Gallery - Saltford Parish Council

Saltford is a beautiful rural village, situated surrounded by green belt, and located between the historic city of Bath and vibrant city of Bristol. Saltford is known for its historic Conservation Area and views towards the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, especially the iconic Kelston Tump. Both the River Avon and Brunel’s GWR line run through the village. Along with many activities and events happening in this active place, there is much to capture through a lens. This gallery page aims to give a flavour of various aspects of a village which around 4,000 residents are fortunate to call home.

Saltford is known for its river side walks and many public rights of way through local countryside. This view looks towards Saltford from the Kelston side of the river, on to Kelston Weir which is one of two weirs in Saltford. For B&NES Council’s interactive public rights of way map, see our ‘Location Map‘ page for information. For river safety information, please visit our ‘River Information and Safety Advice‘ page.

The population of Saltford significantly expanded in the 1970s and 1980s following many new houses being built in the Manor Road and Montague Road area of the village, including the ‘Admirals Park’ and ‘Manor Lawns’ estates. Saltford Environment Group’s Online Map page shows how the village has expanded, particularly in the second half of the 20th Century.

Many of Saltford’s shops are located on the A4 Bath Road, the main road which runs through the middle of the village that connects Saltford with Bristol and Bath. Historically, Saltford’s shops were on the High Street (which is primarily now residential and in the Saltford Conservation Area). Many businesses are located in Saltford, a high number of which are part of the active Saltford Business Network.

Saltford’s War Memorial is located on the Beech Road / Norman Road / High Street junction. It was erected in 1920, and relocated to its current position in 1966. It is the focus of Saltford’s Remembrance Sunday commemorations each year as organised by the Saltford Scouts. The War Memorial railings are a SPC asset, the poppies and words were added to mark the centenary of the end of World War 1. See SPC’s History or Saltford page for more information.

In 2024 B&NES Council’s Claverton Road play park displayed artwork created by pupils from the nearby Saltford Primary School, created as part of a B&NES Council WECA funded environmental project for which SPC was a named partner. This project saw the introduction of new wildflower areas, trees, and ‘bug hotel’ benches. More about the play area can be found here on the B&NES Council website. Another (smaller) B&NES Council play park is located at Wedmore Road (adjacent to Saltford Hall).

Tunnel House is a grand Georgian building in Saltford, situated within the Saltford Conservation Area and one of Saltford’s many listed buildings. Tunnel House was famously purchased by Brunel to enable this section of his GWR line between Bath and Bristol. The track runs via a cutting under the building. The site of the former Saltford Railway Station (closed 1960) is on the A4 Bath Road. Photo by Cllr Phil Harding. SPC actively supports the re-opening of Saltford Station at its current site, type ‘Saltford Station’ in the search bar for the latest news on this.

Railway features visible in Saltford were designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel. This includes the Grade II listed ‘Saltford Tunnel portals’, as well as Clay Lane Bridge situated on the boundary of Saltford and Keynsham which is one of four near identical Tudor Gothic overbridges on this section of his London to Bristol GWR line. The drawings for the bridge and portals are still in existence, as signed by ‘I.K. Brunel’. The west Saltford Tunnel can be seen in the photo above taken by Cllr Jon Godfrey in May 2021. Visit SPC’s ‘History of Saltford‘ page (under 19th Century) for more information.

Saltford’s Conservation Area is also known as the ‘old village’. This photo taken by Cllr Phil Harding shows some roof tops on the High Street. A map of Saltford’s Conservation Area can be found on SPC’s ‘Planning‘ section of the website. This page also links to listed buildings in Saltford.

Located in the old village is the Saltford Brass Mill, a Scheduled Ancient Monument. The Brass Mill is run by a dedicated volunteer team who open the mill for free to the public during weekends in the summer months. A mill was recorded in Saltford in the Domesday Book of 1086, it is recorded as have had a value 12 shillings and 5 pence. At the time, Saltford had a recorded population of 23 households.

St Mary’s Church, which dates from the Anglo-Saxon period, is located on the edge of the village. This beautiful oak in St Mary’s Churchyard is protected by a Tree Preservation Order, as are several trees in Saltford. Trees in the Conservation Area have planning protection too. Find out more about Tree Preservation Orders and works on Conservation Area trees on the B&NES website https://www.bathnes.gov.uk/…/tree-preservation-orders

One of the earliest maps featuring Saltford, or ‘SALFORD PARISH‘ as shown, dates from 1742, titled ‘An Actual Survey of the City of Bath, in the County of Somerset and of Five Miles Round’. It clearly shows the High Street and The Shallows, plus significant buildings including St Mary’s Church and ‘Salford Mills’ (today the site of Saltford Brass Mill). The field above Mead Lane is marked as ‘Salford Mead’, indicating where the current name of the road below originated. A high quality image of the Saltford section of this map can be found on SEG’s Online Map Room. The original map is held by the Bath Record Office with its entry detailed on the Bath in Time website.

The Northern Lights were spotted over Saltford in May 2024. This image, captured by a resident, also shows one of the many historic fingerposts dotted in and around Saltford. To find out why so many fingerposts still survive in the local area, see the 19th century section of SPC’s ‘History of Saltford‘ page.

Spring flowers with the cottages behind formerly being known as ‘Ferry Cottages’ where those that operated the Saltford Ferry use to live (see our ‘Local History – 19th Century‘ page for more). SPC encourages environmental projects in the area, especially those that improve nature and habitat in public places. See SPC’s Grants page for more information about SPC funding for environmental initiatives.

Saltford is a rural village, despite its proximity to Bath and Bristol. It is surrounded by green belt, the majority of which is used for farming. The image above shows a field to the south of the village, which is used for arable crops. SPC has designated much of Saltford’s green belt as an Area of Great Landscape Value – take an armchair tour of the AGLV through this photographic record.

Cows with Saltford in the background. The fields to the north of the village are used for grazing, particularly by cattle whose milk is used for several well-known Bath cheeses available in the many local farm shops in and near Saltford. Saltford’s rural landscape contains a rich variety of wildlife as well as a matrix of Public Right of Way (PROW) footpaths and permissive footpaths/bridleways that allow residents and visitors to gain essential health and wellbeing benefits from the openness of the landscape.

Saltford has a fascinating geological past. As a former resident and geologist describes, ‘Saltford sits on Lower Jurassic rocks that formed about 200 million years ago when a large part of southern England was covered by a warm, shallow sea, perhaps similar to the Bahamas today‘, with the evidence of this still apparent. The photo above shows a rock exposure dating from the Jurassic period on Mead Lane (on private land, as viewed from the highway) demonstrating an alternating limestone / mudrock / shale sequence. See SEG’s ‘Walking through Saltford’s geological past‘ leaflet for more information.

Autumn by the river, November 2023. The river, though beautiful, flows high after periods of wet weather. Visitors and residents alike are advised to take care when walking near the river, especially in colder months. The river can flood surrounding areas, for flooding information visit our ‘Report It‘ page.

Saltford Festival has taken place in the village every two years since 2011. Run by volunteers, in 2024 over 60 events were being held by local organisations, groups and businesses to provide a most entertaining 10 days with hundreds of people participating.

SPC hosts a free guided ‘Parish Walk’ as part of the Saltford Festival, which explores different areas of the village each time and includes interesting facts about Saltford’s history, geography and nature. The photo above was taken during SPC’s 2024 evening walk in June, on the way back from the highest point in Saltford which gave 180 degree views from Bath to South Wales.

The Saltford Festival also includes the biennial photography competition. The image above, used with kind permission of competition finalist Gennine Blanning, captures a fantastic shot of Avon Fire and Rescue carrying out one of their regular water safety training sessions on the river in Saltford. For more information about water safety including advice from Avon Fire and Rescue for those using the river, please visit SPC’s ‘River Safety Information and Advice‘ page.

Sunrise in January 2024 – Hot air balloons can often be seen over Saltford, usually in the early morning and during the evenings, with several launch points in the surrounding areas. Balloons sometimes fly over the village, and like others living in this part of England where hot air balloons are popular, Saltford residents sometimes wake up to the unique sound of burners overhead (along with a friendly wave from those enjoying the views from above!)

Saltford is surrounded by green belt, as seen in this view looking over the village taken from Lansdown hill. In 2023, the Parish Council agreed the following: ‘SPC is in favour of protecting the Green Belt and our highly valued landscape surrounding Saltford from development including from a road bypass (that would be infilled with housing)’. To read SPC’s full policy overview, visit the ‘Parish Council‘ page.

Saltford Hall is at the centre of many of Saltford’s activities and events. Multiple rooms are available for hire, including the Avon Room which is the usual location for SPC’s full council meetings. It is also Saltford’s polling station. Saltford Hall is run by the Saltford Community Association, which has over 60 affiliated members, including SPC. The hall is located on Wedmore Road, to the north of the village.

Situated behind Saltford Hall is Saltford Sports Club and its playing fields. Saltford Sports Club hosts Saltford’s football and cricket teams, and is a great community sports facility with several other sports played at the club’s premises. This includes petanque, which SPC gave grant funding towards the costs of a new court. More about Parish Council grants can be found on SPC’s ‘Finance’ page under ‘Grants’. Photo by Cllr Jon Godfrey.

SPC’s red phone box situated at the Bird in Hand pub on the High Street, all lit up for Christmas. SPC has several assets that it looks after on behalf of the Saltford community, these are checked and maintained by the Parish Council. More information can be found on the ‘Council responsibilities‘ page. Photo taken by Cllr Phil Harding in December 2022.

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