Westgate Heritage Centre, Westgate on Sea, Thanet, Kent
Westgate Heritage Centre, Westgate on Sea, Thanet, Kent

Welcome to the Westgate on Sea Heritage Centre

Founded in 2007, the Westgate Heritage Centre aims to tell the story of Westgate on Sea, a unique Victorian development, from 1865 the year when the first houses were built to the present day by a series of displays called “Time Line”.

We are open regularly throughout the year to browse our archives, speak to our volunteers or for our monthly talks about rich heritage of Westgate-on-Sea, please see the details in the Opening Times section.

Next Event

Saturday 2nd September 2017 10.30am

Childhood memories of the chalk cliffs and stacks around West Bay

The Heritage Centre opens at 10.00am when homemade refreshments are on sale.

Latest News

Exhibition in homage to the men of Westgate who fought and died in the Great War 1914-1919

26th July 2017

Amongst those to be remembered is Captain Leonard Neville Rogers of the Northumberland Fusiliers who was killed at Arras in April 1917. There is a memorial window to him in St Saviour's Church

Amongst those to be remembered is Captain Leonard Rogers of the Northumberland Fusiliers who was killed at Arras in April 1917. There is a memorial window to him in St Saviour's Church

At the same time that the Westgate Art Group is holding its annual exhibition in St Saviour’s Church, the Heritage Centre will have a display in the south aisle, which will focus on two of the great battles of 1917 – Arras and Passchendaele. We will also display personal stories of the relatives of today’s Westgatonians, who fought in the Great War. More stories are welcome. Our poppy garden of remembrance will again be near the display boards.

Extra: The recent release of the film Dunkirk has aroused interest in an event which touched the heart of Thanet in 1940. Over the years we have collected the stories of those who remember seeing the returning troops from the beaches of Dunkirk – a sight they have never forgotten. As a result of the evacuation of Dunkirk and the threat of invasion, many Thanet children were evacuated to Staffordshire within days and we have their heart-rending stories too.

The exhibition is runs Monday 14th August to Friday 25th August.

Opening times:

Mon - Thurs: 10.00am to 4.00pm
Fri: 1.00pm to 4.00pm
Sat: 10.00am to 12.00pm

Town Hall Buildings Open To The Public

The Town Hall Buildings will be open to the public to celebrate Heritage Open Day and is hosted by volunteers from the Westgate-on-Sea Heritage Centre. The Buildings will be open between 12noon and 4pm. At 12.30pm and 2.30pm Local Historian Dr Dawn Crouch will tell the story of the Town Hall buildings. Sir Wm Ingram, who had the Town Hall built exchanged many letters with the Chairman of the Parish Council and there will be Dramatic Readings from the original letters. Also a slide show on Sr William Ingram will be shown several times during the afternoon and displays will show early photographs of the exterior and interior of the building. Dr Crouch and the Heritage Centre volunteers will be happy to take you on a short tour of the Council Chambers. The Town Hall Assembly Room is now the Carlton Cinema.

REFRESHMENTS: Ploughman's lunches will be available from £5 to £7and will include a choice of cheese, pate, pork pie, ham, sausages, quiche; all will be served with fresh salad and artisan bread. Tea, Coffee and Fruit squash is included in the price.

Not suitable for wheelchair users as access is via a grand Victorian staircase. Toilets available on site.

Plenty to see and do. Children and family activities will be available.

Opening Times

Saturday 9 September: open 1200-1600, Talk at 1230 & 1430

Booking Details

No booking required


Sorry no wheelchair access as entrance is up the original Victorian grand staircase to the chambers on the upper floor. Ploughman's lunches can be reserved in advance via The Heritage Centre (open Wednesdays or Saturdays pop-in between 11am to 1pm or email enquiries@westgateheritagecentre.org.uk or phone 01843 832617 or text 07955 913838 Toilets are available. Parking available throughout the Town, or side roads near by.

Additional information

Max 30 people per tour/session. Event contact over the festival:07955 913838.


The Town Hall Buildings are one minute walk from Westgate-on-Sea Train Station and a bus stop is directly outside. (The Carlton Cinema has replaced the original Assembly Room and this is a good landmark).

Organised by Westgate-on-Sea Heritage Centre in partnership with Westgate-on-Sea Investments

Heritage Lottery Fund