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Flatford Dock

Flatford Dry Dock & Barge.


Flatford Dry Dock & Barge. As a preliminary to renovation by the National Trust, Flatford Dock was excavated and a barge, which was scuttled in it during the first world war was recorded and partially preserved by the National Trust in conjunction with the SAU. The barge was "in moderately good condition and provides a wealth of information about construction techniques" (S1). The River Stour has been a navigation between Sudbury and Mistley from the early C18 to the first world war. "The barges on the Stour always worked in pairs, the Flatford vessel is a 'rear barge'- a previously recorded barge from Sudbury was a 'front barge'; together they are the only remaining example of the vessels used on the navigation" (S1). The excavated lock and barge are closely comparable to John Constable's painting 'Boat Building at Flatford', which illustrates the same lock in use circa 1800. Further details in parish file and further plans, notes and photographs are held at Ipswich (R1). Preliminary excavation account (S3) and postcard of Constable's painting in Parish file. Apparently similar dry docks survive slightly to E as depressions (S2). October 2006: the restored dry dock structure was recorded prior to further reconstruction work - details in (S4). 

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