Thursday, 8 May 2014
TDC Cobb Shell collection - the missing document
In the past I have mentioned the Cobb shell collection that was once held in the old Margate Library in Victoria Road. The collection was then transferred to Thanet District Council in 1974 during local government reorganization. In 1991 the collection of 17,000 sea shells was given to the Powell Cotton Museum , Birchington . Some months ago I did make enquires with TDC regarding this decision because the PCM would like to return the collection back into the public collection. Before that TDC did not have a clue about the decision and they didn't even know they once owned them. That was only made known to them when I presented an old Margate Museum document. I have now retrieved the original document that details the reasons why it was given away. The document has one interesting fact and that is, even though it is known as the Cobb collection there are no records held by TDC to show the Cobb family actually owned it, mind you that is certainly down to the old Borough of Margate and their poor record keeping which in all honestly TDC have inherited. In one paragraph it does state that the collection has never been properly catalogued a statement I have come across on many occasions.
I must add that I did not use the freedom of information act to get this document. I obtained this through my own resources and research so there have been no costs involved to anyone other than myself.
Finally, I must add that the collection has never been displayed at the PCM and there are no plans to ever display it at the PCM.