Longis Bay is a beautiful crescent of sand on the south-east of Alderney. It was a haunt of my youth for gathering bait and fishing. I don’t get to Alderney now, but when I do, I love to walk the beach from west to east, and then along the tidal causeway to Raz island, home to one of many Victorian fortifications, and an excellent fishing spot. Strong tides ensure good food supply, and so there is a diverse fauna in the rock pools. Longis is pronounced ‘Lon-jee’.
The low structure above the sand is a German WW2 anti-tank fortification (the whole island was heavily fortified). There is a deep pleasure in seeing this structure used as a windbreak by sunbathers, with any protruding metal supports used as handy hooks for beach towels, and cans of drink keeping cool in gun ports. If only we could repurpose all the mechanisms of war. You can find the remains of a Roman fort near the western approach to Longis Bay.
The structure on the horizon at the right of the painting is Fort Houmet Herbé, another of the island’s Victorian-era forts.