Thanet District Council is to launch a major new initiative for Ramsgate to generate and take forward ideas for the town’s development over the next few years.
‘Ramsgate Future’ will build upon existing and forthcoming schemes, ensuring that activity such as the £2.7m Future High Street fund, the Heritage Action Zone and plans for the Port are brought together into a cohesive vision to help transform the town. It is hoped that this could also help to better leverage future funding opportunities.
Local engagement will be at the heart of this initiative to ensure that residents from all seven Ramsgate wards have a voice, creating an overarching ambition for the town that unites the wider community.
Council Leader, Cllr Rick Everitt, said: “Ramsgate belongs to all its residents and we want to put them at the heart of planning for the town’s future. The reopening of the Victoria Pavilion in recent years and now the Royal Sands development on the Pleasurama site have been a great start, but we know there is a huge appetite in the community to make Ramsgate an even better place, to live, work and spend leisure time.
“There are already improvements planned via the Future High Streets fund and the Heritage Action Zone initiative, but we want to find ways to do more.
“Last year’s port and harbour feasibility study has provided valuable feedback, but rather than look at that area in isolation we want to identify the opportunities across the town, including making better use of a number of assets that the council already owns. That will only succeed however if we can work in partnership with the community, capitalising on Ramsgate’s maritime history and working up ideas that the public supports.
“It won’t be one grand scheme, but a series of initiatives that can be brought forward as and when we can identify external funding. However, we are confident that there will be some improvements that we can make quickly and which will help build public confidence.
“We would love to be able to create a major visitor experience that would bring people into town all year round and help support the whole Ramsgate and Thanet economy. That may be ambitious, but it is right that we should be aiming high for Ramsgate.”
The council is working on a brief to develop this activity and will be engaging specialist services to carry out broader community engagement to help create an investment plan for the town.
The council will aim to build on the recent experience of working with local people in Margate to put together its town deal bid.