Record Details

NHER Number:26938
Type of record:Monument
Name:Hunstanton World War Two Coastal Battery

Summary

A World War Two coastal battery is visible on aerial photographs taken in 1944 and an observation tower and pillbox from it survive (see NHER 23514). The battery was built in June 1940 and had closed by 1943. Features on the aerial photographs include a minefield, an enclosure of barbed wire, Nissen huts, linear earthworks, ditches, gun emplacements (see NHER 24939), pillboxes and the observation tower. Some may relate to the World War Two radar station that is also recorded as having stood here. Earthworks recorded by the Norfolk Rapid Coastal Survey in 2004 may have been part of the complex.

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TF 6756 4190
Map Sheet:TF64SE
Parish:HUNSTANTON, WEST NORFOLK, NORFOLK

Full description

January 2001. NMP.
The Hunstanton Coastal Battery was amongst the first phase of emergency coastal batteries to be built in end of May/start of June 1940. It had already closed by 1943.
A group of World War Two structures and earthworks are visible on 1944 aerial photographs (S1). An area around TF 6742 is enclosed by a length of barbed wire fence and areas of minefields. Within this enclosure are eight Nissen huts of various sizes. In the northern part of the enclosure, a number of short linear earthworks are visible, forming what appears to be some sort of firing range. Some banks have associated ditches/trenches. Two lengths of narrow ditch can be seen between TF 6772 4206 and TF 6774 4204, and between TF 6774 4210 and TF 6773 4208. These cut through the walls surrounding the garden of the principal structure, suggesting they are modern and associated with the World War Two features. At least four further structures are visible in the enclosure, although their purpose is unclear. There is some kind of stronghold at TF 6769 4214, as a structure can be seen which is enclosed by a barbed wire fence, with a square enclosure adjacent to it.

Gun emplacements are visible at various locations within the enclosure (TF 6735 4166, TF 6745 4180, TF 6767 4198 and TF 6753 4198) and would have contributed to the defence of this area. Two substantial coastal battery gun emplacements are visible at TF 6743 and TF 6745 4188 (NHER 24939), further emphasizing the defensive nature of this complex.

Three pillboxes can be seen along the coast in this area (at TF 6735 4169, TF 6767 4175 and TF 6774 4228).
This area appears to have been an important World War Two defensive position, comprising a number of different elements. The principal building in this area pre-dates the World War Two features - it is marked on the 1905 Ordnance Survey map (S2) as a coastguard station, see NHER 23514 for details.
A. Hunt (NMP), 16 January 2001.

See NHER 23514 and 24939 which are part of this site.
M. Horlock (NLA), 25 October 2002.

December 2004. Land based fieldwork phase of the Norfolk Rapid Coastal Survey.
NHER 41012, context 1.
A very shallow circular ditch at TF 67346 41495. Possibly a military bunker, gun emplacement or crater.
NHER 41012, context 2.
At least seven banks and three ditches aligned roughly east to west between TF 67372 41635 and TF67459 41863. Possibly field banks and ditches.
NHER 41012, context 4.
A collection of low mounds and banks with a number of shallow hollows between TF 67435 and TF 67636 42032. Possibly field and agricultural features, although they could be associated with military activity.
See (S3).
J. Allen (NLA), 1 December 2005.

December 2006. Norfolk NMP.
Some of the features described above may relate to the World War Two CD/CHL radar station that once stood here (see (S4)). This was redundant by the end of 1942 (S5), which may account for no features relating to it being identified on the consulted aerial photographs.
S. Tremlett (NMP), 9 December 2006.

Monument Types

  • BANK (EARTHWORK) (Unknown date)
  • MOUND (Unknown date)
  • BARBED WIRE OBSTRUCTION (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • BUNKER (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • COAST DEFENCE CHAIN HOME LOW STATION (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • COASTAL BATTERY (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • DITCH (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • FIRING RANGE (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • GUN EMPLACEMENT (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • MINEFIELD (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • MOUND (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • NISSEN HUT (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • PILLBOX (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • RADAR STATION (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • SLIT TRENCH (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1944. RAF 106G/LA 67 4130-4131, 4135 02-DEC-1944 (NMR).
<S2>Map: Ordnance Survey. 1905. OS 2nd Edition 25 inch Sheet VI.1 (1905).
<S3>Unpublished Document: Robertson, D., Crawley, P., Barker, A., and Whitmore, S.. 2005. NAU Report No. 1045. Norfolk Rapid Coastal Zone Archaeological Survey. Assessment Report and Updated Project Design..
<S4>Monograph: Dobinson, C.S.. 2000. Twentieth Century Fortifications in England. Volume VII 2. Acoustics and Radar. Appendices.. p 168.
<S5>Monograph: Dobinson, C.S.. 2000. Twentieth Century Fortifications In England. Volume VII 1. Acoustics and Radar. Text.. p 131 table XIV.

Related records

24939Parent of: World War Two gun emplacements at Hunstanton Coastal Battery (Monument)
41423Parent of: World War Two remains on Hunstanton beach (Find Spot)
23514Parent of: World War Two Royal Navy pillbox and observation tower (Monument)
41012Part of: Norfolk Rapid Coastal Survey: land based survey at Hunstanton (Monument)

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