The River

The Land Yeo flows through North Somerset.

There are two main rivers, in Clevedon: –

Most people are used to seeing the Land Yeo in the centre of the town, it’s the narrow river that runs past the Conservative Club then through the culvert under Queens Square and emerges at the back of the Cinema. However it is also to be seen as you enter Clevedon going under Northern Way then behind the NSC offices. It is also visible at Strode Road, Southern Way and then again at Marshalls field.

The Blind Yeo is much wider and is  on the outskirts of Clevedon to the south of the town. Most people see it when they drive across it using the main road from Clevedon to Kenn.

Can you use the rivers for Canoeing/Kayaking.

In our opinion the Blind Yeo would be the most suitable for Canoeing/Kayaking as it is much wider, therefore disturbance to wildlife would be less likely and also the river banks on both sides are mostly owned by the Environment Agency.

The Land Yeo is narrow, there are seven culverts and many low bridges, also most of the riverbanks are privately owned.  Most importantly it has become a wildlife haven with nesting swans, ducks and moorhens throughout the summer. We know from experience because the river is very narrow in places, great distress can be caused to the wild fowl etc by the passing of a boat.

We would hope anyone taking to the water, Blind Yeo included, would give the wild life careful consideration, keeping clear as much as possible and creating the minimum of disturbance.

Where does the river start

It rises on Dundry Hill near Barrow Gurney Reservoirs, then flows through various villages to Clevedon where it exits into the Bristol Channel.

It has provided power by way of at least ten watermills for more than a thousand years, sadly only one is still functional.

It is possible to walk from Watercress Farm to Clevedon (with one exception), or parts of the walk can be undertaken

Starting at Watercress Farm walk towards Wraxhall House (B3130) onto the Trout Farm (B3130) – the next bit of the river is on private land – turn left at the entrance to the Farm heading towards Nailsea. Before you get to the fire station turn right down Pound Land to the Moor End Spout (on your left) follow the footpath to Tickenham Church, then Tickenham Mill, continue to follow the river to Moor Lane. Turn left to reach the next river which is the Middle Yeo. The photographs below provide a guide to this walk. Members of the group are available to act as informal guides and provide information about the river – please make contact for details.

These two pictures show the river at  Nailsea, looking towards Wraxall House

Farm land near Nailsea


Watercress Farm near Wraxall

Nailsea looking towards Wraxall

Bridge near Watercress Farm

Clevedon Section

Looking away from Clevedon towards Nailsea

Looking towards Nailsea – the footbridge forms part of the footpath

Towards Clevedon

Looking the other way having crossed  the footbridge

To complete the view of the river where it enters Clevedon

The Yearling ditch flowing towards the Blind Yeo

You can get to this starting point by using the footpath next to the Motorway Bridge on the Clevedon to Nailsea Road

The footpath is on the left hand side of the road as you come from Nailsea just before the motorway bridge (view shown is looking towards Clevedon)

To get to the Land Yeo from here. Cross the fence at the footpath sign then keep the motorway close to you on your right – at the fence / gate at the bottom of the field turn left towards the footpath / wooden bridge

The wooden footbridge at the start of the Clevedon Section

 Excess water is diverted along the Yearling Ditch to the Blind Yeo, water levels are maintained by changing the height of the tilting weir at Cooks Clyse. We hope to include this section as part of a walk – details to be advised

Cook’s Clyse looking from the Land Yeo towards the Blind Yeo

The tilting weir at Cooks Clyse

Just to the right of this weir is another one that controls the Middle Yeo

Following the Land Yeo towards Clevedon the river enters a culvert under the M5 motorway.

The river enters the M5 culvert – M5 in the back ground

The river is then visible for a short time as it flows between the Motorway and Court Lane

The river as it leaves the M5 culvert

As it enters the culvert under Court Lane

This area is not that easy to access / find and in the past used as somewhere to live.

We spent time, in conjunction with the Highways Authority clearing it.

One of the many trailer loads we filled clearing the area in September 2010

As it exits the Court Lane culvert

The river now heads towards the area that most people first see the river as it enters Clevedon

Looking towards Northern Way

Click on the link below – the blue line shows the Land Yeo river flowing through the town.

Map of the Land Yeo

Please note:-

It is not always visible in the main part of the town as it flows through various culverts – the largest being under Queen’s Square. The entrance is next to the Conservative Club and the exit at the rear of the Curzon Community Cinema.


35 Responses to The River

  1. Julia James says:

    I would like to ask a question ? I live along the river yeo my garden backs in to it behind the old clerical medical building. Recently it’s banks were cut back by the council ? Anyway my question is , what do we do about the weed that is vigorously growing across from the opposite side ? It’s almost & I mean almost completely across to our side of the river bank now & fish, ducks, moor hens are almost unable to pass through towards the bridge and the flow is a bit concerning too , do we get a dingy and try to clear it ourselves ? I’ve never seen it to thick with weed & it looks almost possible to walk on it, it’s so thick . Any answers would be gratefully received and any actions in the best future would be be brilliant.

    Kindest regards Julia James 26 Irving close clevedon

    • landyeofriends says:

      Thank you for your question. I will ask our rivers expert to reply – they are away at the moment so it might be a few days before they do

  2. Julia James says:

    Many thanks

  3. Same problem strode road weed growing across river how can we clear it

    • landyeofriends says:

      Thank you for your question. I will ask our rivers expert to reply.

      • landyeofriends says:

        Following on from a mild winter and early spring growing conditions have been ideal and the rate of growth has been unprecedented. One section of river from Court lane down to Northern Way and beyond was severely affected and was cleared with a machine on the 27th June. The Environment Agency usually carry out routine weed cutting in August and September both with machines and by hand from the Motorway to the Pill.

        We have on several occasions this year expressed our concerns to the EA, we were told yesterday one of their foreman would walk the river today (Friday 25/7/14) to assess the problem. In addition the foreman also visited one of the residents in the Fearnville Estate who had complained to the EA, they were told the Agency would also be spraying the weed to control it. If the weed is to be sprayed, for it to be effective and reach the roots we feel it would be best left for the EA to deal with.

        As yet we have have not been given an indication of when the spraying and cutting will be carried out, when we hear something from the EA the web site will be updated.

  4. Steph says:

    I have noticed that someone has built on to the river bank beyond their own boundary , (Coleridge vale property )maki g it very difficult to pass along the river bank. Who should this be reported to.

  5. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We are looking into this with the appropriate agency department and hope to have it resolved as soon as possible.

  6. Helen Brewer says:

    Is fishing permitted on the Land Yeo and if so which parts, please?

    As far as we know a permit is not required for the Land yeo. we suggest you try the Clevedon Angling Club.

    • Annie says:

      You’ll need a rod license which you can get from the PO but best place for local fishing info is the Tackle Shop in Alexandra Rd. Very helpful and friendly, even if you are new to it.

  7. Gill Brown says:

    Are the Friends of the Land Yeo aware of the plans to develop land close to the river North of Nailsea?

    The area is in greenbelt, but Nailsea Town Council is pressing hard for the boundary to be changed. If the development was to go ahead it would cause significant runoff into the river which could result in flooding downstream. As anyone who has walked along this part of the Land Yeo will know, it is beautiful, wildlife rich and relatively unspoiled. it’s loss to development would be keenly felt by many. Please contact me if you would like further information. Thank you.

    • brunfag says:

      As it happens We have our next bimonthly meeting during the first week in Feb. We do have a councillor from Clevedon Town Council as part of the LYF group. I will raise the topic at the meeting and see if there is any specific knowledge amongst the group.
      Geoff Harrison
      Chairman LYF

  8. Gill Brown says:

    Thank you, I have studied the wildlife on this part of the Land Yeo for many years and am very concerned about potential development. Any support your group could offer would be very welcome.

  9. Peter Skett says:

    Hi there, I love next to the Blind Yeo and wondered if your group is involved in maintaining it in the same way as you’ve been involved with the Land Yeo. I’ve been concerned about litter in the river, particularly plastics. I’m worried that these could get through the sluice gates and into the Bristol Channel and thereon to the open sea, where they could become a danger to Maine animals.

    The issue is that a lot of this litter is inaccessible from the river banks, so a boat would seem the best way of clearing it. I have seen people kayaking on the river, but am unsure of the rules about this. There are moorhens and other birds which nest along the stretch I’m concerned about, so it may not be straightforward to do. I wondered if you had any thoughts about the right people to approach about clearing the river of litter. I’m fairly new to Clevedon so I’m not very au fait with the best (and legal) way of taking action on this.

    • brunfag says:

      Hi Peter
      The Land Yeo Friends is focused on the Land Yeo, primarily from just east of the Motorway through the town to the outfall at the estuary. We are not involved in the Blind Yeo. Rubbish on the banks of the river is basically the responsibility of the riparian owners. (essentially the landowners through which the river flows, householders, farmers or a statutory body). I suspect the riparian owner for the Blind Yeo is either North Somerset Council or the Environment Agency.

      • Peter Skett says:

        Many thanks for the quick reply. I thought as much. I’ve sent an email to the Environment Agency to get their position on it. I wasn’t sure if the golf club and the farmer who farms some of the adjoining fields would own the banks, but I’ll wait to see what the EA say. Thanks again, Pete.

  10. Karen Howell says:

    Apologies but I am trying to source a contact for the mooring at Pill , would you have any details please ?

  11. Jayne West says:

    Hi there, I have been looking for your contact details ‘on the right hand side of the page’ but there don’t appear to be any. Could you let me know if you are a registered charity please?

  12. jaynewestbclear says:

    Hi there
    I was looking for your contact details on ‘the right hand side of the page’ as stated on the web pages, but there don’t appear to be any. Could you let me know if you are a registered charity please? Many thanks and I look forward to hearing from you.

  13. brunfag says:

    No we are not a registered charity. We are a local community group consisting solely of volunteers who care about the river and its environs. We do have a written constitution, accounts and minutes. You ae welcome to attend any of our meetings, listed on the home page, which are held in the Oak Room at the Curzon Cinema, Clevedon. Sorry about the confusion re contact details. We used to have personal contact details on the website but removed them after some issues arose.

  14. Paul Welcomme says:

    On Monday evening I walked the full Two Rivers Walk. It was a lovely revelation on a beautiful evening. So well done to everyone who enabled this to come about. 😊
    The only difficulty was the field beyond the M5 bridge. There was no clear signage marking the permitted path and the field was criss-crossed with electric horse fencing with no way through. Fortunately some horse peeps were there who said the electric was off and we could climb in between the fences to get to the corner gate.
    Other walkers may get similarly confused.
    Many thanks
    Paul Welcomme
    0774 829 5253

    • brunfag says:

      Hi Paul
      thank you very much for your feedback. I’m very pleased you enjoyed the walk. It has taken many years to bring to fruition. Several other users have mentioned the electric fence since the walk’s inauguration and the difficulty it can cause. The route does follow a public footpath; we will discuss at the Land Yeo Friends meeting on 1st August and endeavour to find an appropriate way forward.

  15. Gareth Crowe says:

    I noticed a lot of dead pike in the river between Strode Road and Southern Way tonight. The river has been fine clear but in the last few days has become murky and I saw at least 10 dead pike.

    • brunfag says:

      Thank you for getting in touch. I had a walk along yesterday and there were still half a dozen dead fish visible. There were a lot of smaller fish visible yesterday still active. I have reported as an incident to the Environment Agency. The EA had also had a couple of other reports. They are considering if they need to send someone out to look and a minded that they probably will. Their thoughts without having seen it , is that it could be oxygen shortage. Hot weather and low flows. Today’s rain and cooler conditions may help. Apparently its the big fish that suffer first in these circumstances. .If they do go out they will be back in contact with me though it may take a while to get back to me during the current corona situation

  16. Wayne Pearce says:

    Quick question, my wife and I like to Paddle board and noticed this stretch of river from Strode Road with relatively easy access to the water. Is Paddle boarding permitted here?

  17. Paul Welcomme says:

    Re two rivers walk
    Saw today that the gate by bridge to Clevedon Medical Practice has a sign stating it’s private land so can’t be crossed. Isn’t the river bank NSC/ public land so pathway can be used to cross the ‘fence’ to continue along river bank.
    Please advise?
    Paul Welcomme

  18. brunfag says:

    I suspect you are referring to the fence /gate across the bank at the next bridge upstream from the medical centre. As in much of Clevedon the riverbank is owned by the adjacent properties These landowners enjoy riparian rights over the river bank and half of the width of the river. There is no public right of way along the riverbank unless there is a public footpath across the land. Such is the case in some locations in Clevedon, for example, with the footpath along the riverbank from Southern Way to Marshalls Field.

    The landowners in the river section from the bridge at Kingston Avenue upstream to Northern Way have made it clear that they do not welcome public access. We have made a note of this on the updated Two Rivers Walk on our website.

    North Somerset Council do own two areas of river bank in Clevedon. One is alongside the Strode Road playing fields, extending eastwards along the bank behind the industrial buildings to the rivers junction with Strode Road. The other is at Penny Fields, north of Churchill Road.

  19. Trish Manning says:

    Please please arrange for the poor dead swan to be removed at Marshall field. Thank you

  20. Maria Chappell says:

    Can you confirm that the land Yeo is no longer part of clevedon flood defence as it is blocked in several places with reeds lollies and weeds . Plants take root because the water is too shallow owing to lack of dredging and flow. Please do something about this before clevedon floods .

    • brunfag says:

      Hello Maria

      Thank you for posting a comment on the Land Yeo Friends website.

      The Land Yeo’s classification remains that of a “main river”. As such it is the responsibility of the Environment Agency to include it in the risk assessment of flood risk they are required to undertake and to maintain the river as part of the area’s catchment and drainage and flood mitigation.

      For the Land Yeo the EA’s normal approach is to weed spray once a year and to clear out weed once a year, typically in the autumn. They have responded in the past to sudden growths by intermediate weed clearance in localised spots.

      Being a voluntary community group the Land Yeo Friends do not and are not allowed to undertake weed clearance of the river. We do stay in communication with the EA and keep them informed of any troublesome events. This spring (ie 2022) the LYF walked the length of the river from the M5 culvert down to the outfall into the Severn Estuary, with a group of EA personnel. We pointed out troublesome areas of vegetation growth that they may have missed in the past. There is a great deal of vegetative growth this summer and we have been in contact with the EA and are awaiting a response.

      If you have any concerns we suggest you also raise them with the EA.

      Geoff Harrison
      Land Yeo Friends

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