Discover Margate’s Magnificent Past
Margate Museum is housed in the second oldest building in Margate town, which has served as the town hall, police station and magistrates’ court. Visitors can enjoy many of the original features of the Victorian police station and magistrates court.
Margate Museum tells the story of Margate and its people through displays that range from an Iron Age burial pit and beautiful drawings by Thomas Rowlinson to pieces of WW1 Zeppelin, and one of Margate’s earliest ambulances.
Visitors travel through time, with original pictures and engravings showing how Margate changed in the 1730s from a small farming and fishing village to a salt water resort for royalty and the wealthy, then in the 19th century with the arrival of the paddle-steamers and railway a seaside resort for the working man and his family.
Visitors can experience:
1) Victorian police cells
2) Margate by the sea: see the Sunbeam donkey that generations sat on to have their photograph taken, the Victorian souvenirs and the Edwardian swimming costume.
3) Maritime Margate: find the remains of Margate jetty that millions of visitors walked on as they disembarked from the paddle-steamers. See the heyday of sea travel and its destruction.
4) Margate at War: discover how Margate received 1/7th of all soldiers evacuated from Dunkirk beach.
5) Magistrates’ Court: stand before the bench and hear your sentence. Meet Cecil one of the earlier Margate residents and enjoy pictures by Alfred Clint and Arthur Meadows to name a few.
The museum is staffed by volunteers who are happy to guide you in your discovery and to share their passions.