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Holne Bridge, River Dart

Thousands of paddlers descend the Dart each year, It's arguably one of the best white water rivers in England. Many clubs in the southern half of the country base their winter programme around visits.

Expand Overview


In 1991, British Canoeing and local paddlers purchased the land on the Dart to secure a point of access to and from the river. The strip of woodland now provides a convenient access and egress point. 

Maintenance is managed by a local volunteer management group. Donations towards the upkeep are sought annually from clubs and individuals to pay for essential work.

Expand Location


Located on river left below Holne Bridge, it extends from the first bend in the road to the meadow. It includes all land between the river and the road. 

Access is available by parking in the wider part of the road, closest to the river. Volunteers periodically cut back the hedge and clear mud so cars can be parked closer in. 

A short carry past the field gate finds a footpath access to the wood. A fixed sign shows the downstream limit of access and egress. 

Use of the meadow further down has caused aggravation with a supportive land owner and paddlers are urged to avoid this.

Click here for the location on Google Maps.

Expand Usage


The site is accessible to those wanting to gain access to the river for paddling. We also welcome wild swimmers to enjoy the space responsibility.

It should be noted the site is not to be used for social gatherings, picnics, or other activity not related to paddling. BBQs, fires and camping are strictly prohibited.

Maintenance is managed by a local volunteer management group. Donations towards the upkeep and help on maintenance days is greatly welcomed. 

 Access on foot is available via the main site gate adjacent to the road. 

The gate is locked from April to September using a combination lock with the code available to those registering in advance for site access. 

Please click here to register your details for the code:

The limited parking is the main problem, with care required to avoid traffic hazards. 

The layby is not an official one and great care is needed when loading boats etc. 

 The weir on the lower part of the site is owned and maintained by River Dart Country Park on the opposite bank. 

This weir can be run in low water conditions but has a powerful keeper in medium to high flows and should be treated with caution. 

Portage is easily available on river left. 

All users are asked to respect the angling interests using the site and share the space fairly. 

The pool above Holne Weir is fished for sea trout during the spring and summer months during the hours of darkness. 

Disturbance in the evening when the water level is low is therefore discouraged.

Expand Donate


Responsibility for this land rests with a local volunteer management group, made up of representatives from local canoe clubs and wild swimmers.  

In the last few years we have spent nearly £4,000 on essential maintenance, therefore donations to support operating this special site are welcome, please contact [email protected] to find out more about how you can donate or get involved in volunteering at the site.