During the last ice age the bank was part of a large landmass connecting Europe and the British Isles, now known as Doggerland. It has long been known by fishermen to be a productive fishing bank; it was named after the doggers, Old Dutch fishing boats especially used for catching cod.
The bank extends over approximately 17,600 square kilometres (6,800 sq mi), with its dimensions being about 260 by 97 kilometres (162 by 60 mi) long by broad. The water depth ranges from 15 to 36 metres (49 to 118 ft), about 20 metres (66 ft) shallower than the surrounding sea.
The bank is an important fishing area, with cod and herring being caught in large numbers. It gives its name to the Dogger sea area used in the BBC Radio 4 Shipping Forecast. Several shipwrecks lie on the bank.
Dogger Bank has been identified as an oceanic environment that exhibits high primary productivity throughout the year in the form of phytoplankton. As such, it has been proposed by various groups to designate the area a Marine Nature Reserve.
Geologically, the feature is most likely a moraine, formed during the Pleistocene. At differing times during the last last glacial period it was either joined to the mainland or an island. The bank was part of a large landmass, now known as Doggerland, which connected Britain to the European mainland until it was flooded some time after the end of the last ice age.
The 1931 Dogger Bank earthquake took place below the bank, measuring 6.1 on the Richter scalem and was was the largest earthquake ever recorded in the United Kingdom. Its hypocenter was 23 kilometres (14 mi) beneath the bank, and the quake was felt in countries all around the North Sea, causing damage across eastern England.
South of Dogger Bank is the Cleaver Bank.
- Battle of Dogger Bank (1696), during the Nine Years' War on a French fleet under the command of Jean Bart was victorious over the ships of the Grand Alliance.
- Battle of Dogger Bank (1781), during the War of American Independence, a Royal Navy squadron fought a Dutch squadron on 5 August 1781.
- Dogger Bank incident, during the Russo-Japanese War, Russian naval ships opened fire on British fishing boats in the on 21 October 1904, mistaking them for Japanese torpedo boats.
- Battle of Dogger Bank (1915) and Battle of Dogger Bank (1916), during the First World War, saw battles in and between the Royal Navy and the German High Seas Fleet.
- In 1966, the German submarine U-Hai, a German Type XXIII submarine sank during a gale. 19 of 20 men died, one of the worst peacetime naval disasters in German history.
In January 2010, a licence to develop a wind farm on Dogger Bank was granted to Forewind Ltd, a consortium of developers. Originally projected to develop up to 9 gigawatts of power as part of a planned nine zone project of 32 gigawatts, the plan was later scaled down to a 7.2 gigawatt installation in agreement with the area's owner Crown Estates.
Construction was scheduled to start around 2014 at the earliest, but has been repeatedly postponed.
- Stride, A.H (January 1959). "On the origin of the Dogger Bank, in the North Sea". Geological magazine 96 (1): 33–34. doi:10.1017/s0016756800059197.
- "The Dogger Bank - A Potential MPA" (PDF). WWF. Retrieved 15 Oct 2008.
- Spinney, Laura (25 Apr 2013). "Searching for Doggerland - National Geographic Magazine". Ngm.nationalgeographic.com.
- Duff, Joel (24 Feb 2014). "Fishing for Fossils in the North Sea: The Lost World of Doggerland – Naturalis Historia". Thenaturalhistorian.com.
- Laister, David (19 Feb 2014). "Dogger Bank wind farm zone to be scaled back by 20 per cent". Grimsby Telegraph.
- "BBC News - New UK offshore wind farm licences are announced". news.bbc.co.uk. January 8, 2010.