Dunwich Heath is one of the few areas of coastal lowland heath remaining in eastern England. It lies on the Suffolk coast, between Dunwich village and the bird reserve at Minsmere.
Dunwich today is a pretty coastal village with an attractive shingle beach:
Dunwich is a possible candidate for the location of Dommoc, where St Felix established the bishopric of the Kingdom of East Anglia under the patronage of King Sigeberht in the 630s.
In the Middle Ages Dunwich was a major town and an international port, until a series of fierce storms in the late thirteenth and early fourteenth century destroyed the harbour, silted up the river and swept large parts of the town into the sea.
Dunwich Heath is south of the village, a wide open space of sandy soils covered in gorse, bracken and heather. In the time of King Sigebehrt and St Felix, much of the Suffolk coast would have looked like this. The heath is especially lovely in late summer, when the heather comes into bloom and carpets the landscape in purple flowers, alive with bees and other insects.
|Close-up of heather flowers|