Lost in a Landscape: Horsford Forest

I like to get out, occasionally with a target in mind, sometimes just to wander. This is one of the various places in Norfolk which involves bronze age barrows; ancient cemeteries lost in the landscape, with a nice ancient heath and a possible...

Lost in a landscape: Gunton

When I was at primary school in the 1970s one of my friends lived in one of a row of cottages in Suffield. It backed onto a farmyard full of interlocking hay bales, knackered cars, and a grain store with an egg-timer mountain of grain surrounded by...

Lost in a Landscape: Pleasure beach

An set of photos from 2009, taken during a phase of producing 'candids' or 'street' photos, it's an alleged art-form that involves trying to take photos of people in an interesting way without them realising and not getting your head kicked in....

Coasting: Lost lands – West Runton

Another one of my favourite bits of Norfolk coast, lots of reasons; my childhood, our children played here, I spent a lot of my teens mooching about between the slipway with Vodka and the Village Inn with beer, staggering up to Roman Camp to doss...

Dead cities: Thorpe Abbotts

In February I was fortunate enough to get invited by Waveney Valley Community Archaeology Group with the permission of Lord Mann on a reconnaissance mission for a project they are doing on studying standing buildings on the site of Thorpe Abbotts...

Maps: Norwich City Wall

Basically Norwich City Wall with all the main elements marked on, This is not 100% accurate for detail, It's stepping off point and that is all at that stage. Building started on 1294, finished in 1350-ish, then we started to pull it down....

WW1: Trench Ghosts Part 2

Part 2 in a series of an uncertain number of these things. There's no project like an open ended one... St Eloi 1915 St Eloi is just to the South East of Ypres on the Salient, not that far from Hellfire Corner, or Hellfire Roundabout as it is now....

Vanishing point: Guillemont, Trones and Jünger’s Lane.

It suddenly struck me yesterday, what I'm trying to finish the unfinishable. The Great War may have ended in 1918, but it didn't, and so it goes, new layers of images, understanding and history being laid down with every word typed and shutter...

Lost in a landscape: Antingham

You can see Antingham, and identify it from quite a distance which is why I ended up there, I saw it from Suffield, remembered the view from trips to the coast up the A140 or across country out towards Aylsham. It stands out because of the two...

Lost Rivers of Norwich

I'm nothing if not unoriginal, this has come about for two reasons; me watching the excellent Thames Discovery project at work on Twitter, And more recently an idea of Jon Welch's based on seeing this rather remarkable work of Art by Stephen Water;...

No place like home: Viking Norfolk

The landscape reveals many things about our past. You can stand in the middle of the city entirely enveloped in the past; the Norman cathedral and Castle, medieval churches and Tudor buildings, the remnants of war and peace, people remembered in...

Geomapping: Norfolk Deserted Villages

A good few years ago Cameron Self and I were discussing DMVs or Deserted medieval Villages on Flickr, we'd both been to a few too take photos, thus began an obsession with them, not just the Medieval ones, actually all of them. There's an oddly...

Lost in a Landscape: Wayland Wood

There is a darkness in woodland, hiding in the shade of the green canopy, something that retracts in the sunlight in the corner of your vision, beyond the growing and shrinking of the shadows with each revolution of the earth on its tipping axis....

Mapping the Grim

  This was part of the original intent of the Public Archaeology project (for PA2015) and for me, because data is poetry and maps are fine prose. Due to the nature of my working life; the fact that I'm a bit of a butterfly/battering ram when it...

Vanishing Points: Tyne Cot

If and when you visit the Western Front, which a huge and growing number of people do partly because of the centenary and partly because you know, corner of a foreign field and all that family stuff, you are entering a piece of ground that is...

Lost in a Landscape: Little Ryburgh

A bit of a late addenda to a trip to Pudding Norton last year that ended up with a chase around the countryside near Fakenham looking at Deserted Medieval Villages, shrunken settlements and ruins. The whole area is haunted by the Flockmasters and...

Lost in a landscape: Bromholm Priory

A bit of a hidden wonder, Bromholm or Broomholm Priory also known as Bacton Abbey sits on a piece of farmland just off the coast road as you enter Bacton from the Mundesley end. The Priory is situated on private land, the main surviving gate at the...

Forgotten outposts: The Bure line at Oxnead

You will, as you drive around north and east Norfolk, pass these all over the place. In fact you'll find them all over the county as you will tank blocks and mortar spigots, even the odd trench line still exists all still protecting us from a long...

Dead cities: Langham Dome

A sort of anti-axis forces death star type thing. It looks a bit like one of those chocolate bombs or a steamed pudding, but about 18 feet high, made of reinforced concrete and painted black. Nestling on the edge of an abandoned airfield about 4...

Vanishing Point: Carnoy to Montauban

I'm not far from here now. Sitting in a hotel room on a laptop, watching a dubbed film which was bad enough in English in the first place. So I thought I'd start work. Carnoy is just to the South West of Albert in the Somme region, maybe five miles...

Lost in a landscape: Salthouse, touching the past

We visited the long dead, stretched our fingers out to them, touched fingertips through the flint and bracken. North Norfolk has some lovely landscapes, far removed from the outsider idea of some flatland devoid of features. The North County is a...

Lost in a landscape: Wretham Circles

There's a lightness about Breckland, A dryness and pallor to the soils that make it feel somehow different from the rest of Norfolk. It's in the earth, the thin sand with it's luggage of chalk and flint, the exhausted soldierly lines of Scots pine...

Lost in a Landscape: Rich pickings – Swafield

‘Fruit picking’ and ‘Pick your own’, still seen on cardboard hand painted signs still wedged in hedges and gateways, were and are a summer long routine in Norfolk. The memory flickers up from somewhere as I drive, I'm here and not,...

Lost in a landscape: Caistor St Edmund – A buried town

Five miles to the South East of the modern nucleus of Norwich sits Caistor St Edmunds, on a rise in the land between the confluence of the River Tas and the River Yare near where the Wensum joins the "I'm the biggest River" bunfight and loses it...

Lost in a Landscape: Warham Camp

Warham camp is the best known and best preserved iron age hill forts in Norfolk. Hills aren't that popular in Norfolk, we like our sky to go right up to the edges of everything whenever possible, but that doesn't mean they don't exist, if you think...

Coasting – Bacton

Bacton; a place name to conjure with if you know North East Norfolk's emptier fringe. A confusing piece of coast where as you move North of Happisburgh the cliff first drops and as you swing further there is a vale where Walcott sits. As the cliff...

Lost in a Landscape – Blickling Arborglyphs

Dogs lead sometimes, our is beige, stinks, is opinionated and prefers woods to beaches, muck and leaf mould to sand and pebbles. There's more to sniff and mark an roll in in woods and fox shit beats dead gull hands down in the scent masking stakes...

Lost in a Landscape: Pudding Norton

There's a lot to be intrigued about in towns like Fakenham. Not unlike North Walsham, it sits on a small winding road that makes it's a much less direct but more interesting trip than somewhere like Attlebourough or Wymondham. The drive is less...

Lost in a Landscape: RAF Happisburgh

Everyone I mean *everyone* in North Norfolk, and the Eastern bit of North Norfolk, or East Norfolk as I like to call it when I'm a bit y'know, not from London or the home counties, knows Happisburgh. It's the most interesting bit of Norfolk Coast...

Vanishing Point: Devil’s Wood

Oak is a feature of the English psyche, a fabled national wood if there is such a thing. It proliferates throughout our history from warships and traders building an Empire to the familiar furniture and ancient twisting house frames. The royal Oak...

WW1: Aerial Trench Ghosts Part 1

I did one of these to explain something to someone, then tweeted it and it all went a bit nuts, so it makes sense to put some of them together into posts on here rather than having them scattered to the 00000100 corners of the digital world....

Coasting: Beeston Regis – Farmer Reynolds peculiar grave

A bit of a Norfolk folktale, a ghost story of sorts. The stone pictured above is the slightly unconventional grave of farmer James Reynolds and latterly his wife Anne. The tale goes that two stones stood either side of the path beside the church...

LOST IN A LANDSCAPE

Hidden corners, holloways, tracks, and desertion in the deep landscape.

Lost in a landscape: Barton Turf

It rained, my god how it rained. A bank holiday hex hanging over Easter. And typically the patterns of various occupations in one household left me on my own staring at a refracted sodden world as the cars trundling along Aylsham Road under a lead grey sky. I went...

Lost in a Landscape: Scottow

Memory has a strange tonal range, there are sparks of colour in between the washes of grey and flat spots of black or white. I have a very distinct memory of first learning to ride a bike. Oddly for some reason that escapes me it wasn’t at the hands of a parent...

Lost in a Landscape: Stratton Strawless

There is this thing were you travel through a landscape, passing things, that have become lost, part of the blur of the countryside, the unnoticed facets of a landscape which sit just back, away from our arterial routes cut as they are by human traffic. It’ is also...

Lost in a Landscape: Wayland Wood

There is a darkness in woodland, hiding in the shade of the green canopy, something that retracts in the sunlight in the corner of your vision, beyond the growing and shrinking of the shadows with each revolution of the earth on its tipping axis. Beyond the sterility...

Lost in a Landscape: Trunch

There’s a lot in a name, Trunch has one that doesn't fit in in Norfolk, or in fact in England. Locally it sits uneasily with the profusion of ~hams and ~tons, and ~bys and ~thorps. East Anglia’s toponymy is that of the invaded, repeatedly settled. People who move into...

Lost in a Landscape: Rich pickings – Swafield

‘Fruit picking’ and ‘Pick your own’, still seen on cardboard hand painted signs still wedged in hedges and gateways, were and are a summer long routine in Norfolk. The memory flickers up from somewhere as I drive, I'm here and not, between sunlight and...

COASTING & WATERLANDS

The sea edged curve of Norfolk and the waters within

Coasting – Bacton

Bacton; a place name to conjure with if you know North East Norfolk's emptier fringe. A confusing piece of coast where as you move North of Happisburgh the cliff first drops and as you swing further there is a vale where Walcott sits. As the cliff starts to rise a...

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...

Coasting: Happisburgh Low light

It's a habit, almost a ritual. On Boxing day we go on a beach walk, blow away the cobwebs, usually at Happisburgh. This drives further back than our family now. We did the same when I was a child. My mum and dad and whoever else happened to be there on Boxing Day were...

Coasting: Trimingham – On the beach

I wrote a bit about Trimingham a few weeks ago, it was canvas really, the backdrop, the beach is the deep history. Being what it is and how quiet it can be we went back. There was a bitter driving Northerly, ice bearing, even the hardy fishermen had all packed up and...

Coasting: Happisburgh

I keep trapping myself in series' of work and forgetting that sometimes I take a photo just because I happen to be somewhere and something special happens. I was just poking about in my digital shoe boxes and I came across these. We went along the coast the day after...

Coasting: Caister

March 2013, a scouring North Easterly for a few weeks changed the profile of Caister (and Hopton) beaches, revealing some secrets that haven't been seen for a decade or so, estimates indicate losses of between five and ten feet of sand, most of what was left seemed to...

VANISHING POINTS

The Landscapes of the Western Front

Vanishing Point: Dartmoor – father and son

There's a focus, out there. You'll see it in most cemeteries on the old front. The famous dead, the men, and boys who achieve some infamy by dint of their bravery, age or circumstances. Sometimes it's a footballer who scored big in 1912 before signing away four years,...

Vanishing Point: Bernafay Wood

After Carnoy the cloud started to drop, a shield of it obliterated the sun. Within twenty minutes the light had almost completely failed, the air filled with prickles of moisture. It took a good hour to lift as the edge of a small front slid in from the South West. It...

Vanishing point: Courcelette

I've been fortunate at times out on the front, walking the levelled trenches, across the flattened shell holes and in the regrown woods. You meet people, some you know via the curious world of social media, shared interests in a shared space eventually made flesh out...

Vanishing point: Guillemont, Trones and Jünger’s Lane.

It suddenly struck me yesterday, what I'm trying to finish the unfinishable. The Great War may have ended in 1918, but it didn't, and so it goes, new layers of images, understanding and history being laid down with every word typed and shutter click. I'd set various...

Vanishing Point: Carnoy to Montauban

I'm not far from here now. Sitting in a hotel room on a laptop, watching a dubbed film which was bad enough in English in the first place. So I thought I'd start work. Carnoy is just to the South West of Albert in the Somme region, maybe five miles from the town. It...

Lost boys: Sid Northrop

I recently rediscovered this. It was something I'd put on Flickr. It is the tale of another family member and his last few days and hours in the Great War. We visited the panel he is remembered on at Tyne Cot a couple of years ago. He was my grandmother Jesse Parr's...

Urbanism and the hidden city

Walking the old streets

Hidden City: The Chapel in the fields.

One of the most intriguing things about any landscape urban or rural isn’t so much what you can see as what you can’t, and how what is there covers up what was, or how it gives up clues. The Assembly House in Norwich covers a particularly interesting one....

Up city: St Giles Street, Norwich

I've realised recently I rarely write about the city itself, or at least I don't on here. This is actually based on something I wrote for something that was a sort of outline history of St Giles in relation to a couple of properties. I found it recently while rooting...

Last breath: Rosary Cemetery

My inclination was to put this into the hidden history category, but then I remembered how often I end up sauntering around with people I've never met, but whose names I can see, in the light and shadows of trees and bushes and stone and thought it all sort of needed...

Collapsing new buildings: Barrack Road Gasometer

Another thing to collect, often more by chance than design. These are unmistakable monuments in our urban landscapes and I happened to pass this yesterday in Great Yarmouth and happened to stop and get my camera out and take a few snaps of it after it skylined in...

Westlegate: The tall boy at the back

I first met Westlegate tower in the 1970s, I would have been about seven or eight. It was just part of the background noise in a city where I had yet to link up all the parts. In 1975 it was just a place where my brother-in-law worked. And on a couple of occasions I...

Collapsing new buildings: Sheffield

I used to go to Sheffield a fair bit, less so now as one of the reasons we went as often as we did (one of my children) now lives in Slovakia, one of the estimated 2 million Britons living in Europe that handily get ignored by the hysterics burbling on about...

Hidden history

What you don’t always sense

Gate guardians – Coltishall and Horsham.

This post is a short one, more of a response to this post and the photo which was found in a jumble sale in 2016 by Julie Chettleburgh. It contains a fabulous photo of a Spitfire on Farmer's Avenue (above) which caused a flurry of excitement as everyone either...

Hidden history: The burial mounds of Greenwich

I've been to Greenwich twice in my life once when I was at school, I can't remember why except we looked at the Cutty Sark sat in the water, I have no other memory than that, it's lost in the maze at Hampton Court, and in the stalls of the Old Vic where I went on...

Hidden History: The forgotten chapel

Ring-roads, go round and past. Nature of the beast I suppose, circling. Norwich is blessed with ever-increasing circles; from the old castle ditches and the fee to the city wall and the inner link roads, out to the proper ring-road now forming into another ripple of...

Norwich: “Brightest shining of the city” – part 1

We live here. It is easy to forget where Norwich comes from, we take our surroundings for granted; a city that has grown from virtually nothing over the last 1200 years. A scattering of people living on  gravel terraces above a bend in a river in wooden houses, living...

Hidden History: The Mousehold heath air crashes

It's an odd little memorial just off the side of the Road near the football pitches near Gilman Road. I'm not entirely sure of the circumstances either. Mousehold was at the time a dummy airfield chances are that either plane could have been making that way to try and...

Hidden history: Myths – Tombland, Norwich and the Plague

It's odd where you end up in conversations, the same is true in a digital landscape as it is in an analogue one. In between the pictures of cats, the videos of fat people falling over and the flux of skulking, trolling and pixel-fist-waving/bumping that goes on in our...

The Walled City

The flint and water circle

The Walled City 4: St Augustines Gate

This used to be the back wall of Magpie Print. I remember it being an inside; a building full of printing gear with 'Mudpie Bob' at the helm steering it. The trade seas were rough, from letterpress through to photolitho. I used to help him out with now-and-again with...

The Walled City 3: Pockthorpe gate and city wall

Barrack Street is pretty dull these days, a humdrum piece of grey carriageway winding through crossings and traffic islands as it links the Magdalen Street flyover to the nexus; Mousehold, Plumstead, Kett's Heights or along Riverside. It's the epitomy of 'Innerlink'...

Maps: Norwich City Wall

Basically Norwich City Wall with all the main elements marked on, This is not 100% accurate for detail, It's stepping off point and that is all at that stage. Building started on 1294, finished in 1350-ish, then we started to pull it down. Privately financed partly by...

The walled city 2: Berstrete gates

Ber Street Gate or Berstrete Gate, sitting just on the edge of Foulgers opening off Ber a Street and Bracondale. Another Norwich city wall fragment, not the gate itself. The gate no longer exists, nor do any of the others, largely a result mainly of progress (or...

The walled city: part one

Norwich: The walled city I've been wandering around staring at flint in various forms for years. This is Norfolk after all it's ubiquitous and unavoidable from pebble built fisherman's cottages to our gazillion churches, dividing walls, farms, sheds and tumbledown...