2008/9 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: British Cities; Great Britain
Margate shown within Kent
|OS grid reference|
|- London||64.1 mi (104 km) W|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||South East Coast|
|European Parliament||South East England|
|UK Parliament||Thanet North|
|List of places: UK • England • Kent|
Margate is a seaside resort town within the Thanet district of East Kent, England. It lies 38.1 miles (61.3 km) east-northeast of Maidstone, along the North Foreland of the coastline of the United Kingdom.
Margate's history is closely tied to the sea; it was a "limb" of Dover in the ancient confederation of the Cinque Ports.
Margate was recorded as "Meregate" in 1264 and as "Margate" in 1299, but the spelling continued to vary into modern times. The name is thought to refer to a pool gate or gap in a cliff where pools of water are found, often allowing swimmers to jump in. The cliffs of the Isle of Thanet are composed of chalk, a fossil-bearing rock.
The town's history is tied closely to the sea and it has a proud maritime tradition. Margate was a "limb" of Dover in the ancient confederation of the Cinque ports. It was added to the confederation in the 15th century. Margate has been a leading seaside resort for at least 250 years. Like its neighbour Ramsgate, it has been a traditional holiday destination for Londoners drawn to its sandy beaches.
Margate had a fine Victorian era pier which was destroyed by a violent storm in 1978.
Margate railway station
Margate railway station serves the town of Margate in Thanet in Kent, England. Train services are provided by Southeastern Trains.
Since 1983, the Member of Parliament for North Thanet, covering northern Thanet and Herne Bay, has been the Conservative Roger Gale. At the 2005 General Election, in North Thanet the Conservatives won a majority of 7,634 and 49.6% of the vote. Labour won 32.2% of the vote, Liberal Democrats 14.4% and United Kingdom Independence Party 3.9%.
Margate is within the Thanet local government district. The town contains the seven electoral wards of Margate Central, Cliftonville West, Cliftonville East, Westbrook, Garlinge, Dane Valley and Salmestone. These wards have seventeen of the fifty six seats on the Thanet District Council. As of the 2007 Local Elections, nine of those seats were held by the Conservatives, seven by Labour and one by an Independent.
As of the 2001 UK census, Margate had a population of 40,386.
The place of birth of residents was 94.2% United Kingdom, 0.9% Republic of Ireland, 0.5% Germany, 0.8% other Western Europe countries, 0.7% Africa, 0.6% Eastern Europe, 0.5% Far East, 0.5% South Asia, 0.5% Middle East, 0.4% North America and 0.3% Oceania.
Religion was recorded as 71.6% Christian, 0.7% Muslim, 0.2% Hindu, 0.3% Buddhist, 0.1% Sikh and 0.3% Jewish. 17.1% were recorded as having no religion, 0.3% had an alternative religion and 9.8% didn't state their religion.
For every 100 females, there were 92.0 males. The age distribution was 6% aged 0-4 years, 16% aged 5-15 years, 5% aged 16-19 years, 31% aged 20-44 years, 23% aged 45-64 years and 19% aged 65 years and over.
11% of Margate residents had some kind of higher or professional qualification, compared to the national average of 20%.
As of the 2001 UK census, the economic activity of residents aged 16-74 was 33.8% in full-time employment, 11.8% in part-time employment, 8.0% self-employed, 5.5% unemployed, 2.2% students with jobs, 3.9% students without jobs, 15.5% retired, 8.3% looking after home or family, 7.9% permanently sick or disabled and 3.6% economically inactive for other reasons. The rate of unemployment in the town was considerably higher than the national rate of 3.4%.
The industry of employment of residents was 17% retail, 16% health & social work, 13% manufacturing, 9% construction, 8% real estate, 8% education, 7% transport & communications, 5% public administration, 6% hotels & restaurants, 2% finance, 1% agriculture and 6% other community, social or personal services. Compared to national figures, the town had a relatively high number of workers in the construction, hotels & restaurants and health & social care industries and a relatively low number in real estate and finance.
In more recent years, as tourists have travelled further afield, Margate's unemployment rate has become higher than much of the rest of southeast England.
For at least 250 years, the town has been a leading seaside resort in the UK, drawing Londoners to its sandy beaches. It was the first resort to introduce bathing machines and deck chairs, in 1898.
Like Brighton and Southend it was infamous for gang violence between mods and rockers in the 1960s.
Margate faces major structural redevelopments and large inward investment. Its Dreamland Amusement Park (featured in " The Jolly Boys' Outing" extended episode of the television series Only Fools and Horses) was threatened with closure because of the increase in value of the site. In 2003, one of the arcades on the seafront was destroyed by fire. This has created a new potential entrance point to the Dreamland site. In the following years, 2004–2006 it was announced that Dreamland (although somewhat reduced in its amusements) would reopen for three months of the summer; a pressure group has been formed to keep it in being. The group is anxious that the UK's oldest wooden roller coaster, The Scenic Railway, a Grade II Listed and the third oldest in the world was sadly destroyed in a fire on April 7th 2008. It was planned that the Dreamland site will reopen as a heritage amusement park in the near future with the Scenic Railway at the centre. Classic rides from the defunct Southport amusement park have already been shipped in as well as parts of the now demolished Water Chute at Rhyl. More details on Dreamlands future can be obtained from The Dreamland Trust web site.Today the Dreamland roller coaster is one of only two early twentieth century scenic railways still remaining in the UK and the only other surviving UK scenic railway is located in Great Yarmouth and was built in 1932. If the Dreamland scenic railway is not rescued the Great Yarmouth coaster would then be the last of its kind in the country. The Margate roller coaster is an ACE Coaster Classic.
Other attractions - Cliftonville next to Margate has a classic British Arnold Palmer seaside mini golf course.
A controversial gallery, The Turner Contemporary, has been proposed, as an alternative to Margate's traditional tourist trade, and when built it would have formed part of the harbour itself. Some critics, however, questioned the prudence of placing part of Britain's national art treasures in a spot that is exposed to the full fury of the North Sea. Thanet District Council have now moved the building from the harbour wall, to a plot of land adjacent to the harbour because of the spiralling costs for a sea born building. Work has a projected completion in 2009. The scheme had been supported by the artist Tracey Emin, who was brought up in Margate. It is hoped the gallery will help regenerate the town in the same way St Ives has benefited since the introduction of the Tate gallery.
There are two notable theatres, the Theatre Royal in Addington Street - the second oldest theatre in the country - and the Tom Thumb Theatre, the second smallest in the country, in addition to the Winter Gardens.
An annual jazz festival takes place during a weekend in July.
Margate Museum in Market Place explores the town's seaside heritage in a range of exhibits and displays.
The Shell Grotto, which has walls and roof covered in elaborate decoration of over four million shells, covering 2000 square feet, in complex patterns, was rediscovered in 1835, but is of unknown age and origin.
In addition there is a Tudor House in King Street.
Margate features as a destination in Graham Swift's novel Last Orders and the movie made version of it. Jack Dodds has asked to have his remains scattered at Margate. The book tells the tale of the drive to Margate and the memories evoked on the way. It also features at the start and as a recurrent theme in Iain Aitch's travelogue A Fete Worse Than Death. The author was born in the town.
Draper's Mill is a smock mill built in 1845 by John Holman. It was working by wind until 1916 and by engine until the late 1930s. It was saved from demolition and is now restored and open to the public.