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!