Pronounced "Aln - mouth" (unlike Alnwick, the "L" is sounded). A popular but peaceful coastal resort with superb sandy beaches and two golf courses including the fourth oldest in England.
Alnmouth has an interesting history as a trade port of some repute. In 1799, during the War of Independence, this reputation led to an attack on the port by the American privateer, John Paul Jones. Later, Alnmouth harbour was left high and dry when a storm caused the river to change its course, forcing a new route through to the sea. This cut Church Hill off, making the town's church inaccessible and leading to its eventual destruction. The church's position is now marked by a wooden cross and beyond Church Hill the ruins of a long, low building indicates the area in which the port was originally located.
After the loss of the port, the town was revitalised with the coming of the railway in the 1840s. It became a popular holiday resort and remains so to this day.
What can I do?
- Find the site of the old church, cut off from the town after a huge storm in 1806 changed the flow of the River Aln - you'll need to follow the Northumberland Coast Path around the estuary.
- Explore the beach and walk or cycle around Alnmouth Saltmarsh and Dunes (a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest).
- Walk the Northumberland Coast Path north towards Boulmer, past the remains of the Percy Volunteers battery built to defend against Napoleon and the fourth oldest golf course in England. If you get as far as Craster or Howick you can catch the bus back.
- Look out for bird life on Marden Rocks.
- Search for neolithic cup markings on the hillside of Alnmouth Wall.
- Take a walk - There is a guidebook of local walks around Alnmouth
- Visit the Ferryman's Hut - one of the smallest museums in Britain
- Download a Journey Planner for trips around the AONB from Alnmouth by bus
What do I need to know?
- You should not attempt to cross the estuary or swim in the sea - there are strong currents.
- Alnmouth to Warkworth is on the National Cycle Network route 1 and there is a traffic-free route to Warkworth.
- Alnmouth station, with direct links to Edinburgh, Newcastle, London Kings Cross and the West Country, is about a mile west of the village.
- Alnmouth has an annual Arts Festival in June
Ferryman’s Hut, Alnmouth
The Ferry Hut used to give shelter to the ferry-man who rowed passengers across the River Aln; a service now sadly lapsed.
The Hut was rented from Northumberland Estates, restored, and turned into a museum of local history and memorabilia. It is open each day, entry is free and it is looked after, paid for, and maintained by a local resident.