Monks Bay

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Monks Bay
Monks Bay, IW, UK.jpg
Monks Bay
Monks Bay is located in Isle of Wight
Monks Bay
Monks Bay
Location within the Isle of Wight
Civil parish
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
EU ParliamentSouth East England
UK Parliament
List of places
Isle of Wight
50°35′55″N 1°10′52″W / 50.59865°N 1.18103°W / 50.59865; -1.18103Coordinates: 50°35′55″N 1°10′52″W / 50.59865°N 1.18103°W / 50.59865; -1.18103

Monks Bay is situated on the southern coast of the Isle of Wight, England just to the east of the village of Bonchurch, it is around 13 mile (0.54 km) in length.[1] It has proved popular with visitors and is one of the natural highlights of the town, which has been the venue for such figures as Charles Dickens. It has also proved to be a good state for local flora to be established. The bay has a row of houses which look out to the English Channel.[2]


The area where the battle took place

Monks Bay is believed to be where French monks from Lyra Abbey landed from Normandy.[2] It was also the site of the 1545 Battle of Bonchurch being one of the three locations where 2000 French troops landed on the Isle of Wight coast. The result of the battle stopped the French attempts to seize the island as its own, making war for continued operations against England in the Italian War of 1542–46.[3] The area was notable as a venue for smuggling rings, where contraband would be landed here and then transported inland.[4] The bay was also used to legally disembark cargo from ships and fishing for local lobsters and crabs, once a major source of income, continues the area.[2]


Looking up the bay

The cliffs lining Monks Bay are made of Blue slipper clay and, as such, have been mixed with imported rock to prevent slippage, which would present a danger to the numerous walkers who pass along its shores every year. The bay has a sand and shingle beach above the high tide line, below is a large expanse of sandy beach.[4] In the early 1990s the sea defences in the area were upgraded, with a £1.4 million investment project and the transportation of 25,000 tons of Norwegian granite and 40,000 cubic metres (52,000 cu yd) of sand and shingle to stop aggressive marine erosion.[5] The bay gives its name to a type of Lower Albian ferruginous sandstone, formally known as Carstone, which is only found on the Isle of Wight.[6]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Google (4 September 2018). "Monks Bay" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "Monks Bay, Bonchurch, Isle of Wight". Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  3. ^ Goodwin, Bonchurch from A-Z, 7.
  4. ^ a b "Monks Bay". The Beach Guide. Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  5. ^ "Coastal Defence Schemes". Isle of Wight Council. Monk's Bay, Bonchurch.
  6. ^ "The Lower Albian Monk's Bay Sandstone Formation (formerly the Carstone) of the Isle of Wight: its distribution, litho- and bio-stratigraphy" (PDF). Natural Environment Research Council.