River Barle Structures

Thornton’s Bridge

Bridge Name: Thornton’s Bridge
No.: 13
Location: SS 73153 39998
Build Date: circa 1915

“His favourite spot on Exmoor is just round the corner up above Thornton’s bridge in the Barle valley. He reckons the Barle valley is the most beautiful valley he has ever seen. He’s seen quite a few. On the continent you see lots of river valleys, the Gorge du Tarn and the Aveyron, the Auvergne, the Ardeche, the Vienne and all those places. He doesn’t think you will find anything prettier than the Barle. If you walk up from Marsh Bridge towards Tarr Steps, it’s magical. That’s his favourite place.”1
Named after a Mr H.H.Thornton who built the bridge in his capacity as Secretary of the Devon & Somerset Staghounds for the purpose of riders being able to safely cross the River Barle when the water levels were too high to use the adjoining ford.The bridge was also used to kennel the pack of hounds. 2

Mr.H.G.Thornton 1915

1.Oral history recordings – Tom Yandle – http://www1.somerset.gov.uk/archives/exmoor/yandlesummary3.htm
2.Exmoor Society Newsletter N0.60 Spring 2013