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Alresford Tidal Crossing
TM063195 (1*) Tidal
Sent in by Matthew ??? (19/11/2004)

'This is marked as a footpath on the OS map. It can be crossed at low tide (preferably a LW spring) but the soft mud was about 60cm deep on a gravel base when I last crossed it a few years ago. Better to swim over at high water. There is a video on youtube of it being crossed by 4WDs in 2008, but they started by bulldozing a trench to the firmer base.' Anon







Arkesden (x2!)

TL474354 (1*) Irish Bridge
TL473355 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Kevin Miller (06/01/04) and John V Nicholls (09/08/2004)

'A simple ford with stream culverted - has a footbridge + a depth gauge when the 1st foot is buried in the verge. Rarely has water across the road. The second ford is similar to the other Arkesden example complete with six feet depth gauge and footbridge. It is piped and It is unlikely that the little stream (Wicken Water) ever makes it up to road level. Part of the stream bed had dried out when visited in August.'





Barrington
TL545186 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Hiroyuki & Kumiko Kasahara (10/04/2005)

'An Irish bridge with footbridge but no sign and no gauge..'









Black Notley
TL772204 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by John Walton (Image 1: 17/04/2013), Dave Cooper (Image 2: 10/08/2013) and Mike Kneller (Image 3: 11/08/2013)

'It came as a surprise to see water flowing across the road because Google Street View showed it sans water. There could be some pipes running under the road. If so I think they could be blocked. It is a normal tarmac road. The footbridge on the downstream side shows signs of not being maintained for sometime.' Link to geograph





Buttsbury
TQ659977 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Mike Carr (29/04/2003)

'Approached on a bend this concrete bottomed ford is surprisingly deep and fast flowing considering there had been no rainfall for some time. Quite a busy road and lots of splashing going on!' Image mouseover sent in by John Nicholls (04/02/2001)

'The local council have now taken to erecting “Road Closed” signs on this ford when it is running deep, presumably they have been sued by a few people who have got stuck in it! It can get quite deep at time and also very fast running. On occasion went through it at near bonnet height in Range Rover, worrying thing I went through it a few days later when it was only a couple of inches deep and there was a large tree trunk about 15 feet long and about 12 inches diameter wedged against the fence, obviously washed down when it was running fast!' Aubrey Thomas







Clavering (x2!)

TL472319 (2*) Suitable for All
TL467317 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Chris Jones (12/05/2003)

'The eastern ford (Image 1) is in a picture postcard location in the centre of the village surrounded by thatched cottages. It's concrete-bottomed and is almost an Irish Bridge. Has a depth gauge, but it's hard to tell how deep the water would get in flood.

The western ford (Image 2) is on a quiet wooded lane on the outskirts of the village, with a setted bottom and adjacent footbridge. Only a couple of inches of water in it at the time of our visit after a long dry spell. There's a handy parking spot nearby visible in the background of the photo.'





Coggeshall
TL847229 (1*) Restricted Access
Sent in by Michael Bardell (04/01/2017)

'A simple ford on Robin’s Brook a tributary of the River Blackwater where Robinsbridge Road becomes Ambridge Road which, thanks to the A120 Coggeshall Bypass, is now banned to motor vehicles. The small stream is culverted.'





Cooksmill Green
TL630061 (1*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Mike Carr (29/04/2003)

'It is midway along a byway known as Colley Bridge Lane and as such is only suitable for 4x4 and trail bikes. The photo is of the ford after a long dry period. The ford in flood conditions is completely muddy and impassable, except for the very brave!'





Coopers End
TL459351 (2*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Andrew JD Smith (27/10/2004)

'The ford is on a byway and is about four inches deep. The byway generally has a good firm surface.'





Cressing
TL794205 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Michael Bardell (04/01/2017)

'A simple ford on an unnamed tributary of the River Blackwater just off Church Lane, Cressing. The small stream is culverted with just one 9 inch pipe and has a footbridge, it often has water across the road in winter months.'





Danbury
TL771038 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by John Nicholls (08/06/2003)

'Concreted road base extending on the south side with kerbing for about 25 feet. Normally six inches of water but can rise to a substantial depth after heavy rains. Fairly recent steel footbridge with wooden planking for pedestrians.'





Dedham
TM058335 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Graham Hardy (04/07/2005)

'About 6 inches deep, the road is a dead end so you have to come back through it.'





Farnham
TL485244 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Kevin Miller (24/01/2004)

'On a single track road off Mill Hill this ford is not signed and is approached by blind bends so could be a bit hazardous in flood conditions. Bourne Brook enters at one end and flows along the road for about 20 metres. Has a footbridge at one end, a footpath on the bank and a standard depth gauge.'







Finchingfield
TL685328 (1*) Restricted Access
Sent in by Adam Abel (25/01/2004)

'Not many people realise these days but the "pond" (its the river really) at: Finchingfield is actually a ford, as shown in the picture on the link below taken turn of the century.'

www.roger.beckwith.co.uk





Good Easter
TL617122 (4*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Mike Carr (29/04/2003)

'Quite a steep drop down to this ford after passing a lovely quaint cottage on the left. The ford is quite deep even in dry conditions and has a natural bottom. Its about 45 yards long and as can be seen by the tide mark on the depth sign is normally just under 3 ft deep. A footpath runs along the top of the bank and a small footbridge takes pedestrians over the river.'Image mouseover sent in by David Cooper (06/02/2004)

'The 'quay side/river bank' signs on approach to this ford imply there is a fair drop off into the ford, but it's only slight and only at the cottage end. On the day we visited, the water was up to the 0.5m mark and was approx 30m in length. This is a great ford and well worth a visit but realistically only passable with a 4x4.' Andy Jeff





Great Dunmow
TL637207 (3*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by David Cushing (11/06/2003)

'Situated at one end of a byway this ford is only suitable for 4x4 vehicles. Although only about 12" deep it has an uneven gravel bottom and steep muddy approach and exit. Byway is very rutted and closed temporary partway along for a new bypass construction. Well worth a visit by those into green laning.'

'Until recent maintenance to the byway here, the eastern side of the ford was extremely steep and required commitment through the ford to exit it if you were travelling west to east and good care on entering if you were travelling east to west. However, today the steep rise has been removed and subsequently has broadened the ford. Ordinarily there is up to a foot of water in the ford, but today after not a lot of rain the water was between two and three feet deep easily coming over the bonnet of my Land Rover. With a firm heavy gravel bottom, the ford is passable with a 4x4 only.' Andy Jeff





Great Easton
TL603252 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Kevin Miller (07/02/2004)

'On main road through the village with ford signs in both directions although it very rarely has water across it. Has a separate footbridge and a depth gauge.'





Great Leighs
TL731156 (2*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Mike Carr (21/04/2003)

'A small basic ford with concrete bottom and nearby footbridge for when in flood. Quite a heavy build up of algae on the bottom which makes it slippery by motorcycle.'

'This ford at the south end of Paulk Hall Lane is in need of repair. I did not discover the footbridge reported to exist in 2003.' Patrick Arnold





Great Sampford
TL642352 (1*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Kevin Miller (Image 1: 26/06/2004) & Andy Jeff (Image 2: 31/10/2012)

'This is next to the new bridge in Gt Sampford on the main B1051. The track and ramps are bare earth so I imagine in winter it must be impassable! 4x4 required as the exit/entrance ramps are very steep.' (Image 1 in 2004)

'Whilst the description of this ford on WetRoads is accurate, the image is somewhat out of date and the star rating is wholly inaccurate! The ford at Great Sampford is located on a marked byway to the side of the bridge that carries the B1051. When we arrived, we found that it had clearly not been driven for some long while. Tall overgrown weeds and brambles on the south approach to the ford made access difficult and only one set of horse hoof prints could be seen in the soft mud on the approach. The hoof prints did not emerge on the north side! The river was quite fast flowing as it narrowed from the bridge to the ford and gave no idea as to its depth. A recce in waders with a large stick revealed that the water was about 3 or so feet deep (even though there had been no significant rain in the preceding days) with quite a steep bank both in and out of the river, however the bottom and sides appeared to be good and firm. An approaching visitor to the nearest house (who had by now blocked our escape route) asked "Your not really going to drive through that are your?", and we could understand his disbelief. Having taken all necessary precautions, one of us did indeed drive through, but it must be noted that this is a challenge even for the most capable 4x4. When in flood or even after moderate rainfall, the depth and speed of flow is likely to make this ford impassable to all! The ford was the highlight of the day and if slightly wide would have more than deserved a 5* rating and I for one will look forward to our return.' (Image 2 in 2012)





Great Waltham
TL689139 (2*) Suitable for All
Sent in by David Cushing (11/06/2003)

'Pretty country ford with footbridge, markers and depth gauge. About 1 car length long and 8" deep with hard bottom. More of a water splash, suitable for all traffic.'





Haygreen
TL605006 (1*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Mike Jeffreys (14/03/2003)

'This one is near Blackmore. It has a wooden walkway so that it is still passable (by pedestrians) during floods'





Horsey Island Tidal Causeway
TM234233 (3*) Tidal
Sent in by Matthew ??? (Image 1: 19/11/2004) and Jonathan Gurney

'Readers of Arthur Ransome's 'Swallows & Amazons' books will recognise the setting of "Secret Water": this is the place where Titty and Roger get trapped by the rising tide.

Questionable vehicle access. The 1:50k shows the final part of the approach road on the mainland side to be a public footpath only.'





Hullbridge Tidal Crossing
TQ809956 (4*) Tidal
Sent in by John Nicholls (10/06/2003)

'Only suitable for 4 X 4 due to soft silting up of river bed. Photo (about half tide) shows view towards Hullbridge. The other side of the ford is the roadway by the white building. The crossing is marked ford on O.S. Explorer map.'

'Thofe who diflike a Ferry, may go by Woodham, and crofs the River when the tide is out, at a Place called Hull Bridge, but where the Bridge has been down many Years. At low Water it is very fhallow; but this Way is five Miles round; or they may go ftill higher, and crofs the Water at Battlesbridge, and fo to Rayleigh.'
Taken from Daniel Paterson's "A New and Accurate Description of all the Direct and Principal Cross Roads in England and Wales" (Ninth edition of 1792)






Langley Lower Green
TL437343 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Andrew JD Smith (27/10/2004)

'At the time of the photo there was about 2 inches of water in this ford. Its an Irish bridge and is usually dry. There are warning signs, a depth gauge and a footbridge.'





Little Baddow
TL759072 (5*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Mike Carr (21/04/2003)

'The road meets the river at a bend and the ford continues through the river for approx 50 yards, before the river turns again and the road exits. Can be very deep when in flood - have seen it just below the railings in the photo!'

'This ford is in a 1975 film called "Expose" aka "Trauma" aka "The House on Straw Hill" starring Udo Kier and Linda Hayden (look on IMDB under filming locations). It is filmed in summer time (still quite deep) and they drive through it in a Rolls Royce!' Rick xxx





Little Bardfield
TL662318 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Kevin Miller (28/02/2004)

'An Irish bridge on Cook's Lane which is a single track road to Great Bardfield. The River Pant runs underneath and only very rarely gets across the road. Interesting features? No less than 4 depth gauges and an arched concrete footbridge which is almost (but not quite) a work of art.'





Littley Green
TL696167 (3*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Mike Carr (21/04/2003)

'It is on a byway and as such is only suitable for trail bikes and 4x4s. The water level is about 2-3ft which is the standard depth here without rainfall for some time. The drop off this side of the river is quite steep and the bottom of the river is littered with loose rocks/bricks etc to keep things interesting.'





Mallows Green
TL474262 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Andrew JD Smith (27/10/2004)

'This is a small part-time watersplash at a road junction. It is usually dry but occasionally the water overflows (as in the picture, when it was only an inch deep). It has a footbridge and depth gauge but no signs.'







Matching Green (x2!)

TL535095 (1*) Irish Bridge
TL534099 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by John Nicholls (Image 1: 23/04/2005, Image 1 mouseover & Image 2: 23/02/2009)

'Leaving south from Matching Green is Watery Lane. There is a sign along the lines of "Ford - unsuitable for motor vehicles" (so that was a challenge even though I only drive a Fiesta) and as a further discouragement, no arm on the fingerpost down the lane. There are two Irish Bridges and some evidence that they do flood over the road after rain. At the south end (Little Laver) of the lane is a normal signpost with arm towards Matching Green but no indication of the fords. So you can travel north in a motor vehicle but not south!!!'

'To describe this ford as a 1* would be reasonable most of the time. However, It's easy to see that with a bit of heavy rain, this would be an excellent and extremely long ford. The culvert that flows the whole length of the bend in the road was three quarters full on a day with not too much recent rain and it was easy to see the potential of this ford.' Andy Jeff

'I have been through this when in full flood, it was well over the bonnet on a Discovery in places and about 100ft long.' David Wilcox





Millers Green
TL591078 (3*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Jim Barnard:

'The ford is actually on a track, not a metalled road, possibly also not a public road. The track is a turning off Dukes Lane (which connects Willingale and Birds Green) and the track itself connects Dukes Lane and Miller's Green. On the OS maps of the time it was shown as a track ('white road') but on the current maps it is shown as a footpath, something may have changed over the years... The ford runs along the track for some distance (much like the 'mother of all fords' you mention on your site). Measured on the map it could be for nearly 400 metres. I met this ford for the first time back in the mid 50s when doing the hike for my Boy Scout 1st Class badge; the hike included Dukes Lane. A few years later in the late 50s I drove through the ford during a night-time car rally; I recall a considerable, potentially sump-cracking drop from the tarmac of Dukes Lane onto the track. I was the navigator in the car; I seem to remember that the splashing through/along the ford seemed to go on forever.'

Details and images from Mike Carr (29/04/2003):
'Millers Green ford does still have public access as an ORPA. It is only realistically passable by trail bike and I consider this a 5* and I've ridden it for many years, both in the condition it is here and with the ford in full water. Once you start there is no turning back, its very narrow with steep banks and is approximately 600 yards long!





Northey Island Tidal Crossing
TL871057 (3*) Tidal
Sent in by David Cushing (10/02/2004)

'This is situated in Chelmer and Blackwater estuary. The island and road to it is national trust and can be visited by appointment only. Causeway can be crossed at low tide but is impassable when the tide is in. Pleasant walk to it along the seawall from Maldon.'





Nounsley
TL795101 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Nicholas Woollett (22/04/2003) and Mike Carr (21/04/2003)

'It has a very slippy concrete bottom with a very shallow entry & exit. The water wasn't very deep but it was flowing surprisingly fast considering the recent dry conditions'





Osea Island Tidal Crossing
TL897069 (3*) Tidal
Sent in by David Cushing (10/02/2004)

'This is situated in Chelmer and Blackwater estuary. The road to this is private but can be accessed on foot of pushbike The island is as far as I can remember is also privately owned. Causeway can be crossed at low tide but is impassable by anything apart from a boat when the causeway is covered. Pleasant views of the estuary from the sea wall either side.'





Pilgrims Hatch
TQ587963 (1*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Martyn ? (19/09/2009)

'To be honest its not really much of a ford anymore unless we've had really heavy rain over a few days, the lane itself is passable by pretty much any vehicle as its a gravel track, but the council have altered the ford with a concrete pipe and dug out a channel, its not big but its deep and narrow enough that you wont get through it in a normal car, you can see the gouge my Range Rover put in the bank with the towbar as the back grounds out on the way through it.'





Potton Island Tidal Causeway
TQ949902 (3*) Tidal
Sent in by Matthew ??? (19/11/2004)

'Potton Island tidal is privately owned (by the military) and hence a little difficult of access, but it is occasionally still used by the MoD when they need to take very heavy loads onto Potton Island, i.e. too heavy for the bridge.'







Radwinter (x2!)

TL604378 (2*) Suitable for All
TL605381 (2*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Kevin Miller (24/01/2004)

'Water Lane is aptly named. The first ford is on a 90 degree bend. A brook flows under a footbridge, out across the road and into a culvert opposite.

The second ford is similar to the first. A brook flows under a footbridge, across the road and into a culvert opposite.'





Rushley Island Tidal Crossing
TQ962884 (2*) Tidal
Sent in by Matthew ??? (19/11/2004)









Shalford (x2!)

TL734281 (1*) Irish Bridge
TL730290 (2*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by John Nicholls (Image 1:06/09/2003) and Adam Abel (Image 2: 25/01/2004)

'The River Pant in normal flow goes under through four large culverts. Always a good flow on this river but no idea how often it gets to true ford status. (Image 1)'

'The second ford is on a road signed as unsuitable for motors from east and no motor vehicles from west. No idea why as apart from being a tad bumpy it was fine. (Image 2)'





Shalford Green
TL704273 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Kevin Miller (20/12/2003)

'This is on an unclassified single-track road marked as "Unsuitable for Motors" at both ends. A brook enters at one end, runs along the ford for about 20 yards and then exits at the end nearest the camera. Has a concrete base which is in better condition than the road! You can drive through in a car quite easily but bear in mind that the road goes through a farm and gets really muddy.'

'Since the original description on 'WetRoads' the road has been resurfaced and would appear tho be raised over the ford and hence there was no water across the road. After heavier rains however the stream by the side of the road would flow across giving a good splash to passing motorists.' Andy Jeff





Sible Hedingham
TL792332 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Kevin Miller (01/02/2004)

'This is on a single-track road (signed as being liable to flood) past Hull's Mill Farm. Has a footbridge, a depth gauge and the water flows across a concrete base. Picture shows the ford in flood (depth gauge shows just over 3 feet of water which was entirely believable so I didn't drive the Carina through it!) - normally the ford has water across it at all times of the year and anything can drive through it.'







Steeple Bumpstead (x2!)

TL677410 (2*) DECEASED!
TL691418 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Chris Jones (12/05/2003)

'An intriguing location adjoining the B1057. The concrete-bottomed ford is very wide, probably 4 car lengths, and carries not only a road into the village but a private drive into a house. There's a footbridge alongside. Dry at the time of our visit, but when it's wet, pulling out on to the main road must be a slippery prospect after rain.Image mouseover of flood sent in by Kevin Miller (06/01/04)'

Ford 2 sent in by John Nicholls (06/09/2003)
'Located about a mile downstream of the big 30 yard example just off Blois Road (B1054) at Broad Green, Steeple Bumpstead. Normal flow is taken by 3 X 24 inch pipes. The "big one" in the village has 4 X 12 inch. Marked as ford on Explorer map sheet 210.'





Stisted
TL800242 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Michael Bardell (04/01/2017)

'A simple ford on an unnamed tributary to the River Blackwater at Water Lane, Stisted. The stream is culverted and has a footbridge, it only occasionally has water across the road.'





Sturmer
TL706433 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Kevin Miller (25/01/2004)

'This is the River Stour which at this point marks the county boundary of Essex and Suffolk (the photo is taken from the Suffolk side!). This is on a single track road off the A1017 and leads to Wixoe. It has all the usual ford warning signs and doesn't usually have any water across it but it can quickly become impassable in flood conditions. Water level was just under the concrete surface of the ford when the photo was taken.'







Terling (x2!)

TL768150 (4*) Off-Roaders Only!
TL765155 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Nicholas Woollett, Simon Watling (Image 1: 02/03/2003) and John V. Nicholls (Image 2: 17/02/2004 & mouseovers: 26/01/2009)

Another East Anglian whopper, 45 paces long and very wide. The level post said 2 ft last Friday and I can believe it although the bottom is gravelly and fairly smooth. There is a BUT and this is the very high step at the North end which would be dangerous for all except 4WDs etc. The lady who lives in the house adjacent told me of the hapless East Anglia Electricity van driver who damaged his brand new van and lost his job. She also told me of the school bus driver who drove through, could not get up the step and was forced to reverse all the way back through it! (Image 1)'

'Didn't really feel the 'step' into the ford and noted that although the marker at the north end said 2 feet, the marker at the south end indicated much lower than this! I'd say the northern end marker was more correct! Overall great ford!' Andy Jeff

'Just up the road from Terling's "big one", this is just a small stream. Drops over a step weir into three pipes. Local informant said that it does come up to ford status after heavy rains (Image 2).'

Web Video
http://www.rockcrawler.com/trailreports/essex/





Thaxted
TL605317 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Paul Fennessy (19/02/2005)

'This is situated on Watling Lane (part of the long distance Harcamlow Way and is shown on the Landranger as an "other route with public access" but the lane becomes a bridleway just after where the picture was taken). Its an Irish bridge and the water level is usually way below the road surface - only becomes wet in flood conditions.'















The Broomway Tidal Byway
TR005895 (3*) Tidal
Sent in by Nicholas Woollett and David Cushing (Image 1: 26/07/2004)

'The Grandfather of tidal roads stretches for about 6 miles and is called the Broomway. This is a very historic track and probably completely out of bounds to the general public because it runs along the sands of Foulness Island an MOD site. When I last spoke to the Security people they were definitely not keen for anyone to try the route.'

Info from John Nicholls:
'Public access to the most southern point of The Broomway is via a narrow lane from the MOD gate house down to Wakering Stairs (Image 1). The Broomway is, for the most part, in a military danger area and in all cases the potential traveller should telephone 01702 383383 prior to going on the tidal road. Local knowledge should be sought and good summer weather be chosen. Even experienced locals have lost their lives getting caught by the incoming tide in poor visibility. The furthest northeast end of the road (beyond Rugwood Head, Eastwick Head and on to Fishermen's Head, a distance of about four kilometres) is now regarded only as a bridleway.'

There is an old photo here. This also says that before the bridges were built in 1926, this was the only way to Foulness. The name comes from the broom branches placed to mark the way.

Info from Darren Thipthorpe:
'just a quick note to say that me and the guys have been out on the Broomway lots of times, on enduro bikes. If the M.O.D are using it for operations the road leading to it is closed off with a barrier. We normally follow the tide out about a mile off shore then just blast along following the shore line, you can come onto foulness island via the marked roads on O.S maps. The M.O.D police guys are well friendly. its a funny feeling standing a mile off shore in 6" of water for as far as you can see!' Write up from Jonathan Gurney (22/07/2013):
This is the second longest subtidal road in Britain. I travelled the full 6-mile length of the Broomway on the 'Broomway Bus', a 14-seat converted spraying tractor belonging to a farmer based on Foulness Island, used for occasional tours of the Broomway and birdwatching expeditions. It was a fascinating ride (just as well at £23 per seat). Anyone wanting a ride or a guided walk along the Broomway (usually booked up months in advance) see www.wildlifetrips.org.uk

Some points to note for anyone planning an independent visit:
- the whole of Maplin Sands and Foulness Island are a military training area. The area, including the Broomway, is normally closed to the public on Mon - Thur all day and Fri mornings, and may be closed at any other time at short notice.
- there is no publicly accessible route from Foulness Island to the mainland except the Broomway, so anyone who reaches the Foulness end of the Broomway but cannot get back due to the tide must either stay there on the byway on Foulness until the next low tide or try to persuade the MoD security staff to allow them to use the private military road off the island. I'm told this can lead to being treated as a suspected terrorist, spy, or industrial spy and of getting stranded on purpose as an excuse to look around.
- the Broomway is no longer marked by the 'brooms' (posts) which used to mark it's route. There is no physical sign of it's route at all on the ground once away from the causeways. In many places our tractor's tyre marks had disappeared by the time we made the return trip. Following the route poses quite a navigation problem and would get very difficult if poor visibility set in due to sea mist or heavy rain. There are some rows of posts dotted about on the Sands (range markers) but they are not on the Broomway: do not head for them.
- going off the Broomway route to either side is dangerous due to quicksands near the Foulness shore and in re-filled shell holes. The Sands are used for artillery training and have been churned up by explosions: the craters get re-filled by loose sand which can be very soft. Because of soft sands between the Broomway and the shore the only safe vehicle access points are the causeways out to the Broomway at Wakering Stairs on the mainland and at Rugwood Head and Fishermans Head on Foulness. During the trip I was on, a teenager who wandered off the Rugwood Head causeway sank up to his knees in a soft spot and it took two hefty men to pull him out. I would not recommend a solo expedition.

Image 2 - Wakering Stairs
Image 3 - Rugwood Head
Image 4 - Fishermans Head
Image 5 - Maplin Sands
Image 6 - Broomway Bus






The Strood Tidal Road
TM014150 (2*) Tidal
Sent in by Mike Green & Michael Jefferies (15/08/2003)

'The Strood Tidal Road is located 6 miles south of Colchester and carries the busy B1025, connecting the Sovereign Ring wearing Essex mainland with the bleak Mersea Island. The Romans built the first causeway to their retirement camp on Mersea Island and local legend has it that a ghostly Roman Centurion still roams the present causeway at night, although you can apparently only see his top half due to the raising of the road over the years!

At low tide, the Strood resembles a huge expanse of mud with only a tiny bit of water in it, hence the sniggers at the “Try your Brakes sign” located half a mile down the road. At high tide however, the centre section of road can get hydrated sufficiently to guarantee the occasional car engine casualty when somebody tries to chance it by driving straight through it! (I did this ten years ago in an old Vauxhall Chevette and had a very narrow escape!). Essex County Council have made many murmurings over the years about raising the road above the high water level or even building a bridge, but spirited local resistance from the islanders makes this look unlikely. Mind you, their counter plan to put Piranhas in the Strood is unlikely to succeed either!'

www.beenthere-donethat.org.uk





Wendens Ambo
TL512362 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Kevin Miller (06/01/04)

'This ford has the stream culverted beneath it - water level is usually about 2 feet below the road surface + I've never seen water across the road. Has a concrete footbridge + a Ford sign at the junction with Royston Road.'





White Notley
TL786184 (3*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Nicholas Woollett (16/02/2003)

'It is not terribly interesting but has a hard bottom and is paralleled with a narrow metal bridge built by the local Crittall company better known these days for double glazing.'





Writtle
TL672074 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by David Cushing (11/06/2003)

'Hard bottomed Irish Bridge. No water flowing over the road most of the time but quickly becomes impassable in heavy rain. Has footbridge and signs. Writtle is well worth a visit for its picturesque pond and village green if not for its ford.'









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