Last Days of the Margate Scenic Railway?

Monday, August 11, 2003 6:14 AM
I just returned from an amazing UK coaster trip and wanted to share the important highlight with you. Our last stop was DREAMLAND at Margate (in the Kent region of England). This historic park is unfortunately on its last legs but the highlight is the Scenic Railway, running since 1920 and featuring an on-ride Brakeman to maintain a safe speed (since there are no undercarriage wheels).

We had an amazing time there and after our 2nd circuit the Brakeman noticed our interest and gave us a 2 hour behind the scenes tour of this beloved classic that they are desperately trying to save. He let us try braking on the cars in the workshop, showed us all the mechanics up close, discussed the park history and more. He and his crew were amazing and told us he will give these tours to ANY coaster enthusiasts who come to visit.

The reason I have put this in this area and not as a trip report is that while we were there the Park Owners came by and threatened to shut the coaster down forever if a payment wasn't made immediately. There is a plan by the ownership to tear down the coaster and a grass roots effort to save it is not making the strides everyone had hoped it would.

If anyone out there can send support to this "little coaster that could" it would be greatly appreciated. In addition to letters of support, they are accepting ANY donations to keep it going plus they are selling off pieces of old support timbers and the like as souvenirs.

I told the Brakeman who gave us the tour, Dave Collard, that I would let CoasterBuzz members know about their current dilemma. I know, of course, most of us can't take off for England to get a ride on what may be its last season, but perhaps we can help SAVE it for future visits as well!

There's a terrific website devoted to saving the coaster at www.savedreamland.co.uk . Let's hope we can make a difference...
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"You have to scale a lot of lift hills to coast easily..."

Jason
*** This post was edited by FloridaFlyer 8/11/2003 10:18:33 AM ***
*** This post was edited by FloridaFlyer 8/11/2003 10:20:08 AM ***

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Friday, August 15, 2003 10:40 AM
Surprised nobody has replied, although I think you've pretty much said everything that needs to be.

Nick and Sarah from Save Dreamland Campaign have organised a magnificent campaign - let's hope it ends in success.

MS

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Friday, August 15, 2003 12:45 PM
I actually DID mean to reply to this, and then got sidetracked. Sadly, such is the way with modern life.

The Scenic Railway is a great roller-coaster. I really hope it can be saved, as it would be a terrible loss of a real historic landmark.

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--Greg, aka Oat Boy
My page
"What do you want, you moon-faced assassin of joy?" -- Londo Mollari, Babylon 5

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Friday, August 15, 2003 3:46 PM
A scenic railway with just flanged wheels, no under-friction rollers AND three double dips - just gotta love it! Add to that the fact that the original cars are still on the ride (albeit with restraints) - how could they get rid of it?
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