Dalby Square Townscape Heritage Initiative

Dalby Square Townscape Heritage Initiative

The Dalby Square, Cliftonville, Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) Grant Scheme began in January 2013 and will run until January 2018.  It is a £2.5million scheme dedicated to preserving the unique heritage of Dalby Square, the historic heart of Cliftonville West.

The scheme's major activity is providing grants to preserve the built heritage of the Dalby Square Conservation Area and for programmes that challenge and change perceptions of Cliftonville West.  Learn more by clicking on the links at the left.

Latest News

  • Car Park Consultation - We have commissioned Rachel Taylor, who is very experienced in working in community engagement, to undertake consultation about how the car park at the north end of the Square can be creatively reimagined.  She is holding a number of events with local groups and door-knocking around Dalby Square to get feedback, but if you would like to get involved please Contact Us.
  • Garden Party!  On Saturday 15 October there will be a Garden Party in the gardens of Dalby Square.  There will be music, games, and the opportunity to comment on the car park redesign and learn more about getting involved in the gardens in the future.
  • The Formal Gardens in Dalby Square will be partially shut from Monday 20 June until Saturday 8 October while we undertake improvement works.  There will be some reduced parking during this time at the edges of the Gardens, but the car park at the sea end and on-street parking will be unaffected.  The children's playground will remain open.  For more information on this project, please click here.

History of Dalby Square

Dalby Square was laid out in the 1860s and quickly became a popular area following the construction of the fashionable Cliftonville Hotel in 1868.  This occupied the site that is now a bowling alley and amusement arcade at the northeast corner of the Square.  The Square was originally called Ethelbert Square but was renamed for Thomas Dalby Reeve, developer of the site and Mayor of Margate from 1873-75.

The large terraced buildings were mainly used as boarding schools and hotels until the 1980s.  The Cliftonville Hotel closed in 1939 and was demolished in 1960s.  The south end of the Square, Warrior Crescent, was badly damaged by bombing in the Second World War so the properties demolished in the 1990s and later rebuilt. The central area was historically used for tennis courts and croquet, and the present formal gardens were laid out in 2005 in a project spearheaded by local residents and supported by the Big Lottery Fund.

Below is an 1872 engraving of Dalby Square when it was still known as Ethelbert Square, showing a view across the gardens looking south. Image courtesy of Margate Local History.

Dalby Square Engraving 1872 

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