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Industrial   1700AD-1900AD

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Display Contents

Industrial Furniture
Travelling Crane Track
Mooring Posts
Rope Marks
Engraved Coping Stones

Pier Furniture
Mooring Rings
Timber Settings
Railing Scars
Lamp Post Scars

The Pier Structure

Historic Images

1953 Storm Damage

Margate Pier - The Pier Fittings

Margate Pier

Industrial Furniture

Travelling Crane Track

A metal rail is visible on the present pier and runs the length of Sections 3, 4 and 5 finishing eight metres short of the pier end. This rail represents one of the rails used by a number of travelling cranes operating on Sections 3 – 5 of the pier. The travelling cranes were wheeled moving along tracks and used for the loading and unloading of cargo on the pier including coal coming into Margate and coke being shipped out by the South Eastern Gas Board from their King Street depot. Early photographs show more than one crane operating on the pier at a time; some fixed to the pier, others are shown as travelling cranes. No identifiable evidence for the fixed cranes remain on the pier.

Travelling crane rail


Mooring posts

Mooring posts styled to look like cannon barrels exist on Section 4 of the pier. These posts are not original as their location first appears on the 1907 map of the pier.

Canon Style Post

Other mooring posts on Section 3 and 4 of the pier survive only as scars where the post has been sawn off at ground level. 

Bollard Scar


Rope marks on coping stones

The linear marks caused by ropes or chains rubbing on the stone surface are evidence of the weep holes in the coping stones being used as convenient anchors to moor vessels

Rope marks


Engraved coping stones

A number of etched or engraved markings on the inner faces of upper coping stones are visible along the harbour. The engraved stones are visible from the pier structure rather than the Harbour. Three engraved stones were recorded “W”, “CB 4” and “CB 9” These markings probably relate to mooring rights or to loading positions of ships or cranes. The “CB” may stand for Coal Board.

CB 9


Pier Furniture

Mooring rings

Various elements of mooring furniture are visible along the inner harbour wall. These consist of large iron rings fixed into stone blocks. Two types are represented, one a single welded Iron ring held in the loop at the end of an Iron pin. The second a ring with double looped ends that were joined to a looped pin with a central cotter pin.

Mooring rings


Timber settings

Vertical squared timber beams have been used since the pier was first constructed to protect the stone harbour structure from damage from the movement of moored craft. In recent times some of the vertical timber structures have been removed.

Timber beams are visible on early engravings and photographs of the pier associated with mooring points for ships. In places the stone used to construct the pier has been chased to provide a recess for the beams. The locations of missing timber uprights are clearly visible from
the harbour basin at low tide.

Timber settings


Railing scars

The use of railings for safety purposes in the original construction of the pier is evident along the promenade deck and in front of the Droit Office along the inner harbour wall.

Railing scars

Railings along the promenade and at the edge of the stone steps are shown in photographs and engravings from the early 1800’s onwards. The original railings sat on a low stone plinth, a scar where the stone plinth has been removed is clearly visible.

Plinth scar

A substantial octagonal granite newel post survives at the base of the steps of the promenade. A circular indentation with the remains of iron fixings indicate that a lamppost may originally have been attached to the top of the newel. Three regularly spaced holes show where the original railings connected.

Granite Newel

The railings continued up the edge of the steps and along the promenade where they were set directly on the promenade deck. Modern steel railings have replaced the original cast iron railings.


Lamp post scars on promenade

An engraving from 1851 shows lamp columns visible on the top of the outer harbour wall from Section 3 of the pier onwards. An engraving from 1895 shows lamps added along the full length of outer harbour wall along the promenade. Only the metal collars where the posts supporting the lamps were set into the stone blocks of the outer harbour wall now survive.

Lamp base


Clements, R. Whyman, J. & Perkins, D. R. J. Britain in Old Photographs. Thanet. Alan Sutton
Scurrell, D. 1982. The Book of Margate. Barracuda Books Ltd.
White, A. 2004 A History of Whitby.

Emma Boast
Version 1. Posted 27.02.06

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