Old boat and rail track on a shingle beach
Coast & seascapes,  England,  Sunday Stills,  Travel galleries

Gallery: at the edge of England

For those who like a coastline to be photogenic rather than picturesque, and who are more interested in exploring than lying on a beach, Dungeness is close to perfect. But don’t come here expecting to swim, to eat ice cream and to make sandcastles. Dungeness is for fishermen, walkers, photographers and lovers of the wild and windswept. Oh, and it just happens to be Britain’s only desert .

Scattered almost at random across the shingle banks are a number of houses. Some are little more than weathered shacks, others more sizeable, and a few are quite attractive, up-market looking homes. Many of the more down-to-earth properties are owned by local fishermen, with their boats pulled up on the shingle alongside. Others are the homes of artists who are drawn by the unique light and atmosphere. Some of the smarter ones are holiday homes, some of which can be rented.

Of most interest to me, photographically, are the older, weathered houses. Many of these are made from old railway carriages, abandoned here when the old South Eastern Railway Marshlink line stopped serving Dungeness in 1937. You can still see the track in places too; part of it has been repurposed as a freight-only line to serve the power station.

Along with the fishing boats, random bits of disused railway track and assorted rusting metal objects whose former use I could only guess at, the weathered old houses and shacks made for some very satisfying photography; I spent a happy hour or so wandering around to get the most interesting viewpoints.

Posted in response to the Sunday Stills photo challenge. Terri asked us to post images illustrating a Weathered Look, showing the effect of time and the elements. I hope you’ll agree that Dungeness, on the very edge of England, is a perfect spot in which to capture such images.

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