Walk Three: The River Avon From Stratford Upon Avon
County/Area – Warwickshire
Author – Lou Johnson
Length – 3.8 miles / 6.1 km
Ascent – 100 feet / 30 metres
Grade – easy
A short walk along the banks of the River Avon from Stratford-upon-Avon. The route is easy to follow and takes in many of the sights associated with William Shakespeare.
Walk Route Description
This walk explores a section of the River Avon on the southern outskirts of Stratford-upon-Avon. In addition it offers the opportunity to visit Holy Trinity Church where William Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway are buried. The walk is generally flat and undemanding. After rain, some of the paths may be muddy so suitable footwear should be worn.
The start is the front of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre (Grid ref. SP203547). Facing the theatre, walk left towards the river and follow the concrete walkway along the riverside of the Theatre. Cross the grassy area and reach the road (Waterside) by the ferry. This leads you into Southern Lane. Turn left at the next junction into Old Town passing Holy Trinity Church on your left. (If you wish to see the graves of Shakespeare and Anne Hathaway are then a small admission charge is payable.)
Just after the Church bear left down Mill Lane following the footpath to reach a main road (Grid ref. SP200540). Go under the bride and bear slightly left to continue along the riverside path, which forms part of the Monarch’s Way long distance footpath. The riverside walk is very pleasant and you soon pass a weir and lock that helps make this section of the Avon navigable. Continue alongside the river to reach a substantial girder bridge that once carried the railway from Stratford to Honeybourne.
Walk up onto the old track bed and cross the bridge (Grid ref. SP188533). You will see the return path on your left as you reach the other side of the river. To get to the path turn left off the old railway and go under a small bridge and then back on yourself to reach the path. The path follows the river to pass the restored lock and weir to reach the main road (Grid ref. SP201539). Go under the road and continue on the path through pleasant grassed areas past another weir. Passing the bandstand you get a good view of the Royal Shakespeare across the river. Cross the river by the next bridge. Turn left and you are back at the start.