Record Details

NHER Number:27543
Type of record:Monument
Name:World War Two coastal defences

Summary

World War Two coastal defences including barbed wire, pillboxes and slit trenches are visible on contemporary aerial photographs. They were located to defend the section of coast, road and railway line around California Gap. An extant pillbox and spigot mortar pedestal are associated with these defences (NHER 18356).

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TG 51815 14530
Map Sheet:TG51SW
Parish:ORMESBY ST MARGARET WITH SCRATBY, GREAT YARMOUTH, NORFOLK

Full description

August 2005. Norfolk NMP.
World War Two coastal defences including barbed wire, pillboxes and slit trenches are visible on contemporary aerial photographs (S1-5). These defences were centred on TG 5188 1459.

A hexagonal pillbox, probably a standard type 22, had been constructed on a small headland at TG 5212 1423 by August 1940 (S1). Barbed wire had been placed along this section of the beach to the south of California Gap by this date (S1). However this line of defence had been removed by December of that year, possibly due to coastal erosion (S2). Also by December two weapons pits had been positioned on the cliff top at TG 5189 1466 and a slit trench to the north of California Gap at TG 5185 1474. By February 1941 additional slit trenches had been added to the site at TG 5183 1460 and TG 5176 1488 and two more weapons pits were located at TG 5171 1475 (S3).

Extensive barbed wire defences were present around California Gap by May 1944 (S4). A strip of barbed wire extended along the cliff top to the south of the Gap. Further barbed wire extended inland from TG 5193 1457 to TG 5150 1474 before curving back to the cliff top at TG 5175 1493. A type 24 pillbox and spigot mortar emplacement were located at the western end of the barbed wire circuit between the road and former railway line at TG 5155 1474. These two defences survive and are recorded as NHER 18356. Aerial photographs dating to September 1945 show two anti tank cubes blocking the end of the road at California Gap at TG 5285 1472 (S5). Although they were not clearly visible on earlier aerial photographs, it is likely that they were positioned in the early part of World War Two. The barbed wire defences around California Gap had been removed by July 1946 (S6).
J. Albone (NMP), 2 August 2005

Monument Types

  • ANTI TANK BLOCK (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • BARBED WIRE OBSTRUCTION (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • PILLBOX (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • SLIT TRENCH (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • WEAPONS PIT (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1940. RAF 2A/BR190 43-45 18-AUG-1940 (NMR).
<S2>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1940. RAF 268A/BR183 7-9 17-DEC-1940 (NMR).
<S3>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1941. RAF 268F/BR172 39-41 10-FEB-1941 (NMR).
<S4>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1944. RAF 106G/LA/17 4015-4016 28-MAY-1944 (NMR).
<S5>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1945. RAF 106G/UK/832 3186-3187 23-SEP-1945 (NHER TG 5113A-B).
<S6>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1634 3036-3037 09-JUL-1946 (NHER TG 5114C-D).

Related records

18356Parent of: World War Two pillbox and spigot mortar emplacement (Monument)

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