Tuesday, June 15, 2010

New purpose helps rescue Margate gem

Northdown Park has in recent times been subject to much neglect, due in part to Thanet council’s management exemplified by the asset fiasco, in which council failed to take account of covenants as they tried to make a fast buck.

Still hopefully with a change of leadership in the local Conservative party things might improve, anyhow for the last year or so I’ve spent most of my time working in North London, since that project is coming to an end, I’ve got now got time to catch up on things like taking a stroll.

This afternoon I walked to Northdown Park and was pleased to see that the walled garden in the park has now been taken over to provide a safe playground for children with disabilities. sign outside garden

The walled garden despite having been revamped I reckon about 15 years ago had in recent times become overgrown, so its brilliant that this is once again being put to good use.

I hope that this is a success, maybe it’s a disappointment that it won’t be available to the wider community but brilliant that it will benefit young kids.

the secret garden

Just a quick postscript, I've been told that work is ongoing and that the garden will be open to children sometime next month, those who now run it, will, I'm told open the garden to the wider community from time to time.


  1. nice to see you visiting the park yesterday Tony! We hope it is a worthy use for the garden, there was some consternation as memorial plaques and trees in the garden etc were removed on the initial clearing works. The groups using the garden are also going to be using rooms in the house which is a suitable use for that too. Some rumours about the house not being made as accessible as it could be, unrealistic prices for room hiring by charities etc. Don't think Thanet leisureforce necessarily make things run smoothly!

  2. The garden from what you can see looks fantastic, the fact that the general public will be excluded, will probably have little impact, since in recent years it has been a rare event when council staff have unlocked the gate anyway.

    Anyhow someone at the council said they would get back to me about access for the "community".

    I maybe look back at Northdown with a nostalgic view, when as a kid the park appeared a lot busier and part of the House was opened as a cafe.

    The park is a lovely space and maybe rather than spend Sundays wandering around Westwood Cross, Thanet's residents might find the park a more rewarding excursion.

  3. Hi Tony

    I have to correct some of the things said by your anonymous visitor of 0647. I have been on the edges of this project for many months, and have thoroughly enjoyed helping, in a small way, Ivan O Reilly and his crew achieve an approrpiate use for, and the safeguarding of, this garden.

    The correction is to say that Steve Davis, and through him Leisureforce have been enthusiastic supporters and helpers of this project throughout.