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Maud Heath's Causeway Raised Section

(Each Side of Kellaways Bridge)

In 1474, an endowment was made by a Kellaway's woman, Maud Heath, to build and maintain a causeway from Bremhill to Chippenham. The pathway is four and a half miles long and starts at the top of Wick Hill, near Bremhill and continues through Kellaways to Langley Burrell and onward to Chippenham Clift. The causeway was initially referred to as a 'causey', a word possibly coming from the French word Chaussée, a raised path. The elevation of the path was particularly important in the area between Kellaways and Langley Burrell, the lowest point of the route, where the river often flooded the fields.

To reach the bridge at Kellaways across the Avon river, the path was initially raised by stones, and the floodplain was crossed by wood piles and footboards, which would have needed constant repair. Efforts were later made to improve the path, the Maud Heath Trustees engaging Mr John Smith of Calne to estimate the cost and to build 'an arch or arches for raising the road at Kellaways … so as to render the road passable in time of floods.' The present brick arches were constructed in 1811 and finished in 1812 at the cost of £602 as a more permanent structure, able to take heavier loads. They consist of 64 arches, split on either side of Kellaway's bridge, and raise the pathway about five feet above the level of the road. The raised section, now grade II listed, continues to be of great help to walkers and cyclists. At times during periods of heavy rain, the raised sections remain the only means of crossing the floodplain.

 

Heath's Causeway
(raised section each side of Kellaways Bridge),
Langley Burrell

 

NGRef: ST 92767 75794
Historic England 1022352 

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