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Coltishall

A Broadland village near the head of navigation of the River Bure and known as the gateway to the Norfolk Broads

An Introduction to Coltishall

Coltishall Common
Coltishall Hall
Coltishall Church
Coltishall Staithe
Coltishall Hall

Coltishall
is a busy riverside village. It is sometimes referred to as the "Gateway to the Broads" as it marks the start of the navigable portion of the River Bure. The staithe is someway out of the village itself and it captivates visitors with its picturesque setting, riverside pubs, a grassy field and is overlooked by fine properties. The thatched village church of St John is within walking distance of the staithe. The residential part of the village is nearly a mile further along the road, with plenty of old buildings housing shops and buisnesses. The Bure Valley Railway has a station in Coltishall, but this is a long walk from the staithe! Coltishall is also famous for its RAF base, situated about a mile north of the village. This RAF base has a long history and is where Sir Douglas Bader was once a squadron commander. Sadly, flying operations ceased at the end of March 2006.

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Coltishall Map

Belaugh Map Aylsham Wroxham Norwich Belaugh Coltishall
Aylsham Wroxham Norwich
 

Coltishall Guided Picture Tour


We start our tour at Coltishall Common, which is a great place to moor your boat. In our view this must be a contender for one of the most picturesque spots in the whole of Broadland. The staithe has a large area of grass that sweeps down to the River Bure and is an ideal place for a picnic or a game. Adjacent are 2 pubs, both with restaurants, and a post office/shop.
Cotishall Common
The staithe at Coltishall Common
New Rising Sun
Rising Sun pub at Coltishall Common
Kings Head
The Kings Head at Coltishall Common
New Rising Sun
Coltishall Post Office and Shop
Coltishall Common
Coltishall Common
Coltishall Staithe
Coltishall Staithe and river

Coltishall Hall overlooks the staithe from the other side of the road. It is a lovely building dating from 1871, now split into luxury flats.
The Andaman Orchid is a great Thai restaurant, situated a 5 minute walk from the staithe, opposite the church..
Cotishall Hall
Coltishall Hall
Andaman Orchid
Andaman Orchid Restaurant

Only five minutes walk from the staithe is the thatched parish church of St John the baptist, which stands in large grounds. The church is built of flint, with a square tower and finished off with a thatched roof. It is usually open, so you can take a look inside and you will find some lovely stained glass, font and colourful prayer mats!
Coltishall Church
Coltishall Church of St. John the Baptist
Stained Glass
Stained glass window inside Coltishall Church
Church Inside
Inside the church at Coltishall

The residential part of the village grew up in 16th to 19th centuries, when Coltishall became a thriving commercial centre, with many malt houses. At this point in time, the River Bure was fully navigable to Aylsham, and Coltishall became an important stopping point on the Aylsham to Great Yarmouth route. Coltishall even had its own ship building yard and many wherries were built here. As the river silted up and with the development of the railway, Coltishall's importance declined as a river trading route. Many of the buildings in the centre of Coltishall however, reflect this once great importance and you will find some magnificent properties, many of which still house businesses of one sort or another.
Coltishall Shops
Coltishall Pharmacy
Coltishall Property
Property in Coltishall

Housing in Coltishall
Coltishall Londis
Londis Stores in Coltishall
Coltishall Cottages
Cottages in the centre of Coltishall
Coltishall Business
Grand buildings now home to several Coltishall Buisnesses

Crossing over the river bridge, we come into Horstead. The Recruiting Sergeant is a well know local pub and restaurant, serving regional food. Just around the corner is Coltishall Lock, where you will find a path taking along the River Bure back towards Coltishall. The path makes a nice short walk, perhaps to help digest a lunch or dinner from the Recruiting Sergeant!
Recruiting Sergeant
The Recruiting Sergeant Pub
River Bure
The River Bure at Coltishall Lock
Coltishall Lock
Coltishall Lock
Coltishall Bridge
Coltishall Bridge
Coltishall River Path
The path along the River Bure from Coltishall Lock

Not far upstream from Coltishall, towards Aylsham, you will find Buxton Mill. The mill was built in 1754 by William Pepper, a merchant living locally. The building was constructed of white painted brick and weatherboard with a pantile roof and has been a prominent landmark in the village for many years. It closed as a working mill in 1970 and has now been split up into flats.
Buxton Mill
Buxton Mill on the River Bure
Buxton Mill
Buxton Mill
Buxton Mill Flats
The entrance to Buxton Mill

Also in Buxton and Coltishall, you will find the Bure Valley Railway. The line runs from Aylsham to Wroxham and has train stopping points at both Buxton and Coltishall (the station is a fair walk from Coltishall staithe). This narrow gauge railway operates steam and diesel services during the summer months.
Bure Valley Railway
Steam train on the Bure Valley Railway at Wroxham
Wroxham Station
Wroxham station on the Bure Valley Railway

Destination
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Coltishall summary of what to SEE and DO

Have a picnic on the staithe at Coltishall Common
Enjoy a drink from one of the 2 pubs on Coltishall Staithe
Investigate Coltishall parish church and its interior
Explore the shops and buildings in the centre of Coltishall
Walk the riverside footpath from Coltishall Lock
Enjoy a pub lunch, dinner or Sunday roast at the Recruiting Sergeant
Find Buxton Mill and walk along river path
Enjoy a ride on the Bure Valley Railway towards Aylsham or Wroxham

Our Verdict

Coltishall Common is a lovely place to moor for the night, but it is a little walk into the main village of Coltishall. However, there are plenty of facilities within a 5 minute walk of Coltishall Common, including 2 pubs, a restaurant and shop.
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Recruiting Sergeant

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NORFOLK BOOKS AND MAPS


This is a good and comprehensive Norfolk guidebook

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If you like circular walks to a pub, this is the book for you!

A really useful paper map for Norfolk Broads holidays
 
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