Loddon has an attractive marina where there
is an information board that shows photographs of the area in bygone days.
Here you can hire a river boat for a day or longer. The staithes were once
the unloading point for wherries, which carried all manner of loads
including grain, timber and coal up and down the river, until before the
last war. Loddon was once a commercial port, and there are old warehouses
with Loddon Watermill standing to this day on the bridge over the River
Chet. This Watermill is mentioned in the Domesday Book and is the
earliest recorded building in the town.
Down stream there is a pleasant walk between the river bank and grazing marshes. After about a quarter of a mile you will find Pye Mill with its pleasant picnic area. At Pye Mill there is a two tonne oak block that has been turned into a story and acts as a signpost for visitors to a town shopping trail. It shows a mother who wants to be sure that her family have ample provisions before they cast off. However, as she had overloaded the shopping bag there is now a trail of items they she has dropped along the footpath into town. The items which were dropped by the sculptured shopping party can be found as way markers as you walk through the water meadow to the Loddon's shops.
The town centre has been designated as a
conservation area and is made up of many period properties. Loddon House
and Farthing Green House were both built in the early 18th century; with
the latter receiving considerable additions in later years. The village
has a number of shops including a community stores and a
Loddon has an imposing 15th century parish church and inside is an interesting small room reached by a spiral staircase located within the thickness of the wall. In pre-reformation days, the priests from Langley Abbey may have used it as overnight accommodation as within three miles of the town are 13 medieval churches.
There are miles of local footpaths around Loddon including The Wherrymans Way a 35 mile route which follows the course of the River Yare between Great Yarmouth and Norwich. The name comes from the wherry a large cargo-carrying barge whose elegant black sails were a once common sight on these waters. You can walk or cycle the route or explore parts of if by train and river bus. There is also a good circular walk around Loddon (7km 9 miles) which takes you past the old Watermill, the church and Hales Hall, details of all these walks can be found at the local Tourist Information Office located in the town.
Other walks have way markers along their routes, with information panels and audio points. It is possible to do a river walk that runs the full length of the Chet from the Staithe to Hardley Cross for those who enjoy spotting wildlife or simply enjoying the countryside .
Hardley Flood nature reserve is about half a mile along the river bank an important Ramsar site (Ramsar sites are wetlands of international importance designated under the Ramsar Convention) which provides an essential wintering ground for thousands of wildfowl and is always teeming with birds and wildlife. A bridge that spans the Hardley Floods links a footpath from nearby Chedgrave to the furthest end of Hardley Flood.
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