Lonely Planet Writer

Historic seaside shelters will be transformed as part of an English coastal park celebration

Kite-making, exhibitions and a dog portrait studio are among the events taking place in historic seaside shelters and sites in Margate Coastal Park in Kent, England. ‘A Clifftop Wander: A Celebration of Margate Coastal Park’ is a new event that will take place from 9-11 September 2016, and it aims to inspire ideas for the future of the park.

The Blushing Pavilion is part of a new event that aims to inspire ideas for the future of Margate Coastal Park. Image: Margate Coastal Park Promotion Group
The Blushing Pavilion is part of a new event that aims to inspire ideas for the future of Margate Coastal Park. Image: Margate Coastal Park Promotion Group

A diverse programme of free events that explore the past, present and future of the coastline will be presented at the celebration, which forms part of the National Heritage Open Days weekend.

The Putting Green, Lido. Cliftonville, Margate in the early 1960s. Image: Margate Coastal Park
The Putting Green, Lido. Cliftonville, Margate in the early 1960s. Image: Margate Coastal Park

The historic coastal park covers the five-kilometre stretch of public open space from Main Sands to Botany Bay in Kent. Research indicates that the land was acquired over a period of time, starting towards the end of the 19th century, with the specific aim of promoting healthy walks, community well-being and coastal tourism.

'A Clifftop Wander' is new event that aims to inspire ideas for the future of Margate Coastal Park. Image: Margate Coastal Park
‘A Clifftop Wander’ is new event that aims to inspire ideas for the future of Margate Coastal Park. Image: Margate Coastal Park

According to curator, Maria Romero, of the Margate Coastal Park Promotion Group, local artists, community groups and businesses have been invited to showcase the contemporary vibrancy of the area. A kite-making pavilion, a photographic studio for dogs and their walkers, and open-air exhibitions called Lacuna and Blushing Pavilion are just some of the creative ideas that are being tested this weekend.

'A Clifftop Wander' is new event that aims to inspire ideas for the future of Margate Coastal Park. Image: Margate Coastal Park
‘A Clifftop Wander’ is new event that aims to inspire ideas for the future of Margate Coastal Park. Image: Margate Coastal Park

Further talks, performances, workshops, walks and special offers from local businesses are all being promoted, as part of the grass-roots movement to reassert the value of the coastal park, along with Pro Bono Publico, a clean-up and historic tour of Newgate Gap.

The full programme can be seen here.