Thornbury and District Museum

  Home arrow Thornbury

Main Menu
About Us
Where to find us
Whats On
Heritage Trail
Museum Shop
Contact Us


Thornbury Print E-mail

The Historic Borough and Town of Thornbury

Thornbury Castle - administrative centre of the Manor of Thornbury

Thornbury is situated right in the heart of the Lower Severn Vale. The Borough of Thornbury was established by Charter in 1252 AD by Richard de Clare, Earl of Gloucestershire and Lord of the Manor of Thornbury. The earliest surviving features of the medieval Borough and Town are the layout of the streets, lanes, and burgage plots along with their associated paddocks and orchards behind the walled gardens of the burgage holders' houses.

The principal streets, High Street, Castle Street, St. Mary Street and John Street, are lined with predominantly 17th and 18th century facades. Often the structure behind them is of an earlier date. The buildings are constructed from local stone and roofed with locally made red pantiles. The combined effects of stone boundary walls, rendered building facades, varied roof levels and the unified scale of the buildings of the old town create its special character.

In the High Street, the prominent Market Hall was the focus for the cattle market held in the High Street until it was moved to Rock Street in 1911.

Of the many interesting buildings, the Cossham Hall, built in 1780 as a Wesleyan Chapel, was visited by John Wesley on several occasions, and later purchased and donated to the town by Handel Cossham in 1888. The jettied Bristol & West building in High Street is a timber framed structure of 16th century origins. The Town Hall, former Magistrates Court and Police Station, was remodeled from 17th and 18th century buildings in 1860. The Swan is an old coaching inn dating from the 17th century, whilst Porch House (No. 11 Castle Street) has 15th century origins.

Guided walks of historic Thornbury are organized from the Museum in Chapel Street.
© 2015 Thornbury & District Museum
Joomla! is Free Software released under the GNU/GPL License.