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HER Number:MDV102940
Name:Earthworks from mines or military training on the foreshore at Broadsands


An extensive area of linear earthworks is visible on aerial photographs taken between 1945 and 1946. They are part of the Second World War U.S. Army military training area, associated with exercises undertaken on the foreshore to prepare for Operation Overlord. The earthworks have probably been levelled by water action since the 1940s.


Grid Reference:SS 470 328
Map Sheet:SS43SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBraunton
Civil ParishHeanton Punchardon
DistrictNorth Devon

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • BOMB CRATER? (World War II - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)

Full description

Royal Air Force, 1945, RAF/106G/LA/102, NMR RAF/106G/LA/102 5001-5002 17-JAN-1945 (Aerial Photograph). SDV349060.

Several linear pits are visible as earthworks.

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/106G/UK/1655, NMR RAF/106G/1655 4197-4198 11-JUL-1946 (Aerial Photograph). SDV349996.

Several linear pits or ditches are visible as earthworks.

Hegarty, C. + Knight, S., 2011-2012, North Devon Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty National Mapping Programme Project (Interpretation). SDV349018.

Several linear earthwork ditches or pits, approximately 12 by 3 metres, are visible on aerial photographs taken between 1945 and 1946. They are parallel to each other and perpendicular to the shore, in two groups - one of which at SS747032950 is approximately 150 metres in length and the other at SS4692032808 is 50 metres in length - on the lower edge of the mudflats above the channel and close to the grids of craters. They are likely to be associated with U.S. Army training activities for Operation Overlord although their exact cause or function is not clear. They appear to be newly made in January 1945, with sharp edges, whilst by July 1946 they have smoothed edges and seem to have become part of the creek system, indicating that they had become eroded. They are not visible on later available aerial photographs, presumably having been levelled by natural processes.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV349018Interpretation: Hegarty, C. + Knight, S.. 2011-2012. North Devon Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty National Mapping Programme Project. AC Archaeology Report. ACD383/2/1. Digital.
Linked documents:1
SDV349060Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1945. RAF/106G/LA/102. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). NMR RAF/106G/LA/102 5001-5002 17-JAN-1945.
SDV349996Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/106G/UK/1655. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). NMR RAF/106G/1655 4197-4198 11-JUL-1946. [Mapped features: #62443 ; #62444 ]

Associated Monuments

MDV102705Part of: Military training area between Broadsands and Crow Point, Braunton Burrows. (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV6132 - North Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty NMP Project (Ref: ACD383/2/1)

Date Last Edited:Sep 25 2023 9:50AM