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Severn Beach to North Nibley via Berkeley -Marshes, Cotswold Edge - Castles & Churches

Sunday 20 February
by wjhall
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A circular day out through Gloucestershire history, starting from Severn Beach station. North over the Old Down ridge, and down into Thornbury Vale past the community cafe in Oldbury-on-Severn, then across the marshlands to Berkely, passing a castle renowned for foul deeds. Then turning south east to North Nibley, near the site of the last private battle in England at Nibley green. Home past the six hundred year old Tortworth Chestnut, the castle and church in Thornbury, over Titter's Hill and back across the marshes to Severn Beach station.

Generally quiet roads, the unclassifed road from Berkeley to the A38 and the short stretch of B4060 being a little busier, but the climb out of North Nibley is mostly within the village 30 mph limit. Staggered crossroads over the A38 at Heathfield, with good sight lines. Similarly at Buckover a direct crossing with good sightlines.

Following the NCN route markings round the south of Thornbury takes you past the church and castle, and quite close the the high street, without getting lost in the sprawling modern housing estates. More direct routes may be possible for those who know the town.

Taking the train to Severn Beach, now hourly, is handy for those needing to cross Bristol to reach the countryside; direct routes to and from north Bristol are also obvious. 

Foggy morning at Severn Beach

Greenditch street: the marshlands

North Nibley, St Martin's with Tudor school

Tortworth Chestnut: six hundred years old, and a great sprawling wreck of a tree

St Leonard, Tortworth

Swinhay Farm: Sir David McMurtry's ultra-modern country seat near his Charfield works

Brightening up: evening sunshine at Severn Beach