Stormy Margate

Stormy Margate

Monday, 26 January 2015

The Ramsgate Town Council collection

Following a report to the amenities committee of Ramsgate Town in November 2014 , I have now been tasked to take an in depth look at all the items of art and artefacts Ramsgate Town Council have in their collection. This follows my original report was about the status of the remaining Ramsgate art and artifacts in local government collections.
The fire at Ramsgate library in 2004 almost completely wiped out the Ramsgate collection of fine art along with many artifacts. However spread over the three authorities, Kent County Council , Thanet District Council and Ramsgate Town Council there is still a small viable collections of fine art and artifacts.
However all three authorities are beset with problems. KCC with the loses due to the fire, TDC with the auditing of their collection due to council officers not following procedures in the past and Ramsgate Town Council following the move from Albion House and the lack of space to house the collection they own at the Custom House.
My task with the RTC collection is to audit the entire collection in order of relevance based on the provenance of each item.  In some cases the provenance will need to be strengthened like the town silver for example, the makers and year of assay has never been recorded from the hall marks.
I have opted to keep the collection based on Civic and Cinque ports history as that is the historical roots of Ramsgate Town council . There is small collection of fine art and  other miscellaneous items. I must add that what I am suggesting is not set in stone as it is up to the other Ramsgate Town Council members to decide.
I have many findings and taken many photographs of which I have posted a few with some details.

This signed photograph is of the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother .The photograph was taken by Dorothy Wilding . The frame is Sterling Silver and has a Birmingham  hallmark 1948. The makers mark is Henry Hobson Plante of 12 Bury Street W1 . The portrait is one of a pair as the other is King George VI  with the same details.

Some of the town silver does have an Art Deco influence like this trophy . Made in 1936 by S. Blackensee & Sons Ltd Birmingham and assayed in 1936. It does carry an engraving " Ramsgate Venetian Fete Challenge Trophy presented by the Corporation of Ramsgate 1936."

Most of the Ramsgate Town Council  silver is very traditional like this one on the table. The cup is known and engraved as the H H Green cup. Herbert Horace Green was Mayor of Ramsgate in 1900 and his details are on the Ramsgate Town Council website.
 On the base is a small plate that was assayed in Sheffield in 1925, the maker and engraver of the plate is Martin Hall & Co . The engraving reads "In memory of Herbert Horace Green ESQ Justice of the Peace for the County of Kent and 25 years for the Borough of Ramsgate, March 3rd 1926, Presented to the Ramsgate Borough Police to be awarded for the most meritorious act of the year". 
The cup itself was assayed in Sheffield in 1868 and there is a Victoria young head duty mark present.  The makers of the cup are Richard Martin & Ebenezer Hall. (RMEH).  

In the framed section all the armed forces are represented. Most of the items presented to the Ramsgate Charter Trustees the predecessors to the current Ramsgate Town Council. I have posted a framed presentation from the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment when they exercised their right as Honorary Freeman on 19th September 1998. 

In the RTC collection there is some artwork by local artist Denys le Fevre  and his work on the Synagogue and Montifiore Mausoleum is very attractive. 

This map is from the Cinque ports section of the collection and it is by local artist Denys le Fevre. Also in the Cinque port collection there are three copies of the loyal address. 

This framed print is one of three of William Friths " Ramsgate , life at the seaside " owned by RTC . Two are engraved by C W Sharpe published by the art union of London 1859 and the other is a later edition as in early 20th century. Also under William Frith  there are three framed detailed sections of the print by C W Sharpe taken from periodicals.

There are not many loose photographs in the RTC collection. This one from 1959 will eventually be disposed of from the collection and given to another collection once copied.

Excluding the town silver and the photographs of past mayors that are stored in the flat I have listed to date 79 items in the RTC collection of which 19 maybe classed as fine art.
I have not listed all of the twinning items and some of the smaller repro prints as they will be a subject of a debate when I present my report to RTC.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Ramsgate Town Council and the Tomson and Wotton wine coolers.

Ramsgate Town Council is reviewing its entire collection of Art and Artifacts. Each item being audited and on a new data base. Most important of all the provenance of each item is to be researched in better detail. I have now taken up this task.
In the collection there is a pair of wine coolers in silver gilt.They are made by R & S Garrard and the hallmark is London 1839 , the hallmark on the liner is London 1840. The collar has no year date but has the Victorian duty mark and the Robert Garrard makers marks.
The detachable is engraved   “presented by Tomson & Wotton Ltd to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Town’s Incorporation 1884 to 1934”.  The liner has a crest of an Earl's coronet with a dragon kneeling. On the base there are four crests one being the town of Ramsgate. The others are undergoing further research and I have have taken many photographs and these are a few.

One of the pair

The wine cooler taken apart with the liner and collar

The engraved collar "presented by Tomson & Wotton Ltd to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Town’s Incorporation 1884 to 1934”

The crest on the liner

The crests on the feet. At present three are being researched.

Above the town crest of Ramsgate and below the decorative handle.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

A Margate Historical event this Saturday 22nd November

I have joined this event and I have now found a home to display my finds from the Margate area. For the first event I will be displaying all my finds found during the sea defence works in early 2012 including the photographs I took.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Thanet coastlife in Cuba part 2 - more fossilized coral.

Following on from the previous posting, I have put together a series of photographs to act as a guide for anyone visiting this part of Cuba. Also for those who are interested in the subject of fossilized coral.
The photographs were taken September 2014 on the beach opposite the Sol Rio de Luna y Mares  Playa Esmeralda , Guardalavaca , Holguin province , Cuba. I suggest anyone visiting this hotel to bring a snorkel you will not be disappointed as everything is in shallow water and safe.

The patch of rock lies directly opposite "la Pinta " beach restaurant and as is terraced forming a number of reefs under the water.

It is not very deep and this guy is snorkeling in about a meter and a half of water. The sea bed is a mass of fossilized coral and living coral. Sea shells, fish and sea urchins are abundant.

 Above is a example of the fossilized coral found snorkeling. This haul took around five minutes to gather together.

Just as much can be found on the foreshore like these large pieces of fossilized coral that can be found ashore below the strand line between the rocky area and the sand.

One of the many larger pieces found ashore.

Examples of selected pieces found snorkeling. 

Examples of sea shells found on the strand line and on the fossilized reefs. I kept it simple by keeping one of each species and colour to take home. I must mention that none of these were difficult to find and there are plenty of them.

A Tiger Lucine sea shell , there are many of these to be found in the water and I kept just this one.

I like this piece as it does resemble Pasta, so I now own a piece of fossilized Pasta.I only took a four small examples of fossilized coral out of Cuba and photographed the rest.  I do know that fragments of fossilized corals are exempt from international convention so I was in the clear. Plus previous experience with Cuban authorities is don't get greedy and you will be alright. 

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Thanet coastlife in Cuba.

Recently I spent two weeks holiday in Cuba and as usual I took the opportunity to completely map out the area of the coast where I am staying. The intention being to build up a small collection and just to log where items can be found and seen out of interest. The part of Cuba where I was staying was on the Atlantic coast in Holguin province at a hotel called Sol Rio de Luna y Mares situated  in Guardaclavaca.
The area of beach opposite the hotel is well publicized on youtube and all contributors have covered everything very well. So what are the main features and what can be found and seen ?
I suppose the most outstanding feature has to be the fossilized coral that is unmissable. To the left of the hotel beach there is a small headland of which I had attached as a photograph, plus it can also be seen clearly seen on youtube. This headland consists entirely of fossilized coral like the cliff behind it. Both the cliff and headland have many interesting formations of which I have photographed below for reference.

Above, the headland as seen to the left of the Hotel Mares.

The cliff face as seen facing the head land.

Fossilized coral formations as from ground level.

Above and below more coral formations at ground level.

Lumps of fossilized coral pushed up against the cliff by the tide.

A view from the headland looking back at the hotel.

Above and below close up view of the fossilized corals.

Below, further in from the waters edge many lumps of fossilized brain coral are be found. This was the largest piece I came across and used my shoe to give so idea of scale.

Friday, 5 September 2014

A message in a bottle

Found yesterday in Pegwell Bay Ramsgate (4/9/14). A message in a bottle cast adrift from the Cunard cruiser " Queen Victoria " in the North Sea on the 23rd August 2014. I have made contact with the person who cast the bottle adrift informing him that it took 12 days for his bottle to reach shore.
I found the bottle when looking for sea coal something I have been doing over the past few weeks around the Thanet coastline. The origin of the sea coal is unclear and I really have to put it down to flotsam and jetsam either from spillage or shipwreck. Below I have photographed some of the different grades I have picked up. Left is sub bituminous, middle six pieces are bituminous and on the right a piece of canal coal. Also I have picked up another lump of coal weighing over 14 kilo , the origin I believe is from a shipwreck.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

The Droit House Dream Land exhibition at the Droit House Margate Harbour.

I am always interested in the new history projects that arise from Margate and the Dream Land exhibition at the Droit House was not a dissapointment. Not to be confused with Dreamland amusement park the film show is excellent and covers Margate's sea side history as a holiday resort as told through local  peoples memories with old and recent footage. The exhibition is open today and tomorrow Sunday 31st August until Monday the 1st September closes at 17:00 hrs.