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Shrewsbury on Foot

A tree-lined towpath follows the river as it winds its way through Quarry Park, passing the ironwork Porthill Foot Bridge, Pengwern Boat Club, Shrewsbury School and Kingsland Toll Bridge along the way. At just 20p to cross, we think Kingsland Bridge must be the UK's cheapest toll bridge in the UK!

The Quarry is packed with petals and open parkland - there are 23 acres in total. The jewel in The Quarry's crown is The Dingle: a sunken garden designed by Percy Thrower, of Blue Peter fame. He was Shrewsbury's Park Superintendent for 28 years and The Dingle is his legacy.

You can tour the town in the footsteps of Charles Darwin - Shrewsbury's most famous son. He was born at Mount House and spent his formative years looking at bugs and beetles in his garden, exploring the River Severn and surrounding fields and floodplains, or in the Dingle in Quarry Park. There is a free Darwin Town Trail (available from the visitor information centre in the new Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery) and the Darwin Festival in February offers guided walks exploring the buildings and parts of the town that he and the Darwin family knew.

Of particular note on route is the granite boulder named 'The Bellstone'. You'll find it just off Bellstone - go through the pair of black iron gates at the entrance to Morris Hall Yard and you'll find it standing at the end of the courtyard. The Bellstone was Darwin's first introduction to the science of geology. According to Darwin a Mr Cotton first drew his attention to the Bellstone. Mr Cotton explained that this type of stone was only found much further north in Cumbria or Scotland and went on to assure Darwin that "the world would come to an end before anyone would be able to explain how this stone came where it now lay."