Star attraction gets star award

What a delight to find in my email inbox this month a message from our Heritage Advisor, Nick Dermott, informing me that the Minister for Tourism and Heritage has decided to amend the List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest to show the Scenic Railway’s entry as being a Grade II* listed building. 

Our Chairman, Nick Laister, said; “It is wonderful news that the Scenic Railway listing has been upgraded from Grade II to Grade II*. The Scenic Railway was listed Grade II in March 2002, and this amendment to its status is an entirely appropriate recognition for this rare and vulnerable structure, coincidentally coming exactly 10 years after I first wrote to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport in July 2001 asking them to consider listing the ride. It puts the Scenic Railway into the top 6% most important listed buildings in the country. This is a great springboard for the restoration works that will be starting on the ride over the coming months.” 

The list entry has now been published on the English Heritage List for England, and can be accessed via this link on their website http://list.english-heritage.org.uk/resultsingle.aspx?uid=1359602.  A very timely gift for the Scenic Railway’s 91st birthday – Happy Birthday! 

I Wish I Could See My Little Willy

Fearful that the nation’s morals were in decline after World War II, the authorities confiscated and destroyed thousands of British ‘saucy’ seaside postcards in the early 1950s.  Working together The Dreamland Trust, Thanet District Council and The British Cartoon Archive are exhibiting these banned postcards and invite you to decide whether or not they really are ‘too rude to view?’ 

The Dreamland Trust is delighted to have the opportunity to celebrate this important part of British popular culture and Margate’s seaside heritage by bringing together this exciting, and entertaining programme of exhibition, visual talks, radio drama, film screenings and music in and around Margate from 17 July – 2 August, 2011.

This extraordinary story will unfold at the site of the hearings in the old Margate Magistrate’s Court, now Margate Museum, through a series of visual talks, and writer Neil Brand’s play for Radio 4, about the ‘Postcard King’ Donald McGill’s trial for obscenity in 1953.  Brand’s other work includes the television documentary, Paul Merton’s Weird and Wonderful World of Early Cinema and the TV mini-series, Silent Clowns. 

The Director of Public Prosecutions’ archive of 1,300 prosecuted seaside postcards is held by the British Cartoon Archive, at the University of Kent, and is freely available through its website at www.cartoons.ac.uk  All 128 postcards prosecuted in Margate during the 1950s can be seen on its catalogue at www.tinyurl.com/6yyypfx

Carry on at the Carlton

As part of our popular culture and seaside heritage celebration we have, once again, teamed up with the Carlton Cinema. For one exclusive day only the Carlton Cinema in Westgate is showing a special double screening of those masterpieces of innuendo, Carry on Camping and Carry on Girls, supported by cabaret from the aptly named Private Widdle Social Club. For full details and bookings please visit the Carlton Cinema website www.carltoncinema.com

Capture a Seaside Moment

Throughout the events look out for the family of ‘saucy’ postcard characters around Margate. Take a picture, write a caption and upload it to our Facebook page, Capture a Seaside Moment, to create an archive of saucy seaside fun – all done in the best possible taste – of course!                                                                 

So much to do over the summer months and I hope you enjoy the events as much as we’ve enjoyed putting them together.  Our special thanks go to Kent County Council Arts Development Unit for funding the event and to our volunteers and partners for their continued support and commitment. 

Carry On at the Carlton

Sunday 17 July, 2011 doors open 12noon – 5pm, Carlton Cinema, Westgate CT8 8RE. Disabled access. Tickets £14 + concessions from the Carlton Cinema telephone 01843 834290 from 1pm daily. www.carltoncinema.com. Concessions available.                              

I wish I could see my little Willy

FREE exhibition of the British ‘saucy’ seaside postcard. 23 July, 2011 – 2 August, 2011, Pie Factory Gallery, Broad Street, Margate CT9 1EW. Open Monday – Saturday 11am – 5pm, 12 noon – 4pm Sunday. Disabled Access available. 

1790-1960, Thomas Rowlandson to Donald McGill – the eternal joke

FREE visual talk by Heritage Advisor, Nick Dermott. Saturday 23 July, 2011 2pm. Margate Museum, Margate Old Town CT9 1ER.  Limited disabled access. 

Good, honest vulgarity? The 1950s campaign against seaside postcards

FREE visual talk by British Cartoon Archive Curator, Nick Hiley. Saturday 30 July, 2011 2pm. Margate Museum, Margate Old Town CT9 1ER.  Limited disabled access.

Getting the Joke

FREE radio 4 play By Tinniswood Prize nominee Neil Brand. Saturday 30 July, 2011 3pm. Margate Museum, Margate Old Town CT9 1ER. Limited disabled access.



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