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Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Festive Folk by the Sea

SWC 101:  Ramsgate to Margate or Vice Versa via Broadstairs Folk Festival T=SWC.101

Distance:  9.8 Miles or 15.7 km for those more metrically minded (walk can be shortened by ending in Broadstairs)

Difficulty:  2 out of 10

Train:  Take the 10:08 AM Margate train from London St. Pancras to either Ramsgate OR Margate, depending on preference (see options below), arriving 11:27 in Ramsgate or 11:39 in Margate.  The more direct return trains from Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate are at 53, 59 and 05 minutes past the hour respectively until 21:53, 21:59 and 22:05.  Buy a day return to Margate.  If you book before 18:00 the day before, you should be able to get a £10 day return – though I am not sure if there is a limit on availability of these special price tickets.

To the consternation of some, I am breaking with tradition and posting this walk with an option for the participants to go in whichever direction they prefer, possibly crossing paths along the way…  It is an easy coastal walk along the Isle of Thanet (arguably where the east coast meets the south coast) with a combination of chalk cliffs and secluded coves (and excellent swimming opportunities – one of the best being Botany Bay).  Thus, for those opting to start in Margate, it should not be too onerous to follow the instructions in reverse…. For swimming purposes, low tide will be around 12:45 and high tide at 19:00.

This posting also coincides with the festive Broadstairs Folk Festival when the charming seaside town is bursting with song and dance.  Many of the pubs also have live free music offerings through-out the day and evening (voluntary contributions in the collection buckets always welcome) and you can buy a program (including the unticketed pub events) at the festival headquarters along the High Street.  The music offerings are generally quite varied from traditional folk sing-alongs to more modern rock offerings. 

Also, for the more cultured among us, there is the Turner Contemporary Gallery in Margate (admission free).  The gallery is dramatically located on the seafront where TMW Turner stayed when visiting the area.  It has a series of rotating contemporary exhibitions.

In terms of deciding which way to go…for those interested in visiting the Turner Gallery in Margate and swimming in Botany Bay, I would suggest starting in Margate and finishing in Broadstairs or Ramsgate and for those more interested in the Broadstairs festival, I would suggest starting in Ramsgate and possibly finishing in Broadstairs.  You can find more information about the walk and download the walk instructions here.

There appear to be a number of potential lunch spots along the way with the Capitan Digby Pub (01843 867 764) being fairly centrally located on the cliff top in Kingsgate Bay.  Tea and afternoon refreshments can be had at any number of places in Margate, Broadstairs or Ramsgate.    

Enjoy the walk (whichever way you go)!


Marion said...

There are no £10 tickets coming up as being available. Anyone got any success here. I'm intending to catch the 9.37 from Victoria arriving 11.24 at Margate just before the high speed train. Cost £19.75 ish with senior railcard. Want to visit the Broadstairs festival so hoping to meet up with other afficionados .

Stargazer said...

I was just able to book a 10 pound promotional ticket on the Southeastern Trains website for the specified outbound train -- You do need to nominally pick a return time -- but I suspect the ticket itself functions more like a day return.....

Andrew said...

Offer is after 10am

Stargazer said...

Two disembarked from the high speed train at Ramsgate, leaving one aboard who started in Margate and did not encounter any others before setting off, making for n=3 on a day which started off w=cloudy-clearing-to-bright-and-breezy-sunshine (a refreshing change from recent Wednesdays). The two who started in Ramsgate enjoyed a short walk along the beach to Broadstairs having a picnic along the way and spent the remainder of the day and evening enjoying the festival offerings, including watching a regular SWCer (not on the walk) perform a thespian piece on the main promenade, and a delightful late afternoon swim in a rising tide at neighboring Stone Bay. I understand the lone Margate starter enjoyed some time at the Gallery before setting off. Unfortunately, poor mobile reception scuppered efforts to meet in Broadstairs. Not sure about those on the slow train -- please feel free to supplement if others also did the walk.....

ramblinros said...

Perfect tide-out day to walk all the way on the beach from Ramsgate to Margate, as in 2011, but with recovering foot and knee, walked from Broadstairs to Margate, mainly on cliff top. Glorious weather to make use of £10 bargain. Turner Gallery fascinating as always, but a few days too early to see a Gormley placed on the coast nearby

Anonymous said...

this comment is transfered from another walk's comment section:

Marion, Fri 25 Aug 17, 07:43
Just wanted to thank you for posting the Folk festival and make a comment about last weeks walk to Broadstairs. Cant find the walk report. We did the Margate to Broadstairs option on the train from Victoria at 9.37 which arrived before the high speed train. Walking to Broadstairs along the cliff walk Viking Trail we arrived around 5pm having explored the vintage clothes, bric a brac shops and Dreamland complex in Margate. We visited several venues in Broadstairs including the Gardens and the Bandstand where normally everyone congregates. Also the festival stalls. Didn't see a soul unlike previous years.

Could I suggest that next year we have a meeting point and fewer options for walking so that a group walk is possible? i was with Jayne kennedy who only comes back from Penzance to Ealing occasionally and it would have been nice to have seen somebody! What was the turnout like? We caught the 8pm train home and enjoyed very good fish and chips in transit.
Such a good day out I booked again this week on the £10 fare to return to the vintage shops in Margate where I've now acquired 5 vintage dress patterns and a pattern cutting book to add to my library.

This is a wonderful day out with something for everybody and anyone with children or grandchildren would love the vintage rides fully restored at the art deco Dreamland entertainment complex in Margate. A real trip down memory lane for those of us who remember going to Margate as children.