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Activity 2: Using Aerial Photography

Aerial photography is very useful to the historian and the geographer. Below is a photograph of the Terringtons in north-west Norfolk.

You can answer the questions by either printing out this sheet and writing directly onto the photograph, or save the photograph to your own computer software and marking up your presentation using the software.


  1. Mark the orientation of the photo with an arrow for north. The church of Terrington St John is in the bottom left corner; the sea of the Wash is at the top. The shadows are lying approximately towards north-east.
  2. Try to identify the church of Terrington St Clement; the map on page 27 of Exploring the Norfolk Village will help, as will an Ordnance Survey map, or multimap.co.uk on the web. Mark the church on the photograph.
  3. Using the map on page 27 of Exploring the Norfolk Village, mark three key historical features directly onto the photograph.
  4. Because the photograph is an oblique aerial photograph, the scale varies across the photo. However, use another map to work out the distance from Terrington St John church to Terrington St Clement church, to help understand the size of the parish.
  5. Use Exploring the Norfolk Village and other research to write a short note on how land was gradually reclaimed from the sea. Two other aerial photos north of Terrington St Clement can be viewed here, together with the map on page 27, to help understand this process.

    Copyright note: Permission is given for use of these photos within schools and for personal use; they may not be used in publications or other web presentations without agreement from Poppyland Publishing.

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