The name Walberswick is believed to derive from the Saxon Waldbert or Walhbert – probably a landowner – and “wyc”, meaning shelter or harbour. Once a thriving port trading in cheese, bacon, corn, timber and fish from the 13th century right up to World War 1, the village is now a bustling tourist attraction in the summer months and almost half the properties are holiday homes.
History about Walberswick
Over a thousand acres of heath and marshland around Walberswick are protected as an Area of Outstanding National Beauty (AONB). The seaside town of Southwold is within strolling distance along one of the many beautiful walks in and around Walberswick.
St Andrews Church is at the top of the village, the size of the ruins demonstrating how wealthy and large the Parish once was. In fact this was the village’s third church built at the end of the 15th century. Once prosperous, the church lost its tithes, became decayed and – would you believe it – had to be finally partly dismantled to provide for repairs and restoration to the south aisle.
Within Walberswick there are tea rooms, restaurants, two public houses, an art gallery, original crafts and gift shops. Fresh fish can be bought from Uncle Fred in Church Lane and from the harbour huts on the Southwold side of the River Blyth, which itself may be crossed either by a bailey bridge or the foot ferry that runs during the summer months.
A wide variety of flora and fauna makes Walberswick popular with ramblers and visitors alike. A major attraction for children in summer is crabbing by the harbour, where bridges and river banks become crammed with buckets, lines – and foul smelling bait! Every year, The British Open Crabbing Championship is held in Walberswick to raise funds for various charities, attracting entrants from around the world. To find out more about this fun event, visit the Crabbing Championship site.
Make 2008 the year you catch crabs in Walberswick! (Event date is 10th August).
Walberswick is a very beautiful village but the very factors that make it so popular with tourists, and indeed its inhabitants, have meant that – recently – management schemes have had to be put in place so that the village and its wonderful environs may be preserved for this and future generations.