Sheerness and Minster
Located at the mouth of the River Medway on the Isle of Sheppey, Sheerness is the largest town on the island and began as a fort built in the 16th century to protect the River Medway from naval invasion.
The former Royal Dockyard site is now a thriving commercial port. With the new road bridge to the island, Sheerness has become a much more attractive option. The new bridge provides good access to the rest of the road network, with a direct link to the M2 and M20 motorways and to Maidstone.
In the nineteenth century a pier and promenade were constructed and so Sheerness became a seaside resort. There are now holiday parks throughout the Isle of Sheppey. We love the beaches at Sheerness and Minster which have been awarded European Blue Flags for cleanliness and safety. There is now a swimming pool and a leisure complex in Sheerness and sailing is available at various points around The Island.
There is so much to see and do from learning about the fascinating history going back to Viking times, watching birds at Elmley Nature Reserve and Swale National Nature Reserve, exploring beaches and rockpools or even enjoying the amusement arcades at Leysdown.
Up until the 11th Century the village of Minster lay right on the estuary to the River Wantsum, making it one of the nearest ports to the continent. Ships used to sail past on their way to London and regularly anchored at what are now arable fields below the Church grounds. The name of the town derives from the monastery founded in the area. The village has a historic Saxon Abbey built on the only high ground on the Isle of Sheppey. In the 9th century the Abbey was ransacked by Vikings and was rebuilt by William the Conqueror. The remains of the 1000-year old Gatehouse adjoining the abbey now houses an interesting museum where visitors can learn more about the area’s fascinating history.
Minster Leas is a Blue Flag award winning (2017) beach making a tranquil place to come and relax and enjoy the views. A grassy area with park benches slopes down to a long, shingle beach where a number of groynes stretch out into the sea. The local area offers a selection of shops, bus service, as well as lots of green spaces and lovely walks. Commuting is easy with access to the M2 and M20 and rail links with the mainland via the Sheerness Line.
What we love about Sheerness and Minster: Views across The Thames Estuary, beaches at Minster, Leysdown and Sheerness. Elmley National Nature Reserve, Swale National Nature Reserve and amusements at Leysdown.
There is a popular swimming pool and activity centre, in the heart of the towns, at Sheppey Leisure Complex and Spartan Leisure, golf at Sheerness Golf Club, sports facilities at Festival Playing Field and activities such as Pool, Table Tennis and modern Radio & Television Production can be found at Sheerness County Youth Club & Activity Centre.
- Beachfields Park
- The Fleet
- Trinity Gardens
- Abbey Rise
- The Glen
Pubs and Restaurants
- Ship on Shore
- The Napier
- Harps Inn
- The Highlander
- Mem’s Mezze
- The Playa
- Jacey’s Bistro
- The Aviator
- Elmley National Nature Reserve
- Barton’s Point Coastal Park
- Churches and Places of Worship
- Community Church Sheepy - Non-Denominational
- St Henry & St Elizabeth Catholic Church - Catholic
- Minster Road Baptist Church – Baptist
- Strode Crescent Baptist Church - Baptist
- Minster Roman Catholic Church – Catholic
- Sheppey Islamic Cultural Centre – Islam
Eastchurch is a village and civil parish. The area is styled the "home of British aviation" as Eastchurch airfield saw the first controlled flight by a British pilot on British soil. The airfield played a significant role in the history of British aviation from 1909 when Frank McClean acquired Stonepits Farm, on the marshes across from Leysdown, converting the land into an airfield.
The traditional seaside resort of Leysdown-on-sea is situated towards the eastern end of the Isle of Sheppey. As a well-established seaside town there are all the facilities you would expect, shops, cafes and amusements. There are plenty of places to see and visit around Leysdown. Whether you love hiking or cycling, Leysdown is a region where hidden gems are waiting to be explored and visited.
Queenborough is a sleepy fishing town, just a few miles from Sheerness. There has been a fishing village here since Anglo-Saxon times and the tradition continues today. The harbour sits in Queenborough Creek where you can watch as the boats go about their business, or just enjoy looking at the different types of boat that reside there. The Guildhall houses the Queenborough museum, which documents the history of Queenborough from Saxon times through to the present. Close to Queenborough train station you will find Castle Park, built on the site of Queenborough Castle, here there is a lovely green space, ideal for picnics and a children’s play area. The Queenborough and Rushenden Regeneration project provides an exciting opportunity for new homes, schools, employment and a new marina.