Happisburgh on Thames
During the earliest periods of human occupation, the geography of Britain differed considerably from that of today. Britain was not an island but a peninsula of the north-west European continent.
There was no English Channel, but a precursor
of the river Thames flowed, far to the north of its present valley,
reaching the North Sea at Happisburgh. This land bridge was
the point of entry into Britain for migrating animals, including
humans. The following maps show how the geography of Britain
evolved during a period of about half a million years, culminating
with the most extensive period of glaciation, known as the Anglian,
about 450,000 years ago.
(900,000 years ago)
A reconstruction of the geography of Britain during the period of human occupation at Happisburgh Site 3.
Early Middle Pleistocene
(700,000 years ago)
A reconstruction of the geography of Britain during the period of human occupation at Pakefield in Suffolk, England.