Record Details

NHER Number:23980
Type of record:Monument
Name:World War One or World War Two pillbox


Initially recorded as a very rare First World War circular concrete pillbox built into a sloping bank on the southern edge of the saltmarsh. Excavation and local sources suggest it dates to the Second World War.


  • World War One pillbox  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service
  • World War One pillbox  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service
  • World War One pillbox  © Norfolk Museums & Archaeology Service


Grid Reference:TF 9684 4394
Map Sheet:TF94SE

Full description

September 1987. Visited.
In wooded slope overlooking marshes.
Pill box, circular, concrete block.
E. Rose 6 September 1987.

24 April 1994. No change.
E. Rose (NLA).

See (S1), which adds:
Very rare World War I pillbox (type WIX) situated on edge of plantation on south side of path, 250m east of car park. Similar to type WIA, but made of coarse, reinforced concrete without steel doors or shutters. Possibly early version later refined.
Survey No. C4-3.
D.Walker (NLA), July 1996.

October 2003. Visited.
Still extant but looking the worse for wear; filled with earth.
E. Rose (NLA), 22 October 2003.

May-November 2004. Norfolk Rapid Coastal Zone Archaeological Survey.
Inter-tidal survey (Environmental Zone 10), Context 996:
A World War One circular concrete pillbox was recorded at TF 96847 43945. It was built into a sloping bank on the southern edge of the saltmarsh.
See assessment report (S2) for further details.
The associated archive has been deposited with the Norwich Castle Museum (NWHCM : 2017.421).
J. Allen (NLA), 19 April 2005. Amended by P. Watkins (HES), 21 July 2019.

June 2007. Still present, interior cleared out.
E. Rose (NLA), 6 June 2007.

August 2014.
The missing concrete blocks are in the creek to the north, and there are plans to clean out the pillbox and for these to be reinstated. The pill box is built on a shelf below a small cliff which is soft and eroding. However it is possible to see some earthworks on the lower shelf running from the box to the north west. These may be an associated trench system or something from WW2. It seems very likely that the pillbox was used during WW2, for training if nothing else, but this is not known for sure. It is also interesting that the pillbox is on a small promontory giving good views both ways along the coast (now the coastal path) not out to sea.
D. Gurney (HES), 1 September 2014.

February 2015.
It is well known in the village that this is a pillbox built for the light artillery training camp during WW2. A one-off built of very light construction. There is absolutely no evidence to suggest this was built in WW1 (S3).
D. Gurney (HES), 6 February 2014.

Monument Types

  • PILLBOX (World War One to World War Two - 1914 AD to 1945 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Photograph: Kent, P.. 1994. KHH 5A - 6A.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2014. First World War pillbox now restored. 4 December.
<S1>Recording Form: [various]. Norfolk Defensive Structures Survey Recording Form. Norfolk Defensive Structures Survey.
<S2>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.
<S3>Website: 2015. Stiffkey Pillbox Update from Stiffkey Local History Group.

Related records - none

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