Flapping sails, tingling halyards and launching trolleys fill the harbour, which is now only navigable to small pleasure crafts. Many of the houses here have incredibly long gardens which end at the staithe itself. Bikes, boats and windsurfing boards can be rented in the village. In Old English a 'staithe' is a bank, or landing stage.
This area is known for its shellfish
with tons of oysters and mussels grown in the waters
between the staithe and the sea. Lots of the locals sell
fresh mussels from their houses and a walk down to the
harbour takes you through whelk sheds where your feet
will crunch on the myriad of discarded shells from these
busy sheds. Brancaster
which is just over a mile further down the coast has
wide sandy beaches for those amongst you who wish to
build sand castles and for the golfers there is the
Royal West Norfolk Golf Club, an eighteen hole course.
The village itself has a couple of
shops, a garage, a pub/inn The Jolly Sailor and a local
restaurant The White Horse, both of which serve good
food. At Brancaster Staithe there is The Fish Shed,
which sells fresh and smoked fish, they also make meat
and fish pies, pate, potted shrimp, marmalade, jams and
fruit crumbles, has basic grocery items and vegetables.
For a further range of shops there is Burnham Market which
lies three miles inland.
William Hotching was a smuggler who ended
his days as an honest man selling fish. He had an inn
called the Hat and Feathers in the 1860’s overlooking
the marshes. He used to smuggle tobacco, amongst other
things, which he used to hide in his cellar. When he was
planning a daylight smuggling operation he would arrange
for bowling competitions at the White Horse pub so that
all the villagers would be occupied. He was eventually
caught by the excise men at Kings Lynn and spent six
months in prison. When he finished his term he decided
to go straight and spent the rest of his life as a