About West Acre
West Acre is a village in the King's Lynn and West Norfolk district of the county of Norfolk, England.
The small, quiet, ancient village of West Acre lies on the north side of the River Nar in a heavily wooded valley. Close to the village church are the remains of a Priory which was founded for the monks of the Cluniac Order in about the year 1200.
Nar Valley Way
West Acre village is on the Nar Valley Way pathway. Much of the of the River Nar is a river valley Site of Special Scientific Interest and supports many interesting flowers, such as yellow rattle and meadowsweet.
The Nar Valley Way is a 34 miles long walk, running from the historic port of King's Lynn to the Museum of Rural life at Gressenhall, and is contained almost entirely within the watershed of the River Nar.
The route follows Public Rights of Way, tracks and minor roads, and passes through Shouldham Warren. The Nar Valley Way also links with other long distance routes, the Wash Coast Path at King's Lynn, and the Peddars Way at Castle Acre
Links to things to see and do
Operating in a converted Chapel which serves as a flexible studio space seating 80, Westacre Theatre offers a year-round programme of in-house productions, visiting companies, concerts, workshops and events.
West Acre Gardens is in a lovely old walled garden. This nursery is a treasure trove for plant lovers and the extensive display gardens have year round interest and beauty.
The gateway to the 13C Priory sits immediately to the west of All Saints Church. The church itself is rather striking, being essentially Perpendicular in style. Sir Edward Barkham substantially rebuilt the church in the 17C and his death head symbol is placed above the entrance to the porch, which contains a 13th century relief sculpture. The clock on the tower reminds us to Watch and Pray. All Saints is one of seven churches belonging to the Nar Valley Group, ministered by the Canon Stuart Nairn.
The Stag Inn is a CAMRA award-winning pub which also serves excellent locally sourced food at very reasonable prices. Visit their website for details of opening times.
West Acre Priory
This 2019 report by Historic England gives a very detailed account of the history of the Augustinian Priory, built c1135 by the Lord of the Manor, Ralph de Toni.
To view a larger version of the Historic England report click here
The River Nar
Chalk-streams are globally rare river systems. Most flow through southern England. The River Nar is arguably Norfolk’s most unspoilt and beautiful chalk river.
And yet it is not without its problems and challenges.
The River Nar is a small chalk stream which flows through the downs and fenland of north-west Norfolk. Its progression from chalk river to fen river is distinctive and gives the Nar particular conservation value, which is reflected in its Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) designation. This Water Framework Directive (WFD) Local Catchment Plan aims to identify the pressures the River Nar is under, and the way ahead to restoring and conserving a healthy river, meeting the requirements of the WFD.
To view a larger version of the Norfolk Rivers Trust plan click here