The quiet parish of Eastchurch is surrounded by enjoyable country walks with some beautiful views across the Swale and to the north of the Thames estuary. 
Shurland Hall
The area is also steeped in history.  In 1909, Eastchurch became a leading centre in the country for aviation.  In fact it is considered the birth place of aviation.  The aerodrome used during those exhilarating and inspiring times was also used in both world wars.  There’s a memorial to all this opposite the 14th century church and it was in nearby Shurland Hall that Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn visited in 1532.  To the north there are a number of Caravan and Chalet Parks offering good quality accommodation for short or long holiday breaks.

An air race at Eastchurch ca. 1909

Harty is really a separate island and until comparatively recently the neighbourhood was known as Isles of Sheppey, which included the main island and the smaller ones of Elmley and Harty.  

Elmley was once a village with a poplulation of about 200, it included a cement works, a pub and school house, once the cement works closed in 1906 the poulation of the village dwindle. In 1920 the Elmly school was closed and in 1960 the church was dimolished. The village of Emly is now just ruined fondation apart from the school house of which most of the walls still stand.

Emley School House
If you thought there was no wilderness left in the South East, go to Elmley Marshes.  For an exhilarating break cycle the Isle of Harty Trail.  Try spotting a bird of prey swooping across the reed beds and visit the RSPB Reserve Raptor Viewpoint for a closer look.  Also don’t forget the Swale Nature Reserve to find more outstanding wildlife.  Discover one of the oldest and most remote churches in Kent, St. Thomas’s at Harty, then take a well earned rest at The Ferry House Inn.  A perfect day out.

A raptor pictured at sunset on Elmley marshes

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