River Wylye

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River Wylye
River Wylye at Norton Bavant.jpg
River Wylye at Norton Bavant
Country England
 - left Chitterne Brook, River Till
Cities Maiden Bradley, Warminster, Codford St Peter, Wilton
Source Rodmead Farm
 - location Maiden Bradley, Wiltshire, England
 - elevation 148 m (486 ft)
 - coordinates 51°07′25″N 2°18′11″W / 51.12361°N 2.30306°W / 51.12361; -2.30306
Mouth Confluence with River Nadder
 - location Wilton, Wiltshire, England
 - elevation 69 m (226 ft)
 - coordinates 51°04′45″N 1°51′45″W / 51.07917°N 1.86250°W / 51.07917; -1.86250Coordinates: 51°04′45″N 1°51′45″W / 51.07917°N 1.86250°W / 51.07917; -1.86250
Length 45 km (28 mi)
Basin 470 km2 (181 sq mi)
Discharge for Chitterne Brook[1]
 - average 0.3 m3/s (11 cu ft/s)
 - max 0.6 m3/s (21 cu ft/s)
 - min 0.1 m3/s (4 cu ft/s)

The River Wylye (/ˈwli/ WY-lee) is a southern England chalk stream, with clear water flowing over gravel. It is popular with anglers for fly fishing.[1] A half-mile stretch of the river and three lakes in Warminster are a local nature reserve.[2][3]


The Wylye rises below the White Sheet Downs just south of Maiden Bradley in Wiltshire, and after flowing through the Deverill valley, forms the southern edge of Warminster. It then heads generally east south east, forming the Wylye Valley, into which the A36 road and the Wessex Main Line are also squeezed. The river passes through the parishes of Norton Bavant, Heytesbury, Knook, Upton Lovell, Boyton, Codford, Wylye and Wilton, near the southern edge of Salisbury Plain, and is fed by ephemeral, winterbourne streams so water flow can vary.[4]

The river forms part of the River Avon catchment. At Wilton it joins the River Nadder and eventually drains to the sea at Christchurch as part of the Avon.


In parts the river flows through various SSSI:[5]

Source and valley[edit]

A vineyard is located near the river's source.[6]

The Wylye valley is dotted with small chocolate box villages composed of thatched cottages and stone-built pubs.


Wilton, and hence Wiltshire (which was originally Wiltonshire), are named after the river. There is also a village of Wylye.

In literature[edit]

The River Wylye forms one of the five rivers referred to in the novel Sarum.


The villages located on the River Wylye include (source to confluence):


  1. ^ "Fishing Breaks". Retrieved 20 November 2007. 
  2. ^ "River Wylye". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. 
  3. ^ "Map of River Wylye". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. 
  4. ^ "IUCN" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 December 2007. Retrieved 20 November 2007. 
  5. ^ "English Nature". Retrieved 20 November 2007. 
  6. ^ "W Wilts Tourism". Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 20 November 2007. 
  7. ^ "The Village of Sutton Veny, Wylye Valley". Retrieved 13 June 2008.