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Coastal Journeys

Explore Britain’s coastline and beyond.

Folklore

Discover the superstitions, tales and other oddities of the British coast.

Fantasy Writing

Step into my upcoming coastal fantasy novel.

Latest blog posts

The Ankou – the most terrifying figure in Celtic folklore?

Before the Grim Reaper, there was the Ankou…

It is said that every graveyard in Brittany has its own Ankou. Not long ago, he was someone they knew. He was the last soul to die in the village that year. Doomed to dwell on this Earth a year longer, serving the graveyard as its guardian and collector of souls.

Prologue: the sea, a ceremony, a monster

It begins at the end. A young girl performs a strange ritual on the beach at night. Something evil stirs in the sea. Everything has aligned to bring her to this moment, her calling, her destiny.

The prologue to my upcoming novel is also its ending. The rest of the story tracks the forces which brought Morvern to this moment.

3 Essex Coast Walks To Send Your Imagination Wild

The Essex I know isn’t the world of TOWIE. Essex is wild, exposed coastline. It’s flat, endless salt marshes. It’s beaches dotted with pill boxes that have crashed dramatically from the cliffs. It’s witch-hunts, smugglers and Saxon Kings.

Start your own discovery of Essex with these three locations…

Hag Stones – Magic from the Coastline

Known across the British isles and Northern Europe as hag stones, witch stones, adder stones. It’s easy to see why our ancestors were perplexed by how hag stones could have formed naturally, and instead linked them to the involvement of the supernatural.

Find out what the rationale for their magic is, what they were used for and where to find them…

The Suffolk Coast’s Secret Island – Orford Ness

Formerly owned by the Ministry of Defence and used to test atomic weapons during the Cold War, Orford Ness is still a strange and secretive place whose ruined military buildings feel almost post-apocalyptic. What the site was actually used for was classified until the 1980s under the Official Secrets Act. I’m calling for a British remake of ‘Stranger Things’ set here!
Today you can visit the Ness and walk around this fascinating piece of living history…

‘And Tenar listened to the sea, a few yards below the cave mouth, crashing and sucking and booming on the rocks, and the thunder of it down the beach eastward for miles. Over and over and over it made the same sounds, yet never quite the same. It never rested. On all the shores of all the lands in all the world, it heaved itself in these unresting waves, and never ceased, and never was still. The desert, the mountains: they stood still. They did not cry out forever in a great, dull voice. The sea spoke forever, but its language was foreign to her. She did not understand.’

URsula K. Le guin, the tombs of atuan