Record Details

NHER Number:36028
Type of record:Monument
Name:Post medieval sea defence


A probable post medieval sea defence bank visible as a linear earthwork on 1946 RAF vertical aerial photographs.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 8537 4505
Map Sheet:TF84NE

Full description

2000. Field Observation and Desk-based Assessment.
Site examined and considered as part of archaeological assessment of Holkham Estate.
Part of the system of seabanks in Burnham Overy, superseded by the present high seabank (section from TF 8530 4485 to TF 8524 4451).
Within nature reserve and in use as a low access track.
See report (S1) for further details.
K. Penn (NAU), 2 March 2001. Amended by P. Watkins (HES), 28 April 2015.

March 2002. Norfolk NMP.
The bank is aligned in a north to south direction, has a slightly irregular course, and is visible for a total length of approximately 1.5 km (S1). There is a bank (NHER 27031) running westwards from the midpoint of this bank, which then turns southwards towards Burnham Overy Staithe. The northerly part of this bank may actually be part of NHER 27031, and represent a re-build, rendering the southern element redundant. They may also be all one contemporary build.
The bank appears to be partially depicted on (S2), and probably has a track or road on its course for part of its length. This bank was probably built to contain the eastern side of the tidal channel of Burnham Overy Staithe. It was probably constructed in the post medieval period although a late medieval date is also possible.
M. Brennand (NMP), 29 March 2002.

May-November 2004. Norfolk Rapid Coastal Zone Archaeological Survey.
Inter-tidal survey (Environmental Zone 8).
Context 863:
A revetment formed of numerous circular and squared timber posts was embedded in estuarine silt between TF 84586 44419 to TF 84746 44688. Aligned N-to-S, it was situated at the base of the modern sea wall [Context 1091]. Behind it were concrete, brick and chalk fragments. The revetment and the building material may have been part of an earlier sea bank.
Context 864:
Two revetments were found in-situ in estuarine mud on the edge of Overy Creek (between TF 85021 44921 to TF 85112 44904). One comprised at least seven upright timber posts and the other had at least fifty. Found close to the modern sea bank, they may have been part of an earlier example.
Context 1091:
A modern sea defence bank, possibly containing earlier elements. It was located on the east edge of the Burnham Overy harbour between TF 84472 44357 and TF 85785 45703.
See assessment report (S4) for further details.
The associated archive has been deposited with the Norwich Castle Museum (NWHCM : 2017.421).
J. Allen (NLA), 18 April 2005. Amended by P. Watkins (HES), 21 July 2019.

Monument Types

  • REVETMENT (Unknown date)
  • SEA DEFENCES (Medieval to 19th Century - 1066 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds

  • BRICK (Unknown date)

Protected Status

  • Higher Level Stewardship

Sources and further reading

---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Unpublished Contractor Report: Penn, K. 2000. The Holkham Estate, Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk. Archaeological Survey (Final Report). Norfolk Archaeological Unit. 532.
<S2>Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1571 4023 07-JUN-1946 (SMR TF 8544A).
<S3>Publication: Faden, W. and Barringer, J. C. 1989. Faden's Map of Norfolk in 1797.
<S4>Unpublished Contractor Report: Robertson, D., Crawley, P., Barker, A., and Whitmore, S. 2005. Norfolk Rapid Coastal Zone Archaeological Survey. Assessment Report and Updated Project Design. Norfolk Archaeological Unit. 1045.

Related records

36036Related to: Post medieval sea bank (Monument)

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