High drama at the last full council meeting before the end of term and next month’s elections.
The Theatre Royal argument continues with the delivery of a petition with 4,416 signatures by Jacqueline Quigley. I’ll invite some debate about the finer details here but from where I was sitting, there appeared to be confusion over the role played by the Theatre trustees and Thanet District Council in clearing its considerable debts and changing its ownership. Many of these questions were, I think, addressed in the Q&A I have in a story link from earlier in the month but this doesn’t appear to be putting an end to a good conspiracy theory that lay in the minds of many of the observers in the public gallery.
There was a suggestion made in the meeting that Roger Gale, our MP, had refused to accept the petition but when I saw him the other day, I was given to understand that procedurally, he couldn’t accept a petition that had already been submitted elsewhere, which appeared to make sense to me at least.
So if you were at tonight's council meeting, did the answers finally reveal why the Theatre Royal is where it is today. Several Labour councillors were struggling with the detail, I concede, given by Chief Executive, Richard Samuel.
Another petition tonight was submitted by John Farley on behalf of a 1,000 Ramsgate residents, worried by the potential development plans for Montefiore Avenue in Ramsgate.
An energetic case was made for the defense of the green spaces; putting green, park and tennis courts and concern over the gradual loss of open, public green spaces on the island. I suspect that 99% of Thanet residents share the same concern as more and more new properties are squeezed into ever smaller spaces to meet the insatiable demand for more housing.
I even met Tony Flaig from the Big News Margate weblog this evening and the strangest thing, there seemed to be very little that we disagreed upon in regard to making Thanet into a better place for all.