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Watchet Town in Somerset

Photograph of Watchet


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Map showing location of Watchet

Watchet is a small coastal town in northwest Somerset. It currently has a population of about 4,500. It lies 15 miles west of Bridgwater and 15 miles northwest of Taunton. Its nearest neighbour is Minehead. Watchet lies at the mouth of the Washford River on Bridgwater Bay, part of the Bristol Channel, and on the edge of Exmoor National Park. The town was recorded in the 'Anglo-Saxon Chronicle' in the 10th century with reports of it being attacked and ravaged by the Danes in 987 and 997AD. The town's harbour is known to have been in use since that time and during the English Civil War the Royalist forces tried to send reinforcements for the siege of Dunster Castle via Watchet but the plan was unsuccessful. In the 19th century Watchet was a commercial centre exporting iron ore from the Brendon Hills, via The West Somerset Mineral Railway, as well as paper, flour and gypsum. Samuel Taylor Coleridge's poem 'The Rime of the Ancient Mariner' was written whilst travelling through Watchet and the surrounding area. The mines and West Somerset Mineral Railway closed in 1898 but have since reopened as a heritage railway and visitor attraction.

Tourist Information

The nearest source of local information is available from Watchet Tourist Information Point.

Events near Watchet

Mon, 29 Dec (ca. 7 km)

Christmas Lantern Making Workshop

Fri, 20 - Sun, 22 Feb (ca. 7 km)

Introduction into Stargazing Weekend 2015

Sat, 7 Nov (ca. 23 km)

Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival

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