Photo: Joanna Thomson

Doing your own research

For those of you interested in doing your own research there are plenty of resources and websites available.  We suggest you start with our website, see what you can find and take it from there.

For shipwrecks, we would recommend Richard and Bridget Larn’s ‘bible’, the Shipwreck Index of the British Isles, Volume 2 which was published in 1995 following a commission from Lloyds Register of Shipping.  The contents of this enormous and wonderful book have now been put online and can be obtained on a fee-paying basis from  Though there is nothing quite like leafing through the pages of a huge book to make one feel like a real academic!

Historic England’s Historic Environment Research records is another very useful information source with some 650 records related to the Goodwin Sands and The Downs.   These include military aircraft crash sites, although the list of these is not exhaustive and we have supplied HER with details of a further 20 or so obtained from the Kent Battle of Britain Museum.

For wreck locations, search, another fee-paying service and the Government’s Hydrographic Office (UKHO), which is free.   Try asking local fishermen where they snag their nets, as it is likely this will be the site of a wreck and is in fact how many of the famous Goodwins wrecks have been found.   Local divers are a fount of information though be warned they are apt to be rather protective of their knowledge, which is frustrating to say the least!

Once you have done your research and written a paper on it, do share your results with the public via the free online portal OASIS V hosted by the Archaeological Data Services.  Finds can also be registered with the Portable Antiquities Scheme as well of course as with the Receiver of Wreck.

Sharing your new-found knowledge will not only bring a personal reward but will enhance our understanding of the fascinating world of maritime archaeology. You never know, it may even bring you some international recognition!

Our peer-reviewed report on Dover Harbour Board’s bathymetric (sea floor) modelling of the Goodwin Sands has now been published.  You can read the report here.

Research Documents 

Marine Conservation Zone
RAF and Naval losses in both World Wars
South Goodwin Light Vessel Disaster
HMS Stirling Castle