Project Aims

England's Shipping is a pioneering project funded by the Aggregate Levy Sustainability Fund, and in this case, administered by English Heritage. It aims to develop ways to make better use of the vast quantities of information that exists in the historical record about the movements and activities of ships in the past.
The project output is principally designed to support seabed developers, their archaeological advisors and heritage curators in assessing maritime archaeological potential on the seabed during the preparation of dredging work proposals. However, English heritage intend to make the information results and search facilities available to the general public through the National Monuments Records search facilities. Although the project is designed to run for two years, the gathering of information relating to England’s Shipping is intended as an ongoing task. The project is currently being structured around a series of case study areas drawn from concentrations in the pattern of dredging activities in English waters.
The project aims agreed with English Heritage are as follows:
  • Map the intensity and other characteristics of pre-1730 shipping in UK waters
  • Collate information about shipping patterns in an accessible format
  • Develop a database which can contain data reflecting the multiple facets of shipping related data
  • Map the data using a GIS format to enable the user to query the data
  • Provide an Outreach schedule to disseminate results
In order to meet ALSF requirements to engage the wider public in the importance of the marine historic environment and in order to facilitate access to the data, it is anticipated that the content of the digital atlas will be made available to users via the NMR. For further information on the planned outreach schedule, please click here or email a request to