An oblique aerial colour photo of a London Gateway development, to the right is a large silty river, to the left a large industrial area.

About this image

This aerial view of 2014 shows the rapidly growing London Gateway port development, designed to handle the huge container ships at the heart of world trade today. © D. Grady/Historic England

Coastal & Marine Planning

The seas and shore around England contain an immense wealth of archaeological sites and remains. At the same time, our coasts and sea areas are subject to increasing development for social and economic purposes. 

Historic England is involved in the whole process of advising on marine and coastal development projects from sand and aggregate extraction to major port construction, working with Government regulators, advisors and industry.

The initial site investigation work is very important as it enables us to advise the developer about known marine archaeological interests, such as important historic shipwrecks, but also to make sure that the developer is aware that other remains, possibly of major archaeological importance may lie on or within the seabed but have yet to be discovered.

Thanet offshore windfarm
Thanet offshore windfarm © Peter Williams

Further information

The marine planning system explains the context in which changes to the seabed are approved.

Coastal change sets out Historic England’s approach to managing change in coastal areas affected by natural erosion, shoreline management schemes and development pressures.
Ports looks at the specific issues raised by these major developments in the coastal and maritime environment.

Was this page helpful?