Things to do in Walmer, Kent
The Walmer of today is a relatively quiet mainly residential seaside town. It has, however, played a significant role in English history.
Julius Caesar and his legions are said to have first landed on Walmer beach in 55BC. Ruins around the old St Mary's Church, in the original Walmer Village area, are linked to the Norman Conquest and the Auberville family who came with the invasion.
Following his quarrel with the Pope and fearful of invasion, Henry VIII ordered the building of three defensive castles - at Walmer, Deal and Sandown - in 1540. In the English Civil War, they were taken by Cromwell, within 13 days.
Today, Walmer Castle and its beautiful formal gardens are a major attraction for visitors. The official residence of Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports since the 18th Century, the building is now an English Heritage property and features a collection of memorabilia of the Duke of Wellington, of Battle of Waterloo fame and who made Walmer his home for 23 years.
As part of the long-distance Saxon Shore Way, Walmer's unspoilt shingle beach is especially popular with walkers and cyclists, who take advantage of an extensive hard-surfaced promenade. Excellent views of Channel shipping and the coast of France, the prospect of free summertime band concerts and a range of services on The Strand are among the other attractions.
Walmer's close neighbour, the town of Deal, provides excellent shopping and leisure facilities. For many visitors, exploring the picturesque rows of cottages between the High Street and the seafront are a special delight. Deal also has one of the south-east's few remaining piers, popular with anglers and said to be the same length as the Titanic!
Walmer has a voluntarily operated, community website which can be found at www.walmerweb.co.uk.
Description by Harold Wyld