Great Yarmouth is a traditional seaside holiday resort with bright lights and a festive atmosphere, there are lots of indoor and outdoor pursuits, many places to stay and a whole host of eating establishments.
But Yarmouth is much more than just a
seaside resort, its a place with a rich history and has
much to offer the visitor. The town sits at the mouth of
the river Yare and is surrounded by flat land and
waterways complete with old windmills and wind pumps.
The river is where the town derived its name from.
It began life as a small settlement on a sand bank, by the middle ages it was a town of some importance with a large herring fishing industry producing endless supplies of Yarmouth bloaters and kippers. The old quay side was filled with open sheds and smoke houses where the fish was prepared. Excavations in 1974 in Fullers Hill revealed large numbers of fish bones especially those of cod and herring, this find demonstrated Great Yarmouth’s dependency on the fishing trade, which began as early as the 11th century but which unfortunately stopped in the 1930’s.
It is well worth wandering around the
back streets of Great Yarmouth where you will find a
wealth of ancient buildings and sections of the
town wall which date from around 1300. The Yarmouth Rows
built around the town in the 1200s were deliberately
made very narrow some only 27inches wide so as to fit
within the town walls. Up until the 1700’s no building
was permitted between the wall and the sea. The rows
were originally erected east west across the narrow spit
of land that lies between the Town Wall and the River
Yare. If all the rows had been put end to end they would
have exceeded seven miles.