Newbury Second World War Heritage Walking Trail

A short walking tour of historical points in Newbury with connections to the Second World War.

Newbury Second World War Heritage Walking Trail

England RG14 5AS, United Kingdom

Created By: West Berkshire Museum

Tour Information

This walking trail starts from the West Berkshire Museum and ends at Newtown Road cemetery. It shows the location of significant sites in Newbury, and outlines their relevance to the Second World War. The trail can easily be split and the Museum to the Corn Exchange section is around 1.7 miles and the Railway station to Newtown Road cemetery around 0.5 of a mile.

The trail was Prepared by West Berkshire Museum and Greenham Common Control Tower.

The Walk

From the West Berkshire Museum in Wharf Street (1) take the bridge (2) over the canal into Victoria Park. Queen Victoria’s statue (3) is at the top of the Park in a roughly north easterly direction. Return to the canal, do not cross but instead turn right and take the towpath towards the town. Turn right at Northbrook Street and then turn left along Northcroft Lane (signed Northcroft Leisure Centre) for approximately half a mile. Turn left on the public footpath after the Cricket Club and before Northcroft Leisure Centre, then cross the River Kennet. The Type 22 pillbox (4) can be seen to the right of the Monkey Bridge before crossing the canal. Continue crossing the canal and then turn left.

Head towards the town, centre passing the 17th century Weavers Cottages and West Mills. The Newbury War Memorial (5) is on your right as you reach Bartholomew Street. Cross the road, continue straight on and turn right into the Market Place. The Corn Exchange (6) is on your left. Continue into Cheap Street noting the old Post Office building (7) on your left then continue until you reach the A339 dual carriageway and turn right.

Cross the railway and turn right into Station Road. An above ground brick built air raid shelter is located on the A339 side of the station building (8). Continue past the station. The original signal Box was located beyond the western end of the platform. St Nicolas School and playground are on your left. This was the original location of the Newbury Senior Council School (9). Continue along Station Road.

Turn left into Newtown Road and continue south past Fair Close Centre (10). Continue until St John’s Church (11), on your left, which was totally rebuilt after the 1943 bombing. Carefully cross St John’s Road and enter the Memorial Garden (12). Continue south on Newtown Road until you reach the entrance to the Newtown Road Cemetery (13). The cemetery is open daily between 10 am and 3 pm (please check, not open Christmas Day).

This is the end of the walking trail but some (more distant) additional locations are illustrated which may be of interest.

Tour Map

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What You'll See on the Tour

West Berkshire Museum is housed in two of Newbury’s best loved historic buildings - the Grade I listed 17th century Cloth Hall and the Grade II* Granary or Corn Stores in Wharf Street.  It is a modern, community museum working with, list... Read more
The “American bridge” was built in 1940 to provide a second canal crossing. It was designed and built by British contractors but the plans allegedly certified for use by the Americans. The “American bridge” was replaced in 2001 with... Read more
Queen Victoria’s statue is at the top of the Park in a roughly north easterly direction.  Originally, this area was called The Marsh but it was renamed Victoria Park because of the popularity of the Queen. Victoria’s statue was origin... Read more
The pillboxes along the Kennet and Avon Canal were part of the GHQ Stop Line Blue; a planned anti-tank defence running from Wiltshire to Theale using waterways, ditches and concrete structures as obstacles to an enemy invasion. This is a Ty... Read more
The Newbury War Memorial is on your right as you reach Bartholomew Street.  The War Memorial was unveiled in October 1922 to commemorate 338 local men and one woman who died in the First World War. After the Second World War, the record w... Read more
The Corn Exchange is on your left.  The Corn Exchange opened for trade in June 1862 and is now a Grade II listed building. On the 25th July 1944 the Glen Miller band played a concert at the Corn Exchange for the 101st Airborne and the pe... Read more
Continue into Cheap Street noting the old Post Office building on your left. In the entrance vestibule is a visible brass plaque in memory of seven Post Office workers who fell in the Second World War. No access at this time. Continue on C... Read more
Here, on the A339 side of the station building was the location of a public air raid shelter in Newbury, which is no longer in situ. At the other end of the Station platform during the war years, a signal box was situated on the other side... Read more
This was the original location of the Newbury Senior Council School. The Newbury Senior Council School (opened March 10th 1909) was partially destroyed in the bombing of February 1943 when three pupils and two members of staff were tragical... Read more
The row of Almshouses was located behind the Fair Close Centre roughly where the flats are situated now. The Almshouses were totally destroyed during the 1943 bombing when seven people were killed. Continue until St John’s Church. ...
St John’s Church was totally rebuilt after the 1943 bombing. The original church was consecrated in 1860 but in 1943 the bombing caused total destruction with only the altar left standing. The church was rebuilt after the War and was con... Read more
On February 10th 2013, the Mayor of Newbury unveiled this marble plaque to remember the victims of the bombing in 1943. The memorial is close to the spot where the first bomb landed. Additional Note: The Shaw cemetery at Shaw Hill contains ... Read more
The cemetery is open daily between 10 am and 3 pm (please check, not open Christmas Day). This was closed in 2000 but, in subsequent years, the Friends ( have been restoring the cemetery and researching and documentin... Read more


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