Saturday, May 26, 2007

Miracle in Progress

I was out and missed last night's BBC South-east news coverage of Margate's regeneration story and thanks to ECR for spotting it.

He has a different slant on the story as you might expect but fundamentally it's all about the good news as seen from the BBC studio, "The economic miracle" taking place in Thanet. If I'm totally honest, I would say that it's early days to be thinking of miracles. We have many of the necessary pieces of the infrastructure jigsaw puzzle in place to regenerate the economy but we also have a number of pressing problems that demand urgent attention too, workforce skills, investment, housing and deprivation being among them.

The mistake is to mock the report. Everyone here shares a common goal of trying to make Thanet a better place but there are many different opinions on how we can best jump-start the local economy. There is however a single blueprint or plan in place and like it or not, it's the one that may hold the best chance for success and we need to give it a sporting chance to succeed before we start anticipating its failure.

You can watch the BBC news report here.

“The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable.” - John Kenneth Galbraith

13 comments:

DrMoores said...

I just had to remove a clearly libellous comment regarding council money being "pocketed" by a named councillor. (not me)

There is absolutely no point in making such comments here.

1) It breaches the acceptable use policy

2) It is terminally stupid

3) If you make such a comment and the person in question wishes to take legal action to defend their good name, your IP address is recorded by law, a court order can match this to your address and the end result could be very expensive in terms of a libel damages award.

So be sensible and take your personal animosity elsewhere please!

Anonymous said...

What was most noticeable about the report was how empty Old Margate was; Westwood Cross car park was full on Friday! As a tax-payer I am still livid about the casual deposal of The Seabathing Hospital for less than £500,000. The irony is that a building probably visited by Turner has been turned into a marvellous development by private enterprise and yet'top down' tax payers money to the tune of £7 million has been wasted on the non-existent TC and all we have been offered so far is a series of coloured cubes! The less TDC, KCC and SEEDA do in the re-development of the Isle, the better.

Anonymous said...

anon again!
Yes, the Sea Bathing must be like the Titanic, worthless on the bottom but worth Millions on the surface. Talking of old dumps, what about those other thanet "eyesore's" ? That empty hulk opposite the Lido.... I'll pay £3000 for it, need the rest to do it up. Then there's the third building on the right as you go up Elephant Hill.... been dumped by it's owner...???? I'll pay £1000 for it, need the rest to do it up!
Places like these are what makes Thanet the dump it appears to be...

Time to do something TDC? I think so!

Eastcliff Richard said...

Don't forget (although TDC frequently and conveniently do) that we have eyesores in Ramsgate too - a cliff in a parlous state of repair, a key seafront site boarded up (Pleasurama), an empty motor museum that's rotting away, a pavilion that's soon to be empty etc etc.

Anonymous said...

anon again!

The name (meaning) Titanic appears to cover Thanet's dilema well then.... from the TDC to the ruins of our High Streets! It's close to the bottom, with very little sign of emerging.

Anonymous said...

Dickie, old boy, you're absolutely right! The problem is that the chaps and gals in Cecil Square pop out for a quick lunch into Margate and clearly got fed up with passing all the shops their policies closed in Margate High Street. The crumbling East Cliff can wait whilst the 'cafe society' is encouraged in Margate to provide decent 'watering holes' for lunch.

Anonymous said...

I have just been looking at ECR and his take on Outfitters, The Parade, Margate. In 2006, this property was granted a £100,000 GOSE Grant via TDC and is now up for private sale with Lovetts for £415,000. Looking at GOSE site and Lovetts it seems that the refurbishment with grant is as Lovetts pictures show. Is this another TC on the smaller scale? How many local people benefitted from the funding? Did not TDC have a similar issue with funding of a hotel a few years ago, when the owners sold out to developers after receiving a TDC grant from similar sources. What has gone on here?

Anonymous said...

cafe society my ars* ... just dont excpect to be able to sit outside, right ramsgate, honestly they must be laughing like lottery winners over the other side of the channel.

Anonymous said...

10.31 pm, Outfitters' address is 20, The Parade, Margate and according to nethousprices.com was purchased on the 4th Oct 2001 for £89,995. It seems that the GOSE grant of £100,000 given to 'Outfitters' has gone a long way to improving the building if it is now on offer for £415,000 as you state. A diiference in less than 6 years of £325,000 represents a 361% increase in value. Quite extraordinary!

Anonymous said...

I am afraid this quite brilliantly represents all that is badly wrong with the idea that the 'arts' and 'regeneration' can be forced or squeezed together to produce boom times for all, undoubtedly some good times for some, those in the club, but certainly not all.

Anonymous said...

Will GOSE and TDC recover any funding back? How long did the project at 'Outfitters' last for and how many young people benefitted? What exactly was the funding used for and how was it accounted for? When public funds are used in this manner and wasted, and there appears to be a clear benefit to the owners of the property ( Jeremy and Linda Theophilus) should not money be clawed back for use elsewhere? I find it disgraceful that Doc Moores as a Westgate Councillor has to scrabble around for a miniscule bit of funding for the Basketball Net and space for our youngsters.

Anonymous said...

Its a rarefied club the arts world and, to coin a phrase, if you don't or have 'never had the Latin', you will be shown the door, a-dont-cha-know.

Jeremy Jacobs said...

Simon, Somewhere I've got the original proposal document for that Margate regeneration from the 60's. Part of the scheme was to have a marina at Margate harbour.

JJ