Shed of Stilts (Watch House), Paglesham

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Shed of Stilts (Watch House), Paglesham' page
Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Shed of Stilts (Watch House), Paglesham' page
Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Shed of Stilts (Watch House), Paglesham' page

By Nathan Bell

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Early 1960s

This old structure has long since disappeared. It was probably in the area where oyster beds are behind a chain link fence with a newer brick & concrete shed and two derelict barges rusting into the mud. This is just beyond where the remains of Charles Darwin’s HMS Beagle are thought to have sunk into the mud and, the second picture, an old postcard, “Paglesham, Oyster Pits”, does show a large hull in an appropriate position, on the left. The “Shed on Stilts” position would have been just off the postcard picture, to the left. Old maps indicate a Watch House in this sort of position…

The third picture of the Oyster Beds at Paglesham is more recent but the old railway carriage and the broken down shed are no longer on the shoreline.

This page was added by Nathan Bell on 08/05/2012.
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The oyster industry at Paglesham was marketing several hundred million oysters per annum by the time of the 1st World War. These huts were used to keep watch over the oyster beds against theft which was a real danger at night and specially at weekends.

By Sue Horncastle
On 01/01/2013

The final resting place of the Beagle is now known to be at Paglesham due to recent academic research. A booklet giving information about this, written by Ann Boulter, is available at the Plough and Sail, Paglesham. There is a detailed article on the subject in course of preparation for this website. Note: this comment has been republished and now displays out of normal date order amongst the other comments on the page

By Sue Horncastle
On 10/05/2012

If it's of interest, the story is also mentioned in my book 'Essex – History You Can See' under 'Paglesham'.

By Robert Hallmann
On 23/05/2012
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