Month: February 2016

Coasting: Sidestrand – the moving edge

There are a few places where you can really see the dynamism of the erosion of the soft coastline. It is obvious along nearly the whole length of Norfolk and well into Suffolk, our soft glacial memory is easily eroded. Shifts can be seen in the surfaces, the revealed patterns change relatively gradually in the respites between the winter storms. The heavy northerly and easterly gales cause scours that bite at the cliffs and suck at the sands and clays pulling at the cliff, lowering the beach profiles and dumping the sand where the spits grow. The stretch from...

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Blitz in Colour: The British Gas Light Company, Dereham Road

Post-April 27th 1942,  this was the scene at the corner of Heigham Road and Dereham Road in Norwich during some kind of clear up work, probably to do with the gas supply. The whole crossroads here was badly damaged, the pub to the rear of the picture made of sturdy hard yellow brick rather than soft Norfolk Red was pulled down and continued to trade from a lean-to until the 1950s when it eventually shut. The building was rebuilt vaguely in keeping and has been Petals for as long as I can remember, or was until recently. This is...

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Blitz in Colour: Dereham Road Baptist Church 1942

Opened in 1904. Closed temporarily in 1942 during the Baedeker Raids. Sources point at this being a result of the first raid on the Monday night; the 27th of April; this would fit the pattern of most of the bombing being of the north and north-western sectors of the city. I don’t know when the photo was taken; there are clues the roads are clear of rubble so it would appear to be at least a few days afterwards, the post-aftermath phase, and life goes on. One thing I’d not noticed before is the stretcher leaning against the wall...

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Great War: Verdun in postcards

Fort Vaux – Artillery observation post. A century on from events. These are in fact a post-war set of tourist cards I bought as part of an album at a flea market in France.  These are basically Verdun through a lens from some time after everything had been tidied up. It is basically someone’s holiday in Europe a large tour mostly across France. You viewing the result through the lens of one photographer just after the Great War bought by someone just before the shutters fell and Europe burst into flames again. The Album is marked 1938. All titles...

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Blitz in Colour: Curls Store 30th April 1942

Outside Curls store, Rampant Horse Street corner with Brigg Street, 30th April 1942. They’re standing in the wreckage caused by the incendiary bombs that fell on Norwich on the second night of the Baedeker Raids on Norwich. So this is the 30th of April 1942. The photo is from photographer unknown shot in black and white and used in the EDP and Evening News and lay in the archive. It’s an interesting one, I’ve used it before for rephotography here but there’s always another way and this is it. So here it is coloured in which takes longer, but...

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Blitz Ghosts: Church of St Julian Norwich

One of the best known Blitz victims in Norwich, because of it’s famous Saint Julian thing. Hit head on by a 250kg, it was all but obliterated as you can see. Beautifully rebuilt, and a fabulous little church, even if you don’t do the whole religion thing it’s a very calm nice space that feels more like a catholic chapel than a church, it made me smile a bit. It still has a couple of the original floor memorials and some of the base stonework is obviously original, plus it has the arch from St Michael at Thorn as...

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Blitz Ghosts: St Michael at Thorn

St Michael at Thorn, or it was, just behind the Archant building, sort of opposite or adjacent to the shops that survived the flame-grilling of Bonds in April 1942, this is 11 years before the bombs fell in 1931. So I’m standing roughly, within a foot or so of where George Plunkett stood, 80 years before me, it’s drizzling a bit and a cold. Then in a minute I’m… …jumping forward about 11 years and about 10 feet to one side and it’s 1942 for a split second and then 10 years later it’s 31 July 1952 and 2011...

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Blitz Ghosts: St Benedicts Church

Quite hidden away, a poor little thing. The tower is still there, preserved like like a thick flint chimney, or a Cloigtheach except no bells ring here, It reminds me of Messines in Flanders too. It’s set in some grass just off St Benedicts Street, behind a new development, in the middle of a slightly older development of what I think are or used to be assisted housing. I knew a lovely chap called Colin who lived in one of them years ago, I taught him everything I knew about photography, which took about half an hour then we...

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Blitz in Colour: Rampant Horse Street 30 April 1942

Rampant Horse Street in the aftermath of the second night of the Baedeker raids on Norwich, The Luftwaffe bombed across the centre of Norwich using incendiaries. There were too many individual fires for the wardens to put them all out the fire spread from building to building in the wind with , from Curls to Buntings and Woolworths and up until it eventually caught the Mackintosh chocolate factory. Buntings (now M&S) was saved by having concrete floors which stopped some of the fire. Curls was burnt out and had to be...

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The Mancroft resurrection. Woven in 1573 by Flemish weavers. It's fascinating. The more I stare at it the more convinced I am the walled city in the background is actually Norwich. St Peter Mancroft. ... See MoreSee Less

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For #flintspiration here's a series of posts about lost churches on Magdalen Street. www.invisibleworks.co.uk/magdalen-street-hidden-history/ ... See MoreSee Less

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