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The Naze Tower, Walton-on-the-Naze

#2 of 7 in Things to do in Walton-on-the-Naze
History Museum · Landmark
The Hanoverian tower, more commonly known as the Naze Tower, is situated at the start of the open area of the Naze. It was a navigational tower, constructed to assist ships on this otherwise fairly feature-less coast. Visitors can climb the 111-step spiral staircase to the top of the 86ft tower for a 360 degree view of the beach and countryside. The Naze Tower features a museum with exhibits about the tower, the ecology and geology of the Naze, and the coastal erosion problem. The tower also features a private art gallery on six floors with changing exhibits several times a year, and a tea room. The tower is privately owned.
The present tower was built in 1720–21 by Trinity House, and was intended to work in conjunction with Walton Hall Tower to guide vessels through the Goldmer Gap. Towers at Naze and at Walton Hall are marked on a map of 1673 by Richard Blome, which in turn was based on a maps drawn up in the late 1500s. The present Naze Tower therefore replaced an earlier construction at a similar location. It was of particular benefit to ships using the nearby port of Harwich. Both the current Naze Tower and its predecessor had beacons or lamps lit at the top, providing an early form of lighthouse.
Over the years, the tower has had a variety of uses. In the eighteenth century it was a tea house, operated by the actress and aristocrats' mistress, Martha Raey. It was a lookout during the Napoleonic Wars and again during the Great War of 1914–18. In the Second World War it was used as a radar station, with its crenellations removed to accommodate a radar dish.
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The Naze Tower reviews

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275 reviews
  • great place to climb up through an art gallery on each floor which was really worth looking at. when you reach the top you can literally see for miles. I would suggest you make use of the excellent.....  more »
  • Reasonable to get in and friendly, helpful staff. 7 small floors with art displays (cafe on first two floors and tables outside). You climb a narrow metal spiral staircase and can stop on any of the.....  more »
  • Beautiful setting and peaceful environment. Lovely Tower built in 1720! Not possible for all visitors to climb the narrow iron staircases between floors within the Tower. From the viewing platform, I had a perfect clear view all around. I loved the arts and crafts presently being exhibited within the Tower. Such a quaint and quirky place for a tea-room. I loved my experience - recommended.
  • Great day out. Kids normally spend hours looking for fossils on the beach. Got a small collection of sharks teeth building up. The walk down to beach is not ideal with the pushchair. Nice little shop/cafe at the top to get buckets, spade and other beach stuff.

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