WELCOME TO TOLLESBURY

Tollesbury is a historic maritime village located in the northern part of the Maldon District. Known as the village of 'Plough and Sail', it is an excellent place to explore for both walkers and wildlife enthusiasts. The village is also often used as a filming location due to its beautiful saltmarsh landscape. Productions filmed in Tollesbury include BBC's 'Great Expectations' 2011 mini series and ITV's 2017 emotional thriller 'Liar'.

HISTORY OF TOLLESBURY

The parish of Tollesbury has mostly been farmed to grow crops for thousands of years. The dominant crop is wheat for bread, animal feed and biscuits and the land is also used for extensive livestock grazing by various breeds, including British White and Beef Shorthorn Cattle, Shetland Sheep and Wiltshire Horn. During the later part of nineteenth century, Tollesbury was home to a large oyster fishing industry and during the early part of the twentieth century, many local jobs were involved in the construction of racing yachts.

THE CRAB AND WINKLE LINE

The Kelvedon and Tollesbury Light Railway, known as the 'Crab and Winkle' Railway, opened in 1904. It ran from Kelvedon to Tollesbury, with stations along the way at Feering, Tiptree and Tolleshunt D'Arcy. There were also stops at Inworth and Tolleshunt Knights.

The terminus station for the railway line was just inside the sea wall near the remains of Tollesbury Pier. The pier was taken over by the War Department during the Second World War and was blown up in 1940 as an anti-invasion precaution.

In 1951, British Railways decided that the line was unprofitable and it was closed to both passenger and freight traffic. The very last train had chalked on its firebox "Born 1904. Died 1951" and on the bunker was the warning "there be many a poor soul have to walk."


Tollesbury Railway Station 1904

TOLLESBURY AS SEEN ON ITV'S LIAR

Tollesbury as seen on ITVs Liar

Discover Tollesbury, as seen on ITVs 'Liar' which is a psychological thriller about a teacher and a surgeon who go on a date that has far-reaching consequences for the couple and the people around them as lies and secrets are revealed.

Joanne Froggatt, known from Downton Abbey, plays Laura Nielson who is a dedicated teacher unsure about getting back on the dating scene. Ioan Gruffudd, known from Fantastic Four, plays Andrew Earlham, a handsome and renowned surgeon whose son is a pupil at Laura's school.

The opening scene of the drama was filmed in Tollesbury and features Laura kayaking through the saltmarshes at high tide. There are several panoramic shots of Tollesbury's landscapes throughout the show. A crucial moment of the series was filmed in the dark boat shed and subsequent scenes showcase the sail lofts and Tollesbury Marina. 

The shocking finale to the series again features Tollesbury saltmarshes, this time at low tide and it was reportedly the toughest scene to shoot. Work has already begun on the second series, and it is possible that production will return to Tollesbury to resolve the cliffhanger ending.


MAIN WALKING ROUTES

Exploring Tollesbury's Footpaths

A SHORT CIRCULAR WALK TAKING IN A LITTLE OF THE SEA WALL, THE SAIL LOFTS AND THE MARINA AND RETURNING THROUGH TOLLESBURY VILLAGE (2.5 MILES)

Take the Blue path from the car park to join the Saltmarsh Coast Trail. From here, you can look over the Old Hall Marshes, and out to Mersea Island and Bradwell-on-Sea. Turn right to head towards the Tollesbury Marina, passing the sail lofts and sailing clubs. Circle the Marina and then take the path on the right, leaving the sea wall and heading back towards the High Street.

After a few hundred yards, you will turn left onto Mell Road, then turn right to pass through the fields towards Tollesbury Recreational Ground. Then take Church Street back into the centre of the village, passing St. Mary's Church. Take East Street and then head onto Woodrolfe Road to return to the start.

A CIRCULAR ROUTE PAST THE MARINA & AROUND TOLLESBURY WICK MARSHES NATURE RESERVE, ALONG THE SEA WALL WITH VIEWS TO BRADWELL & MERSEA (5.8 MILES)

Follow the Green path and head down Woodrolfe Road where you will pass the sail lofts and the marina. Continue through the gate and along the sea wall to the Tollesbury Wick Marshes entrance, ignoring the footpath heading off to the right. On your left, there will be views of the red lightship and Woodrolfe Creek. After a quarter of a mile, there is an option to turn right down the steps to follow the path to the Essex Wildlife Trust hide which provides an excellent view of the reserve's birdlife.

Continuing along the sea wall for a mile, you will be able to see the decommissioned nuclear power station at Bradwell-on-Sea, as well as the WWII pillbox at Shinglehead Point. After a mile and a half, you will pass the dismantled Crab and Winkle Railway, as well as the remains of the Tollesbury Pier.

Nearly half a mile from these remains will be a gate which marks the boundary of Tollesbury Wick Marshes. Seventy-five yards after passing through the gate, head off the sea wall by following the path to the right. Continuing along this path, you will go over the stile and turn left onto the track. You will pass Wick Farm after 400 yards and then Mell Farm will be on your left.

Along this track, you will pass through another stile and a kissing gate, and you will turn right onto the lane which soon becomes Mell Road. Continue for a third of a mile before turning right onto Woodrolfe Road and heading to your starting point.
Exploring the sea walls of Tollesbury
Tollesbury Landscapes

A CIRCULAR ROUTE TO THE SOUTH OF TOLLESBURY ALONG THE SEA WALL AND BACK TO THE START ALONG PRENTICE HALL LANE (APPROX 5.8 MILES)

Follow the Red path heading past Tollesbury School before turning right down Mell Road. Continue down the lane and turn left to follow the path onto the sea wall. You will pass through a stile and kissing gate. Follow the track for 400 yards, where you will see Wick Farm on your left. Turn right onto the track ahead, going over the stile, continue for 200 yards before heading right onto the sea wall.

Continue along the sea wall for two and a half miles before approaching Rolls Farm. You will see a track leading up from the marshes to the left of the farm, head off the sea wall and turn right onto the track. Passing the farmhouse on your right, continue along this lane for a mile and a quarter, following its bends. With another farmhouse on your left, follow the footpath on the right and continue for a third of a mile.

The footpath goes ahead into the trees, and the track will fork right. Follow the footpath, looking out for the footbridge on the left. After crossing, at the end of the field turn right and continue along the back of the houses, passing the playground on your right. Coming out of the field, bear right onto Church Street and continue until reaching the High Street. Turn right to reach your starting point.

A CIRCULAR ROUTE AROUND RSPB'S OLD HALL MARSHES (6.4 MILES AND 10.7 MILES AS EXTENDED WALK)

Follow the Orange path by heading down the High Street and turning right onto North Road. Instead of following the bend to the left, continue straight ahead onto the footpath which is on the right of the house. Continue along this path, going up the steps of the bank and going down on the other side. Take the path to the left when you reach the T-junction of paths, the path makes an immediate right. After 300 yards, ignore the path heading right to the sea wall, and continue for another 250 yards.

Going up the bank, continue left along the sea wall for over half a mile until you reach Old Hall Farm. Passing the farmhouse, turn left down the steps heading off the sea wall. When reaching the front gate of the farm, turn right along the track and later when you reach the junction of paths, take the path heading left. You will pass the outbuildings of the farm, and after the big barn on your left, turn right. Go through the gate before crossing the field. When you've reached the other side of the field, go through the gate and turn left to head onto the sea wall.

Continue right when you reach the sea wall and walk for nearly half a mile. At this point, you will reach another gate and you have the option to descend the bank, turn right and cross a stile onto a track marked 'short cut'. Or you can continue ahead for the extended walk which is an additional 4.3 miles. For the shorter walk, continue along the track for over half a mile until reaching the sea wall.

Turn right and continue for two and a half miles, retracing your route past Old Hall Farm and heading past the original path you took. Follow the sea wall, going past Tollesbury Marina before heading down the steps by Woodrolfe Road. On the left you will see the sail lofts. Turn right onto Woodrolfe Road, and bear left down East Street to reach your starting point.
Tollesbury

WHERE TO EAT

The Loft

The Loft

The Loft is a modern tearoom with a vintage feel, set in the beautiful working marina of the lovely coastal village of Tollesbury in Essex.

Tollesbury Café

Tollesbury Café

The Tollesbury Café is located on Woodrolfe Road, nearby the historic sail lofts. The café offers a range of food and drink, as well as a friendly service and warm welcome.

WHERE TO STAY

Ship Ahoy Cottages

Ship Ahoy Cottages

Ship Ahoy Holiday Cottages are an ideal base for a family holiday or short break where visitors can take advantage of fantastic walks around the isolated marshland coast, world class bird watching, a strong tradition of sailing.

Field View Cottage

Field View Cottage

Discover the real Essex at our recently built self-catering cottage in the peaceful village of Tolleshunt Major.

Five Lakes Hotel,Golf,Country Club & Spa

Crowne Plaza Colchester- Five Lakes

Set in 320 acres of unspoiled Essex countryside the newly refurbished Resort offers leisure facilities & two magnificent 18-hole golf courses. It also boasts an on-site Spa and two restaurants.

LOCATIONS NEARBY

Tolleshunt Knights

Tolleshunt Knights is the location of the luxurious Crowne Plaza Resort Colchester Five Lakes Hotel, home to the annual Essex Tourism & Leisure Show.

 
 
 
Goldhanger

There are some beautiful walks around Goldhanger and we are fortunate to have miles of sea wall stretching along the Blackwater Estuary as far as Maldon on one side and Tollesbury and beyond on the other.

 
 
 
Maldon

Visitors have been coming to Maldon district for a day out or holiday for many a long year. During the 18th century the growth in interest in saltwater bathing began to bring leisure visitors to Maldon.

 
 
Tollesbury

Along the coastline of the Maldon District, five Saltmarsh Coast Hubs are being installed as part of Maldon District Council's Dengie Gateway Project. Aside from Tollesbury, they are located in:

These inspirational visitor information points make the perfect starting point for your journey and provide you with engaging facts and details about this fascinating part of Essex's Discovery Coast.

Saltmarsh Coast Trail
Additionally, audio posts, signage and waymarking will continue to be installed. This work has been undertaken as part of the Maldon District Council’s Dengie Gateway Project funded by the Coastal Community’s Fund.
These inspirational visitor information points make the perfect starting point for your journey and provide you with engaging facts and details about this fascinating part of Essex's Discovery Coast.

Additionally, audio posts, signage and waymarking has also been installed. This work has been undertaken as part of the Maldon District Council’s Dengie Gateway Project funded by the Coastal Community’s Fund.
Saltmarsh Coast Trail

CONNECT WITH US

Maldon District Tourist Information Centre

Specially trained staff at the Maldon District Tourist Information Centre and the Burnham-on-Crouch Tourist Information Centre are on hand to offer expert and friendly advice to help you make the most of your visit. Situated in the centres of Maldon and Burnham-on-Crouch, the two TICs offer a selection of free guides and brochures to help you understand and appreciate this unique area.