Walmer is a town in the district of Dover, Kent in England: located on the coast, the parish of Walmer is six miles (10 km) north-east of Dover. Largely residential, its coastline and castle attract many visitors. It has a population of 6,693 (2001).
Walmer is closely associated with its adjoining neighbour, the town of Deal – sharing many amenities and services and benefiting from Deal’s High Street shopping area.
Walmer railway station is on the Kent Coast Line.
Julius Caesar reputedly landed on the beach here in 55 BC and 54 BC. It is only one possible landing place, but it is the most probable, judging from the distances given in his account of the landings in his Gallic Wars. It was in the 19th century thought that he landed by Deal Castle – hence a house there with SPQR emblazoned on its gate – but the landing-point is now put half a mile further south, beyond the lifeboat station, and marked by a concrete memorial.
Walmer Castle and its beautiful formal gardens are a major attraction for visitors. The official residence of Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports since the 18th Century, the building is now an English Heritage property. Famous Lords Warden have included Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Sir Winston Churchill, William Pitt the Younger (whose niece Lady Hester Stanhope first created the gardens), and the Duke of Wellington (of the Battle of Waterloo fame). Wellington lived there for 23 years and the castle houses not only a collection of Wellington memorabilia but also the room in which he died.
The Castle was built in 1540 as one of three on this part of the Kent coast by orders of Henry VIII. The others were nearby at Deal (southern Deal) and Sandown (north Deal) – the Deal one survives, the Sandown one has been lost to coastal erosion.
People born in Walmer include:
• Dornford Yates
• John Hassall (illustrator)