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Layer Marney Tower near Colchester in Essex is the tallest Tudor Gatehouse in the UK, a magnificent building standing 80 feet tall within stunning grounds.
The Tower stands on the shores of the river Blackwater, and construction was initiated by Lord Henry Marney in the 1520s, a close friend of Henry VIII. The Gatehouse and ranges which were continued by his son after his death were supposed to be part of a grand palace, but construction ceased after his son's death. What stands today is a glimpse into the luxurious aspirations of a 16th century lord, now a family-run venue which opens its doors to the public at certain times of the year, and it still does not fail to impress.
Events run throughout the year, often on Bank holidays or weekends, are always a fun mix of historic and contemporary activities:
- Guided Tours of the tower are run by Sheila and Nick Charrington, the owners of Layer Marney Tower
- Plays, shows and re-enactments are often put on in the grounds, with costumes to make you wonder what century you have travelled to.
- Join in with lamb feeding in the grounds' farm
- Attend the village fete or fairs, as well as live music and concerts
- If camping's not for you, then try glamping in Layer Marney Tower Grounds. It's all the excitement and wildness of camping, with less cold showers and bugs.
Adults £10.00 per person
Children (13+ and students) £7.00 per person
- Disabled access
- Wheelchairs available
- On-site catering
- On-site light refreshments
- Picnic site
- Coach parking
- Dogs Accepted
- Coach parties accepted
Map & Directions
By car: Layer Marney Tower is a 20mins drive from Colchester town centre, off Maldon Road on the way to Tiptree.
Public Transport Directions
By Bus: The 75 bus from Colchester Town Centre will take you to Smythe's Green, a 20min walk from Layer Marney Tower. The nearest railway station is Kelvedon, which is 6 miles away.