Plan to drain Westcliff Boating Pool for annual music festival with proposed acts including M People

Boating Pool Photo Dean Spinks

A bid to drain Ramsgate’s boating pool in Royal Esplanade for a music concert, with acts on an event poster including M People, Alexander O’Neal and 5 Star, will be discussed by Thanet council next week.

Broadstairs Sea Lounge owner Danny Potts is requesting a premises licence which includes live music and recorded music from midday until 10:00pm to run in parallel with his existing licence at the Westcliff venue.

The application is for one music concert event per year with the first event on September 14-15 this year and subsequent years for the Saturday, Sunday and Monday of the August Bank Holiday.

The application includes a request for the pool to be drained with suitable arrangements made to accommodate up to  3000 people.

A number of objections have been lodged in regards to the number of people the event will attract, noise, parking and the potential for anti-social behaviour.

A poster created for the event names a number of acts for the first festival, proposed for this September. These also include Aswad, Musical Youth and D-Ream.

The application includes a submission from the company organising the noise management plan.

This states: “Rossco Ltd. has been commissioned to provide and undertake a Noise Management Plan (NMP) for Ramsgate Boating Pool Festival 2019 to take place on Saturday 141h & Sunday 151h September at  Ramsgate Boating Pool, Royal Esplanade, Ramsgate CT11 OHE.

“Rossco Ltd. have been designing and commissioning sound systems for temporary and permanent installation nationally and internationally for twenty years and have produced and applied approximately thirty

“Noise Management Plans for public events similar to Ramsgate Boating Pool Festival 2019 on behalf of llcencees and in conjunction with local authorities including North, Mid and East Hertfordshire District Councils, Central Bedfordshire Council, Huntingdonshire.”

It adds: “The festival represents the beginning of events proposed for the site of the current Ramsgate Boating Pond.

“The site was originally built as a bandstand and tea pavilion in the 1920s as part of the St Lawrence Estate Scheme then demolished in the 1960s and flooded to create the current boating pool. The pool is to be drained and restored to its original purpose as a music venue.”

Thanet council owns the site with it then being let out on a lease. The lease was marketed in 2017 for  £350,000 with an annual rent of approximately £10,500.

The authority has written to Mr Potts to say it will not allow the pool to be drained.

Ramsgate Boating Pool Photo Andrew Holloway

The letter states: “With regards to the Premises Licence Application (Music festival) that has been submitted to the licensing department as landlord we do not permit this event to happen as it is in breach of your lease and we reserve the right to oppose this and take further action.

“If you look at Clause 30.5 in your lease it states that “the tenant shall not use the boating pool for any purpose other than as a boating pool and shall not use the remaining open areas of the Property for any purpose other than those which are approved by the Landlord.”

Councillors will discuss the application on July 2.


  1. I’m trying to make sense of any of this. The dates given are contradictory referring to a Saturday and Sunday 14-15 September, and in the same sentence referring to three days and also referencing ‘August Bank Holiday Monday’. There would appear to a significant line-up compared to most music events in a Thanet, and plans including draining the Boating Lake yer TDC already appear to have knocked that idea in to the long grass. So what now? A premises licence request for an idea that can’t, seemingly, be implemented sounds bizarre. Yet it is being advertised.. Sounds like a recipe to lose a lot of money to me.

  2. Musical Youth !!! Is he sure and M People is Heather Small and session musicians. Still good lineup. Why drain the pond build stages in the middle they did it before.

    • They used to do that at the old New Cross Baths, but not over a full pool AFAICR! I think H&S would have something to say about such an idea these days.

  3. It will not be just for once a year. Once this person has drained it he’s not going to pay to refill it. And what about us the ramsgate viking model boat club. It’s been our home for more than 40 years. We stage a major model ships rally each year. A very popular event.l suppose we don’t count.

  4. I personally think it’s a good idea, about time it was clean up as it looks a eye sore now, the pool leaks and has dirty smelly water in it, the toilets are smelly, the whole place needs a good make over and we should let Mr Potts do it, I really hope he gets want he wants and makes the boating pool a nice place to go again .

    • Do you live Opposite the Boating lake? Could you even imagine trying to get 3,000 people plus vehicles along that road? The acts this person has planned is pure fantasy most of them are already booked somewhere else and Alexander O’Neil is in Vegas I think during that time, and as already stated what about the Viking model boat club?? You also need to remember that girls in the cafe do a great job and really try their best.
      Does Thanet need this?? No, is the place big enough? No, if your going to have a concert use Dreamland or even better Quex park, they have staged UB40 a few times and it was a massive success as you have parking and ample room…

  5. If the cargo hub goes ahead you wont be able to hear the music with a cargo plane screaming in to land at about 300 metres overhead. You won’t be able to hear anything.

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