RSP Home River Severn Tales Chris Witts

Where to see the bore

Anywhere between Newnham on Severn to Over Bridge at Gloucester can be seen the typical bore, if there were such a thing. Below Newnham at The Hock on the east bank, there is a splendid view as the incoming tide sweeps over the broad sands, full of turbulence as it races around the long bends. Each vantage point offers a different view of the bore, [see map], some locations more popular than others.


News of a good bore travels fast. The problem now is where to park your car?

To make sure of a space, arrive two hours before the bore is due! You have been warned.

The golden rule of bore watching is to arrive early, especially at Epney, Stonebench and Minsterworth, where large numbers of cars normally block the narrow lanes. If left in the wrong place, with floodwater in the river, a bore can quickly top the bank, filling the car with water!

One question asked, with the answer not always understood is, “how can the tide be going out at Sharpness, yet still rising above Gloucester?”. Imagine a cricket ball being thrown under-arm. The arm is brought back, and then pushed forward with the ball being let go as it passes the leg. The ball continues flying forward, but the arm is returning back to the body.

In its simplicity, that is the action of the bore.


Remember the country code. To the farmer the bore is nothing new or exciting. So shut all gates, keep to the footpath and take all litter home. Don't be tempted to throw the litter into the Severn, it will not go out to sea, only flow up and down with each tide! And remember, be careful.

The Severn Bore

Photomarine . Sharpness Shipping . Links . Gloucester Shipyard