Draft Thanet Local Plan - 2031 - Pre-Submission Publication, Regulation 19

The Vision: the Council's aspirations for 2031

  • Thanet has realised its growth potential as a location for business investment. Making the most of its close proximity to Europe and easy access to London, Thanet plays an important role in East Kent.
  • It has benefited from sustained investment in skills, employment and infrastructure. Thanet successfully retains and attracts skilled people to live and work in the area.
  • Health and educational attainment in Thanet are comparable with the county average, driven by good quality education and training.
  • Thanet has a sustainable, balanced economy with a strong focus on advanced manufacturing, emerging technologies, tourism, culture and leisure, supported by the three thriving coastal towns.
  • It has a well-established year round visitor economy, a destination of choice, having high quality accommodation and inviting public spaces.  Thanet  capitalises on its natural assets, the coastline and beaches, the heritage and culture, and these assets are protected and positively managed for the longer term.
  • The coastal town centres have re-defined their roles, maximising their unique characteristics, with diverse commercial offers and independent places to shop, eat and stay. New and restored housing has been regenerated next to boutique hotels and art studios.
  • Margate is a contemporary seaside resort based on its unique assets of a sandy beach, harbour and rich townscape. The creative industry, niche retail and educational sectors have diversified the economic heart of the town.
  • Ramsgate's maritime heritage, the commercial function of the port, supporting renewable technology, its Royal Harbour, marina, beach and attractive waterfront, provide a vibrant mix of town centre uses, with a strong visitor economy and café culture.
  • Broadstairs is a charming and attractive town and a popular location for visitors and residents, who enjoy the flavour of its historic associations, range of small shops and restaurants, beach and picturesque waterfront.
  • Westwood has strengthened its position as a retail destination, as well as being firmly established as a town centre, and has developed as an integrated community, with housing, business, leisure, sport and recreation, and education. This has been supported by investment in transport infrastructure creating a safe and attractive pedestrian environment at its centre.
  • High quality new homes, as well as the regeneration of Thanet’s high quality historic housing, provide a choice of homes for Thanet’s residents and for those who have invested in, or newly arrived in the area.
  • Cliftonville has an economically independent, settled and mixed community structure, with the pride and confidence to invest in quality development and care for its local environment.
  • The villages retain their separate physical identity, historic character and have vibrant communities with local facilities and services.
  • The open countryside between the towns and villages remains essentially undeveloped, with a varied landscape, tranquility and distinctive views. Opportunity has been taken to increase public access and there is a diverse agricultural economic base, including green tourism.