Ramsgate’s Heritage Action Zone (HAZ) has reached the end of its fifth and final year. Launched in 2017 and funded by Historic England (£450,000), the Heritage Action Zone is one of ten original schemes across England, set up to breathe new life into historic places that are rich in heritage but in need of a boost to make them more attractive to residents, businesses, visitors and investors.

Over the last five years, Thanet District Council has worked in partnership with Historic England, the Ramsgate Society, Ramsgate Coastal Community team, Ramsgate Town Council and the wider local community on a range of projects within the HAZ. Extensive research was undertaken to better understand the history, heritage, and changing face of this dynamic coastal town and to understand what makes the heritage in Ramsgate so special. The end goal was to protect and improve the town’s heritage for the future.

As a direct result of HAZ funding:

  • Nine historic sites gained listed status following a listed building review
  • Publication of ‘Ramsgate: The Town and its Seaside Heritage’, a book featuring beautiful new photography
  • Repairs made to the town’s Pulhamite or artificial rock, with training given to help local people look after it
  • Community consultation to review and update the Ramsgate Conservation area appraisal with the publication of a guide with practical advice for residents and businesses located within the conservation area. The appraisal is one of the first to include a chapter on climate considerations which will serve as a model for others.
  • Roof repairs made to the iconic Ramsgate Clock House

Community engagement projects included:

  • Retiling of the public steps at Kent Place with Pugin-inspired tiles designed by local school children as part of Historic England’s Heritage Schools programme
  • Seafront Placemaking, an engagement project to understand how the local community use and value the seafront, including a memory-mapping exercise with interactive digital map and public exhibition
  • Podcast series created in partnership with the Ramsgate Festival of Sound which uncovers stories and lived experience of the town through a sonic trail

NB Each of the items underlined link to more information on an item.

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Terry Prue