Recent work by Wessex Archaeology in the Thames Estuary has been captured in two BBC programmes Thames Shipwrecks: a race against time. The programmes have been produced by Touch Productions and broadcast on BBC2 on Tuesday 26 August and Tuesday 2 September 2008.
The programmes examine a series of wrecks within the main navigation channels looked after by the Port of London Authority (PLA). The port is very busy, with major plans for expansion that include new dredging in existing channels. Since 2003, Wessex Archaeology’s Coastal and Marine section has been advising the PLA on how best to safeguard the archaeological and historical interest in wrecks that lie in these channels.
We have carried out an extensive range of investigations, including desk-based research, marine geophysical surveys, and archaeological diving. Each programme of work has been agreed with English Heritage and includes provision for reporting, handling of recovered material, and publication. Further archaeological work is being planned to accompany future wreck clearance and dredging. Here on Splash, Wessex Archaeology's Coastal and Marine website, you can find out more about our shipwreck investigations.