Record Details

NHER Number:27278
Type of record:Monument
Name:World War Two barbed wire and beach scaffolding between Winterton Gap and California

Summary

Lines of World War Two barbed wire and beach scaffolding are visible as extant structures on 1940s aerial photographs. The two mapped lines are first visible in 1940 and 1944. Similar anti invasion defences stretched the entire length of this part of the coast, and their division into separate sites is somewhat arbitrary. The section recorded here extended from just north of Winterton Gap at its northern end to California Gap at its southern; it is recorded to the northwest as part of NHER 42444 and NHER 42132 and to its southeast as part of NHER 27543. Although much of it was probably dismantled after the end of the war, some parts probably remain buried on the beach.

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TG 5069 1757
Map Sheet:TG51NW
Parish:HEMSBY, GREAT YARMOUTH, NORFOLK
ORMESBY ST MARGARET WITH SCRATBY, GREAT YARMOUTH, NORFOLK
WINTERTON ON SEA, GREAT YARMOUTH, NORFOLK

Full description

January 2006. Norfolk NMP.
Lines of World War Two barbed wire and beach scaffolding are visible as extant structures on 1940s aerial photographs (S1)-(S6), between TG 4964 2042 and TG 5186 1473. These acted as a first line of anti invasion defences for the military sites located on their landward side, e.g. at Winterton Gap (NHER 42452) or Newport (NHER 15113). By 16 August 1940 (it is also visible on oblique aerial photographs taken on that day, e.g. (S7)) a more-or-less continuous line of barbed wire or similar material is visible between TG 4968 2032 and TG 5186 1473 (S1); of the two lines mapped by the NMP this is the thinner, zigzagging line. Beyond its northern end there is a gap of approximately 370m where there is no 1940 vertical coverage, although a less extensive barrier is visible here on 1940 oblique photographs and is recorded as part of NHER 42444. To the south the line of barbed wire continues beyond California Gap, where it is recorded as part of NHER 27543. By 17 December 1940 (S2) it appears to have been replaced by a new line, not mapped by the NMP, which was laid out closer to the seaward edge of the dunes. It extended from California Gap to approximately TG 5054 1795 and was still in place in February 1941 (S3). Oblique photographs taken on 19 September 1940 (e.g. (S8)) might record an intermediate stage between the two layouts. By 1944 (S4) a continuous line of beach scaffolding (the thicker, straighter lines) is visible, from TG 4964 2042 (north of Winterton Gap) to TG 5126 1599. They do not appear to have continued the line southwards to California, perhaps because the cliffs were felt to be enough of an obstacle. At its north end the line of scaffolding is double, perhaps reflecting the perceived vulnerability of Winterton Gap. The gap at Hemsby was also provided with a double line of protection while the scaffolding at Newport was offset on its seaward side. The scaffolding was still in place in 1946 (S5)-(S6), but while it was probably dismantled soon after this date traces of it still remain (see NHER 41601 and 31792, and also (S9)).
S. Tremlett (NMP), 26 January 2006.

Monument Types

  • BARBED WIRE OBSTRUCTION (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • BEACH DEFENCE (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • BEACH SCAFFOLDING (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 (V) 44-58 18-AUG-1940 (NMR).
<S2>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1940. RAF 268A/BR183 8-16 17-DEC-1940 (NMR).
<S3>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1941. RAF 268F/BR172 (VA) 40-5 10-FEB-1941 (NMR).
<S4>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1944. RAF 106G/LA/17 3003-12 28-MAY-1944 (NMR).
<S5>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1634 2045-6 09-JUL-1946 (NHER TG 5019A, TG 4919A).
<S6>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1634 5040-1 09-JUL-1946 (NHER TG 5117A, TG 5017B).
<S7>Oblique Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1940. NMR TG 4919/51-2 (MSO 31014 2A/BR14/4 3611-2) 16-AUG-1940.
<S8>Oblique Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1940. NMR TG 4918/7-8 (MSO 31022 26/BR14/15 4806-7) 19-SEP-1940.
<S9>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1953. RAF 540/1005 0133-4 04-FEB-1953 (NHER TG 4919C & TG 4920C).

Related records

31792Related to: World War Two pillbox (Monument)

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