Baking weather brings crowds to Thanet beaches – but Arlington residents have to take control of Dreamland car park

Sunshine attracted visitors to Thanet beaches Photo Dan Thompson

Residents at Arlington House have been trying to manage the Dreamland car park by the block as vehicles crammed into every space eventually going over capacity today (June 13).

One resident said his neighbours had been closing gates when the car park was full and directing people to alternative parking.

Photo Paul Lloyd Johnson

The car park seems to be devoid of attendants to control the number of vehicles coming on to the site.

Smart Parking is contracted to manage the car park on behalf of Dreamland, which signed an agreement for use of the site back in 2017.

The company also manages the former council car park on the other side of Dreamland after the amusement park bought it from Thanet council for £4.7million.

Photo Dan Thompson

Parking has also been an issue at Buenos Ayres today with residents reporting paths and doorways to properties blocked.

One resident said: “It’s unsafe for residents and pedestrians.”

Issues have also been reported in Botany Bay and Kingsgate.

The scramble for parking spaces comes as hot weather attracted thousands of visitors to the isle’s beaches, Families packed out Margate and Botany Bay, amongst other sites, to make the most of the sunshine.

The influx has caused issues but also means a boost to trade for local businesses, many of which have suffered during the covid lockdowns. There have also been minimal reports of trouble today as beach-goers enjoyed facilities.

Photo via Friends of Kingsgate and Botany Bay

Earlier this year Thanet council introduced an increased presence of Civil Enforcement Officers  on foot in the Kingsgate/Broadstairs area aimed at tackling problem parking and installed static signs to direct visitors to beaches which have more space and available parking when needed.

Dreamland and Smart Parking have been contacted to make them aware of the problem at the car park.


  1. Thanet miss every opportunity of making some revenue from illegal parkers in the local streets. People do it because there are not enough parking wardens policing the situation. In Essex they made thousands from parking tickets. I know because I lived there. Come on Thanet get your finger out!!

  2. if you try to phone the parking office , you are very lucky if anyone picks up the phone . then you dont know if any action is taken. usual TDC rubbish service , and trying to steer you to online so they can do even less !

        • Phylis its not the elected councillors that are necessarily at fault, its TDC officers, and a stupid Online Contact system that doesn’t work! I tried earlier in the year to get them to do something about the Online Contact Forms that don’t work, but nothing happened! Perhaps they want it that way, so no one can contact them on the internet! The dumbest part was, they introduced a useless Online Contact Form, but left up the email addresses of Departments people had been using for years, but they stopped monitoring them, Duurh!

  3. Smart parking use cameras to time you in and out of the car parks and you pay by smart phone payment in most of their car parks. They do not allow free parking and vigorously pursue payment.
    Dreamland must have made a killing today with all the day trippers in Margate. They cannot complain the weather is keeping anyone away now. They should open the scenic railway though as that is the biggest ride which people have come to Dreamland for 100 years to experience.

  4. TDC should increase the penalty for illegal parking with no reduction for paying promptly. £35 is cheap for a days parking in comparison with London prices so the DFL’s don’t care if they’re penalised,giving them an open invitation to park where they like!!!.

  5. Absolute mayhem at Botany Road yesterday, was visiting my brother and took 45 minutes to get out of the road with a car driving at a fast speed on the pavement. Thanet Council need to do something, it is so unfair for residents having to put up with that all summer. And whatever needs to be done it should not penalise the residents, why should they pay for other people’s stupidity.

  6. Dreamland did not bother to open for Local School Children during Lockdown nor are they open for families now. They have no interest in the Community or they would be employing full time Swcurity and Car Park attendants.

    • As long as they are getting the Margate Town Deal £4 million that should have gone on other worthwhile projects in Margate they don’t need to open. I was shocked to hear they are still closed, but they now say they will open in July !!! The season is half over by then. Madness but as you say they have no interest in the community, living here or visiting! It’s all about the money obviously!

  7. My message to Thanet council is:
    1. Put more bins on the pavements on all beaches. Regardless of how people are messy and inconsiderate of others and public spaces, most bins were full.
    2. Ensure there are patrols on the beach to ensure nobody is littering or engaging in drugs. If people have no common sense then they need to be controlled & monitored.
    3. Put massive signs on the A299 2 big round about entering Thanet which say please dont liter on Birchngton, Margate, Broadstairs, Ramsgate beaches. If you do you will be fined £500 on the spot. Please respect our beaches we are a clean council and care abiut the health of our residents & our environment. Thank You.

  8. Money collected from the fines could be used to clean up the beaches. I know some may never pay the fines and there is an administrative cost to this. Something has to be done to ensure residents dont have to pick up this mess once these people are gone.
    It was an eyesore on Margate beach this morning. And that sand it’s just too much now, it’s no longer beach sand but a desert sand. When its windy and dry it’s almost like a desert storm. Where does Thanet council get the sand? Another environmental catastrophe on the the buying and selling of sand worldwide.

    • All good ideas which many people have reported to TDC each summer but are just ignored. They take the weekends and bank holidays off so nobody can contact them to report breaches of their useless PSPO’s.
      It is the same inept council year after year after year, and so on.
      It makes no difference which party is in control because those top officers are still in charge and use all our monies on legal fees to stop complaints or gagging orders. This council needs taking through the court for failure to act appropriately with the funds it controls for starters. They are not using them for the benefit of the residents and visitors, that’s for sure.

  9. What about the day trippers bringing their poor dogs on the beach for hours?
    We see many here at Botany Bay..

    Where are the dog wardens?

    And more toilets are desperately needed here too ..
    We have human excrement on our beaches and surrounding areas.

  10. It’s amazing how everyone has the answer:
    – more enforcement
    – but don’t make us pay for it
    – fine people
    – but don’t fine us, we’re residents
    – more bins
    – but don’t pay for the extra staff to empty the bins or the fees to dispose of the waste
    -clean the beaches
    – but don’t raise our taxes
    – we love the seaside
    – but don’t let others enjoy it
    – we need tourism
    – but we don’t want the tourists
    You all literally blame the council for everything, expect them to fix everything, but don’t want to pay for anything. Perhaps it’s not the council’s fault – the council doesn’t drop litter, park on pavements, clog up roads, have beach parties. If you want them to do something different, then talk to your councillor – but realise council tax lays for very little so if you want more of one thing you need to have less of something else. And before you say ‘less management’ or ‘less fat cats’ show me a business of the size and scale of a council that operates without management, without established and experienced leaders.
    Good luck.

    • Yea that’s blame the council !

      So the council employe beach wardens to give out fines etc to beach go’ers.

      These beach wardens are paid minimum wage, are expected to walk up to these groups of people possible drunk, possibly on drugs. The wardens say ” this is a fine for littering”. If the beach wardens is lucky he will just get alot of verbal abuse and given a false name and address.
      If the beach warden is unlucky he gets his head kicked in.

      How many of you moaners on here would do that job for minimum wage and now back up from the police etc ?

      Its not TDC fault it’s all these soft do gooders over the last few decades, that have allowed some of the public to believe ( and they are ) untouchable.

    • Thank you “Stop Moaning” couldn’t have put it better myself. This platform is the playground of the Arrogant Ignoramus.

    • Stop Moaning, nobody is saying that at all. Try get it right if you are going to moan at the people sending great suggestions.

  11. Irene Gilbert that’s the same sand that’s been there for years sand is made up of degrading stone or rocks under the sand they have never shipped sand in if hot the sand would be fine a breeze would blow it about if it rains the sand sticks together a bit like mud and doesn’t blow around a regular daily local watcher I look on the beach daily there may be small pockets of litter the large amount of locals and visitors use the bins.its certain minorities and the young who leave litter I observe them this is a seaside town we have to expect visitors and give and take there is a lot of people in Thanet that would keep dole on sea. That has to end.

  12. TDC don’t give a monkeys about the locals all their worried about are their wonderful beaches, if I parked my car like these so called day trippers I would get a ticket but no it’s OK for them it’s not as though they even spend any money as they bring everything with them and the leave all their s*** lying about, shame on the Council but wgat else should we expect

  13. Bring back CLAMPERS for the ignorant, Inconsiderate and selfish people whom disrespect our Seaside Towns and more PCSO’s and Litter Wardens out in force with cameras and video recording these DIRTY, UNKIND AND EVIL peeps coming to MESS up our BEAUTIFUL KENT SEASIDE TOWNS

  14. Park and ride needs to be implemented. Plenty of fields around, bus people from field to beaches. They do it into Canterbury so why can’t they do it for Margate,Broadstairs and Ramsgate

  15. Had one woman on Garfield road completely parked on the pathway of the alleyway stopping people with wheelchairs or pushchairs from being able to use the alleyway. Someone got so annoyed they wrote a note saying “This driver is a C*nt” and someone else put ketchup on the bonnet

    Honestly it is getting ridiculous, many of us can’t have friends or family drove down to visit because there is no where to park as tourists scramble for free parking on residential roads.

    I for one am not ashamed to admit to scratching a few cars that have blocked my entrance to my front door just so they can go to the beach and get drunk

  16. Its just another day in Thanet, although the sunny weather has brought more visitors often not complying with covid19 guidelines and others with a massive sense of self entitlement.

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