Originally posted on thanetwatch:


An extraordinary book about the immigration experience gets its launch in Thanet this Saturday.

The book, Pilgrim State, published by Hodder, is written by Jackie Walker, who first moved to Broadstairs five years ago.

In 1960s Deptford seven-year-old Jackie got a crash course in racism.

“You smell wog,” said a little blonde girl she thought was going to be her friend. “Don’t you ever come near me.”

When it was first published in 2008 Guardian called the book: “a survival tale to warm the chilliest heart.”

It tells how Jackie’s family came to this country from Jamaica in the 1950s.

Jackie’s mother Dorothy had an abusive father and experienced recurring mental illness, poverty and racial discrimination.

But she set out to keep her family together – and, despite all the odds, she did.

Says Jackie: “People become immigrants to improve their lives. And while they do that, they improve the…

View original 84 more words

I’ve chopped the children’s heads off & Car Parking Chilton School

Quick recap.

On Friday morning all parents receive a text message from the school reminding them to park legally due to the reoccurring problem of children almost hit by cars in this street – often cars driving on the pavement. Requests like this are frequently sent to parents via the school newsletter.

All of the photos published on my blog over the past few days were taken after that text was sent out.

Having spoken to drivers I have discovered that many do not know what they are doing wrong.

  • Driving on the pavement is not allowed!
  • Parking on the pavement is not allowed.
  • Waiting on a single yellow or double yellow line (at these times) is not allowed.

These are the rules, backed by laws. I didn’t make the rules but most parents stick to them, most of the time, and children’s safety is put at risk by those who don’t.

Will I Remove the PHOTOs?

If there is a particular issue of child safety (or even parent safety). I will be honest, I wasn’t thinking about the issue of child protection and not identifying children in relation to the school and that might cause problems for some children in a totally unrelated way. I offer an unreserved apology for any distress caused if such a case has been inadvertently snapped in my photos.

Hence, I’ve blanked out the children that now appear on my blog. All of the photos of the cars parked are subject to copyright so it is illegal for anyone else to reproduce them without permission, it is illegal to copy them and circulate them on Facebook, for example. If anyone has done that, they should delete them.

But What About the Cars?

I would be very pleased to remove all of the photos and the registration numbers listed if the drivers stop parking in this way at this time of day. I’d be delighted to hear from anyone about this. Is it too much for me to ask you to put it in writing?

How can you contact me?

Well, can you leave a message at the end of this blog. Messages are moderated so they will not be published automatically, unless you have had a message approved by me before.


I have learnt something over the past few days. I assumed the rogue drivers were arrogant, shameless and inconsiderate or just a little thoughtless. I realise now there is a minority of people who do not think they are doing anything wrong.

As many as 1 in 6 adults might not be able to read what I have written, even if they can find their photo on my website. So please talk to people help raise awareness that:

  • There is no stopping, no waiting and no parking on a single yellow line (at this time).
  • Driving on the pavement is illegal and dangerous.
  • Parking on the pavement is not allowed.

Those are the reasons that so many of us, residents and parents, feel so angry about the people who park illegally in Chilton Lane.

They are sometimes there for 10 minutes and often for 45 minutes. They believe they are entitled to park there and are indignant that I have photographed their car.

Other people have been photographing cars too, taking registrations etc. I would encourage them to continue.


Rogues Gallery ~ illegal parking outside Chilton School, Pegwell, Ramsgate

The two men in the photos below think they are entitled to park on a single yellow line at 3.05 or 3.10pm outside a school to pick up children. The school ends 3.15.

I AM delighted to tell you that parking on the pavement outside this school seems to have come to an abrupt end only days after I starting publishing the photos of offender on this website. So photos referred to have been removed.

  • Parking on the yellow line was not the only driving offence.
  • illegally driving on the pavement
  • parking on the pavement and
  • causing an obstruction of the highway.

The vast majority of us know that is unacceptable. It is dangerous, antisocial, selfish, inconsiderate behaviour, in my opinion. Whether you agree with me or not the law is on my side.

The first man pictured below wound down his window to speak to me when he saw me take a photo of the street.

His opening gambit was to tell me that I need permission to take a photograph of his vehicle.

This is not true. If you are on a public street and not trespassing you can take a photograph of anything you can see: houses, gardens, cars parked illegally on the pavement outside of a school, adults and even children.

So I took a photo of him sitting in his car. I’ll try to get a better picture if I see him there again.

BTW, not only that, but you can publish any of these pictures as leaflets, posters, in a book or on the interweb.

Next he demanded to know whether I am the woman who calls the police.

“No, I’m not. But why shouldn’t I? You are illegally parked causing a menace to pedestrians at a busy time of day.” That’s what I said but I could have added: Most people do not park like this and most people disapprove of your behaviour. So there is no reason to think there is only one person calling the police and raising objections.

I began to explain that parking in that way is dangerous but he dismissed this as ridiculous so I saw no reason to continue talking to the man as other cars were stopping. More car drivers I could talk to and take photos of.

His parked car can be seen here. He was there at least 10 minutes before the end of school so he could park immediately next to the school markings and be closest to the gate.

The second man was more polite but was quite adamant that he was entitled to drive on to the pavement and park there, regardless of the yellow line. He also arrived in plenty of time. Look he’s parked right behind Mr-R-U-The-Woman-Who-Calls-The-Police.

Note:  there is plenty of FREE parking within 3 minutes walk of this location.

Hard to believe but these men seemed to sincerely thinks it is OK to:

  • drive on to the pavement,
  • park on the pavement causing a menace to pedestrians,
  • block the road so it is reduced to single lane traffic at the busiest time of day
  • and park on a yellow line in contravention of the the yellow line regulations.

It seems the guardians, grandparents, carers of children at the school are in great need of education. What a poor example they set to the children they are collecting.

I took photographs of many more cars. I only spoke to 3 other drivers were considerably more humble because they knew they were in the wrong.

Finally, I can imagine that these men and other people are not pleased to see themselves appearing in my blog and they may well want to know how to get their photos removed. In taking them and publishing them I have broken no rules and no laws and there is nothing libellous on my blog.

If you want to contact me about removing your image you should consider exactly why you don’t want a photo of your car parked illegally published on this website or wherever else I might choose to publish it.

A little update: I’ve had overwhelming support and in just a few days. Most parents are dismayed at the dangerous situation outside this school, many have witnessed a near miss, some of these incidents are reported to the school and the school have reported them to parents. Yet still we get people like this lady, I call her Ms-Do-You-Know-What-Harassment-Means who expects to stop on the pavement outside school.

Here is a new photo of what the street looks like at peak dropping off time just a week later – yes it really is that clear of traffic!



There are many more pictures and details about my two conversations with this lady here:

And details of the rules as applicable to Chilton Lane here:

Rules for Parking outside Chilton school in Ramsgate Kent, on the pavement, on a single yellow line.

Some people think they are entitled to park on Chilton Lane, Ramsgate, Kent

to drop off or pick up children. They are WRONG.

It is ONLY a single yellow on Chilton Lane so the drivers think they can stop there. It is permissible to stop for passengers to get in or alight and for loading on a single or double yellow line, there is no waiting or parking time allowed.


  • outside Chilton School in Ramsgate, the rogue drivers are mounting the pavement, which is illegal.
  • and parking on the pavement, also an offence.
  • causing obstruction to both pedestrians and other drivers.

Parking Rules Applicable to Chilton School in School Hours

Double and Single Yellow Lines: (Highway Code 238)

The rules clearly state no waiting. Parking on these lines for five or ten minutes before school ends clearly constitutes waiting. In the written rules there is no time period allowed for stopping, parking or waiting on yellow lines, despite many drivers’ misconceptions. At the relevant times you may only stop to load, unload, pick up or set down passengers.

Theoretically, therefore, parents could drive by and stop to drop off or pick up their children on a road with a single or double yellow line. Outside Chilton School, however, there are other regulations applicable to Chilton Lane.

Parents may only stop on Chilton Lane to drop off or collect children at these times if they:

  • do not drive on to the pavement,
  • do not stop on the pavement,
  • do not obstruct people walking along the pavement and vehicles moving along the road.

Whereas drivers are

  • mounting the pavement, which is illegal.
  • parking on the pavement, also an offence.
  • causing obstruction to both pedestrians and other drivers.

The drivers who park on the double yellows on the junction of Saxon Road and Chilton Lane are also committing a number of offences and they have a significant impact on the safe crossing with the crossing lady.

Drivers should NOT:

  • Drive on the pavement

You MUST NOT drive on or over a pavement, footpath or bridleway except to gain lawful access to property, or in the case of an emergency.” Highway Code, RTA 1988 sect 34. It is also illegal under Highways Act 1832 S72.

  • Park on the pavement

“Parking on the pavement can obstruct and seriously inconvenience pedestrians, people in wheelchairs or with visual impairments and people with prams or pushchairs.” Highway code 244

  • Obstruction of the Road & Pavement (collectively the “Highway”)

“If a person, without lawful authority or excuse, in any way wilfully obstructs the free passage along a highway he is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine…” Highways Act 1980 S137.

“You MUST NOT leave your vehicle or trailer in a dangerous position or where it causes any unnecessary obstruction of the road.” Highway Code 242 RTA 1988 , sect 22.

“No person in charge of a motor vehicle or trailer shall cause or permit the vehicle to stand on a road so as to cause any unnecessary obstruction of the road.” The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986 R103.

Parking Outside Schools and Road Traffic Accidents

I’m not perfect, I make mistakes and sometimes I park in the wrong place. But what kind of person parks in the wrong place outside of a school? I would be embarrassed to do such an antisocial thing. The incredible thing is that these people are parking outside that very school because of their own children!

  • NOTE: UP DATED on FRIDAY 19th as result of amazing success! Incriminating photos & car registration numbers removed…. NO ONE asked me to remove them, I still have them and I would happily publish more such photos in the future.

Not only is it wrong and inconsiderate but it most importantly of all it is DANGEROUS. There are regular and frequent near misses outside of the school in Ramsgate that my children attend.

What these SELFISH car drivers don’t seem to realise is:

  • They are parking on a very narrow pavement that is for pedestrians and a busy time of day.
  • (small) People crossing the road can’t see around or above the cars.
  • Vehicles frequently have to reverse due to the crazy parking and drivers don’t see the (small) people behind them.
  • It also makes it very difficult for car to drive along that very narrow busy street.
  • There are yellow lines painted on the road for a reason.

A google search will reveal plenty of films and reports of children hit by cars just outside a school. Do we want to add an accident, injury or child death outside of our school to this catalogue?

  • Most people know it is antisocial.
  • Most parents don’t do it.
  • The school regularly remind parents to park correctly and considerately.

What is to be done about illegal parking outside school?

As all reasonable measures have failed so far I think the school and parents should work together to name & shame the offenders.

Name & Shame? Take photographs of these car drivers and their children (you can take a photo of any thing and any person when you are on a public street, it is not an infringement of privacy and you are legally entitled to post such a photo anywhere). I suggest schools should have a web page and a noticeboard where these photos along with names and dates should be posted.

What do you think?

OK I got to school early and took some photos today.

I also talked to some of the drivers. Most were embarrassed but two men thought they were entitled to park there, they thought it was not dangerous. I’ll write about them in my next blog: complete with photo’s of their faces and their cars parked on the pavement. 

10 minutes before the school bell  3 cars were parked on the yellow lines outside – yes 10 minutes, plenty of time for the drivers to park further away.

The lady in the topless car is on double yellows whilst all of the others are parked on a single yellow and on the pavement.

For clarification we have 3 cars:the registrations were listed but here but have been removed after the success of this webpage. Then the lady in the yellow car turned up, she told me she will be gone by the time the bell goes.

Look at the amount of pavement left next to the black car, behind the yellow car. Often pushchairs can’t get though the gaps left by these drivers. In fact I’ve heard of residents  blocked in unable to get though their gates.

Other cars caught by my camera include  terribly dangerous parking on the double yellows, on a junction by the crossing lady. What mad person thinks it is OK to park here? . I frequently see cars struggle to make this turn from Chilton Lane into Saxon Road because of cars parked here on the double yellows (2 regulations broken), and cars rolling back into the children crossing over.

                 In this picture the lady with the baby in buggy can just squeeze through, but some of theses pavement-parkers aren’t so generous.

If anyone can help come and take snaps like these I’d be delighted. Leave a message here or email me at

MORE: 15th June

It’s Monday morning and I’m too busy to loiter outside the school but I did take a number of photos. The gem that will take pride of place in the Rogues Gallery is the lady I spoke to on Friday afternoon.

This morning after I took a photo of her car she wound down her window and said, “Do you know what harassment means?”

Dear reader, you’ve read up to here, you know I’m just taking photos of the street.

I replied, “Yes, and I know you are parking illegally.”

“Harassment,” she repeated. “You will be hearing from someone.”

I suggested she contact the school to make her complaint about my activities.

Her car is pictured above because I took a photo and had a reasonable conversation on Friday and here it is again at 8.48.

It is vital I don’t engage in confrontation with these people who already show blatant disregard for the law and respect for other people, so I walked away. I then took a lovely photo of her face as she drove off.

So here is the face Ms-Do-You-Know-What-Harassment-Means – picture now removed.

Taxi Drivers Are They Exempt from the rules?

Yes you can stop on a yellow line to drop off passengers if it is safe to do so and you are not obstructing the highway. I’m not sure you can stop this close to a road junction. I know you definitely can’t drive on to the pavement as I witnessed and the photograph shows. Note this was taken at 8.40 so there was plenty of time to drop the passenger further away in a safe place. The car was from United Cars.

I have children, who were all babies once, so I have every sympathy with the dad securing the baby into the car seat at 9.49. It is tough to get older children to school when you have a baby to get in and out of the car.

And here are the rest of the photo from Monday 15th June 8.40am – 8.49am

PLEASE NOTE:  Some people may have copied photos from this blog. Please delete such photos, they are protected by copyright and may not be shared without permission.

Don’t miss my guide to the law relevant to Chilton School in Ramsgate here.

And Rogues Gallery here:

And have a look at the comments.

What legit reason could there be for parking here? What about blue badge holder bringing disabled child to school, who also faces the problem of where to stop because of the inconsiderate drivers.

Update Tuesday evening:

As I suspected, I’ve only taken a few minutes of photos on a few days already we see some of the same cars. This afternoon I was confronted by a small group of women who were annoyed that I was taking photos of their cars & publishing them with number plates. As I told them, it is completely legal to photograph anything you can see on the street and to publish it.

Obviously it was a little intimidating to be confronted by this group so I stated my case and continued to do what I was doing, much to their amazement, perhaps they thought I’d stop.

Many more people have thanked me for it. The vast majority support me and are annoyed by the antisocial behaviour of these people.

As those women may look back here to check on their photos (all of the photos were published including those of people who objected to me taking their photo)

I didn’t tell them what they were doing wrong and they don’t seem to realise because I heard someone say:

“Why take their photo when they are not on the double yellow lines.”

The rules for double and single yellow lines are the same at this time of day and it is not the only reason I’m taking your photo.

Logically, if you didn’t want you photo here you wouldn’t park illegally outside the school. See here:

And here come the rest of the photos:

Monday afternoon:

I had a pleasant talk with the owner of this vehicle explaining why it was such a dangerous place to stop, immediately on the corner with an impact on traffic turning into Saxon Road and Chilton crossing. Someone turning left from Saxon Road would be immediately confronted by the other driver. She had a legitimate reason for parking here & blue badge but all the selfish drivers had taken up the safer/better positions.

Another bunch of photos were taken on Tuesday 16th June.

This next picture demonstrates the single file approach we have to take on foot because of the obstruction of the highway (the footpath is part of the highway).

Here you can see why parking at the bottom of Saxon Road on the double yellows would not be a good idea, it is already difficult to turn there and I have seen cars stop here and roll back into the people who are crossing.

By 8.52 it all looks good where the children were crossing but there are frequently car parked along here (yes some have blue badges but some do not).

Later that afternoon at 15.13 there are several cars parked on the pavement along Chilton Lane They will be driving away while small children will be walking along that narrow pavement.

On Tuesday at 3.05 the cars had started to gather and I am told were actually there some time earlier. Cars start to park on the pavement here for school collection from 2.30ish.

It is perfectly legal to take street view photos.

If you don’t want YOUR Photo to be here you will not park illegally outside the school.

Look at the highway code.

  • No waiting, no stopping no parking on these lines, regardless of them being double or single at this time of day.
  • No obstructing the pavement.
  • No driving on the pavement.

There is more on this subject here:

The Message to all parents sent from school last Friday reminding people not to park on the pavement and children are almost hit by these cars.

From Wednesday Afternoon Onwards

Should I Thank Facebook?

Totally unknown to me parents were circulating links to my blog on Facebook. It received a staggering 645 hits redirected from face book to this page on Tuesday and Wednesday. I don’t doubt some were angry that I had posted these photos. Yet it spread the message in a most effective way.

From Wednesday afternoon almost no cars have stopped on the pavement and there seems to be less people stopping on the double yellows (I’ve just seen the blue-badge holders).

More Photos

Here’s one this morning at 8.51 you can see the crossing lady in yellow in the distance and the clear road. It was like that from 8.40 as well. The chaos of crossing Chilton Lane has been transformed beyond recognition over the past few days.


And here is the text sent from school

SENT last Friday after one of the younger children was almost hit by a car. This was not an isolated incident but simply the latest.


Ramsgate’s Micro Museum

I’ve finally got round to updating my things to see and do in Thanet page. It was well over due because it didn’t include two of the bet attractions in Ramsgate that both opening in 2014!

  • Ramsgate Tunnels – you must know about the tunnels, well worth a visit.
  • Micro Museum – if you are interested in the history of computers or computer games then this is for you. Allow at least an hour for your visit and much longer if you might want to play many of the old games that they have set up.



Originally posted on thanetwatch:


Laura Sandys, Conservative MP for South Thanet, has taken the extraordinary step of attacking UKIP via the left wing Hope Not Hate organisation.

In a letter sent to residents on the Hope Not Hate letterhead, Sandys says: “Unfortunately we have UKIP’s Nigel Farage here who plays on divisions rather builds communities… I would implore you to reject UKIP’s politics of fears and instead choose hope….”

Sandys is standing down as MP after this election. The Tory who is running for the seat is Craig Mackinlay, who was actually one of the founders of UKIP.

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