PLAN YOUR ROUTE
The A443 and A456 offer a speedy route to Tenbury Wells. Three bridges cross the river - Stanford Bridge, Eastham Bridge and Tenbury Bridge. To explore the minor routes and footpaths consult O.S. Explorer Maps 204 & 203.
EXPLORING THIS AREA
The river winds its way eastwards cutting a path through the underlying sandstone. All roads seem lead (eventually) to the little market town of Tenbury Wells.
An ancient church nestles in the corner where the A443 meets the road north from Stanford Bridge. In summer hops grow around the porch, the inside speaks of a long history. This small community at Stockton is coming to terms with change. Across the road a farmer still tends his herd but the hop kilns next to the church no longer dry hops, they have been converted into someone’s home.
This area was famous for its hops but as the demand has fallen so has the acreage. Seasonal workers used to come at harvest time to help harvest the crop. They brought a different culture with them and different ways – enriching a remote area. Today old traditions are remembered in the annual Beer and Hop Festival held in Eardiston.
The Leominster Canal The need to move a rich harvest to a growing urban market in the West Midlands stimulated an attempt to build a canal. It was intended that it should link central Wales to the West Midlands. The attempt was aborted but the completed section runs through the parishes of Knighton on Teme and a part of Lindridge where the south portal is visible at Hatch Farm.
The 1250 yd long Southnet canal tunnel emerges at Lindridge The spire of Lindridge church is a local landmark but it stands almost alone with the school and Rectory. The local village is down the road at Eardiston.
Look for the view of Eastham church from the redbrick bridge at Eastham. The church tower is also built in brick. Take a closer look at the older stonework of this little church. Much of it is local tufa stone quarried from nearby Southstone Rock. Formed by lime water passing through moss in the sandstone the rock resembles pumice stone – not good for the acoustics!
Like Eastham, the churches at Rochford and Knighton on Teme are among the earliest Norman churches in the county, each has a beautiful setting. Take the road through Eastham to Lower Rochford to visit the little church down by the river. Alternatively return to the main road and drive toward Tenbury. Follow the signs and climb up the wooded slopes to the church at Knighton on Teme.
The southern route from Stanford to Tenbury on the B 4204 follows the rim of the valley. The views are magnificent especially as the road descends into Tenbury Wells.
Listen for the barn owls at duskEverywhere the lane and hedge banks are full of wild flowers. The mixed use of the countryside around here favours all sorts of birds and animals including buzzards and Canada geese, foxes, badges, weasels, stoats, grass snakes, slow worms, newts and toads.Watch for the toads crossing the road near Pensax Lake.
Leave the car and walk. Follow the footpath through the river meadows at Stanford Bridge or visit the nature reserve managed by Worcestershire Wildlife Trust at Hanley Dingle.
CHURCHES TO VISIT
St. Mary, Stanford Bridge.
St. Andrew, Stockton-on-Teme.
St. Lawrence, Lindridge.
St. Peter & St. Paul. Eastham. St. Mary, Kyre Wyard.
St. Michael, Rochford.
St.Michael, Knighton. on Teme.
Mary, Tenbury Wells
SHOPS, PUBS & RESTAURANTS
The Mill Farm Shop, Stanford Bridge. O.S. 204: 716658
Lindridge Gymkhana and Show: July
Tenbury Agricultural Show. August
Eardiston Beer and Hop Festival. September
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. 203, 204.
Some churches and pubs have details of local walks
PARISH HERITAGE WALKS - audio walks around Lindridge and Stocton-on-Teme
AROUND & ABOUT
1 Kyre Park and Church. O.S. 203: 626636
2 Mamble Craft Centre. O.S. 203:71688
3 The Cottage Herbery at Boraston. O.S. 203: 615701
4 The Mill Farm Shop. Stanford Bridge. O.S. 204: 716658
5 Abberley Village, churches and hills. 0.S. 204: 755678
6 Cleobury Mortimer and The Wyre Forest