Monday, December 31, 2007

New Year's Heave

Apparently it's your last chance to shake a leg down at the Cliftonville Lido tonight, before they convert the place into (yes you've guessed it) luxury apartments. I'd go, but at 29 I think I'd be classified as a pensioner.

See you in 2008!

Port Whine

Ramsgate's Royal Harbour and Port are, of course, the jewel in the Ile de Thanet's, if not the entire country's, crown. So naturally I ramped my Oticon Delta up to 11 when I overheard a couple of matelots discussing the future of these fine facilities on my morning saunter along the harbour wall, dressed inconspicuously in my customary attire of captain's cap and brass-buttoned navy blue blazer. Here's how it went:

Matelot A: So the council want to hive off the port eh?
Matelot B: Yeah, they need to raise £10m for this new quay the wind farm people want.
Matelot A: But wouldn't that mean there'd be no room for another ro-ro operator?
Matelot B: Yeah but the rumour is TransEuropa are up for sale anyway, so who knows how much longer they'll be here? And Sheerness have made a play for the wind farm people, who are pissed off about the state of the dredging, so what would that leave us with?
Matelot A: Fancy nipping into the pub for a drink?
Matelot B: No thanks, I'm driving.

Crikey! Now of course this may have all been briny tittle-tattle, but you have to admit that our beloved council's track record of running its assets into the ground speaks for itself. So borrowing ten million sovs to build an asset that might never be used in the first place seems to be bordering on the reckless.

Still, if the silt isn't dredged out of the harbour soon, the last thing they'll be accused of is being wreckless!

Sunday, December 30, 2007


My Fellow Thanetians,

Since thawing out from cryogenic suspension in a warehouse at Port Ramsgate last year, courtesy of the intermittent nature of your French power supply, I have moved among you as the man you have grown to love and trust, Mr Richard Eastcliff.

However, with the new year approaching, the time has come for me to address you directly about the year that has passed, and the year to come. [Applause.]

I was greatly encouraged by the re-election of the island's Republican administration this year, as was my Vice President and Chief Pardoner, President Gerald Rudolph Ford, who currently resides in a spare freezer round the back of Iceland. I look forward with anticipation to the day when Gerald and I will be able to reminisce about the good times again, and feel sure that, thanks to EDF, that day is fast approaching. [Applause.]

Over the past twelve months, neglect, scandal and incompetence have grown. Yet there are many other improvements still to be made. I have personally witnessed people questioning authority [gasps of shock and disbelief], and there are still far too many beautiful coastal areas which would benefit from a Watergate [surely 'waterfront'? - Ed.] style development. [Cries of 'Here, here'.]

It is with a joyous heart, however, that I see our Chinese friends will be investing in the island, following my pioneering talks in Peking in 1972, and I have already taken the precaution of reserving a place for Chairman Mao in a frozen ready meals cabinet at the Westwood Tesco, where he will continue to mastermind the import of cheap old tut upon which our economy depends. [Three choruses of: 'Freeze a Jolly Good Fellow!']

I feel certain that you will agree when I say that the continuing prospect of a Thanet with a tremendous great Dick in charge will give great comfort to the populace. To that end, I will be keeping my albeit rather trembly finger poised on that big red button in my office in Margate. [Rapturous applause followed by cries of '90 more years!!']

By the grace of God, and with your support, I am confident that my trusted policies of ignoring your problems, ruining your life, and destroying your future will guarantee my place in history.

May God continue to bless the United States of Thanetia.

Richard M Nixon, President

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Celebrities On The Box

Flaming Nora! I've seen more celebrities staring out from the packaging of my Christmas presents this year than I'd have clocked watching UK Living for an entire week! Here's a rundown:

Gordon Ramsay's Just Desserts Chocolates - I particularly enjoyed the When Are You Going To Grow A Set Of F*cking B*ll*cks You F*cking T*sser? Lime Parfait

Bill Oddie's Fat Ball Holder - has attracted some great tits. So much more effective than just dangling your shrivelled old nuts off a bush

Nigella Lawson's Topless Jugs - speak for themselves really

That reminds me I must speak to Bev, my agent, about endorsing some products myself next year. After all, I doubt there'd be many Christmas consumers who'd be able to resist a festive nibble on my Dick Cheese!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Rubbish Collection

Despite the generous box I had waiting for them, and indications to the contrary on their website, our beloved Tory council's bin men sailed straight past the old cliff top mansion this morning with ne'er a second glance. Resulting in me having to take the Christmas detritus to the tip in the car.

That, and their ongoing failure to introduce wheelie bins or any kind of recycling scheme in these parts, rather makes a mockery of their Safer, Greener, Cleaner slogan, doncha think?
A load of old rubbish from Thanet District Council

Lights, Camera, Inaction!

Eschewing the tawdry entertainments on offer from the major channels this Christmas, I decided to support my local TV station and tuned in exclusively to Kent County Council TV's festive fare. After all, it's cost us £1.6m and I figured, for that kind of money, the least they'd be doing was exhuming and re-animating Morecambe and Wise this year.

So imagine my disappointment when I discovered their prime time Christmas viewing consisted of a lame docco about some amdram panto, advice from the British Christmas Tree Growers' Association about how to prevent your needles dropping, and a member of Her Majesty's Scrotum Scratchers breath testing drivers on Margate front for the benefit of the cameras. Admittedly the panto docco was, albeit unintentionally, almost as amusing as Extras, but where was the seasonal message from the Tory council's ruddy-faced leader, telling us how he was going to pull a cracker and roast his nuts this Yuletide?

Later, as I was changing Bertie's litter tray, I came across an old copy of the Gazunder which carried a story about £229,000-a-year KCC Chief Executive Peter Gilroy being 'very pleased' with the number of people watching the channel - 109,000 since its launch in September. Crumbs! By my reckoning, that's around 8,000 viewers a week, or, with around 400 videos on their site, 270 viewers per video! At an average cost of £4000 per video, it would be cheaper to mail out the DVDs individually, surely? If I made programmes that attracted a grand total of 270 viewers, I'd be sacked. As indeed I have been on many an occasion.

I've a good mind to write to my old TV chum Nigel Dacre, the Ten Alps Project Director behind Kent TV, and the brother of Daily Mail editor Paul Dacre, and complain. Or perhaps I'll just pop round his North London mansion and make my views known in person!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Well, did you see it? Just a few minutes ago, the flying doctor did a double circuit of Ramsgate's trendy East Cliff, on his charity tug with the banner paid for by Bignews Tony, and, of course, me and all you lovely readers here on the island's premier blog site. Proceeds will be going to the NSPCC.

Right, I've got the biggest bird I've ever had waiting to be stuffed in the kitchen, I'm off to smother some breasts in butter. Happy Christmas to you all. Unless you're a bigot, Oasis Hong Kong Airlines or That Bloody Awful Noel. In which case, I'll wish you a Crappy Mizmas!

The ECR Christmas Quiz

Yes, it's that time of year again! When Thanetians settle down after scoffing the Christmas pud to a huge helping of ECR Christmas quizzing, a tradition which has spread joy around the Ile de Thanet ever since 2006.

As usual I've based my questions on the events and people that have shaped the Ile during the past year. So stoke up the yuletide blaze, and if there's any furniture left after the fire brigade have put it out, settle down and test your noddle with my Thanet brainteasers!

I spotted this whiffy old geyser in Rotorua (aka Fartopolis), New Zealand on my Big Down Under tour at the start of the year. Which recently appointed Thanet bigwig's last job was in Rotorua?

A: Oozalum-loving Manston Chief Executive Matt Clarke
B: China-loving TDC Chief Executive Richard Samuel
C: Car-park-loving Thorley Taverns Chief Executive Frank Thorley

Answer: A - Kiwi Matt's previous job was at Rotorua Airport.

This was put on display at Margate's Winter Gardens. What is it?

A: Tracey Emin's shoe box collection
B: Foam Sweet Foam, an exhibition of art from Kazakhstan
C: The initial design for the onshore Turnip Centre

Answer: C - currently the Turner Contemporary is expected to cost over £25m (including £8m wasted on the aborted offshore design).

New CCTV was installed by our beloved council to protect this Ramsgate monument after they scrubbed off years of gruesome graffiti. How long did the camera remain?

A: About a day
B: About a week
C: About a month

Answer: C - but why was it removed, and why has it never returned? (That's not another quiz question, just a pensive thought).

The earth moved here in the Millionaires' Playground on the morning of Saturday the 28th. What caused it?

A: An earthquake under the Channel a few miles from Dover
B: Our crumbling East Cliff collapsing
C: A Viagra spillage at the nearby Pfizer factory

Answer: A - Thanetians found their oats quaking around 8.30am.

The local council elections returned rugged Tory leader Sandy Beach to power, but what was Sandy in a previous life?

A: A boxer
B: A bouncer
C: A belly dancer

Answer: A - Sandy is famous for his Ali-like, pugilistic banter, such as last April when he called the Mayor of Margate a 'f*cking tosser' at the Mayor's own ball, and wittily suggested to another councillor 'come on, just put your face in mine!'

Former Isle of Thanet Gazunder reporter Nick Dorman upset Northsiders by printing some rather off colour remarks about Margate in The People. The article was about 'dole scroungers', but what is the town's apparent nickname, according to young Nick?

A: Dolegate
B: Benefit Bay
C: Sicknote-on-Sea

Answer: C - but as we all know, it's actual nickname is the Arsonists' Playground!

St Ives in Cornwall (pictured above) was named the best seaside town in Britain by The Guardian, but which resort came second?

A: Cliftonville
B: Ramsgate
C: Broadstairs

Answer: B - um, er, well, no it was C: Boredstares actually. But it should have been Ramsgate. I think they may have miscounted the votes or something.

I was approached by a television company wanting to make a film about Ramsgate. What was going to be the film's highlight?

A: A musical which brought all the people of the town together
B: A Bond style speedboat chase through our Royal Harbour
C: A courtroom sequence in which the council was sued for incompetence

Answer: A - for some reason the producers never got in touch again after I told them my last single was truly eponymous, having sold just the one copy.

I broke the exclusive that a new company was planning to build seven, eight metre high glasshouses on the Ile - covering the equivalent of 75 football pitches - and fill them with tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. What is the name of the company?

A: Thanet Earth
B: Birchingtoms
C: The Veg of The Known World

Answer: A - and here's the proof (or you can visit their website by clicking here):


Fishermen protested about the enormous sand bank that now virtually blocks the entrance of our Royal Harbour at low tide, caused by our incompetent council's lack of dredging. What was the council's response?

A: They renamed the sand bank The Sandy Beach Sandy Beach
B: They applied for Blue Flag status
C: They sold off the harbour's only dredger

Answer: C - they then put the dredging contract out to tender, but nothing further's been heard and the sand bank is still there.

The Isle of Thanet Gazunder was bought by Daily Mail group Northcliffe Media back in July. What did they blame this gobbledegook headline on in November?

A: Problems with their monkey/typewriter interface?
B: New computers
C: Sdf dsfskj sdffkjsd sdfkjf kdfjfklj dfjk

Answer: B - apparently the computers were fixed following the application of copious amounts of red wine, gin and high tar ciggies.

The ruling Blue Rinsers announced plans to close Ramsgate's Maritime Museum, quoting budget constraints and a lack of visitors. What else will they be closing?

A: Libraries to make way for 'one stop benefit shops'
B: Public khazis
C: Margate

Answer: All three!

So how did you do?

0 - 4 correct answers - That Bloody Awful Noel
5 - 8 correct answers - Christopher Biggins
9 - 12 correct answers - Me!!!!

And don't forget, if you want more good quizzing for Christmas there's still time to rush out and buy The Prince of Wales Quiz Book by my old chum and quizmaster extraordinaire Marcus Berkmann. A snip in paperback at £8.99! (Marcus - please send the Krug to the usual address).

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Rammed Up The A*se

As I was toddling back down the A2 after doing my Christmas shopping in Knightsbridge yesterday, the old Toyota Priapus was rear-ended by one of those white Transit vans that seem to regard all three lanes as their own personal domain these days.

I must admit my practice of annoying van drivers when they're behind me by decelerating on downhill stretches, where they like to work up a bit of speed, and accelerating on the uphill stretches, where their underpowered, overburdened hulks struggle to reach the speed limit, may have contributed to the incident. But don't tell my insurance company that.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Charity Bid's A Winner

Hurrah! The ECR/Bignews Margate axis has won the flying doctor's charity eBay auction to get our very own banner tugged around the island. Well, er, it wasn't that difficult as we were the only people to bid. What a load of skinflints you Thanetians are!

More news closer to the day (Christmas Eve), but we're hoping the banner will read MERRY XMAS FROM THANET BLOGGERS, and that the proceeds will go to the NSPCC. Tony and I are going half each on the £150, but one or two of my readers offered to chuck in the odd fiver, so I'll make my contribution the full ton. Hopefully, if Tony does the same, we'll have raised 200 nicker for a good cause.

And as it's Christmas, I suppose I ought to thank the Doc for contributing his time, plane, fuel and er oh gawd I think I'm going to throw up.

Update: As Tony is over the weight limit (85kg) for the passenger seat, and I'm a purely fictional persona, Dr Moores has asked us if he could auction the spare seat off for more charity wonga via local radio. Which is a nice idea, so listen out for that.

Update update: Er, he's now taking sealed bids via email for the spare dicky, so send your offers to

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Crown Jewels

The winter edition of our council sponsored listings magazine Isle sports an artist's impression of the proposed Turner Contemporary Mark n on its front page, comparing the £25m (so far), glass clad arts centre to the Crystal Palace, and describing it as 'the jewel in the nation's crown'.

Isn't that tempting fate somewhat? I mean, the original Crystal Palace burnt down in 1936. And this one's going to be in the Arsonists' Playground!

Click here for yet more of Margate burning down on the BBC News website. This time it's a factory making flame retardant chemicals. I agree, you couldn't make it up, could you!

Jingle Bells, Batman Smells 2

Judging by my countersiterometeriser I've had a lot of people visiting over the past few days looking for the alternative, Australian lyrics to the seasonal anthem Jingle Bells. Happy to oblige:

Jingle Bells, Batman smells,
Robin Flew away.

Wonderwoman lost her bosoms
Flying TAA!

For the curious, TAA stands for Trans Australia Airlines, a domestic Australian airline which was gobbled up by Qantas in 1995. So, now you know!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

'Arrowing Experience

Holy ear defenders! I think I'm going to have to switch off my deaf aid! Both the Red Arrows and that knackered old jumbo have just started dive bombing my cliff top mansion.

I presume the dastardly Doctor has something to do with this. Maybe he didn't like my charity suggestion after all!

Run It Up The Flaigpole

Burger loving Margate burgher Bignews Tony Flaig (scourge of the Freemasons, police and Kent County Council) has rung to accept my offer of going 50/50 on the flying doctor's charity Christmas tug.

If you recall, the Doc has so far failed to get any bids for his eBay offer which starts at £150. The deal is that Tone and I will chuck in 75 sovs each, but if any other Thanet bloggers want to make a contribution for a banner that will, we hope, read MERRY XMAS FROM THANET BLOGGERS then there'll be more for charity. Unless the charity is the Oasis Pilots' Benevolent Fund, in which case you can count me out!

Neither Tony nor I will be going in the doctor/councillor's cockpit (Tony's too fat and I'm too anonymous) so who knows, this could be your chance to join the mile high club with your favourite Blue Rinser! Just append your comment with the size of your donation to this post, and we'll work out the details later. Happy tugging!

Click here for the Doc's relisted eBay offer, currently showing our £150 bid

Monday, December 17, 2007

Old Eastcliff's Thanet Almanac

Crumbs! My predictions last year turned out to be pretty accurate, so I thought I'd give it another go for 2008! Here's what I saw after a good long stare into my crystal balls:

A cold month, with much wind emanating from the north. A great wailing and gnashing of teeth will be heard in the region of Cecil Square as one foolhardy member of the public attempts to borrow a book.

February will be slightly longer this year but still quite short by usual standards. A well known Ramsgate millionaire will be inundated with offers of marriage on the 29th.

Thanetians will celebrate a new feast day, to be called The Closing of The Museums. This will become an annual event, rivalled only by the already popular Nailing Up of the Khazis. A great gloom will spread across the island as Council Tax demands arrive.

This will be the fourth month of the year. There will be new developments offering the same old promises - luxury apartments, retirement homes, and buy-to-let opportunities.

Thanet's rugged chieftain will celebrate his first year in power by laying a carpet in Kingsgate and instigating free parking (outside his shop in Cliftonville).

This will be a hot month, and many buildings in Margate will suffer spontaneous combustion. Victorian bathing costumes will be all the rage in Broadstairs. (What's new? - Ed.)

A great hoard will depart from RAF London Kent Ramsgate Manston International Airport, only to discover that their holiday consists of flying over Ramsgate every nine minutes for the rest of the week.

Our leaders will sign a treaty with China and the island shall henceforth be known as 'Hong Kong'.

Many famous celebrities bearing presents will flock to Thanet to celebrate the birthday of its foremost citizen. To avoid the rush, please send your gift in advance to: Richard Eastcliff, Cliff Top Mansion, Victoria Parade, Ramsgate, Kent.

This month will come before November, but after September.

With winter approaching, much of the area will suffer from debilitating eyesores. The islanders will give these various names, such as 'Dreamland', 'Pleasurama', and 'West Cliff Hall'.

A great traffic jam will form at Westwood Cross as the island's inhabitants rush to buy presents for Christmas, which I predict will this year be on the 25th.

Phew! That's enough almanac, pass the Armagnac!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Royal Choke

Just back from one of our local Thorley Taverns after a night with some of my millionaire chums, and I must say the atmosphere was pretty rancid. One fat fellow at the end of the bar appeared to have a problem with his bowels, and was guffing like an elephant most of the night, much to the amusement of his boneheaded chums.

Call me old fashioned, but I for one found the waft of tobacco smoke before the ban infinitely preferable to the malodorous concoction of lavatory smells, BO and unwashed nether regions that we have to put up with these days. And now that our Frank, who was moaning in the Gazunder this week about a current downturn in trade, is saving money by turning off his air conditioning, I'll be certain to take the precaution of donning an NBC suit before entering one of his establishments again!
Must-have gear for a visit to your local Thorley Tavern

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Christmas Shopping In Ramsgate

Following last week's abortive attempt to get my Christmas shopping in Boredstares, today I thought I'd give the Millionaires' Playground a go.

The High Street was rammed, with the market in full swing. And I have to admit that the happy cries of 'Any bowl (of brussels sprouts) you bloody well fancy!' briefly drew my attention. However, not wishing to appear cheapskate by presenting my Aunt Mavis with a bag of vegetables or a disposable lighter for Christmas, I changed tack and popped into one of our twelve card shops. There I met with moderate success, finding a couple of reasonably tasteful Christmas cards, just along from the shelves sporting birthday greetings such as 'Happy 30th Grandma' and 'For The Best Stepmother's Boyfriend In The World'.

Bypassing the huge bones labelled 'Postman's Legs' (the perfect present for the rabid hound in your life) outside the pet shop, I popped into the seasonal 'Polar Village'. Here I felt slightly hoodwinked by the advertising, which had promised an ice skating rink. Hmmm. No ice, just that plastic stuff with a few poor souls wondering why their skates wouldn't budge. And not so much a rink as a patio.

So I ended up getting most of my pressies at our local biblio-bloke Michael Child's splendid secondhand bookshop on trendy King Street. A cup of tea and a browse. Now that's my idea of civilised shopping!
NB: photograph for illustrative purposes only

I Do Like To Stroll Along The Prom...

Meandering along the East Cliff prom this morning, I clocked one or two changes. First off, our Grade II listed Pugin lion has been restored after its encounter with the East Cliff Chopper last year. Hurrah!


And Ramsgate artist Ruth Cutler's sea art is much more visible now that the ne'er-do-wells have ripped down the banner telling us what it is:

Graffiti art is coming along nicely here, too, after it was scrubbed off in March and CCTV installed for all of ten minutes. I thought the banner headline in the local ball scratchers' magazine recently was 'Getting Tough On Graffiti'? Um, hurrah?
March 2007

December 2007


Finally, our beloved council has at last restored the backs of those shelters that have been missing since February, although I'm not sure plywood is in tune with the Victorian theme.

Still, if the worst comes to the worst, and I end up sleeping rough on the seafront like my old newsreading chum Ed Mitchell does in Brighton, I can now be assured of a cosy spot. Hurrah!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Time Running Out For Doctor Banner Bid

There's only an hour or so left if you want to get your very own banner tugged by our local doctor/councillor, who's making the Christmas charity offer on eBay. Bidding started at £150, and so far it's up to, er, £150 since nobody's yet made a bid.

As Marvel Comics fans will remember, Dr. Banner was the Incredible Hulk's real name. Let's hope our chap doesn't turn green and split his shirt open if the sponds aren't forthcoming!

Click here if you want your banner tugged

Update: Bidding has now closed with the grand total of 0, zero, none, nada, no bids.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Mincers By The Sea

I see there's a Bandstand Bazaar being held here on Ramsgate's trendy, award winning East Cliff this Saturday. It'll feature carol singing, affordable arts and crafts, a Christmas light parade (eh?) and a fire sculpture finale. Although that last one's taking a bit of a risk in these parts if you ask me.

We're also promised mulled wine, beer, hot snacks and mince pies, so that and the old cashmere thermals should keep the Arctic blasts at bay. And there'll be mistletoe! So if your fantasy has always been a quick snog with our local caff-crushing, car-crushing councillor Dave Green, or the lovely Mrs caff-crushing, car-crushing councillor Elizabeth Green, now's your chance. Festivities start at midday.

I've also received an invitation from the delightful Mrs Gaddfather of Ale to tonight's Eastcliff Residents' Association Festive Quiz at Albion House (kick-off 7.30pm), which also promises to be a boozy affair. Unfortunately I'm tied up with my festive Twankey, so if anyone's got a pair of scissors...

PS: Comments are now back on. Please keep them to the point, or if you can't keep them to the point keep them funny. And if you can't manage either, sod off!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Jingle Bells, Batman Smells

Ho ho ho! I'm really getting into the festive spirit thanks to all the cards you've been sending! Here's a personalised one from reader Terracotta Glenn:
Ha ha, er, jolly good TG! Although as you know, I've yet to hit 30, so I'm only at the 'Money, Money, Sex' stage. Maybe it's a spot of payback for all the times I've published that photo of you in the giant Chinese warrior outfit. Moving swiftly on, and reader Mr X has sent me this card based on a Margate nativity scene:

Keep them coming!

Shots Shot By Shots

Yes I had a lovely time at that new establishment on Harbour Street last night, thanks for asking. I was going to take a few snaps, but ended up rather wellied on vodka shots and pressed the delete button by mistake. So here's a couple of piccies I blagged from their website:

And, er, inside

Moderate Your Comments

I've turned comments back on, but I'll be moderating them for a bit. Needless to say I won't be allowing any irritating drivel through the net, just the usual drivel. You have been warned.

Holly Nickers

Nothing to do with personal feminine itching. No, I've received this email from a reader on the Dickensian east side of the island calling himself Joss Bay, a pseudonym we must assume:

I read in the papers recently that there's a national shortage of holly this festive season, and prices are going through the roof. So I was not entirely surprised as I was driving home the other night to see, as I approached my house, a shadowy figure who appeared to be cutting branches from the holly tree in my front garden. As I pulled into my drive, I remonstrated with the woman, who, calm as a cucumber, retorted: 'It's only a bit of holly' and sauntered off.

I thought about reporting the incident to the police, but she was the wife of the copper who lives a few doors up.

Crikey! Still, you've got to pity the rozzers. They've just had a piss poor pay deal, and what with that and the prospect of having to retire on full pay at 40 and set up their own security business, no wonder some of them are being driven to desperate measures!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Sovereign Rings

Yum! I'm really looking forward to my free slap-up meal for four down at that swanky new hostelry on Harbour Street that's opening tonight. Oh, didn't I tell you? They phoned me the other day to say I'd won the competition to name it. Well, all those suggestions you made were just so... silly. So I thought I'd send in something sensible, and The Sovereign it is!

Towing The Party Line?

Holy joysticks! Footling around on eBay just now, I came across this offer from our favourite Blue Rinser. Yes, the flying doctor/Tory councillor is giving us the once-in-a-lifetime chance to see a banner of our choice tugged around behind his teeny-tiny plane on Christmas Eve!

Bids start at £150, and proceeds go to chariddee. You also get the opportunity to go in the Doctor's cockpit, as long as you weigh less than 185kg (that rules out Santa and most Margatonians then).

With only three days of the auction left, the Doc has yet to be made an offer, but I'm sorely tempted. Seeing him tug TORIES OUT OF THANET or EASTCLIFF RICHARD IS THE BIZ around the Ile would be the Christmas present to end all Christmas presents. Although I'd be a bit ginger about joining him on the flight. You never know, he might develop finger trouble with the ejector button!

Click here if you want your banner tugged

Sub Standards

Last week's Isle of Thanet Gazunder is the gift that keeps on giving. Tucked away on page 15, above an ad for 'The Mayor of Margate's Dickensian Christmas Event' (now everyone wants to pretend they live in Broadstairs) is this nib, or news in brief:

Presumably they mean the Nayland Rock. Oh well, I suppose that's what you get when you shift production of all your local newspapers to one big shed in Auchtermuchty. I look forward to reading future stories about Cliff Send, Peg Wellbay and Dumped On Gap!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Wind Up

Blimey! What an appropriately gusty day for the government to give the go-ahead for another 7,000,000 offshore fart farms. Mind you, it'll give my campaign to promote Ramsgate as The Windy City a boost. And add weight to my plans to convert our crumbling West Cliff Hall into a world class research centre for wind.

As some older Ramsgatonians may know, we're no strangers to wind here in the Millionaires' Playground. And to prove the point, Samantha has sent me another of her splendid clips. This illuminated windmill apparently used to stand somewhere on Ramsgate's West Cliff:
Create myspace graphic with Gickr

Light Fantastic

Regular contributor Samantha writes:

Reading your story about the closure of the Ramsgate Maritime Museum got me thinking. Being a bit of an 'oldie' I remember the days when the whole of Ramsgate front was illuminated, including the 'clock house' as it was then known. So I rummaged through my old cine film and came up with this. Those were the days!
graphic myspace at

Sunday, December 09, 2007

I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Hereson!

In a mad moment yesterday afternoon I decided I'd forgo the delights of Westwood Chaos (too many autograph hunters) and get all my Christmas shopping in Boredstares. But after an hour of perusing Victorian bathing costumes and hand-crafted Bulgarian tarambukas, enough was enough.

I was trundling back to the Millionaires' Playground in the old Toyota Priapus when a hideous grinding noise began emanating from the vehicle's nether regions. Fearing it was about to burst into flames, or fry the Eastcliff jacksie with 20,000 volts, or both (you never know with these hybrid things), I pulled into that Murco garage on Hereson Road.

'Better call the AA,' I thought. And sure enough, in less time than it takes to say 'pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis' the chap had arrived. Much scratching of the bonce ensued. 'I've never worked on one of these,' he finally sighed. 'Where's the gearbox?'.

Now call me old-fashioned, but I thought I was paying my sub for him to know that! I AAsk you!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Museum Destined To Be History

Those blighters at the council look set to close our Royal Harbour's splendid Maritime Museum! The news is tucked away in the corner of this week's Gazunder feature on the council's 2008 budget. The Blue Rinsers are apparently considering withdrawing the museum's grant as part of urgent cost-cutting measures.

But the news is not all bad, as they'll be diverting more resources into keeping the town centre spick and span - by closing the public khazis. Presumably the idea is that the resulting rivers of piss running down the high street will sluice the litter into the harbour. And with no museum to attract visitors, a wee smell or two in the harbour won't go amiss! Genius!

Friday, December 07, 2007

When Is A Library Not A Library? Part 2

When it's Thanet Gateway Plus, of course!

The latest edition of our beloved council's very own trumpet-blowing magazine Thanet Matters devotes a front page and several hundred words to the revamping of Margate Library, which re-opens its doors on the 7th of January and now features Thanet Gateway Plus (urgh!), a 'one stop shop' for council services. But casting the old Eastcliff mincers over the lavish, double-page spread, I clocked only two mentions of the word 'library'. Oh yes, plenty of 'customer service' this, and 'council officers' that, but 'books'? Not a dickie bird!

Santa really must be on his way, as Thanet Matters wasn't the only Christmas present that plopped out of my local paper...

The local rozzers have spent a bob or two too, telling us how luvverly duvverly everything is round here. Actually my housekeeper had occasion to be thankful for the bizzies while I was away. Yet again she came across a posse of them in one of those grimy backstreets, this time tackling some ne'er-do-well with a gun. Cripes!

Anyway, as yuletide is clearly fast approaching, I've decided to put my Christmas deccies up!

Glued To The Box

Tonight's Money Programme (BBC2, 7pm) should make fascinating viewing for chaps of a certain age who habitually found themselves with small bits of plastic stuck in their barnet when they were nippers.

It's all about the resurrection of Airfix, the glue together kit company which Margate firm Hornby bought after it, er, came unglued last year. Hornby have already made a success of Scalextric and, of course, Hornby model trains.

Manufacturing has now been shifted to China, and groovy, new kits for the Playstation generation have been designed, including a snap together Dr Who. Probably a wise move. After all, kids these days would probably be more interested in sniffing the glue than using it to patiently construct a 1:400 scale model of the Scharnhorst!

Click here for BBC Airfix story
Click here for Airfix website
Click here for Hornby website

Thursday, December 06, 2007

East Cliff Scores A Hatrick!

According to regular contributor Millicent it was a straight 1-2-3 for our swinging East Cliff at the Ramsgate Society Town Image Awards 2007 today!

The top gong was handed out to our newly revamped, super-duper, out-of-this-world bandstand, with Miles' Bar on the front runner-up, and the new sheltered housing development at the bottom of Thanet Road third. Hurrah!

There was one serious omission, however. Namely why in the name of everything that's holy wasn't the East Cliff's most famous resident invited to the glitzfest? It's not every day I get to go to a slap-up do at our luxury, 12 star San Clu Comfort Inn y'know. Kuh!


In the absence of anything better to do, I've been trawling around BoobTube. In honour of my recent experience in Germany, here's a little something for those of you who aren't too easily offended. Spurs fans in particular might want to look away now:

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Thanet Gazette Has Me In Its Net. Not!

Yikes! According to my spies on the north side, the hacks at Gazunder Towers are hunting me down like a dog! And they reckon they've narrowed the field of Eastcliff Richard candidates to one of two people, viz:

1. That bloke with the beard and plastic trousers who sat at the back of an Eastcliff Residents' Association meeting the other month.
2. Thanet Council head honcho Richard Samuel.

Both way off the mark, I'm afraid. But whatever they're offering I'll double it!

A Night At The Blogs

Well the Neuries finally kicked in, so I've been catching up with the Thanet blogs.

Bignews Margate - Plucky Tony Flaig has taken on the freemasons, who have apparently been getting free publicity on Kent TV at the taxpayers expense! Good on yer, Tone! Although best stay clear of Blackfriars Bridge until the dust settles, old bean.

Pignews Ramsgate - I'm delighted to see that old ham, Lucy Mail, is back on the horse. Well, the milkman's horse to be precise. Still, it might have been a rash, er, decision (gedditt!!?!?!) to spill all in public!

Prove it, OVIT! - more argy-bargy over on One Voice in Thanet, who has the temerity to suggest that our favourite Doctor/Councillor's Thanet Lifers are occasionally less than politically correct. The cheek! Now Boredstares Blue Rinser Ewen Cameron has thrown his lawyer's wig in the ring, accusing OVIT of skating on thin ice, and saying that if such tendencies existed in the ruling Tory group, he would stand down. Well, let's hope that with the magic words 'Latchford' and 'racist email', I'll be reading about Councillor Cameron's resignation in Friday's Gazunder!

Thanet Strife - Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. Some poor deluded tree planters have accepted a cheque for £3,000 from Oasis Hong Kong Airlines, the oozalum flight providers, and Infartil, our local airport operators. Talk about greenwash. Just like most of the birds round here, they've clearly been sucked in!

Click here for Tree Planters (sponsored by Oasis)

Tuesday, December 04, 2007


As they say in the Czech Republic. And, er, Ramsgate Marina. Yes, I'm back on Terra Britannica! And after four days celebrating with the Moravians, I've got a hangover that's going to outlast religion.

Thanks for all your kind comments, emails and tip-offs while I was away. As soon as I'm feeling a bit less squiffy, I'll be back blogging like a good 'un. Now, where are those Neurofens?

Friday, November 30, 2007

Hunsatisfactory Service

Well I finally arrived in Uherske Hradiste for the wedding. No thanks to Deutsche Bahn. Quite why I was persuaded to take the train, rather than my Lear jet, lord knows. Oh yes, that's right, I had to flog the Lear due to a temporary financial, er, hiccup.

Anyone who complains about the railways in Blighty should try German and Czech chuffers. Talk about ein koch-up! Wrong trains arriving at the right platform. Right trains arriving at the wrong platform. And my luxury compartment with ensuite for the Brussels-Berlin overnight didn't arrive at all! So I was accommodated in a wardrobe that would have made Tom Thumb claustrophobic. And instead of a shower and WC, there was a washbasin which would have given a finger bowl delusions of Olympic swimming pool grandeur. You'll be pleased to hear, though, that even given these restraints I did not resort to the English manner of relieving myself when nature called at 4am.

My previously shiny opinion of German railway efficiency must have been gleaned from documentaries about the pre-war period, when that twat with the toothbrush 'tache was in charge, and everything ran like clockwork. Not that the Czech railways are any better. Chock full, slow and filthy. Even their shiny, new, super-duper Italian Pendolinos were delivered with a software fault which means they have to stop at every other station for a CD upload. Not for nothing does Fiat stand for Fix It Again Tony.

Never mind, the hotel's very, um, hygienic...

And it's been snowing!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Eastcliff Goes East

Mr Ceaucescu (no relation) has invited me to his sister's wedding. She's getting hitched to a Czech chap, so I'm just about to board the Eurostar at St. Pancreas, then onto a sleeper in Brussels for the trip to Prahaha! Of course, I'll send you all a postcard. Pip pip!

Get Noticed!

Once again I'm indebted to regular contributor Mr X, this time for a snapshot of a notice he noticed.

Talking of noticing, am I the only one to have noticed that the 'temporary' fencing (948 days and counting) along our crumbling East Cliff has grown a bit recently? Is this what the Uranians mean by regeneration? I think we should be told!

Meanwhile a reader revelling in the moniker Oh Little Town of Birchington has sent me details of the new Ann Summers iGasm device, which plugs into your iPod and tickles your, er, fancy in time to the music. Apparently it's got iPod makers Apple all hot and steamy under their matching cuffs and collars. Ann Summers don't say whether it comes in multiple packs, but apparently it does carry a warning not to listen to Rimsky-Korsakov's Flight of the Bumblebee in the workplace or other public areas. Now that really would get you noticed!

Frustrated readers can click here for details of the iGasm.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Gazunder Goes Gaga - An Apology

It has been pointed out by m'learned friends that a previous post on this blog, entitled Gazunder Goes Gaga, may have contained one or two factual inaccuracies.

I am therefore happy to set the record straight, viz that the Isle of Thanet Gazunder is, in fact, one of the best newspapers money can buy, and that I was particular impressed by last week's new Blog of the Week column, penned by ace reporter Thom Morris, which exhibited impeccable taste by featuring one Eastcliff Richard in its debut outing.

I trust this apology, and the substantial cheque, will now bring this matter to a satisfactory conclusion for the parties concerned.

Monday, November 26, 2007

'Ello Me Old China

I see the President of France today signed £14.5bn worth of deals with the Chinese. So, have Thanet's illustrious leaders, who've also recently been in China, done as well? Here's an extract from Sandy's China Diary, which I found on a CD marked 'top secret' that TNT popped through the letterbox this morning:

Day 1: Lord luvva duck! Those tossers at BA lost my effing bag. F*cking tossers. 'Ad a couple of Axminster samples in it too. Tossers.
Day 2: Bleedin' 'ell. They served up snake liver last night. Tossers!
Day 3: One of their blokes woz in me face this morning. IN ME FACE! So I told him to eff off. F*cking tosser!

Speaking of China, don't forget you can catch the Terracotta Army exhibition at the British Museum until next April. Which gives me a perfect excuse to run my picture of reader Terracotta Glenn again!

When Is A Library Not A Library?

When it's a 'one stop shop', of course!

There appears to be a fierce debate going on in the pages of this blog (see comments under Gazunder Goes Gaga below) about whether our beloved council plan to use Ramsgate Library, which is currently being rebuilt after the 2004 fire, as a 'one stop shop' for council services and the like. Such plans are already well advanced for Margate Library.

Observer, generally one of our better informed local bloggers, has opined that such rumours are mere gossip and tittle-tattle, but I beg to differ. The following extract is from TDC's very own Corporate Plan 2007-11. Under Theme 6: Modern Council - What we will do they clearly state their intention to embed council services at some point during 2009-11 in the new Ramsgate Library:

Still, they're only catering to the market, I suppose. I gather student demand in Oxford recently led to the opening of a late night booze and kebab outlet in the Bodleian!