Salhouse Broad - a History
We are constantly learning more and more about Salhouse Broad, gaining new photos brought in by locals and visitors alike. I am fascinated by the history of my work place, so strive to piece this puzzle together.
If you have any old photos or memories that you would like to share, please get in touch.
So, where to start? A timeline perhaps...
900s - The site was dug for sand and gravel.
Middle ages - The Broads flooded by a local river. The broads were used for commercial transport until the road network became dominant.
Farmer owned Salhouse Broad & Broad Farm - Reggie Youngs?
Early 1900s - first part of the Broad bought (as far as one could walk into the Broad, up to the knee) by the Cator family.
1926 - the rest of the Broad is conveyed to John Cator.
1982 - The Broads Authority undertake a 21 year lease to manage Salhouse Broad
2003 - Management returned to Henry Cator who manages the Broad to this day.
The Old Wreck
The old wreck which lies at the mouth to the Old Wherry Cut, and is gradually dying away, is thought to have been a Submarine Chaser, or Gun Boat. It is likely that is was a Motor Launch order from the USA and built by the Canadians, delivered between 1915-1916 in the batch ML1-550.
After WWI, the ML was bought privately by a local character known as 'The Major', and used as a pleasure craft. From the video we can see that in 1953 that it still had the name Water Witch written on the bow.
At the outbreak of WWII the boat, along with others was requisitioned by the Ministery of Defence and moored on Salhouse Broad with arrangements of posts and wires to deter German seaplanes and spies from landing.
Following the Second World War, any similar boats that were in good enough condition, were taken to boat yards for repairs. Water Witch was not so lucky and remains on Salhouse Broad today.