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Thread: Spurn Point, Humberside, February 2019

  1. #1
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    Default Spurn Point, Humberside, February 2019


    1. The History
    Spurn point is a narrow sand tidal island, 3.75 miles in length, located off the tip of the coast of the East Riding of Yorkshire that reaches into the North Sea and forms the north bank of the mouth of the Humber Estuary. A storm in 2013 made the road down to the end of Spurn impassable by vehicles at high tide. A further storm in February 2017 further damaged the route to the mainland.

    Defence installations on the point date back to the Napoleonic Wars. In 1805, at the northern end a gun was established and a more substantial fort and barracks at the southern tip. These were linked by a standard gauge railway line as no roads or tracks existed. At the southern end, the railway ran on to a wooden jetty to allow materials to be unloaded from ships. Concrete sea defences were built to protect the fortifications and railway from coastal erosion. Additionally two river forts at Bull and Haile Sands completed the defensive chain protecting the Humber.

    On the declaration of World War One in August 1914 military activity intensified on the point. The village of Kilnsea at the top of the peninsula soon found itself home to a garrison of more than 500 troops. At its height there were about 1,500 personnel on the narrow spit and in nearby Kilnsea. As the war progressed further defences were built along Spurn Point. At the southern end was Green battery and at the northern end, Godwin Battery. Green Battery, named after General Sir William Green, was initially built in 1915 for four 4.7-inch weapons. It was expanded in 1916 when two 9.2" BL Mk10 guns on Mk5 mountings where added. They were mounted in circular concrete pits, with two battery observation posts (BOP) on the extreme left and right of the emplacements.

    At the outbreak of the Second World War Godwin battery gained two 12-pounder guns mounted on the beach in front of the battery in event of torpedo-boat attacks. A number of different anti-invasion defences were constructed along the length of the spit including various anti-tank blocks, road and rail blocks, pillboxes, spigot mortars and field guns. Other wartime building work included the construction of a permanent road the length of the spit and a new BOP for the 6" guns.



    The Ministry of Defence sold Spurn to the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust in the 1959. The Godwin battery has subsequently been subject to massive coastal erosion and have toppled onto the beach.

    2. The Explore
    Have wanted to come here for a while. With the weather forecast to be more late-Spring-like than winter we decided we’d go on a day trip. It was a tight schedule to get over from Sheffield and back in time for tea and so it proved. After a two-hour drive we parked up at the northern end of the spit where the road was shut and started the hour-and-a-half or so hike south. The service road soon gave way to sand, where it got washed away in 2013.

    As we were walking an RLNI Land-Rover passed us. Ten minutes later it returned and half-jokingly I stuck my thumb out. The driver duly stopped and we were given a lift the rest of the way, saving us the best part of 45-minutes, which turned a tight schedule into a bit more of a relaxed wander. Once dropped off we checked out a bunker then walked round the head of Spurn point, clockwise, taking in the pillboxes and bunkers. After that we headed inland to check out the battery. It was a lovely day so we had a pic-nic there then walked the 2 miles or so back to the car. Nothing spectacular in terms of what we explored. However, it was more about the overall location and atmosphere of this quite unique place.

    3. The Pictures

    First bunker we came to:

    img9761 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Spurn 01 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Then onwards on to the beach:

    img9867 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9774bw by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Pillbox on the beach:

    img9787 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    WW1/WW2 Blockhouse and observation post:

    img9766 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9763 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9789 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9800 - Copy by HughieDW, on Flickr

    More bunkers…

    img9801 - Copy by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Filled up with sand:

    Spurn 02 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Spurn 03 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Green Battery:

    Spurn 05 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Spurn 06 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9825 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9818 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9814 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Spurn 04 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Spurn 07 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9828 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Main magazine:

    img9832 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9830 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Battery engine house. A large flat-roofed brick engine room used to house the engine which powered the searchlights for the Light Temporary Battery during WW2.

    img9836 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9838 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9837 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9808 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Spurn 08 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    And finally, that old light house/ex-water tower…gagging to be explored:

    img9844 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9848 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Former billet hut-bases(?):

    img9809 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Gun emplacement:

    img9805 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img9806 by HughieDW, on Flickr

  2. Thanks given by: Bluetwo, Hugh Jorgan, jmcjnr, Mearing, Mikeymutt, noiseboy72, ocelot397, paul.richards.up, prettyvacant71, psykie, smiler, Tbolt, Terminal Decline, woody65
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  4. #2
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    I found that interesting. Right out of the way. That lighthouse is next but you'll need a ladder.
    When the going gets tough - the tough get going.

  5. Thanks given by: HughieD
  6. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Jorgan View Post
    I found that interesting. Right out of the way. That lighthouse is next but you'll need a ladder.
    Glad you liked it mate. Did some googling and found some snaps with a ladder next to it. Would have been up it like a shot!

  7. Thanks given by: Hugh Jorgan
  8. #4
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    Are people still in the houses? And is the cafe still open?

  9. #5
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    Like this matie
    iv'e been meaning to go here for ages but it's a bloody long way from gods country

    Thanks for posting
    Don't panic, be reet!!!

  10. Thanks given by: HughieD
  11. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tbolt View Post
    Like this matie
    iv'e been meaning to go here for ages but it's a bloody long way from gods country

    Thanks for posting
    Pleasure mate. Bit of a hike but well worth the effort...

  12. #7
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    Thats superb as always H, some great perspective shots which I love (the B & W really works). Just proving that u dant have to find stuff packed full of artefacts all the time to make an interesting post
    What the hell am I doing, I mean really at my age!

  13. #8
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    That's brilliant hughie..that light house is so lovely..there is a lot of bits too see.and I would love to visit this.the setting looks really nice
    I like to go where others fear to tread.

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