Layer Marney Tower

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Layer Marney Tower near Colchester in Essex is the tallest Tudor Gatehouse in the UK, a magnificent building standing 80 feet tall within stunning grounds.
The Tower stands on the shores of the river Blackwater, and construction was initiated by Lord Henry Marney in the 1520s, a close friend of Henry VIII. The Gatehouse and ranges which were continued by his son after his death were supposed to be part of a grand palace, but construction ceased after his son's death. What stands today is a glimpse into the luxurious aspirations of a 16th century lord, now a family-run venue which opens its doors to the public at certain times of the year, and it still does not fail to impress.

Events run throughout the year, often on Bank holidays or weekends, are always a fun mix of historic and contemporary activities:
" Guided Tours of the tower are run by Sheila and Nick Charrington, the owners of Layer Marney Tower
" Plays, shows and re-enactments are often put on in the grounds, with costumes to make you wonder what century you have travelled to.
" Join in with lamb feeding in the grounds' farm
" Attend the village fete or fairs, as well as live music and concerts
" If camping's not for you, then try glamping in Layer Marney Tower Grounds. It's all the excitement and wildness of camping, with less cold showers and bugs.

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Guide Prices

Adults £10.00 Prices may vary
Children £5.00 for some events.
Family £28.00 (2 Adults +2 Children)
Event prices may differ, please check. Dogs are welcome on leads.


Sunday, 17th December 2023 - Sunday, 17th December 2023

The Messiah at Layer Marney TowerGeorge Frederic Handel's wonderful Messiah performed at Layer Marney Tower
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  • Disabled access
  • Disabled toilets
  • Wheelchairs available

Booking & Payment Details

  • Credit cards accepted (no fee)


  • On-site catering
  • On-site light refreshments
  • Picnic site


  • Baby changing facilities
  • Children welcome


  • Education/study area
  • Facilities for educational visits
  • Facilities for groups
  • Guided tours for groups

Meeting, Conference & Wedding Facilities

  • Facilities for conferencing
  • Facilities for corporate hospitality
  • Venue approved for civil marriage
  • Wedding receptions


  • Free Parking

Property Facilities

  • Dogs Accepted
  • Gift shop
  • Guided tours for individuals
  • Public toilets
  • Smoking not allowed

Site Features

  • Regional Tourist Board Member

Target Markets

  • Accepts groups
  • Coach parties accepted

Map & Directions


Road Directions

By Road:
By car: Layer Marney Tower is a 20mns drive from Colchester town centre, off Maldon Road on the way to Tiptree.

The address is: Layer Marney Tower, Layer Marney, Nr. Colchester, Essex C05 9US

By Bus: The 75 bus from Colchester Town Centre will take you to Smythe's Green, a 20mn walk from Layer Marney Tower.

The nearest railway station is Kelvedon, which is 6 miles away.

Layer Marney Tower

Type:Historic Site

Layer Marney, Colchester, Essex, CO5 9US

Tel: 01206 330784


  • Other AwardsHistoric Houses Association Friends Scheme Historic Houses Association Friends Scheme 2016
  • East of England AwardsEssex Tourism Awards Essex Tourism Awards 2016

Opening Times

Season (3 Apr 2022)
Season (1 May 2022 - 13 July 2022)
Monday - TuesdayClosed
Thursday - SaturdayClosed
Season (17 July 2022 - 1 Sept 2022)
Monday - ThursdayOpen
Friday - SaturdayClosed
Season (4 Sept 2022 - 25 Sept 2022)
Monday - TuesdayClosed
Thursday - SaturdayClosed

* House Open Sunday 3 April, 2022
1 May – 13 July Sunday & Wednesday
17 July – 1 Sept Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday
4 – 25 Sept Sunday & Wednesday
Opening times 11am – 5pm