|Part of press for the Ramsgate town seal undergoing restoration.|
It is important that everything in the RTC collection now belongs to the Town of Ramsgate whether it be a Civic item, Cinque port item, insignia or a gift to the Town and we (RTC) have our provenance intact. This is the key to a future Town Council collection and if my report gets through intact on Tuesday I will move forward on the next phase. That will be to take on Kent County Council.
It may sound confrontational but it is not, I just feel more needs to be done in Ramsgate regarding Ramsgate's art and artefacts because it does feel as if the fire at Ramsgate library was the day Ramsgate's artefacts died of which it is not.
When I challenged TDC regarding its Thanet collection at Margate there was so much denial and lack of action. It was a bruising battle and looked like a forlorn hope at times but the end result has made it all worthwhile because TDC are now acting as a responsible authority. Plus I am the one having the last laugh because I know there are a few people out their thinking they have turned me over big time by pushing me out to the fringes. When really they are now doing is exactly what I set out to be done ten years ago and that is to get them to manage the collection responsibly and come up with a plan.
So what would be my KCC objective ?
The first thing to do will be to have a list of everything single Ramsgate artefact KCC have on their books and scrutinize each item that has a pre 1974 Borough of Ramsgate provenance.
Under the 1974 local government agreement all Borough of Ramsgate civic items were transferred to the Ramsgate Charter Trustees and KCC retained the library and museum collection. For some reason some civic items did remained in the museum collection even though they were the property of the Ramsgate Charter Trustees.
Then in and around 1990 due to severe damp problems at Albion House civic items from the Albion House cellar were stored in the basement of Ramsgate library. They were still there at the time of the fire and it is never been made clear what was stored there, what was lost and what was salvaged. The only salvaged items returned to the Charter Trustees was the press for the town seal and the Dame Janet Stancomb Wills silver scroll box that contained the scroll giving her the freedom of the Borough of Ramsgate.