Discover: Mersea Island

Mersea Island

Bromans Barn is on Mersea Island which is off the North Essex Marshes near Colchester. The area is famous for its oyster beds and wildlife and if you want to get completely out of the city atmosphere you could hardly find something more opposite and so close to London.


The cottage is adjacent to Cudmore Grove Nature Reserve and there are lovely walks through this area and down to the beaches where the seals sunbath and tidal birds make their wonderful calls. You can walks for miles and miles exploring the shoreline which varies from cliffs to mudflat wildernesses, it is a very different and visually intriguing landscape.

A small Ferry runs from the beach landing over to Brightlingsea on the other side of the estuary, there you will find some lovely old pubs, cafes and historic sailing boats

Please check out this website created by Dougal Urquhart the Ranger at Cudmore Grove, it gives a real insight into the uniqueness of this place and the love that people have for this area: Mersea Wildlife

The owners of Bromans Barn provide bicycles for you to explore the island or you can even bring your own Dinghy, Kayak or surf board.

Food and Drink

The waterfront/anchorage at West Mersea offers a variety of restaurants and places to eat. Mersea is famous for its Native Oysters, which have been praised by both Jamie Oliver and Rick Stein and these can be sampled in ‘The Company Shed’ and ‘The West Mersea Oyster Bar’. There is also the Coast Inn on the sea front.

In East Mersea is ‘Seafood at Dawn’ 01206 383253 which is getting rave reviews and we musn’t forget The White Hart Inn for a great meal.

Mersea also has its own vineyard and both wine and beer are brewed on site and available to supplement a fish supper.

A fantastic seafood ‘restaurant’, you don’t visit The Company Shed for its opulent decor – Formica tables are as posh as it gets – and you don’t go for fancy recipes since there are none; you go because you love seafood. And you eat it here in the properway: with your fingers and nothing added, save a generous hunk of fresh, crusty bread and a glass of ice-cold white plonk – extras that you must bring yourself. ‘The Shed’ sells seafood and nothing else.

“Fantastic seafood, next to the fishing boats on the quay” draws legions of visitors to this “remote” and rather “bizarre” shed; “arrive very early to ensure a table”, and don’t forget to “bring your own wine, salad, bread and so on”.

Yes it is a ‘Shed’ and it is in the boat yard – but it has rave reviews from The GuardianThe Telegraph,The Independent and practically every food magazine. An unmissable experience.

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