Tuesday, 4 December 2012


The name of Broadstairs’ famous Viking Bay is an historic fraud, according to a local author.

Writing in the new issue of THANET WATCH magazine, author Norman Thomas argues that one of Kent’s most picturesque beaches was named Viking Bay as part of a Cold War “stunt”.

The beach was first named Viking Bay in 1949 after a Danish team sailed a replica Viking ship from Denmark to Broadstairs, to celebrate the coming to Kent of two legendary Dark Ages warriors, called Hengist and Horsa.

But these warriors, points out Mr Thomas, were not Vikings.

He said: “Whole generations of tourists have come to Broadstairs thinking that Viking Bay is near where the Vikings first came to Britain and that’s why it’s called Viking Bay.

“This is nonsense. The people who were supposed to have come this coast in 449 AD were Jutes. It would be 400 years later before Vikings came to this area.”

“The Jutes were a Germanic tribe – but of course in 1949 it wouldn’t have been acceptable to celebrate a German invasion of Britain,” said Mr Thomas.

According to Mr Thomas, the story is even more tangled than this – and at its heart, he says, is the cold war alliance between Denmark and Britain,

“My research suggests that the voyage of 1949 was really a gesture against the Soviet Union – a cold war stunt.”

Mr Thomas attacks the history of Broadstairs as told to the tourists.

“The real history of this bay is far more interesting than the totally bogus one that the tourists are told,” he said.

The full story of the Great Viking Bay Hoax is told in this month’s edition of Thanet Watch, available in local newsagents across Thanet. For more information ring Norman Thomas on 01843 604253.

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