The research has helped us to better undertsand the site before we even set foot on it. The more we know in advance, the better we can focus on the important details of the site rather than trying to piece it all together.
The journey started at 7.30am with a 4 1/2 hour coach journey with the deceptively uncomfortable seating. The ride was long and slow, but we eventually made it at around 12. For several hours we wandered from the village to the beach.
Starting near the village sign, a quick walk took us past Happisburgh Manor and to the old RNLI lifeboat station (whose launch ramp was washed away by the sea). Beside, was a caravan park and the access stairs to the beach. The small ramp bridge was already looking like a strong storm could render it too short to reach land.
Upon getting down to the beach, it was apparent how much damage had been done to the 50’s coastal defences. The rusted bent metal, rotting wood and masses of eroded brick/glass deposits made it all too clear how damaging the sea can be. The maze of defences, although entirely man-made, did make the relatively short beach, more interesting.
There was a wealth of treasures to be found, from upturned WWII pillboxes to gold coins (as one enthusiastic metal detector owner explained). It’s just a case of looking, of course some things being harder to discover than others! The walk along the beach was at low tide, which gave a nice set of photos of the waves and damaged defences.
At around 2, we walked upto the Happisburgh Lighthouse for a tour. The lighthouse was everything a lighthouse should be, it was a perfect stereotype, as proved by 2 music videos and a ‘Challenge Anneka’ restorative repaint project.
The remainder of the trip was spent wandering to a local pub before departure….we arrived sometime after 8, WITHOUT a break!
Here’s the link to the photos: