The Closure of the Wade at St Lawrence

When Ramsey Island became mainland

The Wade was a creek that used to run from the River Blackwater to Steeple close to the border with St Lawrence.

The Creek was quite large being up to a quarter of a mile wide and 20 feet deep at high tide.

A small section of the creek flowed back into the River Blackwater to the east making the land now known as St Lawrence into an island called Ramsey Island.

In 1705 William Hoskings was lord of Stansgate Manor when John Plaster was presented to the court for Shutts and Kidells (Fish traps)in the Wade.

Despite a commercial use hinted at by the local nickname of Brick Creek the Creek was a source of flooding on the rich farmland at St Lawrence and Steeple.

Several  attempts were made to block the Wade including the Stansgate Farmer Robert Laver and landowner James Trussel.

These proved unsuccessful due to the large volume of water and width of the inlet.

In the early 1900's the entrance was finally closed and a sea wall erected.

The Wade and the surrounding marshland was finally drained leaving a small stream with a string of lakes and a small area of sea marsh.

The result was that Ramsey Island was no longer an island and the development of St Lawrence.

Economic benefits included a reduction in flooding, reduced costs in maintaining a sea wall for the length of the wade and an increased acreage of farmland.

Visitors to the site can no longer notice changes on the sea wall but inland the course of the wade can clearly be made out with the meadows and marsh proving a great habitat for wildlife.