Severn Estuary RCZAS National Mapping Programme project
Ancient coastal fisheries
Some of the most significant archaeological features identified were the numerous fish weirs and traps located in the intertidal zone of Bridgwater and Blue Anchor Bays, dating from the 10th century period to the 20th century. At least four types of fish weir were identified by the survey, constructed of wood and stone. These variations may reflect the availability of raw materials, changes in construction design over time and the types of fish being targeted.
Second World War coastal defences
Second World War military coastal crust defences were prominent features in the Severn Estuary intertidal zone, providing an interesting comparison with other military defences around Britain's coastline, such as those recorded by the Suffolk NMP. The survey highlighted the strategic importance of camouflage to disguise coastal military defences, especially pillboxes. The historical air photographs are valuable as few surviving examples retain their original camouflage. Numerous pillboxes were positioned along the coast between Porlock Weir and Blue Anchor, of which 28 were identified as a non-standard design known as an infantry section post.
Historical images: an important pictorial record
Aerial photographs taken during the Second World War remain an important historical pictorial record of the nation's defences, as most of the sites recorded were removed soon after the war. These wartime images revealed anti-invasion defences of the Severn Estuary to be far more extensive than previously thought.
Trial lidar assessment
The survey included a trial lidar assessment of part of the flood plain of the River Parrett, Somerset and an area of possible Roman land reclamation at Elmore, Gloucestershire. Lidar was shown to be complementary to aerial photographs for the identification of archaeological sites and also for assessing their survival in both trial areas.
The images used on this page are copyright Historic England unless specified otherwise. For further details of any photographs or other images and for copies of these, or the plans and reports related to the project, please contact the Historic England Archive.
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Historic Places Investigation
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The Forest of Dean mapping project was undertaken to record the remains of the diverse industrial heritage of this area visible on aerial photographs.
Air photo interpretation has revealed the impact of extensive aggregate extraction in an area rich in archaeological sites at Frampton on Severn.
This aerial survey project examined a small area of northern Gloucestershire and Herefordshire likely to be used for future aggregate extraction
This aerial survey covers a part of the Severn Vale from Cheltenham in the north to Bristol in the south.