Text contributed by Sarah and Angela; pics and map by Sarah
After the excessive heat over the previous few days, the weather was forecast to break for the weekend to become ‘less warm’ and, as it was raining when we left Ipswich, I was concerned it had broken a little too much! However, as 11 people gathered outside Southwold Pier in order to start this walk, it appeared the rain had thankfully cleared itself away.
We headed south along the promenade towards the River Blyth, following it inland past the Sailing Club and Harbour to cross the bridge over the River Blyth. We crossed Walberswick Common, past the remains of Horsey Pump and headed towards Dunwich River. The route then took us over heathland before a well-earned lunchtime stop in the welcome shade of the ruins forming part of Walberswick Church, a lovely little church which is still in use. As we ate our sandwiches we realised we were not alone – the church was being prepared for a wedding that afternoon and we benefited from a potted history from the curate (perhaps a little eager to move us on before 2pm!).
He explained why part was in ruins, observing that work to complete stabilisation was completed around 18 months ago. The church was originally built as a much bigger edifice, but the costs to maintain it became too much. Therefore, materials were sold off, as required, to raise funds, and the remainder used in order to build the much smaller church there today.
After lunch we set off again, heading back towards the bridge over the river. We followed Buss Creek towards Reydon Marshes, and skirted around Southwold with occasional views of the lighthouse in the distance before dropping down into the town and finishing back at the pier amongst the crowds of holidaymakers. Ice creams were the order of the day, plus the chance to walk along the pier to see the “Water Clock” and a Punch and Judy show (updated to include the unmistakable figure of Donald Trump!).
Thanks to everyone who came – and thanks to Sarah for organising a lovely walk on a glorious summer’s day.