A wildlife rich nature reserve that's a waterway alongside the River Avon.

The Avon New Cut is home to a wide variety of plants and animals, including some rare species.

The site includes Butterfly Junction near the Create Centre, approximately 1.8 miles long.

The Avon New Cut runs from near Temple Meads Railway Station to the Cumberland Basin.


  • Opening hours: Open at all times
  • Admission is free.
  • Public toilets at Wapping Wharf, Wapping Road, BS1 6UD and the Create Centre, Smeaton Road, BS1 6XN.
  • Car parking is available at Brunel Lock Road, BS1 6XL and the Maritime Heritage Centre, BS1 6JL or on streets surrounding the Avon New Cut.
  • The site is mostly wheelchair/buggy accessible but there are steps at the ‘Banana’ Bridge (Clarence Road side) and at Vauxhall Bridge (near Mardyke Ferry Road).

How do I get there

The Avon New Cut lies between Coronation Road and Cumberland Road/Commercial  Road for most of its length, and between York Road and Clarence Road at its eastern end, which is easily reached from Temple Meads Railway Station.



Community support

The Friends of Avon New Cut (FrANC) work in partnership with Bristol City Council and others to improve and promote the Avon New Cut and its wildlife.

They organise regular river clean-ups, guided walks and other activities.  New members are always welcome. 

Contact: contact@franc.org.uk


The Avon New Cut was excavated between 1804 and 1809 to divert the course of the River Avon as part of the process to create Bristol’s Floating Harbour.  

Industry soon developed along the banks of the New Cut and the waterway was busy with river traffic until the late 1930s.

Silt deposited by the river has formed banks against the walls of the New Cut that now support saltmarsh vegetation.  A band of scrub and woodland lies above the tide line and provides a valuable wildlife corridor through Bristol.

Most of the industry has now disappeared and the site was designated as a Local Nature Reserve in 2015.

Site status

Site of Nature Conservation Interest
Local Nature Reserve


Local Nature Reserves leaflet