Wedged in the sand at Saint Edmund’s Point in Old Hunstanton are the remnants of what was once the Steam Trawler Sheraton, a small vessel with a proud history of service in both world wars.
Built in 1907 in Beverley, the Sheraton was originally used as a fishing vessel and was designed to handle the often hostile conditions of the North Sea. However, the ship was built at a time when people were increasingly worrying about the expanding military power of a recently unified Germany, and the ship was soon assigned to a new line of work.
When war was declared in 1914, the Sheraton was requisitioned by the Royal Navy and took on the role of patrolling anti-submarine booms. During World War II, it was again used by the Royal Navy and armed with a 6-pounder gun. The ship was registered as an armed patrol vessel and served along the North Sea coast. After the war, the Sheraton was painted a bright yellow so it could be used as a target ship.
The Sheraton was anchored in the wash off Brest Sand until high winds caused it to stray from its moorings in April of 1947. The ship eventually settled on the beach at Old Hunstanton, where a large section of its hull can still be seen today at low tide.
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