Alney Island and the City Of Gloucester

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The River Severn is split into two channels at Gloucester - the West Channel and the East Channel and in the middle is Alney Island, one of the largest river islands in the UK. This has been an important crossing point of the river, as the narrower arms of the two channels were easier to span and for this reason, the Romans founded Gloucester here.

Much of the island is now a nature reserve, containing wet grassland and woodland, marsh and pond habitats. The city lies to the east of the island.

Most of the walk is on the island, as it is completely encircled, but it also heads into the city to visit the historic docks and the cathedral. Gloucester Docks are a remarkably complete example of a Victorian port, with many fine warehouses and other dock-related buildings that have now found new uses. The docks are visited occasionally by tall ships and every two years there is a tall ships festival here.

The walk heads through the city centre to the cathedral, which is completely encircled before returning to Alney Island. It is well worth going in the cathedral, where there is plenty to see including the medieval cloisters, the great east window and whispering gallery. There are also guided tours and tower tours in the summer; and of course, the Hogwarts scenes in the Harry Potter films were all filmed in the cathedral.

England - South West England - Gloucestershire - Town or city


Birds, Cafe, Church, Flowers, Industrial Archaeology, Lake/Loch, Mostly Flat, Museum, Pub, Public Transport, Restaurant, River, Woodland

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Distance away
16.8 Miles
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