Announced on the front page of the Gazette this week, news that the company, much associated with the late Jimmy Godden has now changed its name from the Margate Town Centre Regeneration Company to the equally in my opinion misleading name, DreamlandLive.
Calling itself the Margate Town Centre Regeneration Company, always seemed rather insulting to the town given that its largest assets in Margate was surely the old Dreamland Amusement park, which as far as I know had been dismantled by Mr Godden and his associates and has lain in pretty much either derelict or run down state before and during the life of this blog, now to add insult again in my opinion they are choosing to call it DreamlandLive giving it a snazzy new identity, under its previous brand it didn't regenerate much and I cannot imagine any group of businesses and banks looking too kindly on keeping any part of Dreamland alive.
The idea that the current owners are going to pay some homage to the past, is just an impression, still if that were true, why have they not rebuilt the Scenic Railway, which is in their ownership, why have the council had to step in and make repairs to Dreamland building?
Chief Executive Toby Hunter, has the cheek to claim that Thanet residents do not realise the scale of Thanet's potential commitment to invigorating the Dreamland site, still I'd hazard a guess the Mr Hunter doesn't realise the scale of contempt for the blight caused to the area, by the speculative nature of destroying what was once an important asset for Margate, the Dreamland Amusement park, on the assumption that if you can get away with building hundreds homes on what was a once an important leisure site, you'll make far more wonga.
Margate Town Centre Regeneration Company DreamlandLive could take a look just how the property, market is doing in these parts or anywhere else for that matter. Worryingly according to the company, they've cut plans to shoe horn 800 homes on to the site and but still hope to go for five hundred, no doubt they've considered whether the infrastructure, roads, drains and all that will support maybe a thousand plus residents also given the extreme deprivation in Margate, who's going to want to live on the proposed estate, if this high density project goes ahead, the most likely occupants will be, social security dependents and migrants on poverty wages.
Still since I understand back in January this year it was reported that "the Close Brothers bank, is owed £6 million from mortgages on the site and is understood to be willing to lend MTCRC at least half of the estimated £20 million development costs" that there must be incredible pressure to steam roller the authorities in capitulation, myself I assume that the banks made a cynical decision at some time that they could ride roughshod over the greater interests of the people of Margate a gamble on their part and I hope they lose.
Hopefully the compulsory purchase order to purchase part of the park, will be decided in favour of the council and those wishing to create a heritage park will get the go ahead and even better we get our Margate back from the speculators and banks.
DreamlandLive as the new company is now called and its predecessor MTCRC has so far looks to have contributed nothing in Margate other than maintaining an eyesore and blighting the area for some many years, lets hope those in authority can give Toby Hunter and his associates a message from the people. Dream on!