Broseley was first recorded in Domesday Book in 1086. From the 16th century it was an early centre for iron working, coal extraction and ceramic production and became a crowded and wealthy centre as one of Britain’s earliest industrial settlements.
The fabric of the town reflects the key industries of the Gorge: distinctive brickwork, plain and elaborately patterned tiles and boundary walls made from reused industrial materials. From the grand houses of wealthy industrialists to the meagre dwellings of their employees, Broseley provides a coherent example of the upheaval wrought to society through industrial change.
While Coalbrookdale claims to be the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, Broseley was significant in getting the bridge funded. Its importance as a commercial and social heartland for the Shropshire coalfield brought many of the finest minds of the time to the region and ultimately led to the innovative design of a marvel that stands to this day: the internationally acclaimed cast-iron bridge across the River Severn.
In addition to a wealth of industrial heritage Broseley is fortunate to be surrounded by stunning countryside with walks that take you through woods, valleys and dingles. The woods around Benthall and along the edge of the gorge, contain a network of beautiful paths with magnificent views across the gorge. Broseley was an industrial worker’s town and the the old worker’s paths still exist as footpaths, taking you through Corbett’s Dingle, Fish House Wood and Monewood to the Severn Gorge and back again. In another direction you can walk past the deserted hamlet of Darley, though Honeypot coppice and onto the village of Willey with the imposing Willey Estate buildings. Or stroll over the fields to Much Wenlock and back again.
The Haycop, a nine acre nature reserve on the site of a former coal colliery, is a wild life haven featuring a mosaic of habitats including a flower meadow, old established broadleaf woodland, heathland and aquatic ecosystems, with a wealth of fauna to match. Experiencing local walks it becomes obvious that the surrounding countryside is rich in oak trees that provide a sense of continuity with the past and a strong link with nature.
Broseley is ideally placed for walking and we invite you to enjoy it as much as we do.
Broseley Walkers Are Welcome would like to thank Broseley Town council
for their support and encouragement.