The magnificent knapped flint tower of this church rises from the enigmatic ruins of a much larger church. All that remains of the once grand 15th century church are the ruins of nave, chancel and south aisle, and of course the tower although that was built for an even earlier church on the site. But what ruins!
Within those magnificent ruins is a smaller church with a beautifully simple interior that reveals memorials to fishermen lost at sea, a mosaic of medieval glass set in a south window, and altar cross and candlesticks of beach driftwood.
How old is it?
There was an ancient thatched church out by the marshes and another on the current site before an increasingly prosperous port community decided to replace it with a much grander building in 1493, though retaining the tower of 1426.
It prospered for 50 years but was robbed of its tithes by Henry VIII and finally, in 1695, the roof lead, timber and bells were sold off to pay for a much more modest church within the old walls which is what you see today. Take a look at our young person’s guide to find out more about this compelling story.
The church is open for visitors every day and, walking among the ruins, you can still get an idea of the grandeur of the original church with its four altars and lavish flint decoration under the old east window.
The best way to visit is on foot or by bike. Walberswick church features on all three trails in the Angels & Pinnacles orange Church Heritage leaflet No. 1.
- A leisurely walk will take you into the village of Walberswick with its foodie pubs and Parish Lantern teashop Go a step further for the sandy beach and crabbing by the harbour, loved by families in summer
- A longer walk will take you to Dunwich via some of the best coastal walking in the Suffolk Coasts and Heaths
- The foot ferry to Southwold harbour opens up a whole new experience with seafood platters on offer at the simple restaurant of the Sole Bay Fish Company
Food and Drink Available Locally