It is not quite as strange as Orford Ness, that desolate and derelict, haunting and wild, edge of the Suffolk coast, of which I have written, and photographed, before. But Dungeness beach, on the edge of Romney Marsh in Kent, is strange enough. The largest shingle beach in Europe, it’s a bleak landscape flanked by the concrete blocks of a nuclear power station, adorned with two lighthouses, dotted with the rotting hulks of fishing boats and fisherman’s huts, punctuated with odd pubs, artists’ workshops and ordinary houses (that are anything but ordinary), and surprised with desert flowers and rare birds.  One would hardly call it beautiful. But, like Orford Ness, it is infused with a strange surreal poetry. Little wonder that Derek Jarman chose to live there. Or that it’s irresistible for photographers. For more photos see my photography website Light Infusion, or Flickr or 500px.



















  1. Are those railway lines a remnant of the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch railway? I visited the old lighthouse there using the railway in the 60s.

    • Apparently it still does run to Dungeness (though I have never been on it), so I assume that the remnants of the rail line you can now see on the beach must have been part of another system.

  2. Fijay

    Beautiful pictures ….yet sad …my great uncle was an offshore fisherman … was the large scale trawler ing businesses that led to his loss of livelihood ….could’nt compete.
    His boat is in a museum now …or was …haven’t been for a few years …it’s called ‘The Better Hope’ which is a little ironic really:)

      • Fijay

        And other traditional, skilled sustainable industries perhaps? ….The emerging economies could learn a lot from the mistakes I feel …be at the forefront in terms of finding the balance between sustainability and technological advancement …it’s got to come from somewhere …and I’m not holding my breath re any serious commitment from our government or the US at the moment:D:D

    • Yes, it’s sad. There is something depressing about the remnants on the beach. I could not find anything about a museum called ‘The Better Hope’. Was it in Dungeness?

      • Fijay

        No the museum is in Grimsby …NOT a picturesque place:D
        It is my Great Uncles boat that is called the ‘Better Hope’ he called it that because during WW2 he kept going out to sea …I think the fishing boats were used as mine sweepers or something but not 100% sure….and every time he returned his house had disappeared …not many folk are aware the east coast was bombed.
        Not sure if the boat is still there …not even sure the museum is there anymore

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