Safety and wellbeing
There is guidance in place to help you stay safe whilst enjoying your time at Stour Valley.
Due to the nature of our sites and the sensitivity of the wildlife they contain we do ask that visitors respect the byelaws and aim to leave only footprints.
The main byelaws are:
- No camping
- No fires
- No flying of model aircraft, including drones
- No launching, mooring or beaching of any vessels including hovercraft in local nature reserves
The complete list can be found by downloading our PDF
From the Southern bank of the river between Ensbury Bridge (New Road) and the fenced off farmland at Berry Hill is a free stretch to fish during open season. A Fishing Rod Licence is still required (unless exempt). The fine for fishing without this licence is up to £2500.
Licences can be obtained through the Post Office or Environment Agency.
Please fish responsibly, using barbless hooks, landing nets and returning the fish to the water (as soon as possible) unharmed. When leaving ensure all line and tackle has been removed from both the river and banks.
There is a disabled fishing platform situated halfway along the river with wheelchair access from Wimborne Road, BH 7BP and free on-road parking.
What can I catch?
Take a look at our 'A-Z' of the stour valley trail in our exhibition, or click to find out what I might catch.
You can cycle across the site on the designated pathways. This is a shared site so there will be other users around (horse riders, dog walkers, pushchairs, small children, wheelchair & mobility scooters) - please observe the 5mph speed limit.
Stour Valley Nature Reserve is a popular spot for dog walking. We work closely with Dorset Dogs - find out more.
There is an established bridle route that is signposted along the Stour with split paths where access narrows - giving rider and other site users alternate routes along the river. As the site is a multi-use area we do ask riders do not go faster than a trot and keep to the posted paths at all times.
Flying Drones and Model Aircraft
Specific guidance exists regarding flying model aircraft, including Drones in the Byelaws. Here at Stour Valley Nature Reserve, the flying of model aircraft, including drones is prohibited. For guidance regarding flying drones and model aircraft in Bournemouth, visit this website.