Ramsgate Maritime Museum

Maritime MuseumI don?t want to be one of those people who will harp on about something but will idly stand-by and not do anything so on Saturday I made my way down to the East Kent Maritime Museum in Ramsgate to show my support and have a look around as I hadn?t been there for probably 15 years.

I saw reports on Meridian news where they were talking to members of the public and most of them hadn?t been for a long time, or simply didn?t know it existed. Is it worse that they didn?t know about it or worse that I did know about it but simply didn?t go? I?d have to say none of the above, as the museum (and others in the area) does not get promoted, something which Matt B mentions in this article. How can one expect a huge amount of visitors when no one knows about it?

So off I popped down the harbour on my bike, paid my 1.50 entrance fee, and had a wander around the museum. To be honest it hasn?t change much since the last time I went there, and some of the exhibits were a bit plain, but there was also a lot of really interesting stuff too, which could really educate its visitors. Shipwrecks off the Goodwin Sands, Smuggler?s Runs, etc would really make for a great story about the area and could have a museum of it?s own and would really entice the kids with their new found love of Pirates (of the Caribbean). What greater way to educate children than by making the whole process fun and engaging on a level they can relate to?

HovercraftThe period that really interests me is from the last century (up to around the 80s) when one could argue Ramsgate was in its heighday. I know that I?m not the only one interested in this as Zumiweb, Thanet Online, etc are constantly publishing postcards, photos etc, and to be honest I think we could have a whole museum dedicated to this too. This is also a period where quite a lot of our Thanet population (the old ones!) could relate to, and would also interest those like me (born 1980) who view the nostalgia of our childhood in this area where there used to be so much history and when the beaches were still the main attractions.

Anyway? back to the museum. I was there from 12:15-1:30pm and during that time around ten other people were also wandering around, which gave me hope that there is still a chance for the museum to succeed. After going through the whole museum I thought I?d show my support and so purchased a book for 12.99 which I knew would be perfect for a Mother?s Day present, and so with 14.49 less in my wallet I made my way back home. I know that they won?t get much of a cut for the book, but it?s just another way that I can help (or think I can help) with a local business/charity.

FishermenI hope that others are also going to the museum as if loss of funding meant it?s closure then we?d all be poorer for it. We should have pride in our history, and we should make the effort to preserve it and share it, but of course the responsibilty shouldn?t just come down to us, the public. We should all use our influence (and lots are) to make the Council and other local authorities listen to what is best for the area as I really don?t think they know and are instead easily lead by follies such as the Turner Centre or the constant brown-nosing and rolling over for out-of town-shopping centres (Westwood Cross), who are given everything to succeed to the detriment of our high streets, independant businesses, and in this case our museums.

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3 Responses to Ramsgate Maritime Museum

  1. j. says:

    Here, here. Not that I have any conception of this particular museum, but I agree with your general point. It?s sad how people who live somewhere tend to take things like museums for granted until it is (nearly) too late.

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  2. Matt B says:

    That was a smashing review Adem. It brought back memories of when I last visited the place (I was a young teen back then). I think I might take my older little ones to visit in the next few weeks.

    Reply
  3. Aravis says:

    Yes, I agree with J. It?s too bad that the museum couldn?t update it?s presentation to appeal to that younger audience, and to draw more visitors. I don?t mean the displays so much as the community outreach, and programs that would increase traffic.

    Best wishes to what sounds like a wonderful place.

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