Saturday, 27 April 2013
Please do not blame the volunteers.
Today, before I went along to see the re dedication of the Victory lugger memorial at the entrance to Margate stone pier I went for a catch up at the Margate Museum. This was the first time I have been in the Museum since March plus it is the first time since my concerns about the TDC collection has become public. Once again the Museum was fully manned with volunteers and without the dedication of the volunteers the Museum cannot run, I was quick to reassure the volunteers that the problem I have brought to media and TDC attention is nothing to do with the current running of the Museum and it is certainly not their fault. One thing I do not want is people to start thinking the current volunteers are at fault.The problem as I have stated on many occasions has been the way the collection owned by TDC has been managed to the point where the collection has never been fully cataloged or audited in the past. All due to the fact is the collection has been given such a low priority in the past. This has resulted in missing items and poorly looked after items.
I am pleased to say that public confidence is still there as people are still donating items to the Museum . I for one have a batch of items ready to donate to the collection. I expect some people may think this is strange that I buy things with my own money to give to the Museum like the plate above, that in turn will become TDC property. It is not an out break of madness on my part it is entirely due to the fact that I believe in the Margate Renaissance and that history and art is the way forward for heritage tourism in Margate and Thanet.. TDC are sitting on an absolute gold mine of items that up until now I think they did not realize they have got and the potential. There is no other historical sea side resort that has a collection of this size and going back to the 1983 feasibility study for the Margate museum it does state that if the Margate collection was to acquire material from other historical sea side resorts there is enough material to form a national sea side museum.I should stress in the same report there is also a health warning on cost and sustainability but the report was made before the Turner center was even heard of which the Turner center has now had an huge impact on the area. Also since the report many items that belonged to the Borough of Margate that were in KCC hands have now been siphoned off and have become part of the Kent History and Library center at Maidstone. However, in spite of this TDC still has a collection of merit.