Bellfields

 

Riverside Park

Most of the land between the towpath and the A3 road is Guildford's Riverside Park. When the Borough Council created this leisure area it bridged the ditch and made a route for pedestrians between the Park and the towpath.

Sewage Works

and the Clandon Estate

Wey

Stoke Lock is often said to have been built at the same time as the 'flowing river' as the experimental lock at Stoke  Erected by Richard Weston in 1630s.  This may be so but, unless at that time substantial barges were already navigating the natural river here, nothing so expensive as a pound lock would have been needed. A dam or weir would have sufficed to divert water into Sir Richard's channel. A few removable paddles in this would make the structure into a flash lock enabling vessels to pass, albeit with  some difficulty. This was the commonest type of lock at the time.

Stoke Lock Cottage. built in 1882. There seems to have been an earlier cottage

Shagdon Roll. Some 600 yards upstream of Old Bucks Weir the National Trust boundary encompasses a loop of the river once the course of the Navigation. It was known as Shagdon Roll and was cut through in the 1930s as part of the River Wey Improvement Scheme. The short new channel became the course of the Navigation here but the old river bed and the towpath beside it were not surrendered. They remain part of the Navigation. The piece of land between the present Navigation channel and the former towpath was not transferred to the Navigation or, it appears, to anyone else, so it probably belongs to the County Council but it is doubtful if that is known at County Hall.

Channel - Just above the lock leading off to the north behind the lock cottage is a short channel. This is thought to be part of Sir Richard Weston's 'flowing river' dug in 1616-20 to flood his meadows. It heads in the right direction but after a mile or so ball trace of it has disappeared.

Tip.  For years Guildford's rubbish was tipped here and there was a cattle market. Waste is still collected here and an industrial estate now occupies much of the site.

Stoke Cut.  It has been suggested that Stoke Cut from Stoke Bridge to the lock may have been the first stretch of 'flowing river' widened and deepened in the early 1650s to carry barges.

 

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