MUNDESLEY is a pleasant village, in a delightful and salubrious situation, commanding an extensive view of the ocean, and sheltered behind by towering hills, distant 5 miles N. by E. of North Walsham, 7 miles E.S.E. of Cromer, and 20 miles N.N.E. of Norwich. It is said to derive its name from a stream which formerly ran through the village, called the Mun, and has increased its population since the year 1801, from 204 to 451, of whom 214 are males, and 237 females. Its parish contains about 500 acres of land, belonging to various proprietors, several of whom have neat residences here. The manor was anciently held by the Earls of Warren, and eventually passed to the Dukes of Lancaster, and so to King Henry IV., as Duke of Lancaster, and continues in the Crown at the present time. Mundesley, as a bathing place, ranks next to Cromer, and holds a similar situation on the lofty and broken cliffs of the ocean, which are here divided by a deep ravine, through which a small stream, after turning a corn mill, discharges itself upon the beach, which has a broad firm sand, unequalled by any on the Norfolk Coast. The sands form a delightful promenade, and is the frequent resort of invalid visitors, who here inhale the invigorating breeze of an unlimited expanse of ocean. The prospect upon the beach to the southward, differs in appearance from Cromer, by the land at Happisburgh jutting into the sea, and forming a promontary, which with the church and light-houses, has a very pleasing effect. The cliffs and neighbourhood of Mundesley afford many pleasant walks to the visitors, which command pleasing and diversified views of a rich agricultural district, covered with luxuriance and rural beauty. The coast in this locality is subject to the continual encroachments of the sea, and the high tides and gales in January 1845, did much damage, but was speedily repaired. About 30 years ago, the late F. Wheatly, Esq., (deputy vice admiral of the coast) erected a handsome mansion on the cliff, and to preserve it from the encroachments of the sea, built at the cost of £1000, two massive walls, forming an upper and lower terrace, the latter of which being 90 feet above the beach, commands a fine marine prospect. These walls were destroyed by the high tides and gales of February, 1836, but were rebuilt in the same year. In 1849, Capt. Cormick purchased the above, and has made and is still making further improvements. There are three good inns for the accommodation of visitors, the principal of which is Mr. Chas. Boughey's private and family Hotel, which stands in a salubrious situation contiguous to the cliffs, and has a fine sea view : the rooms are spacious, airy, and tastefully fitted up, and visitors will find every accommodation and attention. There are also several respectable lodging-houses, with bathing-machines, warm baths, an other necessaries for the comfort and convenience of visitors during the bathing season. Here is a lifeboat, and on the highest point of the cliff is a mortar for the preservation of shipwrecked seamen, with its carriage, &c., constantly kept ready for use. Here is also the coast-guard station, with a chief officer, (Jno. Douglas, H.C.S.) and five boatmen. There is one large and three small boats, the former is chiefly employed in assisting ships, and the latter in fishing for crabs, lobsters, cod, &c. In 1810, a very rare and curious fish was found on the beach called opha, or king fish. The Church, dedicated to All Saints, stands on the summit of a cliff above the village, and was formerly an imposing structure, but the tower is gone, and the chancel and part of the nave have long been in ruins. The remaining part of the nave has received a new gable, and in 1844 was new seated, and a gallery erected. A small organ was added by subscription, in 1853. The rectory, valued in the King's book at £8 9s. 9d., was augmented with £200 Queen Anne's Bounty, in 1800, and has 6a. 1r. of glebe, and a yearly rent of £170 awarded in lieu of tithes in 1838. The Queen as Duchess of Lancaster is patroness, and the Rev. Robt. Steele, of Paston, is the incumbent. The father of Archbishop Tenison was ejected from this living in 1640 for his loyalty to Charles I. A mission chapel was built here in 1843, at the cost of £300, of flint and brick, with a clock at the west end. The National and British schools were both established in 1844. The poor have 10s. a-year from the sermon acre.
Post Office, at My. Ann Cook's. Letters arrive at 11.45 a.m., and are despatched at 1.45 p.m.
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Mundesley watermill and postmill [Jonathan Neville]
Mundesley Archeology [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
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Parish Information [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
More on Mundesley [GENUKI-NFK]