West Mersea

West Mersea

infobox UK place
country = England
official_name= West Mersea

latitude= 51.7784
longitude= 0.9168
population = 7000 (est. 2006)
civil_parish= West Mersea
shire_district= Colchester
shire_county = Essex
region= East of England
constituency_westminster= North Essex
post_town= Colchester
postcode_district= CO5
dial_code= 01206
os_grid_reference= TM011127

West Mersea is a small town in the Colchester borough of Essex in the East of England. It is the larger of two settlements on Mersea Island, located south east of Colchester. The smaller settlement on the island is the village of East Mersea.

The West Mersea Yacht Club is a notable centre for sailing on the East coast of England. The town also boasts an RNLI lifeboat station. The town hosts an annual regatta, usually in August each year, known as Mersea Week.


Edward the Confessor granted the island to the abbey of St. Ouen in Rouen, France in 1046, and the Priory of West Mersea was established.

In July 1963, the lifeboat station was established next to the West Mersea Yacht Club, one of the first ten inshore lifeboat stations in the British Isles. Originally served by a D class lifeboat, this was replaced by a B class, Atlantic 21, lifeboat in 1972. In 1992, a new boathouse and slipway were opened by the Duke of Kent. In 2001, a B class Atlantic 75 lifeboat was stationed at West Mersea.

West Mersea Today

The town is served by a community centre, various shops, restaurants, small hotels, public houses, a petrol station, library, police station and several churches, including St Peter and St Paul, (Norman, Church of England), Roman Catholic, Methodist and the Evangelical Free Church.

West Mersea has a high proportion of elderly people, so many of the town's amenities cater for this demographic.

The island has a substantial number of caravan parks, and along with other areas of the Essex coast, the island attracts many visitors from London and the Home Counties in summer.

Mersea has a strong sense of community and tradition. A regular publication, the "Mersea Courier", lists many local activities. These include Pond Watch, The Night Sky, Christian Viewpoint and Speed Learn.

External links

* [http://www.west-mersea.co.uk Mersea Island Social and Business Portal]
* [http://www.westmersea.org West Mersea Town Council official website]
* [http://www.mersea-island.com Mersea Island Community Website]
* [http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.asp?compid=39872 The Priory of West Mersea]
* [http://www.rnli.org.uk/rnli_near_you/east/stations/westmerseaessex West Mersea Lifeboat Station]

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