Places to visit
The Beautiful town of Deal in Kent is believed to get its name from the Saxon “Dylle” meaning plain or level floor, because it lies almost level with the sea. It is a former fishing, mining and garrison town and was notorious for smuggling in the 17th and 18th century. Deal is now a beautiful quintessential English seaside town complete with pier and promenade offering a wealth of heritage, history, architecture and contemporary culture, mixed with vibrantly independent shopping, eating and drinking – it was awarded UK High Street of the Year in 2014.
The town falls naturally into a number of unique areas, each full of its own character. Within each area there is a range of tempting shops, pubs, places to eat and visitor attractions.
High Street Deal
Starting from the station this area includes all the popular High Street names located in a convenient pedestrianised area. You will also find many unique shops providing products and gifts that are just a little different. The High Street is lively in the evening too, with many pubs, bars and restaurants. Carry on north up the High Street for lots more independent shops in the conservation area.
Vintage, retro and antique thrill seekers will quickly lose themselves in the town’s array of
welcoming independent outlets. For its size, Deal boasts an astonishing number of shops selling expertly-sourced vintage goods including furniture, clothes, vinyl records, collectables, books and object d’art! The Saturday market is located in a public car park opposite the end of Farrier Street and includes an ever-changing array of stalls selling yet more pre-owned delights and local produce.
Carry on further north along the High Street towards the Town Hall and you will find decadent delis and cheese shops; fabulous fish mongers (as well as regular catches from boats on the beach); independent butchers supplying Kentish meat and poultry; artisan bakeries offering sweet and savoury treats and green grocers stocked with locally-grown produce. During the week on Wednesdays & Fridays the local produce market can be found in the Town Hall undercroft.
Farrier Street is located in the heart of Deal’s Conservation Area that stretches from South Street to North Street taking in the Astor Theatre in Stanhope Road, the Maritime Museum, St. George’s Church, the many independently owned shops at the northern end of the High Street – and St. George’s Passage – plus the historic houses in Middle Street as far as Alfred Square.
Seafront and Pier
Not only one of the last piers to be built in England but a variety of pubs & restaurants and a seafood stall snuggle on the seafront. Just past the fishing boats pulled up onto the beach you will find Henry VIII’s powerful coastal fortress.
Stunning views to the Goodwin Sands, where countless ships have met their fate. Climb the Timeball Tower for spectacular views.
Beyond the Seafront and Pier…
Beyond Deal Castle, following the seafront south along the Strand, you will pass the paddling pool, the Deal Memorial bandstand on Walmer Green, the lifeboat station, beach huts and sailing club before reaching the beautiful Walmer Castle and Gardens.
There are a variety of shops and cafes along the Strand facing Walmer Green where the bandstand is a memorial to the Royal Marines. During the summer months popular band concerts are held here and you can relax on the green with a picnic or sit outside one of the local hostelries. Admire the former Marines’ barracks & School of Music whose Georgian character has been preserved. The popular paddling pool for children 10 years and under, comprises changing rooms and toilet, a refreshment kiosk selling hot and cold snacks. (open summer only). Tel: 01304 375029.
Deal is the largest of the three great coastal forts of Sandown, Deal and Walmer, built by Henry VIII to beat the threat of the Catholic Alliance of France and Spain in the 16th century. The huge rounded bastions designed to deflect shots once carried 66 guns and have over 145 embrasures for firearms. Deal is a fascinating castle to explore with breathtaking views as you wander round the mighty battlements. Sadly Sandown Castle no longer exists, but you can still visit the site at the northern end of the seafront.
Walmer Castle & Gardens
This Tudor castle has been transformed over the years into an elegant home and residence of the Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports. Today visitors can see the principle rooms and enjoy the garden created for the Queen Mother’s 95th birthday. Another famous resident was the Duke of Wellington – see his bedroom with the simple camp bed on which he slept plus of course his famous boots!
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