WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE EBBSFLEET LANDMARK PATRONS, ONE OF THE LARGEST EVER PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT PROGRAMMES WAS BEING DEVISED TO INVOLVE AND INFORM THE LOCAL NORTH KENT COMMUNITY AND THE COMMUNITIES IN THE SURROUNDING AREA. THE PROGRAMME WAS BEEN DESIGNED TO CREATE A LEGACY OF COMMUNITY OWNERSHIP OF THE LANDMARK, BRINGING TOGETHER TEACHERS AND SCHOOLCHILDREN, PRESENT AND FUTURE RESIDENTS OF THE DARTFORD AND GRAVESHAM BOROUGHS, AS WELL AS PEOPLE WHO WORK IN THE AREA AND TRAVEL TO IT REGULARLY.
The programme included a public exhibition in Bluewater Shopping Centre, a talks and debates series and a schools programme Landmark Link run by Future Creative CIS. The process began with the logistical and financial support of the three patrons - Land Securities, Eurostar and London & Continental Railways, each of whom are local businesses and employers investing in the area for the long term. Extensive pre-consultation has taken place with local organisations and stakeholders including Gravesham & Dartford Borough Councils, local MPs, Kent Thameside Delivery Board, Locate in Kent, Arts Council South East, Arts & Business South East, Kent County Council and the 2012 Cultural Consortium.
Drawing on local expertise
The Ebbsfleet Landmark selection panel has been carefully structured to draw on the expertise of people with a real understanding and investment in Kent. Victoria Pomery, Director of Turner Contemporary in Margate, Kent has been appointed as one of the four art advisors and brings an in-depth understanding of the cultural activities of the County to the panel. Manager of Gravesham and District Libraries, Christoph Bull, has been appointed to provide historical expertise about the area and has also been invited by the Selection Panel to join them as an Advisor through the decision making process. The new North Kent Community church which will be sited adjacent to the proposed landmark site are currently considering plans to incorporate a visitor centre for the landmark.