About Heacham and Hunstanton
The name of Heacham arises from its 12th century overlord Geoffrey de Hecham, and its river, the Hitch. Over the years the word and spelling have become Heacham meaning "The Home in the Thicket". Heacham has existed as a settlement since before the Romans, indeed, evidence has been found here of passing centuries as far back as the stone age. Heacham's many amenities include several pubs, restaurants and takeaways, a doctor's surgery, vets and pharmacy, as well as many shops.
Heacham Beach was once wild and unspoilt, visited only by local residents who had to cross the Heacham River by a wooden footbridge to gain access. Cocklers, shrimpers, and local fishermen with nets and rods have also harvested at Heacham Beach for more than 100 years. In 1887, as a result of over-subscriptions from parishioners in celebration of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee, a new bridge was built. It marked the beginning of the development of the beaches and a recreation and holiday area. The area in front of the bridge became the centre of the beach. As one faces the sea, the stretch of beach to the right was designated North Beach and to the left, South Beach. Heacham Beach has long since been a magnet for fans of kites, jet skis, kitesurfing, windsurfing and other outdoor activities.
The Church of St Mary the Virgin is the most ancient building left in the village. It dates from 1230 and is Norman in design. In the cupola on the tower hangs a bell (circa 1100), the oldest in East Anglia, and the seventh-oldest in the country.
Heacham - the sunset coast line, one of the only places to watch the sunset over the sea on the East Coast. The difference in sunset times for the longest and shortest days of the year is about 2½ hours. In Heacham it is 5½ hours! So when it is a great sunset (which is very common in Heacham) you have hours to enjoy it. Often aided by a beautiful moon rising from the East.
The village of Heacham has long been associated with the legend of Pocahontas and the first English colony in America, Jamestown Virginia. The story goes that Pocahontas married a Heacham man, John Rolfe, who sailed to the New World a couple of years after the first wave of colonisation in 1607. Some years later, after their marriage, Rolfe brought Pocahontas to Heacham to visit his family and this is recalled by a plaque in the village church and, bizarrely, a preserved mulberry tree stump in the corner of the local council’s parks department depot.
Heacham golf course has been designed to incorporate the natural features of the area of important landscape it lies within. With two rivers and 4 lakes to negotiate the course is designed in a Florida resort style with views of the Wash. See more on our "things to do in Norfolk" page.
Norfolk lavender farm Heacham has almost 100 acres of lavender under cultivation within the gardens and a must see if you're on the Coast of Norfolk. The attraction is open all year round with the lavender in bloom during the summer with guided tours of the lavender distillery to show how the oil is produced that goes into the world famous perfume and toiletries. From the gift shop you can purchase many products made with the farm's lavender oil and much more. See more on our "things to do in Norfolk" page.
Heacham's poppy fields are a spectacular sight to see in season and is a huge hit with photographers from all over. You cannot fail to be wowed by the sea of red spread across the Norfolk fields.
Throughout the year, watersports enthusiasts visit Hunstanton and Heacham to take advantage of ideal local beach conditions to pursue water ski-ing, canoeing, kite surfing and wind surfing etc.
Hunstanton's most interesting, unique feature is its lovely, multi-colored cliffs. These stand about 60 feet high, and are the town's main tourist attraction.
The Hunstanton Land Train runs regularly through the summer months carrying visitors from Hunstanton Prom up to the lighthouse and back again.