Monument record SLY 069 - A World War II anti-tank ditch, in Shotley parish.

Please read our .


A World War II anti-tank ditch, in Shotley parish.


Grid reference Centred TM 24123 34649 (941m by 1266m)
Map sheet TM23SW


Type and Period (2)

Full Description

A length of WWII anti-tank ditch is visible as an earthwork on aerial photography from 1944 to 1947, running for a distance of circa 1.7km, from TM24803528 where it abuts the sea wall of the River Orwell, to TM24873402 where it meets the bank of the Stour. As it runs south west for a distance of approximately 270m from from the coast at TM24803528, the ditch appears to have been made by enhancing an existing drainage channel, and using the upcast to form an accompanying bank. For the rest of its length, the ditch crosses the centre of a number of fields. Most of the associated bank is located on the southern side of the ditch, but it is not continous, and appears to be interrupted in a number of places. A short length of bank runs on the north side of the ditch for approximately 41m, centred on TM24563514. If there was originally an associated bank along the remainder of the ditch, it is impossible to see by 1944. The ditch is interrupted at TM24303496 and TM24003448 by two roads that lead into Shotley Point. These gaps are reinforced by fortified strongpoints and other associated emplacements (see SLY 093 and SLY 096). The defensive function of the ditch is also augmented by a length of barbed wire, which runs whole length of the ditch, along its northern edge (see SLY 070). The ditch and it's associated features formed part of an extensive defensive network, which covered much of the Suffolk coastline during WWII. This particular stretch of ditch formed one component of a line of defence across Shotley peninsular, as landward protection for the naval base that covered much of the peninsular at this time, and was probably established in the early years of WWII. The line of the ditch is also visible on recent oblique photography as a cropmark. (S1-S4)
Over Hall, Shotley Gate, Shotley. Irregular anti-tank ditch cutting off Shotley Gate from the remainder of the Shotley Peninsula, running from Cockle Creek via Over Hall to Shotley Marshes. Section from TM 24523508 - TM 24803527 appears to survive as a drainage ditch, the remainder having been filled in by 1951. [Plotted from aerial photographs] (S5).

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <S1> Photograph: RAF. Air Photograph. RAF 106G/LA/23 4020-2 6-JUL-1944.
  • <S2> Photograph: RAF. Air Photograph. RAF 106G/UK/1635 3014-5 09-JUL-1946.
  • <S3> Photograph: RAF. Air Photograph. RAF 58/633 5075-6 18-APR-1951.
  • <S4> Photograph: National Monuments Record. Air Photograph. NMR TM2334/2 (956/371) 07-JUN-1976.
  • <S5> Digital archive: Defence of Britain Project archive. UORN: S0006209.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

Record last edited

Feb 25 2013 4:50PM

Comments and Feedback

Do you have any more information about this record? Please feel free to comment with information and photographs, or ask any questions, using the "Disqus" tool below. Comments are moderated, and we aim to respond/publish as soon as possible.