Demolition of Star Lane Gate House cottage did have ‘in principle’ permission

The Gate House cottage site Photo Frank Leppard

Thanet council has confirmed that demolition of the former crossing keeper’s cottage in Star Lane did have permission to go ahead “in principle.”

The building has been flattened to make way for flats.

The Gate House cottage, which was once occupied by the person who operated the level crossing gates from the road over the former Ramsgate town to Margate Sands railway branch Line, was sited at 43 Star Lane, at Westwood.

An application for 12 flats at the site was lodged in September by land owner RealRole Ltd.

The application, which has been refused, is a revision from one previously submitted last year and granted permission in March this year. The main change in the new application was a reduction in the proposed new build, increasing the height of the whole building by one -storey and changing the number of flates from 10 to 12.

Photo Frank Leppard

Work to bring the historic cottage down has now taken place despite concerns at the loss of a piece of Thanet’s history.

A Thanet council spokesman said: “For the demolition of a building, the (land)owner is required to submit notice to Building Control. In this instance the builder submitted the notice but the form was incorrectly completed, resulting in it being logged as invalid. Building Control have confirmed that they now hold a valid application.

Photo Frank Leppard

“An application for outline planning permission was approved by Thanet District Council in March and effectively gave agreement in principle for the building to be demolished and replaced with a new development.

“A further application made in September has been refused. The outline planning permission granted in March still stands. The reserved matters are yet to be submitted.”

It is proposed that the site, at the corner with Nash Lane, will be used for a four-storey apartment building. The scheme will have 14 parking spaces with road access from Star Lane.

Photo Frank Leppard

Margate Sands branch line

The Margate Sands branch  line was closed on July 2,1926, when the new Ramsgate station opened. Ramsgate Town formerly was the termini on what is now Station Approach.

Trains from Margate Sands would run into this station and reverse to continue onwards towards Minster. The Newington Road bridge was the site of the former St Lawrence station and formed a triangular junction in the area of what is now used for the Ramsgate carriage sidings.

The line from Margate diverged directly through this area at Whitehall junction, near White Hall Farm (now Whitehall Road) and connected back up shortly before Newington Road bridge.

The site  was sold into private ownership in the 1950s,


  1. It’s a pity nobody from the Council enforced the H&S Legislation..
    The clowns who knocked the cottage down flaunted every safety rule in the book !
    How none of them were seriously injured was more by luck than judgement …

  2. This is not the first time that TDC has “turned a blind eye’to the requirements of a proper demolition approval and process, Planning consent still requires a separate and additional permission to demolish an existing building and TDC is responsible for ensuring that the required safety measures are followed to protect the workers businesses and residents in the adjoining area (who are also entitled to receive notification) and the public at large.

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