts about work at the Clock House have shown a real depth of Ramsgate support for this project. The Facebook post announcing the successful grant to start work was shared more than 30 times and generated 177 comments – all of which were positive.

Terry Prue

Ramsgate Society Communications Lead


Now your help is needed – Adopt a Tree!

The map above is just a section of the one online that shows all 50 trees that have now been planted to mark the 50th Anniversary of the designation of the Ramsgate Conservation Area. To see the location of every tree, visit the interactive map where the plus sign will expand the map and a click on any coloured dot will reveal the tree name.

We would just ask that you visit it from time to time to check if it’s looking OK and if you have concerns – report it to us. This campaign aims to ensure that these trees remain healthy and beautiful for generations of future Ramsgate residents to enjoy! To help us fund the maintenance for the first two years while the trees establish, we would like to ask that you make a donation of £40 towards your tree’s upkeep. Your contribution will greatly assist us to finance the maintenance costs over the crucial first two years until the trees become established.

To adopt a tree please email the Ramsgate Society and we will get back to make arrangements. You will have the opportunity to choose the tree you wish to adopt. You will be given details about your tree, its name and ‘tree story’ – location, planting history, details about how it likes to grow and what to look out for.

John Walker and Irene Seijo


Ramsgate Society Pegwell Bay Litter Pick

(Photo John Walker)

The Ramsgate Society’s first litter pick of 2021 will take place on Sunday 11 April 2021 from 10am at Pegwell Bay. The assembly point is the Viking Ship café on Pegwell Bay clifftop. We will be joined by the volunteers of Kent Wildlife Trust, local voluntary groups such as the Sea Cadets and the Guides, local residents and members of the Ramsgate Society on the day.

Pegwell Bay is a Nature Reserve and a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) but suffers quite badly from litter and plastic which is washed up on to the beach throughout the year. Much of it is small, dangerous and not easy to see on the photograph below.

Please arrive before 10am for a Health and Safety briefing which will be revised in line with the latest Covid-19 Restrictions (social distancing, wearing face-masks and working in small groups) as well as guidance on litter picking. ​Highviz jackets, litter picks and sacks will be provided courtesy of Kent Wildlife Trust, Ramsgate Town Council and Thanet District Council.

The litter pick will be in and around the small beach between the old Hover pad apron and the chalk cliffs, working along towards the country park at Pegwell returning by 12noon.

Do come and join us. It’s a very worthwhile activity and it’s also great fun.

Meher Basit

Ramsgate Society Event Organiser


New Damage to Western Esplanade Shelters

Shelter 1 (above) has again been attacked with graffiti on walls that were repainted only last year. The TDC graffiti removal team have been informed and once cleaned we hope we can organise a small group of volunteers to repaint it again.

Shelter 4 at the St Augustine’s Road end had the benches set on fire the weekend of 6th/7th March. We don’t know the exact circumstances but it looks suspiciously like a deliberate arson attack. Once again Chris Barton and his team from Ramsgate Town Council leapt into action. On Monday morning they cleared the mess and made the shelter save from a Health and Safety point of view. Thanks to Chris and RTC for your prompt response. We are currently looking into the costs of rebuilding the seats as soon as possible.

John Walker


It is 200 years since Ramsgate’s harbour was designated “Royal”

(Painting destroyed in Ramsgate Library fire showing harbour with Royal Standards flying)

The Spring Bicentennial issue of Ramsgate Matters admits we still know very little about the harbour, its origins, and what has been concealed.

The Harbour is unique in very many ways. Built over a Roman site, it had a pivotal position in maritime history for 1,500 years.

A landfall for saints and invaders, with trade links to London and the world, it was the first harbour of the industrial revolution, designed by the first civil engineer,

Giving shelter from the Goodwin Sands, the world’s worst most dangerous reef, this four-acre Georgian harbour with just two pincer piers, plus temple, obelisk, hospital, orphanage, lighthouses, (and now the nation’s largest pub) was built in a cleft in the longest run of white chalk cliffs and reefs in the country.

Over centuries its small ships resisted crusade, conquest, Armada and Dunkirk. Backed by a tiny town without major river, road, or transport links the unfolding story is remarkable and largely unrecognised. The future is even more important.

Brian Daubney

Ramsgate Matters Editor


Do You Remember the Americans at Manston 1950 – 1958?

(Photo courtesy of ‘Rise and Defend’ by Duncan Curtis)

The Ramsgate Society is providing support to local jazz singer and stage producer Sabina Desir with historical research on the time when Manston was used as a USAF airbase. While the US armed forces were officially desegregated, off-duty African American servicemen were restricted to Ramsgate while others frequented Margate and Broadstairs. We believe there is a story to be told that is very relevant today. Sabina is leading a small team putting together a spoken word and music project with accompanying education pack. The project is part-financed by Ramsgate Town Council and the production will be part of the Ramsgate Festival of Sound in early September.

Do you have memories, anecdotes or family stories about this time when the Americans were in town? If so, please contact us via the email at the foot of this newsletter.

Terry Prue and Richard Oades


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:

Facebook icon Twitter icon Website icon

Copyright (C) *|CURRENT_YEAR|* *|LIST:COMPANY|*. All rights reserved.



Update Preferences | Unsubscribe