PLAN YOUR ROUTE.
Only three bridges cross the river between Worcester and Knightwick - Powick Bridge, Bransford Bridge and Knightsford Bridge, use them to plan a circular route. For more detail refer to O.S. Explorer Map no. 204
EXPLORING THIS AREA
After Knightsford Gap the valley widens and the river makes its way across the Severn Vale to join the River Severn just south of the City of Worcester.
South of the river the motorist should divert off the A4103 at the Bransford roundabout and follow the signs to the Tithe Barn at Leigh. The road to Alfrick and Lulsley continues over the undulating swells and low wooded escarpments of the Suckley Hills. Park at one of the local nature reserves, take a stroll. Back in the car descend the steep slope of Osebury Rock into Knightwick. The Worcestershire Way footpath cuts through this area. It uses a footbridge to cross the river in Knightwick. Motorists need to turn right onto the A44 and cross by Knightsford Bridge before turning left towards the Talbot Hotel and Martley.
Enjoy a fine view of the river from the old Powick bridge. Park in the layby on the left where the A449 leaves the Powick roundabout (A4440) for Worcester.
Walk to the bridge; imagine the noise and the smell of the Civil War battles, contrast it with the traffic that thunders along the A449 today!
Today few people work the land. The great houses have been divided, their barns converted into homes for commuters. Visitors can still sense that here the living is good. Take time, savour and enjoy it. Churchyards and Nature Reserves offer opportunities to get close to nature. Rest awhile, watch the birds and butterflies, listen to the sounds they make, discover who eats what. Reflect on why so many individuals and organisations are working together to protect habitats threatened by change.
The route west out of Worcester is well trodden. The county map shows a finger of Worcestershire protruding into the neighbouring counties of Herefordshire and Shropshire towards the Welsh border. Politically significant in medieval times this remote area came into its own before the Norman Conquest. Early Christian monks must have welcomed the land bestowed upon them by ambitious rulers - once cleared it offered a rich living!
Over the centuries patterns of farming and fishing have changed. Powerful landowners, the occupants of the great Court houses of Leigh, Cotheridge, Broadwas and Lulsley are still commemorated by their fine monuments inside the local churches. The huge armies of people who once worked the land and whose skills fashioned local stone and timber into the churches we admire lie forgotten in the churchyard.
CHURCHES TO VISIT
St. Mary Magdalene, Alfrick.
St. Mary Magdalene, Broadwas. Stories from the Stones audio Listening Post.
St. Leonard, Cotheridge. Stories from the Stones audio Listening Post.
St. Edburga, Leigh.
St. Peter, Powick.
SHOPS, PUBS & RESTAURANTS
Roots Farm Shop at Rushwick. 01905 421104.
Knightwick Butchers Shop (on the A44) 01886 821585
Hammonds Natural Meats Pewcroft, Suckely Road, Knightwick - Farm tours and meals, by arrangement. 01886 884221
Visit the Teme Valley Market - 2nd Sunday of every month down by the river at the Talbot Hotel in Knightwick.
Long distance: A Teme Valley Walk – a new route by David Milton. ISBN 1-869922-45-X. Designed to be used with public transport it covers the length of the river. Available from book shops and information centres.
Walk: The Worcestershire Way
Local walking: O.S. Explorer maps: Nos. 204.
Some churches and pubs have details of local walks
PARISH HERITAGE WALKS - audio walks around Broadwas and Cotheridge.
AROUND & ABOUT
1. Laylocks Garden Centre and Coffee Shop , Cotheridge. (on A44)
2. The Tithe Barn at Leigh. (English Heritage) O.S. 204: 784535
3. Teme Valley Market. 2nd Sunday every month at Knightwick. O.S. 204: 734561
4. Cotheridge Church. Teme Valley Exhibitions. O.S. 204: 786535
5. Elgar's Birthplace and Museum. Lower Broadheath. O.S. 204: 808558
6. Worcester Cathedral.
Petrol: Tenbury Wells, Martley and Great Witley.
Train: 08457 484950
Buses : Worcester to Knightwick: 085457 125406