Yesterday I had planned a local walk (with a bit of christmas shopping at various points) but the weather was soggily wet and dully dreary so I hopped on a train and headed to the coast.
I picked Deal – easy train journey, seafront, castle and dry weather. Well positioned between Dover and Sandwich.
A short walk from the station gets you to the High Street, then turn left and head north, turning right onto the seafront.
No crowds here on such a grey and chilly day, but there were plenty of fishermen. Turn right for a pleasant walk to the pier, also full of fishermen!
This is actually the third pier to bless Deal. The first was built in 1838, but financial problems limited its length to 250 feet as opposed to the planned 445 feet. Storms and sandworm soon attacked the pier and it was washed away in 1857, its remains being sold for £50. A new pier opened in 1864 and a reading room and salt baths were added in the 1870s. Sadly, in 1940 the Dutch vessel Nora hit the pier, destroying a large portion of the structure. Winston Churchill gave the army permission to demolish the pier to allow coastal guns a clear line of sight.
The current concrete version was opened in 1957 by the Duke of Edinburgh. It has suffered several bouts of weather damage, but is still there and has achieved international recognition as an angling venue.
After the pier, turn left and head south towards Dover. It’s a lovely walk and I’m sure the views would be fantastic if the sun managed to get through the clouds. But you can enjoy a peek at all the fishermen’s boats as you walk.
Once you’ve had enough walking, turn around and head back towards town and turn off Beach Street to visit the castle.
There are plenty of pubs if you need a drink, otherwise it’s just a short return to the station for the hourly train back to London.
Linked to Monday Walk
Copyright Debbie Smyth, 14 December 2015