Coordinates: 50°38′00″N 1°10′30″W / 50.63333°N 1.17500°W / 50.63333; -1.17500
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Shanklin Old Village
Shanklin is located in Isle of Wight
Location within the Isle of Wight
Population9,123 (2021 Census)
OS grid referenceSZ584816
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtPO37
Dialling code01983
PoliceHampshire and Isle of Wight
FireHampshire and Isle of Wight
AmbulanceIsle of Wight
UK Parliament
List of places
Isle of Wight
50°38′00″N 1°10′30″W / 50.63333°N 1.17500°W / 50.63333; -1.17500

Shanklin (/ˈʃæŋklɪn/) is a seaside resort town and civil parish[1] on the Isle of Wight, England, located on Sandown Bay. Shanklin is the southernmost of three settlements which occupy the bay, and is close to Lake Sandown. The sandy beach, its Old Village and a wooded ravine, Shanklin Chine, are its main attractions. The esplanade along the beach is occupied by hotels and restaurants for the most part, and is one of the most tourist-oriented parts of the town. The other is the Old Village, at the top of Shanklin Chine. Together with Lake and Sandown to the north, Shanklin forms a built up area of around 25,000 inhabitants.[2]


Regent Street

The main shopping centre consists of two roads, Regent Street and High Street, which together comprise the largest retail area in the south of the Isle of Wight; significant for tourists but also as an amenity for residents.

Near Regent Street are the town's two main supermarkets, the Co-op and Lidl. In Regent Street itself are many local shops, including two arts and crafts shops, several clothing and sports shops, three newsagents and three bakeries. The High Street also has some local shops, but is dominated by tourist shops and restaurants.


Shanklin railway station is the terminus of the Island Line from Ryde, opened on 23 August 1864. The railway was extended south to Ventnor in 1866, but this section was closed in 1966. The line from Ryde to Shanklin is now operated by former London Underground tube trains. In October 2004 a direct link was revived in the form of a bus service named the "Rail link".[3] This was discontinued in 2010 but was replaced by the Southern Vectis number 3 bus.

Bus services to nearby towns and suburbs are run by Southern Vectis, mainly on routes 2, 3, 22 and 24, principally from the bus stands at the Co-op supermarket. Destinations served include Newchurch, Newport, Ryde, Sandown, Ventnor and Winford.[4] In the summer, an open top bus route called "The Sandown Bay Tour" is run, serving the main tourist areas of Shanklin and running to Sandown.[5]


Shanklin has one theatre, Shanklin Theatre, which is just off the top end of the High Street.

In July and August 1819 the poet John Keats lodged at Eglantine Cottage in the resort's High Street, where he completed the first book of Lamia and began a drama, Otho the Great, with his friend Charles Armitage Brown.

In July 1868 the American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow stayed at the Crab Inn in Shanklin's Old Village during his last visit to Europe and left a poem about it on a stone by the pub. It is not generally held to be amongst his best work.[citation needed].

The 1980s indiepop band Trixie's Big Red Motorbike[6] were from Shanklin, and recorded some of their records there.

Victoria Cross recipient and Deputy Governor of the Isle of Wight, Colonel Henry Gore-Browne retired to Shanklin before his death in 1912.

According to Joseph Jacobs's influential 1890 version of The Three Little Pigs, the Three Pigs and the Wolf live near Shanklin.[7]

In Monty Python's Flying Circus, season 4, "Mr Neutron", Michael Palin plays a US commander who calls upon "Moscow! Peking! and Shanklin, Isle of Wight!". A voice over continues "And so the Great Powers and the people of Shanklin, Isle of Wight, drew their net in ever-tightening circles around the most dangerous threat to peace the world has ever faced."[8]

Beaches & Esplanade[edit]

Shanklin beach
Looking along Shanklin Esplanade.
Shanklin (nearest the camera) set on Sandown Bay. Sandown (with pier) is beyond, while between the two settlements lies Lake. Beyond Sandown and to the right of the picture is the white chalk of Culver Cliff.

Shanklin is on the coast of Sandown Bay, and therefore is part of the long beach which spans between Yaverland in the north to Luccombe in the south. The section of beach situated next to Shanklin is split into Small Hope Beach and Hope Beach. Above Hope Beach is the esplanade which boasts some traditional seaside attractions including an amusement arcade, a crazy golf course, and a children's play area, with slides, ball pools, bouncy castles, rigging, swings etc. available to be hired for a child's birthday party. There are several seafront hotels, a cliff lift from the seafront to the top of the cliff, a putting course, several cafes and restaurants and pubs, and a large, clean beach. Shanklin used to have a pier, but this was destroyed in the Great Storm of 1987. The pier formerly had a theatre at which many famous performers appeared, including Paul Robeson, Richard Tauber and Arthur Askey (whose daughter attended a local boarding school called Upper Chine School for Girls). The Summerland Amusement Arcade on the seafront was formerly a seaplane hangar positioned at Bembridge where it housed Fairey Campania seaplanes of the Nizam of Hyderabad's Squadron.[citation needed] Large areas of the seafront were severely damaged or destroyed during the Bombing raids of World War II, but were quickly rebuilt after the war, causing the current seafront to be a varied mixture of Victorian, inter-war and post-war architecture.

Shanklin Sailing Club is situated at the North end of the Esplanade. Founded in 1931 as 'Shanklin Amateur Sailing Club', the club has a fleet of Sprint 15 catamarans and holds races three days a week during the season.[9]

Further along the beach is the Fisherman's Cottage pub. This is at the bottom of Shanklin Chine,[10] from which the town takes its name, historically "Chynklyng Chine" and in the Domesday Book of 1086 Sencliz (held by William FitzAzor; Jocelyn FitzAzor) from "Scen-hlinc".[11][12] The Chine is open to the public for a small fee and continues up to Rylstone Gardens in the Old Village. It contains a small section of the pipe of the "Operation Pluto" pipeline which ran across the Isle of Wight and out from Shanklin and another branch from Sandown to supply fuel to the D-Day beaches.[13]


America Wood is a Site of Special Scientific Interest located between Shanklin and Whiteley Bank. It is owned by the Woodland Trust It takes a bit of stamina and determination to get into America Wood, on the outskirts of Shanklin, since it has little accessible parking. However, the more active Isle of Wight visitor can make use of public footpaths and bridleways that lead into the wood. There is an ‘open’ feel to the site with storm damage during the Great Storm of 1987 and the Burns' Day storm of 1990 felling trees and creating many open sections. There is one particularly large glade which is gradually recovering from the storms. The wood is situated just west of Ninham.

Dunnose is a large cape which is situated southwest of the town. An imposing and high geological feature, it has served as a triangulation point for maps of the United Kingdom, and has also been the site of several shipwrecks, most infamously that of HMS Eurydice, which sank with the loss of 300 people aboard.

Shanklin is also the location where Charles Darwin wrote his Origin of Species during an 18-month-long visit to the town.


Shanklin has an oceanic climate (Cfb) with mild summers, cool nights, rainy winters and average temperature nights. Shanklin is one of the sunniest villages in Great Britain.

Climate data for Shanklin, Isle of Wight 1991-2020
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 8.5
Average low °C (°F) 3.9
Average precipitation mm (inches) 105.1
Average precipitation days 13.3 10.8 9.7 9.0 7.9 7.8 7.5 8.5 9.0 12.6 13.7 13.8 123.6
Mean monthly sunshine hours 69.8 92.8 142.0 207.8 248.1 256.4 268.9 239.6 178.9 123.8 84.1 63.9 1,976.1
Source: Met Office[14]


St Blasius Church

There are three Anglican churches in Shanklin. St.Paul's Church in Regent Street has the bell from HMS Eurydice (1843), which sank off Dunnose Point and is the subject of a poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins. St. Blasius Church, Shanklin – better known as Shanklin Old Church – is to the south of the town and has bell ropes hanging in the nave and a fine lych-gate. The Church of St. Saviour-on-the-Cliff, Shanklin is the biggest in the town and is in Queen's Road.

The Isle of Wight United Reformed Church is situated in Shanklin.[15]

Twin towns[edit]

Shanklin is twinned with Coupvray, a town in the Île-de-France region of France.



  1. ^ "English Parishes & Welsh Communities N&C 2004".
  2. ^ "Isle of Wight". City Population. Retrieved 16 September 2023.
  3. ^ "Southern Vectis route list". Southern Vectis. Archived from the original on 30 November 2009. Retrieved 22 December 2009.
  4. ^ "Southern Vectis Sandown Bay Tour". Southern Vectis. Archived from the original on 26 April 2009. Retrieved 22 December 2009.
  5. ^ "Trixie's Big Red Motorbike – Free listening, concerts, stats, & pictures at". Retrieved 17 September 2013.
  6. ^ "SurLaLune Fairy Tales: The Annotated Three Little Pigs". Archived from the original on 24 August 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  7. ^ Episode Forty-four: Mr Neutron
  8. ^ "Shanklin Sailing Club - Isle of Wight - Dart 15 / Sprint 15 catamaran sailing".
  9. ^ "Shanklin Chine - Isle of Wight".
  10. ^ "UK Web Hosting and Domains From £1.00". Sparrow Hosting. Archived from the original on 24 December 2012.
  11. ^ "The Domesday Book Online - Hampshire - Isle of Wight".
  12. ^ D Eagle and H Carnell (editors), The Oxford Literary Guide to the British Isles, Oxford University Press, 1977.
  13. ^ "Shanklin Climatic Averages 1991-2020". Met Office. Retrieved 16 December 2021.
  14. ^ "Shanklin URC".

External links[edit]

Media related to Shanklin at Wikimedia Commons