FORT PAULL which ceased operations as a heritage centre and museum in January 2020 is the subject of a planning application that was validated this week. The proposal changes the use of the site and would allow for the parking of touring caravans on pitches. The existing café facilities would be used for visitors.
“The proposed use as a site for touring caravans appears to be a benign one,” says the supporting Heritage Impact report. It is “quickly implemented and readily reversible. With present restrictions on foreign travel, sites of this type are likely to be in demand and the unique location is also likely to encourage the use of the site.”
The site layout plan shows up to 64 caravan pitches within the grassed area inside of the Fort complex. The site would continue to operate with its bar and café, including the existing vintage train carriage.
The change of use of the site to ‘mixed use’ would not preclude the continuation of the site as a heritage centre/museum. The commercial use of the central part of the Fort would be beneficial to the preservation of the entire site, says the report. There is future potential to include the listed buildings in a supporting role.
In related news: The Hawker Hunter jet which was auctioned off in September was removed from Fort Paull on Thursday 17 June 2021. Its new home will be the headquarters of Hornby at Margate. The same aircraft was sited outside the Humbrol paint factory on Hedon Road until its closure in 2006.