Join us for a voyage down the River Severn.

Shrewsbury is a town steeped in history and we think there’s no better way to tell the town’s story than on the very river that it was built upon.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

Welsh Bridge

We start our journey along the River Severn at Victoria Quay next to the Welsh Bridge, which connects the suburb of Frankwell to the Town Centre. There’s been a river crossing in this area for nearly 900 years. Completed in 1795, the current bridge has only stood at this site since 1795; its predecessor, St Georges Bridge, was further upstream near Mardol.

Theatre Severn

On the other side of the Welsh Bridge, you will see the Theatre Severn. This is a modern building built to replace the Music Hall, as its audiences were outgrowing the venue. It hosts a huge variety of productions, from comedy to live music, and not forgetting its wonderful Pantomime during the festive season.

Shrewsbury Castle

A Grade I listed building, Shrewsbury Castle is situated at the head of the River Peninsula: the only part of the town centre not protected by the river loop. This meant that invaders had no choice but to make their move through water – a much more difficult task. It was the basis of many power struggles during the 12th and 13th centuries but was eventually purchased from a private owner in 1924 by the Shropshire Horticultural Society. The Castle was then the location of Shrewsbury Town Council chambers for 50 years and is now home to the Shropshire Regimental Museum.

Quantum Leap

Locally nicknamed the ‘slinky’, the Quantum Leap sculpture is the focal point of a ‘Geo Garden’ created to celebrate the bicentenary of the birth of Charles Darwin. As Shrewsbury’s most famous previous resident, you will find many references to him around the town. The sculpture also observes Shropshire’s geological diversity, as we boast 10 of the 12 geological periods.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

Porthill Bridge

The first bridge you come across is the Porthill Bridge. Once a ferry crossing site, the suspension bridge connects Shrewsbury town centre to the Porthill area of town, and that’s where you’ll find…

The Boat House Inn

Now a lovely riverside pub located on the Starboard side of the boat (the right-hand side) opposite The Quarry called The Boat House Inn. The building once served a more industrial role housing lead which was extracted from Snailbeach mine near the Stiperstones.

St. Chads

St. Chads can be seen overlooking The Quarry and is the largest seated venue in Shrewsbury. Interestingly, before it collapsed, the great engineer Thomas Telford had warned that the original church had fallen into disrepair. At the time the new St.Chads building was declared an abomination due to its design, today it’s a revered building and the largest of only four round churches in the United Kingdom. The church’s motto is “open doors, open hearts, and open minds”, indicating its intention to be welcoming and actively involved in the community.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

Quarry Lodge

As we continue our journey we pass by the Quarry Lodge alongside the Quarry’s striking blue gates at the park entrance. Built in 1887, it was once home to Percy Thrower, who was park superintendent for over 30 years.

The Market Hall

Situated within the town centre is our wonderful Market Hall. Voted Britain’s Favourite Market in 2018, and Best Midlands Market in 2019 and 2020, a wander in the Market Hall is a must when visiting Shrewsbury. Filled with a wide variety of stalls from organic produce, locally reared meat and dairy, confectionery, arts and crafts, and even some of Shrewsbury’s best-loved lunch spots, it has something for everyone.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

The Dingle & Quarry

You’ll have already noticed our town park, the Quarry, on the Portside of the boat (the left side). Covering 29 acres, it has been a recreational area for the town since the 16th century. At its heart is the Dingle, a beautiful sunken garden featuring fabulous flower beds and borders, with water features and statues. Most notably is a statue of Sabrina, nymph of the River Severn, after whom our boat is named.

Pengwern Boat Club

Built in 1881, Pengwern Boat Club is considered one of the most attractive rowing clubhouses in the UK. First established by the newly emerged middle class, the club aims to promote both competitive and pleasure rowing and boating for everyone.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

Kingsland Bridge

Continuing on your journey you will pass under the Kingsland Bridge, known locally as the penny bridge (as it once cost a penny to walk across!). An Act of Parliament was passed in 1880 for its construction, and it was built to link the town centre to the Victorian suburb of Kingsland.

Statue of Hercules

A long-standing fixture of Shrewsbury, Hercules has stood for over 250 years, but in various locations. A copy of a statue in Naples, Italy, he has long been the subject of a town myth regarding the fig leaf covering his manhood. A restoration project of our dear Hercules in 2004 revealed that he in fact has nothing to be concealed by the fig leaf.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

St. Mary’s

As the only Mediaeval church in Shrewsbury which remains intact, St. Mary’s is not only a beautiful building but is also full of curiosities such as the epitaph to Robert Cadman, an 18th-century tightrope walker. It is said that no other church in England has a collection of stained glass windows quite like those of St Mary’s. With a variety of styles from the 14th to 19th centuries, the ‘main treasure’ is in the East wing of the church and depicts the Tree of Jesse.

Town Walls

Very little remains of the historic town walls of Shrewsbury but along your journey down the River Severn you’ll see what’s left of the Mediaeval fortified wall dating back to the 14th Century.

What You'll See in Shrewsbury

The Abbey

Shrewsbury’s Abbey is an impressive building made of red brick. Once three times its size, it was originally a Benedictine monastery and grew to be one of the most important and influential abbeys in England. More recently, it was the setting for The Cadfael Chronicles, a historical murder mystery series by Ellis Peters.

English Bridge

Shrewsbury’s English Bridge is where Sabrina ends her journey before heading back to her harbour at Victoria Quay. Imagine before the bridge we see today there was a steep incline to allow ships to pass, houses and shops scattered across and only 12 foot of passing space. Most certainly the local authorities would be getting a lot of complaints.