The Golden Era for Dreamland Margate the 1960s were very much a classic time for the site, with youth culture booming & holiday makers galore!
Seen by many as the golden era for Dreamland, the 1960s were very much a classic time for the site, with youth culture booming, the economy on the up and growing numbers of daytrippers from London bringing fashion from across the capital. The outfits would often be copied and on sale on Margate’s market stalls the following week. The traditional seaside holiday would start to decline by the end of the decade and television would affect the numbers of bums on seats at the cinema, but Margate was an exciting place to be and Dreamland was its epicentre.
The 1960s are largely remembered as the era of the Mods and Rockers and these groups flocked to Dreamland, which was by then one of the premier music venues outside of London. The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Yardbirds, Manfred Mann, Lulu, Desmond Dekker, and Gerry and the Pacemakers all graced the stage at Dreamland, and you can bet that there was the odd dust up in the aisles. Margate Magistrates’ Court made the front pages of the press in 1964, with fighting Mods and Rockers being described as ‘sawdust Caesars’ by magistrate George Simpson, as he handed down sentences.
By the end of the 1960s, hippies, skinheads and London’s post-Windrush black teenagers also found their way to Dreamland, bringing with them a whole new set of styles for local market traders to interpret. This interpretation continues in the new Dreamland, using art, design, fashion and music to give a sense of time and place. There is also a supporting programme of music events, concerts and festivals to continue the youth culture legacy.