Pre-1840 British shipwrecks investigated

English Heritage surveying our oldest wreck sites

Author: Pat
5th August 2013
 

Almost ninety of the UK’s most historic shipwrecks are to be surveyed by underwater archaeologists.

Each site on the list pre-dates the year 1840 and has previously been unexplored.

will determine which, if any, are nationally important

The English Heritage-backed initiative ultimately aims to give the most important wrecks protected status.

All 88 sites came to light last year after a fresh study of archaeological evidence of watercraft from the earliest times up to 1840.

The research divers will take to the water around the UK over the summer.

Sites on the English Heritage ‘hit list’ include a possible Tudor wreck on Walney Island near Morecambe Bay.

Also of interest will be an early barge called a ‘Mersey flat’ located in the north-west, and the wreck of the ‘Forfarshire’, a paddle steamer that sank off the coast of Northumberland in 1838.

After investigating the wreck sites, divers will submit a full report to English Heritage to determine which wrecks, if any, are nationally important.

Those that meet the criteria for protection will be recommended in a shortlist to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in the autumn.

 

 
 
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