Reproduced with permission of Mr. Allan Burberry.
Maps: Walk1. Walk2. Walk3. Walk4. Walk5.
Thornbury`s 13th Century `New Town` was built on a rocky strip between two streams. If you look east from Rock Street Car Park and west from Castle Court Car Park the valleys in which these streams run are clearly visible. These are just two of the streams which run through the present built-up area of the town; some of those shown on maps of the last century have now been culverted, but four remain and it is possible to walk along much of their length around the town. Of those now under-ground there is little to show apart from the occasional willow tree in an otherwise dry area and the perpetually damp areas in some back gardens.
Most of these changes have occurred within the last 20 or 30 years as houses have replaced green fields. Certainly in the early 1970`s the stream to the east of the town was visible on either side of the road at Gillingstool and was also an open stream behind the back gardens of St. David`s Road. Considerable changes of ground level occurred when new estates were built. The most extreme examples are on the stream which emerges between Chiltern Park and Malvern Drive.The position of the mature trees now at the bottom of steep slopes shows the original ground level. Another large build-up can be seen behind Finch Close and Nightingale Close. Since these build-ups are usually of land-fill material, particularly builder`s rubble, there is little if any good soil and the areas tend to be weedy and scrubby.
None of Thornbury`s streams have official names as far as can be discovered. Certainly none of the Ordnance Survey Maps show any names so it is sometimes difficult to distinguish them. For ease of description some names have been given here:-
1. Millstream - Flows east - west from Morton Way to Victoria Close, thence to Parkmill Farm and to Oldbury. Morton Mill was near the Anchor Public House on the Gloucester Road.
2. Crossways Stream - Starts between Malvern Drive and Chiltern Park, crosses Crossways Road and flows alongside Knapp Road to join the Millstream.
3. Hospital Stream - Emerges near the beginning of Streamside Walk, St. David`s Road, crosses Gloucester Road near The Hospital and joins Millstream near Hyde Avenue.
4. Mundy Stream - This rises south of the Leisure Centre, crosses the Bristol Road and flows almost due north through the Mundy Playing Fields, past the Castle to meet the Millstream at Parkmill Covert. Although there are paths by all these streams, to link them all together would result in a very long walk with a number of uninteresting road sections. Instead several short walks are shown and described.
Interactive Guide for Walk.1
Interactive Guide for Walk.2
Interactive Guide for Walk.3
Interactive Guide for Walk.4
Interactive Guide for Walk.5
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