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The River Severn at Upton on Severn, Worcs


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The River Severn at Upton on Severn. The source of the River Severn is high in the Cambrian Mountains in Wales. The Severn starts as a boggy pool which oozes out of the ground. The water comes from all the rain water which falls on the Welsh Hills. The dribbles of water quickly join together to make a small stream. The upper course of the river is a narrow rocky channel. The river has cut a V-shaped valley as it runs down from the hills. There is also a small waterfall in the upper course.
In the middle course the river gets wider and deeper and the valley becomes flatter. The river begins to meander and it is joined by tributaries such as the Avon, Doulass and the Vernwe. There is a floodplain in the middle course on which crops such as wheat and barley are grown.
The Severn continues its journey towards its mouth. It forms an estuary as it flows into the Bristol Channel and eventually the Atlantic Ocean. The River Severn forms the border between England and Wales for much of its course. It passes through important towns and cities such as Shrewsbury, Gloucester, Worcester and Bristol. Settlements grew up along the river from Roman times to the present day. One famous settlement is Ironbridge, the first industrial town.
The River Severn has been used for a long time to transport cargo and goods. The mining town of Ironbridge was built in the Industrial Revolution. Water from the Severn was used to drive waterwheels and other machinery. Iron ore and steel were transported in barges down the River Severn to Stourport. Stourport connected to London and Manchester by a network of canals. Stourport is where the river is officially navigable for barges and cargo ships. It is mainly grain which is transported downstream from Tewkesbury now. There is also a canal built by the estuary (Sharpness Canal) so that ships can avoid the tidal bore. The Severn is regularly dredged to keep it navigable.

10th Jun 2005

Art and Design, Geography, History

Key Stages:
Foundation, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Key Stage 3, Key Stage 4, Key Stage 4+

St Peter & St Paul, Church, Tower, Upton on Severn, Worcestershire

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