Monday, 15 February 2010

Walking The Severn Way Stage 13

Sunday, October 18th, 2009
Highley to Bewdley 
Only 6.4miles
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In this issue…
  • River Knitting  
  • Crossing the border 
  • Discovering a link to London Underground 
  • Quaint little Upper Arley 
  • More Steam
Hello and welcome along again to the next stage of our meandering stroll alongside the River Severn, through some of the most beautiful countryside of Wales and England tracing the whole of its length right from the source at Plynlimon high up in the Mid Wales mountains to its end at the Bristol Channel. Join me now for 210 miles of the stunning River Severn Way with its wonderfully diverse scenery, its fabulous flora and fascinating fauna.

Click here to see how far we've travelled to date.
Hello again and thanks for joining Pam and me on another stretch of our fabulous Severn Way Walk. It’s a Sunday again - October 18th, 2009 - due to the fact we’re using the weekend steam train to get us back from point B to point A and the car.

One of the things we’re discovering is that we can walk in virtual solitude any day during the week but our footpaths and interesting areas along the walk are thronging with people at the weekends as you would expect I guess.

Anyway, here we are at Highley for our next stage which takes us to the town of Bewdley. Ready? Sarnies and flask of tea packed? Boots on?
Let’s go…

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We have to cross over the Severn Valley Railway line here after parking our car at Highley station to gain the Severn Way path down at the riverside. Don’t worry - there’s a bridge!

It’s a pleasant day as far as weather is concerned although a little cool. In fact it’s the coldest day so far on our walks together at around 10deg C so it’s certainly getting cooler as we progress through the English autumn. We notice lots of holiday bungalows along the banks of our river - many are for let. I’m thinking it would be rather nice to rent or even buy one of these for the summer months where we can get even closer to the nature and wildlife that we so love.

Ah… here’s a lady enjoying a quiet hour or two by the waters edge - knitting! We see many fisherman just sitting for hours by the river with their rods cast into the water waiting for a bite but this is the first time we’ve seen someone knitting!

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Perhaps it’s the start of a new national sport - RIVER KNITTING! Which got me thinking of all the advantages of knitting by the river as opposed to fishing by it. Can you add to the list? Pop any suggestions in ‘Comments’ at the bottom of the post:-
  • no animals are hurt in the production of a cardigan (sheep like to be fleeced)
  • arguably more fun
  • you don’t have to throw your knitting in the river at end of the day
  • far less equipment
  • can nod off and not worry about missing a float going under
  • you take the evidence of the size of your catch back home
  • you don’t need a licence
  • you can wear your catch - try doing that with a fish!
The bramble is still in flower although it’s doubtful whether any useful blackberry fruits are to be borne this late in the year.

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Our walk so far today is once more full of charm coupled with easy terrain as we follow the meandering River Severn as it weaves through the countryside. We walk between the river and the Severn Valley line until reaching the quaint village of Upper Arley.

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This marks our crossing into yet another county - our third so far. We started back in May in the Welsh county of Powys, which lead us into our home county of Shropshire and now we’re just entering Worcestershire.

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Upper Arley is a lovely village on the far river bank with a fabulous view of steam trains chuffing by on the opposite bank.  A footbridge carries us over to the village where The Severn Way continueson the east side of the river - the path on the west side continues as the Worcestershire Way.

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After a little wander through this charming spot we continue along a delightful stretch through leafy woodland but still hugging the river right through to Bewdley.

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We approach Victoria Bridge which carries the Severn Valley railway line across the river as it continues to follow the river and our path on the east side. Built in 1861 by John Fowler (who was the engineer responsible for the original London Underground) was cast and erected by The Coalbrookdale Company which is near Ironbridge - an earlier part of our walk you may recall?  This bridge, I discover later is quite famous in that it was featured in the 1978 making of John Buchan’s ‘The Thirty Nine Steps’ starring Robert Powell.

Now there’s a pleasant place to camp and what a great tent - it’s a wigwam reminding me of our stay in a Yurt last November (link opens in a new window if you want to take a look)

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It’s not too long before we see Wribbenhall which marks the end of this stage of our wonderful walk together alongside the River Severn as Wribbenhall sits on the opposite bank to Bewdley

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And in no time at all we’re here. Spot on time too - well done everyone! We just have to walk to Bewdley Station now to catch our train back to Highley. Hope you enjoyed it! 

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Join us in a few days time for the final stretch before we hang up our Severn Way boots for the winter. We’ll fit in a few other walks in Shropshire I’m sure during the colder months but the river path often becomes difficult to negotiate in parts. Floods being the main concern. But stay with us - there’s Bewdley to Stourport-on-Severn coming in a matter of days. Then my blog posts will have finally caught up with the actual walks! I am resolved to keep right up to date when we start again, probably in April. Hope you can make it!

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Walking Companions 

If you'd like a friend or friends to come along too just send them the link:–

We'll make them most welcome. The more the merrier! I know I've said before that I prefer to walk on my own but you're so quiet I hardly notice you're there! Walking The Severn Way together it's really only at the end of each stage you tend to make a comment, and talking of comments... Don't forget to leave one below; help, advice, silly banter, words of encouragement are all very much welcomed and I know then you're definitely following me along the enchanting Severn Way!

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Click collage below for Stage 13 Slideshow

Severn Way Stage 13 for Blog


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