The demise of Scroby Island

The town of Great Yarmouth did not exist until the first few precarious fishermen’s cottages were built in the year 46 AD. Prior to this it was an intermittent tidal sand bank off the mouth of the River Yare, which a supply of sediment drift from the North and material from the river built up to eventually form a stable foundation attached to the mainland.

It is now a bustling town and highly popular seaside resort, with a population of 92,500 which more than doubles in the Summer months.

2.5km offshore to the town another sand bank grew, eventually becoming high and large enough to provide a stable enough surface to form marram grassed dunes and to support seal colonies and nesting terns. The stability was further enhanced by several wrecks, mainly wartime casualties. It was then well above water at all tides in all weathers, and became a permanency called both Scroby Island and Scroby Sands. It continued accreting until soon after offshore aggregate dredging commenced, and is now only visible above the sea on the lowest tides .

The following photographs show how it has changed by average shrinking over 59 years impact from storms and from sand starvation.

Click on an image to show larger images & text


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