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Ansley Mill Ford
SP281917 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Jan Bentley (18/01/2007)
'It’s actually an ‘Irish bridge’ and is dry during the Summer, in the Winter it’s usually about 2 metres wide and a couple of inches deep, but it’s been quite wet recently.'
SP263987 (1*) Restricted Access
Sent in by Jan Bentley and Colin Lea (28/07/2007)
'The problem with this one is that the lane has long been closed off with bollards. But it is a year round ford, about 2 metres wide and 2 to 3 inches deep.
Note the the raised roadway with "Armco" reinforcing on the right against the stream which follows the road for many yards.
The actual ford at low water is at the Dordon (North ) end of the lane and the entrance to the lane to Baddesley is on the loop
of old road which has concrete drain pipe sections, filled with concrete at both ends.
SP263707 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Phil Price (21/02/2004)
SP500800 (1*) Irish Bridge
In true Warwickshire style, this one is a part-time ford with a concrete base.. However, judging by the size of the depth marker, Churchover looks like it could produce quite a substantial ford. Additional signs are provided on approach warning of the danger of its potential depth. Image Mouseover sent in by Neville Fox (22/01/2007)
SP085603 (4*) Suitable for All
Hidden away a little this one and is not very well signed. However, this is well worth a visit as a length of around 7 cars makes Coughton a very good splash-down. This one is on the national cycle network and I am told that it can make for quite a nervy crossing for those brave enough to try on their bikes. Image 1 mouseover sent in by Tim Weston (17/02/2004), Image 2 mouseover sent in by Carla Smith (04/03/2007)
SP283455 (1*) Suitable for All
As far as part-time fords go, this is up there with the best (but don't get your hopes up!) Worth checking if there has been some moderate rainfall. Image mouseover sent in by Sent in by Peter D. Smith (25/10/2004).
SP493670 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Mr Boddle (05/05/2008)
'Irish Bridge suitable for all, looks to only be in flood once a year.'
SP131594 (5*) Off-Roaders Only!
(Images 1 & 2: 19/07/2002)
This ford is a little hidden away on a road which is fast becoming into disrepair. Despite resembling a track, the road has proper signs warning of the ford and of a weak bridge just after it. The bridge can only take seven tonnes - but it was enough of a challenge to get my old Saxo over it! Viewed from the Great Alne side, the ford looks quite shallow with a gravelly bottom as it disappears into the distance. (Image 1)
However, when viewed from the other side, things look a bit more deep and menacing! Unfortunately, there is no footbridge for a full evaluation. (Image 2)
Images and account sent in by Colin Foster (04/01/2004)
'The water was not too deep, maximum about 2.5ft. Ford is relatively easy to drive and
the bottom is fairly firm and falt apart from one hollow. This hollow is
about 10m into the ford from the Great Alne end and towards the left
hand side of the lane. The left wheel will fall down into this which was
enough for the water to rise to the top of my left wing but it doesn't
really cause any problems for a 4x4 to drive over but was a bit of a
surprise. (Images 3 & 4)'
'I cycled through the ford at Great Alne as had viewed it in the car and thought otherwise. The ford is approximately 80 to 90m long with a variable depth and surface. The depth varies between a couple of inches to 1.5ish feet at a couple of places. The surface is mainly gravel however there are some larger rocks present. This would be possible in a Land Rover without any hassle and possibly a diesel car if insane enough to try.' Stephen Nicholls
'Snorkel a must and the hole just as you go in has got very deep. The strength of the flow across where you have to drive can be quite strong. I felt the vehicle go light at one point. Its also falling into disrepair quickly and road tyres are not in my opinion suitable anymore. Good all terrains at the very least are a must.' Fesuvious
'Danger! The depth Marker is Partially hidden by Vegetation.
The Depth at GROUND LEVEL when the water touches the Marker is 2ft Deep at the Entrance not 1ft as Previously stated and not 0 feet as all the other Markers!!!!' Steven Mason
'Great Alne now sports signs that say "Ford, impassable at all times" - obviously an oxymoron!" Rob Gullen
'The "Ford impassable at all times" Signs are still there BUT the Ford has had some work done to it. It has been Dug Wider than before and the bed has been levelled off.
It's a lot smoother now and there's no drop off to the outside of the Island.' Funtera
Image 5 shows Dave Horton bouncing out (10/12/2011)
SP106578 (3*) Off-Roaders Only!
Sent in by Roger Fairclough and Steve Hart (15/10/2007)
'The ford is on UCR. E5420 and is therefore driveable but the route from the South is blocked by a large tree and the track from the North has been downgraded to bridleway. There is a footbridge for walkers alongside the ford. Its a pity we lost it. Depth in good whether roughly 0.33m (1ft) Loose stone bottom.'
SP280721 (1*) Irish Bridge
Set amidst the backdrop of Kenilworth Castle is this exceptionally unusual part-time ford. Unusual in the sense of the standard of road of which is crosses. I visited after substantial rainfall, but the road was still well clear of the water which gives the impression that a very heavy downpour is required to activate this one.
Info from Simon Lapworth:
'I have witnessed this ford when it's angry. It takes few prisoners. There is
usually a 4x4 waiting on one side to drag out the unsuspecting motorist who
thinks he can get through. After their car has been moved sideways by the
fast flowing current they always jump out and run for the bank and safety. I
have seen 6 cars stuck at the same time. I did gloat as I was in a car on
the dry side at the time. As it is culverted, it needs a heavy downpour
before it becomes active. (Image 2, sent in by Harry Simmons, 04/03/2007)
SP449770 (2*) Suitable for All
Sent in by Neville Fox (22/01/2007)
'Not stricly a ford- but a guaranteed wet crossing every time the river Avon is in flood. Makes for a good 200 yard long, fast flowing crossing every time the Avon goes over it's banks. Always catches out plenty of unprepared motorists.
Located on a quite back lane between the village of Church Lawford and the hamlet of Kings Newnham. The small, brick bridge behind the car in the photo is not wide enough to allow full flow in a flood so the road floods very easily.'
SP193624 (1*) Irish Bridge
I don't want to sound condescending, but this is quite possibly the most disappointing ford I have come across on my travels. It is another part-timer, but it doesn't even really look like a ford either! (Image 1) However, check it out in full flow! (Image mouseover sent in by Stephen Nicholls)
SP468771 (5*) Off-Roaders Only!
According to the sign when approaching from Long Lawford, this one is 'unsuitable for light vehicles' and I certainly didn't fancy it in my old Saxo. The River Avon has quite a strong flow and I couldn't see the exit point let alone the bottom!
Account sent in by Simon Edginton:
'This is a great ford generally used by farm machinery, we ford it in our Discovery. The basic route is a slight right and then a long curve left to avoid the deep holes, to the exit ramp which has an almighty bump just as you get on to it. Normally the water level is as high as the bump strip on the Discovery but during bad weather can be 3 times + deep and very fast flowing! In bad weather we stay away as we do not have a snorkel fitted!!!'
Images and account sent in by Colin Foster (16/12/2003):
'Image 2 is taken from the far side having already crossed once. I crossed last Saturday and as you can see the water is pretty deep! Just as you round the corner to the left after entering is the deepest spot. I made it across in my waterproofed petrol Land Rover four times, but stopped on the fifth attempt and had to wade back to dry land to fetch an extra tow rope – it took a 15m and 8m rope to reach me. I stopped at about the midpoint just after the left bend. I estimate this was just before the deepest part and it was waist hight when I stood up – just over 3ft enough to cover the bottom of the pedals and the transmission tunnel and reach the base of the gear lever. The bottom was very smooth and a fine gravel apart from the bump onto the exit ramp – I know because I walked it! Best attempted in a diesel 4x4 preferably with a snorkel – was definitely risky in a petrol even with electrics well waterproofed and driven steadily with a good bow wave – Never the less after a bit of WD-40 and a check for water in the engine she started 1st time and drove home no probs but had I had a more luxurious motor there would have been a lot of wet carpet and seats!'
Image 3 was sent in by Mark Weller (24/07/07) who estimated the depth of teh ford during the floods of Summer 2007 to be in excess of 10 feet.
SP182980 (1*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Lee Chapman (Image 1: 14/04/2003) and Simon Litherland (Image 2: 08/09/2008)
The ford is a part time affair with a concrete base. On the occasion of my visit the river was about 6 inches below the road. The ford has the potential to be about 20 metres across after heavy rain. The base is concrete. One to visit after heavy rain. Image mouseover sent in by Nigel Ward (24/02/2007)
SP358661 (3*) Irish Bridge
Sent in by Andrew Babbs (29/06/2004) and NevilleF (11/08/2003)
'A part time ford par excellence! For much of the year the placid River Leam passes under the single arch stone Offchurch Bridge in a deep narrow channel. Indeed you may question when driving across in the dry, the necessity for the raised footpath and all the flood warning signs. However, given a good week’s rain, the space under the bridge suddenly becomes too small for the volume of water and thus several times a year the road becomes a ford. In essence Offchurch Bridge is an ‘Irish Bridge’ but on a much larger scale. Given a foot or so of water flowing at a fair lick across the road, it becomes quite a challenge for motorists!'
SP217851 (5*) Restricted Access
I do not wimp out at crossing fords but this one (which I visited at low levels) was just too risky without a 4x4! Packington is one of those rare fords where the road joins the river bed, which in this case is for around 75 metres! As the images show below, you would not guess in mid splash-down that you were in a ford! As you can see from the images it does just look like a river! This one is well worth a visit, but don't just plough into it. I definitely won't be taking responsibility.....
Account sent in by Stephen Nicholls:
'I had previously looked at it in the car and promptly turned around. This time I went on my bike as I thought it may be a safer bet. Just prior to beginning the crossing a 4x4 pickup decided to cross. I watched in a amazement as the water got deeper and deeper until the sills of the pick up were well covered. It made it through but was impressive to say the least. We decided to do it on our bikes mine was more of intrigue to see how deep it was and what the base of the ford was like. From both sides the water becomes deep within 10m. The depth remains constant for the remainder. It is just over two feet deep after dry weather as the wheels on my bike were almost totally submerged. The base of the ford is basically gravelly with pebbles etc. through out its duration. If I ever get chance I'm sure I will revisit in a Land Rover.'
At last someone had a go! Check out the mouseovers on Images 2 and 3. Sent in by Peter Greenway (10/03/2003)
Gaz gets wet!
IMPORTANT: ALL ACCESS TO THIS FORD IS NOW NOT ALLOWED AND THE CLOSURE IS LEGAL AND PERMANENT - PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT TO USE THE FORD ANYMORE
SP302487 (2*) Suitable for All
Sent in by John Brown (28/10/2002)
'A nice little proper ford on a sharp bend on a small back lane round the edge of this attractive commuter village. The lane is white on the map but is asphalt throughout, with a ford sign at each end. Footbridge, depth gauge.'
Preston Fields (x2!)
SP180664 (1*) Irish Bridge
SP177671 (4*) Off-Roaders Only!
The first ford is yet another Warwickshire part-timer, that definately comes to life after a bit of rain (Image mouseover: Sent in by Stephen Nicholls)
A further ford can be found on the neighbouring Green Lane. It is long with a gravel bottom and is suitable for all 4x4s. (Sent in by Phil Price, 21/02/2004 and Stephen Battey, 12/03/2006)
Tapster Valley (x2!)
SP168700 (2*) Irish Bridge
SP167700 (2*) Irish Bridge
The road through Tapster Valley is meant to be 'Unsuitable for Motors' but I can promise you that, despite being narrow, it is in far better condition than most 'suitable for motors' roads! Tapster Valley runs parallel with the M40 and is very much a local beauty spot. Three part-time fords are located in close proximity along the road, all with solid concrete channels. Travelling from East to West, the first ford is encountered as the stream comes into sight (Image 1). Image mouseover shows the ford in flood (Sent in by Stephen Nicholls)
Once passed, the next two fords follow in quick proximity to each other (Image 2). Although I will return after heavy rains to confirm, you can't help but feel that when the fords are functioning as three separate fords, they will be very shallow. I suspect that after persistent rain, the three fords probably merge to produce a single very long ford (Image mouseover sent in by Stephen Nicholls). However, unless you had a good knowledge of the road, I wouldn't recommend trying to cross as you may well end up in the stream bed! Overall, Tapster Valley is probably one of the more interesting places featured in this guide, despite remaining something of an unknown quantity!
Local info from Phil Price
'A little further toward the A3400 from the 3 fords. On the right is a green lane 'Tinkers Lane'. It is an easy/ bumpy ride for a Freelander but best approached from the A3400. Took me ages to find the entrance which was a gap in a hedgerow then up a steep muddy bank. Bit bumpy on the way round but otherwise ok.'
SP245375 (2*) Restricted Access
A bizarre little adventure awaits anyone who visits this ford. It is located on a byway which is totally unrecognisable as a right of way, all except the sparkling new Ford sign located by a gate leading into the farmers field (Image 1: approaching from Tidmington)
Open the gate and cross the field (literally) and you will reach more new signs; not just a ford sign this time, but also a warning of an uneven road surface (as opposed to the rutted field you have just crossed).
The ford itself is a monster with two depth gauges (Image 2) which read 2.5 foot on this visit - too deep for me! The river is a tributary to the Stour and marks the boundary between Warks and Gloucs, but only Warwickshire have gone to the trouble of installing signs.
'Tidmington seems to be no more! One end is now a restricted byway (Image 4) and the other has the remnants of the post that held the ford sign and there is a sign next to the ford stating to vehicular access. Shame it looks like perfect Land Rover territory. Daniel Fasham
SP336364 (3*) Suitable for All
Images sent in by Mark Allman (15/05/2002)
A decent ford of around 2 car lengths just over the county border from Oxfordshire. A shallow crossing, concrete base and potentially long run up! Car parking adjacent to the ford.
Famous ford spot by Andrew Neil. Traitors ford can be seen in the film 'Three men and a little lady'
Account sent in by Graham Nelson:
'You might like to note that the Hook Norton parish council website has a cautionary tale of a local cyclist who whizzed through, thinking it a harmless splash, and is now in a wheelchair: apparently the surface underneath is, or can be, very slimy. I survived unscathed but I might have taken the side-ramp if I'd realised. Perhaps that is the treachery in the name.'
SP286536 (2*) Off-Roaders Only!
At first glance, Walton appears like a ford on a farm track (which to a large extent it is). However, the presence of the depth post on the nearby lane indicates that the ford swells to include that too (Image 2: Sent in by Phil Price 01/02/2004)
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