Government funding of £750k for Margate High Street building to be used for ‘necessary repairs’

The former Marks & Spencer building in Margate

A government award of £750,000 to bring the former M&S/ Store 21 building in Margate back into use will be used for repairs to the property.

The grant was allocated to Thanet council by the Government as part of £5bn of capital investment projects, supporting jobs and the economic recovery.

The money is to be used to drive economic development, focusing on urban regeneration, improved transport, better broadband connectivity or skills and culture.

The Margate M&S has been shut for some 14 years. The building freehold was bought in 2006 by Thanet council for £4.5 million with grant funding. It has since been used by Turner Contemporary and then Store 21 until its closure in 2017.

A Thanet council spokesperson said: “The proposal delivers specifically against the government’s criteria of ‘improvements to town centres including repurposing empty commercial properties’.

“The timescales for submitting our proposal as part of this process were very tight, but we were clear that this asset provides a significant regeneration opportunity for the town. The government’s accelerated funding is to support local areas and bring forward regeneration projects in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on town centres. This is in addition to the work we are progressing with the Margate Town Deal Board on the development of the Margate Town Investment Plan.

“Now we have received the funding we will be working at pace to flesh out the specific details of the project. Our ambition is to use the funding to carry out the necessary repairs required to make 53-57 High Street Margate secure, restoring a significant space within a key part of the town centre.”

The money comes from the government’s Towns Fund but is separate to the bid being made under the Margate Town Deal which could see up to £25million granted for projects to rejuvenate the town.

Margate’s Town Investment Plan for government funding to be submitted in December

13 Comments

  1. So now any potential builders know it’s Government money, just how far do TDC think £750k will go, unlikely to even cover the cost of materials!

    Out of idle curiosity, does anyone know exactly what use they have planned for this building?

  2. 4.5 million pounds to buy the premises in 2006 with grant funding seems a bit extravagant. Where did these grants come from and how was the building just then left to get in a state of disrepair? Sounds suspicious huge waste of public funds on such a building. What about all the derelict buildings in Thanet that get no funding?

  3. Do they have any business lined-up to use it? Otherwise, this could easily be another Dreamland cinema/seafront restaurant (a refurbished building basically rotting again).

  4. Let’s do up a building that has been empty for years & no doubt leave it empty, or give it to an art project that makes zero money & will likely need subsidies.

  5. I have no confidence that TDC will ever make good use of this money and building what so ever.
    Their record on wasting money is legendary, I wager this will be no different.
    Cynical? You betcha!

  6. To me this is typical of Thanet council who would not sell The hover port to hotel or retail they let it rot no money for Thanet Port Ramsgate Sally line wanted to stay for 6 to 9 months and offered to pay rent but they kicked them off They said they had people queueing up for coming to the Port that’s that’s why I had to go and rent premises in Ramsgate town for 6 to 9 months to tidy up their business Marks & Spencer’s was brought by the council for 4 1/2 million but they said it was going to rejuvenate Margaret Good sales man Marks & Spencer Personally I think it was worth 2 million. The export of live animals from Ramsgate Is lawful but Thanet council know better and it cost the ratepayers a lot of compensation to the shipowners and farmers they have no idea of the real world They seem to waste so much money I’m sure if it was their money we wouldn’t see some advice we all make mistakes but Thanet council see to be the best four making mistakes

  7. What’s the betting TDC will use the grant to do the building up, move their offices into it and then look to sell the Council Offices at Cecil Street and the surrounding buildings for housing ?

    Stranger things have happened…

  8. On behalf of the British Jetski Association: we express significant interest in acquiring this property – once it’s been done up as a base for our Thanet Contingent to relax and regroup after a hard day keeping Fanets coastline safe from imminent invasion from the ‘European’ Dinghy lot.

  9. So wrong when our theatres struggle.

    Land banked

    What project tdc…

    Don’t worry about theatres tdc.

  10. The council needs checking regular .they seem to think its there money .no doubt some get back handers i myself would sack the lot of em .get people who know what they are doing .time for thanet to come out fighting

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