Bikers are being told by Thanet council not to take part in any unofficial Meltdown rides to Margate – with the authority saying enforcement action could be taken “as a last resort.”
Last week the official Ace Cafe Margate Meltdown scheduled for June 2 was cancelled after paperwork for road closures was not submitted in time.
An announcement posted to the Ace Cafe London facebook page said: “Margate Meltdown is unable to go ahead this year as planned as Ace Cafe London were unable to secure the required road closures within the specified time limit.
“We can only apologise – and look forward to instead seeing you at the Ace for the Queens 70th Jubilee Celebration.”
However, unofficial events remained and many bikers said they would make the trip, just as they did last year when the event did not go ahead due to covid.
But now the unofficial events also appear to be cancelled after Thanet council contacted organisers to say enforcement action could be taken.
Public safety, due to the road closures not being in place, and a lack of parking, were among reasons given.
One letter says “hundreds of bikes arriving unauthorised with no road closure” would “affect the town significantly.”
It also states: “Enforcement action will be taken on large groups who are gathering in Margate for an unorganised event.”
A spokesperson for Thanet District Council said: “Margate Meltdown is a popular annual feature of the local events calendar and we share the disappointment that it won’t be going ahead this year.
“All events held in Thanet, and any other district, have to follow a set time scale to ensure they are safely and appropriately managed. We ask for all applications to be submitted 14 weeks before the event date.
“Unfortunately, despite supporting the organiser with the application process – liaising with them right up until the legal deadline to seal the order for the suspension of bays and road closures, we did not receive the submission in time. As a result the organisers had to take the decision to cancel the event.
“This time limit is a legal deadline for road closures and due to this, we were not in a position to provide an extension or to make alternative arrangements.
“An unofficial event, which could see potentially hundreds of motorbikes arrive in the area, without the necessary road closures, would mean that steps are not in place to appropriately manage public safety.
“The council is encouraging regulars of the event not to coordinate an unofficial gathering. Doing so could have a significant impact on residents, road users and visitors in the area especially without the level of support in place to ensure it operates safely.
“We anticipate that those who usually attend and do so in a respectful and safe manner will understand the potential risks. We would only expect to have to take enforcement action as a last resort, if public safety were being compromised.
“We look forward to welcoming the Margate Meltdown back in 2023.”
A ‘Meltdown’ run being organised from Folkestone will now miss out Margate but stop at other Thanet locations.
The ‘Coastal Boyz’ run will visit Palm Bay, Ramsgate, Broadstairs, Deal and Dover.
Last year more than 2,000 bikers visited Margate despite the official event being cancelled.