INTRODUCTION:    Postcards from the Edge
Old postcards of places now lost to the sea in
Suffolk, Kent, Yorkshire, Norfolk, Lancashire and Devon

I found the research for Lost to the Sea fascinating, so am starting this virtual scrapbook of things picked up along the way. Many surrounded me as I wrote: photos and quotes propped on shelves, tarmac chunks of lost road, sea charts and old postcards, a woolly rhino tooth trawled up from Doggerland.

Bookend: the woolly rhino tooth trawled up from Doggerland (30-40,000 years old)

Some of my favourites are the early postcards of places since lost to the sea.

Often faded to sepia, not only the buildings are now long gone, but also the ground they stood on (one is even postmarked 1904 by a post office that would later be lost in a storm).

Garden of Sleep, Overstrand, Norfolk – the church tower was lost over the cliff in 1916

I’ve begun gathering these remnants in the months before the book comes out, in part as it’s hard to let go of a project that’s obsessed me for the past three years.

Now, sorting through the piles of postcards and old booklets, beachcombings, cuttings and photographs, I am repeatedly drawn back into their stories.

St Brendan celebrating mass on the back of the seamonster Jasconius, 1621

While some made it into the book, many didn’t, although all helped conjure those vanished landscapes and communities. Over the coming months, I look forward to sharing some here.

Typeset pages for Lost to the Sea, with a few sea things picked up along the way – in places that one were land