When thinking about Thanet, mostly one thing comes to mind – the coast. Something that is mostly overlooked in Thanet is all of the beautiful and diverse architecture, buildings and structures that can be found throughout the district. Here, we are going to be looking at three wonderful examples!
Droit House – Margate
Droit house can be found right on the seafront of Margate – a building that many can spot from afar, with its white exterior and its neon art installation above the entrance. Droit House was initially constructed as a Customs Building in 1828 but sadly was later destroyed in the Second World War. It was rebuilt using the original plans in 1947 and in 2001, a circular extension was added to the rear of the building.
Droit House now serves as a tourist information centre, and can be hired out for small events, conferences and other gatherings.
The Turner Contemporary – Margate
The Turner Contemporary is one of the newest architectural additions to Thanet’s coast. Situated right next to Droit House on the seafront in Margate, it surely can’t be missed.
In 1998, the Leader of Kent County Council and representatives of Kent Artists met to discuss the idea of building a space to exhibit local art, and after years and years of persistence and planning, Kent County Council appointed the multi-award-winning David Chipperfield Architects in July 2006 to design the gallery.
From 2008 to 2011, work was underway to create a stunningly beautiful building on Margate’s seafront. The gallery opened on 16 April 2011, and since opening has welcomed over 1.5 million visitors!
Italianate Glass Greenhouse – Ramsgate
The Italianate Glasshouse, a Grade II* listed historical monument, was initially erected in the grounds of East Cliff Lodge - Sir Moses Montefiore's 22-acre estate in 1832. Sir Moses, a British financier and former Sheriff of London, bought the magnificent structure from another impressive house, Bretton Hall in Yorkshire after seeing it in an auction catalogue.
The grounds of the house, now known as King George VI Memorial Park, were eventually taken over by Ramsgate Borough Council and the house was demolished in 1953.
The greenhouse has since been lovingly restored and is now a place for locals and visitors to enjoy a nice spot of afternoon tea.