24 September, 2019

Update on Newgate Gap and Fort Hill Shelters, Margate

Newgate Gap: 

Recent repair work at the Newgate Gap Shelter in Margate has been carried out in the interests of public safety. On 13 June, our Building Control team deemed it a dangerous structure and served a Section 78 Building Act notice to remove the danger immediately.

The site was originally fenced off but the repeated trespass at the site placed an unacceptable risk to the public which we had a duty to mitigate against. This is compounded by its close proximity to the Viking Adventure Playground. Contractors were therefore appointed to remove the timber roof covering to make the site area safe. This work does not require planning consent and was an emergency measure to remove any danger to the public. All the timber has been taken away and stored safely. It will not be disposed of until it has been tested for contamination. Important aspects of the shelter such as the pillars and floor tiles will not be removed.

Following the removal of the timber roof covering, the contractors have raised concerns over the steel roof structure stability. Our technical services team are therefore assessing the site and ensuring that additional emergency repair work is undertaken to make the structure safe in line with the Section 78 notice. This will include getting the contractors to support the steels, testing to check for further loose materials and adding netting to the underside to stop any materials falling and to deter people from climbing on the structure. Once this is done and the structure is deemed safe, heras fencing will be removed.

The Shelter has already been approved by Cabinet for Community Asset Transfer and the closing date for expressions of interest is 9 October 2019. Please email estates@thanet.gov.uk with your submissions. The structure will also be subject to an independent evaluation commissioned by Thanet District Council to assess any further steps required ahead of an asset transfer process.

Fort Hill:

Fort Hill Shelter has been temporarily boarded up in the interests of public safety. On 22 August 2019, the council’s Building Control team deemed it a dangerous structure and served a Section 78 Building Act notice to immediately make it safe. The danger has now been removed in accordance with these requirements and the Shelter is now deemed safe.

The organisers of Margate Now are due to display artwork on the hoardings in celebration of the Turner Prize coming to Margate. One of the festival’s key aims is to use disused and empty spaces with the hope of bringing new attention and life to these areas.

Following the Turner Prize exhibition, an independent assessment will take place to inform future options and ensure due process is followed.

Share this story