Dreamland buyout approved
Plans for a £10m revamp of Dreamland took a great leap forward after the Government approved Thanet council's buyout of the seaside park.
Following drawn-out discussions with developers, officials served a compulsory purchase order in June 2011 which were challenged by owners DreamlandLive. The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government rubberstamped the move on Friday after a 15-day public inquiry earlier this year
Leader of Thanet District Council, Cllr Clive Hart, said: "I'm thrilled with today's announcement.
"This is a key step to unlocking the regeneration of the Dreamland site and means we can start to move in the right direction, in partnership with The Dreamland Trust, to progress the future of the site which has been vacant for a significant amount of time.
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"Dreamland is such an important asset for Thanet, and for thousands outside of the area, so we've always been clear that doing nothing is simply not acceptable."
Chair of The Dreamland Trust, Nick Laister, said: "The Dreamland Trust is delighted that the Secretary of State has backed our plans to reopen Dreamland as a major seaside visitor attraction of regional and national significance.
"Along with our partners, Thanet District Council, we were confident that our plans would be found to be robust, deliverable and in the public interest.
"The residents and businesses of Thanet, and its many existing and future visitors, have waited far too long for work on this project to start. With our funding in place and our plans drawn up, today's news is hopefully the final major hurdle that we will have to cross.
"The Dreamland Trust is ready to make a start on site and we hope to have Stage One of the project fully open by Easter 2014."
The next step is a Land Registry hearing to determine the value of the land before the council gain full ownership but officials regard this as a formality.
More to follow...