Monday, 16 January 2017

Jan 16th Sheringham and Cromer

Its a miracle! After two days of drying out from the snow on Friday, my camera is back from the brink. It is working once more as if nothing ever happened. Thank goodness!


As well as a snowstorm on Friday, on the same day there was also a tidal surge that has caused a lot of damage and floods across Norfolk. I was hoping to go to Cley today, but roads leading to the reserve were closed off due to flooding. Even places like Strumpshaw were mostly underwater as sea water is forced inland, causing many rivers to break their banks. So as there weren't many places to go at the moment, Mum and I decided to visit Sheringham and Cromer to see what the damage was like at these two coastal towns.

At Sheringham, portable metal fencing blocked entrances to the promenade along the seafront. They were there since Friday, but as the danger has since past, people were now squeezing through gaps in the blockade to see the damage themselves. We decided to join them. The damage wasn't as bad as what had happened in 2013's surge, however, there were still plenty of signs of the sea's destructive power everywhere we looked. Shingle from the beach were now piled onto the promenade, some were clearly thrown over the walled sections of the seafront by the powerful waves, while beach huts and railings were wrecked or missing. Despite all of this, people continued with their leisure activities such as walking their dogs and even to bodysurf out on the waves.

Surge damage
Piles of shingle washed up by the surge
One slightly well off beach hut...
...And one that was not so well off
Railings damaged by the surge
Another victim of the surge's destruction
Juvenile Herring Gull
While at Sheringham, I was also looking for a few birds I wanted to see that have been reported here in the last couple of days. Unfortunately, I was unable to find the Iceland and Glaucous gulls and the black redstart along the seafront. I even had someone approach me to tell me that they saw them not long ago and gave me directions. But it seemed I was not as lucky as him as despite the directions, I still couldn't find them. However, there were plenty of turnstones, black-headed and herring gulls to satisfy the birdwatcher side of me. And I also found something invertebrate related finally. There were plenty of these unusual yellowy-white bundles swept up on the shore. These strange objects are egg cases of dog whelks, small sea snails.
Black-headed Gull
Herring Gull
Another Herring Gull
Dog Whelk eggs

Cromer was also hit by the surge and was apparently much worst hit than Sheringham, so we went there next. When we got there, a clean up crew was busy clearing the shingle, sand and debris off the promenade. Just like Sheringham, the seafront was closed off by portable metal fencing, but unlike Sheringham, most of the public did not sneak down for a look. We too stayed away, but we could still see the destruction anyway. Surprisingly, Cromer pier was undamaged as far as I can tell. It was heavily damaged in the 2013 surge, so it was amazing to see this old pier intact, even the glass windows. The same couldn't be said about the beach huts at the other end of the promenade, however, as they were knocked on top of each other like dominoes with many of them looking worst for wear.
Cromer Pier and clean up crew

More surge damage
Cleaning up the mess

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