Stonebridge Wild River Reserve

A place to enjoy rich biodiversity in the heart of Marlborough


On the eastern edge of Marlborough, there is a beautiful green space with the River Kennet running through it known as Stonebridge Wild River Reserve.  The reserve is made up of two parcels of land, the north bank leased from St John's Foundation Trust since 2009, and the south bank with a 15 acre water meadow owned jointly by ARK and Marlborough Town Council since 2011. The land on the south bank is known as Stonebridge Meadow.  Before 2009 both banks were fenced off with no permitted access other than the public footpath to Poulton Footbridge. Now the site is open as a wild river reserve, a new space where people can witness the amazing diversity of wildlife in and around a chalk stream.
Click here to download our new Stonebridge Guide, including map. Use Google Maps to find the reserve:,-1.7244943,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x48715a1d17002b25:0x926830f0f301e059!8m2!3d51.4218874!4d-1.7223056

boardwalk and seating areaThe wooden boardwalk on the north bank has created wheelchair friendly access along a beautiful stretch of the river leading to a seating area from where you can regularly see Water vole, Heron, Little Egret and Kingfisher. 

Gravel beach area

A gravel ‘beach’ area has been created to allow easy access into the river for those wanting to explore and paddle.  


With advice from the Wild Trout Trust, we have completed award winning work to improve the river 
habitat for both wild brown trout, and other native wildlife in the river.  On both banks, and particularly in 
Stonebridge meadow, we have increased access and worked to improve biodiversity. 

Volunteers working on Poulton Footbridge
above: Volunteers working on Poulton Footbridge (left) and the completed restoration (right).

We manage different areas within the meadow in different ways, helping to conserve and enhance the rich biodiverse qualities of the water meadow.  Making this area a special place within walking distance from Marlborough High Street for all to enjoy.  


Stonebridge Meadow is managed in partnership with the Town Council following a jointly approved 
management plan. The management of the meadow is overseen by a partnership committee with 
representatives from both ARK and MTC. Click for Management Plan Summary. 
Appendices are available on request.

The Success of the project has been recognised as follows: 

  • 2012 Biffa Building Communities Awards - Highly Commended

  • 2013 Wild Trout Trusts Conservation Award - Winner

  • 2015 Stonebridge Wild River Reserve officially recognised as a Wildlife Site. 

  • 2015 Britain in Bloom, South West, Stonebridge Wild River Reserve - Outstanding

  • 2015 Britain in Bloom Winner
    - Monk Trophy for 'Best use of Native Plant Indigenous to the Area'

  • 2016 Britain in Bloom, South West, Stonebridge Wild River Reserve - Outstanding

  • 2017 Britain in Bloom, South West, Stonebridge Wild River Reserve - Outstanding

    2018 Britain in Bloom, South West, Stonebridge Wild River Reserve - Outstanding

    2019 Britain in Bloom, South West, Stonebridge Wild River Reserve - Outstanding