Deadman's Island, the Isle of the Dead in Kent

Sometimes the names of certain places do not reflect the place, as I remember the disappointment of seeing the river Milk near Lake Como, which was not at all white. Deadman’s Island, or the island of the dead, is true to its name.

It is located at the mouth of the Swale, opposite the town of Queenborough on the Isle of Sheppey, off the north coast of Kent. The remains are believed to be those of men and boys who died of contagious diseases in floating prisons, moored off the island of Sheppey more than 200 years ago. They were almost certainly prisoners who had to be transported to Australia, when Australia was a kind of large British prison.

In theory, it would be a fascinating and macabre tourist destination, for a day trip, but visitors are prohibited because it is a designated bird nesting and breeding Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Rising sea levels, coastal erosion and lower tides have opened numerous decaying wooden coffins, skulls and bone fragments can be seen protruding from the 2 meters of mud that once covered the area. Maybe it’s a good idea, we can’t go, it’s the stuff of nightmares. 


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