Tracey Emin buys 'haunted' 18th century pub near Kent home for £550k

Tracey Emin takes over Margate: Artist buys ‘haunted’ derelict 18th century pub near her Kent home for £550,000 before snapping up mortuary to turn into an art school and museum to her own work (but there’ll be no smoking or loud music)

  • Artist is listed as the new owner of the abandoned Brown Jug on Land Registry papers after paying £550,000
  • But the ragstone pub appears to be in a poor state with extensive work needed to bring it back into use
  • The pub, in Dumpton, near Broadstairs, Kent, has been up for sale since 2019 and has been under offer before
  • It lies directly south of Margate, where the 58-year-old Emin grew up and where she now lives and has studios

Tracey Emin has bought up a ‘haunted’ derelict 18th century pub near her Kent home, before also snapping up a mortuary, which she aims to turn into an art school and a museum to her own work.

The artist – famous for her unmade bed installation – paid £550,000 for the Brown Jug, an abandoned ragstone pub near Margate, where the ghost of a woman dressed in blue is said to haunt the Grade II-listed building. 

The building appears to be in a poor state with extensive work needed to bring it back into use. Its old signs are still up, with a large brown jug sitting above the main entrance and the beer pumps still intact in the former bar area.

The pub, in Dumpton, near Broadstairs, has been up for sale since 2019 – when licensee Jenny Scudder retired after running it for 50 years – and has been under offer before, however the sale fell through. 

It lies directly south of Margate, where Emin grew up. She lives there again now and has studios in the town, while she is also looking to transform a former bathhouse and mortuary into her own ‘revolutionary’ art school.

The Tracey Emin Foundation will provide a sculpture park, artist residencies, lectures and life-drawing classes for anyone to attend. She has also pledged £100,000 for Margate to have its own Olympic skate park. 

Named TKE Studios, after her full name, Tracey Karima Emin, she told the Times how people studying at the school will have to abide by her ‘really strict rules’. 

She said: ‘No subletting, no smoking, no loud music. And if people don’t want to do the rules then they won’t have a studio there.

‘The other thing, because the rents are going to be so low, I’m not having people having part-time jobs and then never coming in. So, I’m setting it up so they… will have time to work and paint.’ 

Meanwhile, she will turn the mortuary part of the site into a ‘mini museum’, which will showcase a collection of her own pieces.

The pub was being offered by agents Miles & Barr, with the particulars claiming they were ‘delighted’ to offer it for sale. 

Tracey Emin is listed as the new owner of the abandoned Brown Jug on Land Registry documents which show she paid £550,000 for the ragstone pub

The building in Dumpton, Kent, appears to be in a poor state with extensive work needed to bring it back into use

Its old signs are still up, with a large brown jug sitting above the main entrance and the beer pumps still intact in the former bar area

The pub, in Dumpton, near Broadstairs, Kent, has been up for sale since 2019 and has been under offer before, however the sale fell through

The ragstone pub lies directly south of Margate, where Emin grew up and where she now lives and has studios

It was being offered by agents Miles & Barr, with the particulars claiming they were ‘delighted’ to offer it for sale

The location is described as equidistant between Ramsgate and Broadstairs and is serviced by the Thanet Loop as well as Dumpton Park train station

Internal accommodation is in need of refurbishment throughout and comprises of two reception rooms immediately adjacent to the entrance hall, the smaller of the two has access to the bar 

Externally there is a large beer garden to the rear with outbuildings along the perimeter flint walls

Tracey, 58, has snapped up several properties in her former home town of Margate recently, according to interviews

The online particulars read: ‘Miles & Barr are delighted to offer to the market The Brown Jug, a historic pub nestled in a quiet corner of Ramsgate Road, Broadstairs.

‘The location is a equidistant between Ramsgate and Broadstairs and is serviced by the Thanet Loop as well as Dumpton Park train station.

‘Internal accommodation is in need of refurbishment throughout and comprises of two reception rooms immediately adjacent to the entrance hall, the smaller of the two has access to the bar.

‘To the rear of the property there is the larger function room also with access to the bar. The cellar has three separate rooms previously used as store rooms and the beer cellar, the larger store also has access to the rear garden.

‘Venture to the first floor and there are two bedrooms to the front of the building, a large living space to the rear with kitchen and bathroom alongside this. Externally there is a large beer garden to the rear with outbuildings along the perimeter flint walls.’

Tracey, 58, has snapped up several properties in her former home town of Margate recently, according to interviews.

She says she has been given a new lease of life since surviving vicious bladder cancer, diagnosed in the spring of 2020.

The squamous cell cancer, a particularly aggressive form of the disease, led to her having her bladder, urethra, lymph nodes, womb and half her vagina removed. But she has repeatedly spoken about how it has given her a new view of the world.

As well as the purchase of the bathhouse and morgue, Emin also bought a huge complex of buildings near the seafront with her friend Carl Freedman five years ago. 

She now has her studio there, which includes a roof garden and pool. She also owns a home in France and a townhouse in London’s Fitzroy Square.

She said on Instagram seven weeks ago of her Margate plans: ‘My exciting new project in Margate.. I’m so excited, I can hardly contain myself. I’m doing something I really believe in*I’m doing something that at best and biggest,, change the life of others and at the smallest change life for me.

‘I can’t stand the mundane complacency of everyday life*it numbs me and makes me feel I’m dying. As we get older, we get more and more scared of kicking things around, throwing life up in the air and having the guts to change.

‘I hate the destiny of my future. That’s why I have to change it all now*No point in living, if the life we live isn’t ours. Doing the right thing is the best feeling in the world.’

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