The former site of Folkestone's Rotunda pleasure beach is now a hub of heavy ground work and investment. The latest in a long line of regeneration projects that have been bestowed upon our town. The song Rotunda speaks of cycles.. and it strikes me where Folkestone was in the early-mid 90s, industry and tourism sucked from the town. In the interim, we've been lucky enough to have a generous benefactor buy lots of run down properties and land, and gradually pull the towns socks up.... But I can't help but notice, situated right behind the Creative Quarter, the East Folkestone medical practice, just closed... 4000 people now without GP care. It's been reported this week at least one more practice in the town is having to consider handing back their contracts too. Our limp and pathetic local and county council, under conservative control are unable or unwilling to intervene, our national government, not interested. It strikes me how reliant our town has had to become, on a philanthropist, and how impotent our elected representatives are in a privatised world..... It makes me think of the cyclical nature of things... the social and economic climate of the late 1800's and exactly how dependent the poor were on the wealthy... and what socialism gave to the lower classes; dignity, autonomy, health, education in the middle of the twentieth century.
Folkestone artists Joel Snowman collaborates with us on this with his photography and stunning editing. His work magnifies the contrasts that have existed in an important place in a small seaside town over a twenty year period. He is from Folkestone, works and lives in the town and I think has captured a real essence of what has been lost, what might be, and what it all might have cost us.
Think before you vote. X