B is for beach huts

There are two ways to enjoy a beach picnic. One is in your deckchair, behind a windbreaker, trying to keep sand out of your sarnies, and the other is sitting on the veranda of your beach hut, taking in the elevated view and feeling slightly superior to everyone else. Of course, we don't mean just any old beach huts… we mean specifically the ones at Wells-next-the-Sea in north Norfolk.

There are beach huts at places such as Cromer, Sheringham, Mundesley, Overstrand and Great Yarmouth, but the ones at Wells-next-the-Sea stand out, around 100 of them, colourfully-painted with the backdrop of the Scots pine forest.

Most are privately-owned, but some are available for hire, and buying one for most people would need another mortgage. Besides, they're so sought-after that they have waiting lists as long as top London clubs.

As with all property it's about location, location, location and that's definitely the case with Wells-next-the-Sea – at low tide you'll get a brilliant view of the huge beach that Gwyneth Paltrow's character Viola, 'shipwrecked in Virginia', walked across at the end of Shakespeare in Love.

Swimming, messing about in inflatables or canoeing in the Run, the channel that feeds the harbour, are all great fun too.

Today's beach huts follow on from 19th century bathing machines which were wheeled into the sea either manually or by horses, so shy Victorian ladies could step into the water in their voluminous bathing suits and retain their modesty. Sounds like a lot of pfaff to us. Much better to just sit on the veranda and take in the view.

B is also for bloaters, beaches, birdwatching, Blakeney Point

Beach huts at Wells-next-the-SeaThe multi-coloured beach huts on stilts at Wells-next-the-Sea.
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