River Avon at Saltford

Photo: River Avon at Saltford


The River Avon, the Kennet Avon and Canal and other waterways are an important part of Bath & North East Somerset’s rich environment. For example:

• They provide key green infrastructure corridors through both our urban and rural areas, linking otherwise fragmented habitats and providing for a range of wildlife.

• Canal and Riverside paths and rights of way provide recreational and sustainable travel routes and link public spaces.

• They have an important recreational and leisure role.

• Residential and commercial, moorings are provided on our River and Canal network.

• Waterways carry flood waters and discharges, and can provide water supplies for agricultural and industrial use.

• Many of our former industrial sites undergoing redevelopment and regeneration are located on River and Canal corridors and are undergoing significant change.

We value the multi-functional benefits of our water systems, and work together with many partner organisations and individuals to make sure that our Rivers and Canals continue to provide a range of roles and benefits to wildlife and people.

River Avon Projects

For more information about a range of Council projects and functions in this area, see our linked pages below:

Bath River Line Project

The Council is developing an exciting project to rejuvenate the river corridor through Bath. The project will focus on improving the riverside for ecology, cycling and walking, recreation and leisure. As part of the project, we’ll be upgrading the parks and towpath and would like to hear your ideas about they could be improved. 

WaterSpace Connected

WaterSpace Connected is an ambitious large-scale project following the River Avon from Bath to Bristol, aiming to improve the River corridor for people and nature. The project will deliver benefits for nature, communities, and the economy, through the creation of a multi-functional and resilient Nature Recovery Network.

The first phase of the project is focused on the Somerdale area North of Keynsham, where there are plans to deliver a walking and cycling bridge across the River Avon, connecting Keynsham to Hanham and East Bristol.

Watch our project video to find out more

Green Infrastructure

The River Avon and Kennet and Avon Canal Corridor are one of the Council’s seven key Green Infrastructure priorities. The Council's Green Infrastructure web page is here

Environmental Monitoring and Flooding 

Further information in relation to Environmental Monitoring, including the causes of foam on the River can be viewed here.

Further information on this topic is also provided by the Environment Agency here.

The Council works closely with the Environment Agency, who are the organisation responsible for flood defence and flood warning in England and Wales.

The Council's flood web page is here


The Council owns a limited number of mooring sites within Bath & North East Somerset Area.

Moorings - including information regarding Pulteney Moorings is here

River Safety

The Council has established a River Safety Partnership which delivers a range of safety improvements and safety awareness campaigns relating primarily to the River Avon. 

WaterSpace Study 

The Council worked in partnership with the Environment Agency, the Canal and Rivers Trust and Wessex Water to deliver the WaterSpace Study. This included an evidence base, public and stakeholder consultation and identification of opportunities to deliver enhancements to these waterways and adjoining land.

For more information, please follow the link. 

River Avon Bat Project 

B&NES Council worked with Natural England and Ecologists Clarkson & Woods to create Bat mitigation measures for the Bath Enterprise area. This involved the publication of guidance for use by developers, planners and engineers to implement within the zone in order to encourage bats. Between April and November 2016 and in winter 2017, bat surveys were carried out providing an evidence based understanding of how bats are using the River Avon corridor across all seasons.

New informal design guidance has been created based on the detailed ecological survey work undertaken – see our website.

River & Canal Walks 

Experience the River Avon and Kennet & Avon Canal for yourself with one of our walking tours, here.

Volunteer Pages

This web page contains information useful to volunteers working in our area – including information on invasive species found on our waterways – and how to identify them.  See our website for more.

Wood burners

Find out more about wood burning, including access to financial support, wood burning and your health, and moisture content and heat efficiency in our leaflet

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