The Bishop’s Meadow
The Bishop’s Meadow consists of 35 acres of low lying agricultural land to the west of Farnham’s town centre in Surrey. It is an ancient part of Farnham’s farming heritage and part of its floodplain defences. In the winter months, the Meadow regularly takes flood water from the overflowing River Wey.
Made up of a mix of wet hay meadow, rough pasture and managed scrub and undergrowth, it supports a rich variety of flora and fauna. The Northern branch of the River Wey forms the southern boundary and the far western corner lies next to Farnham cemetery and the West Street allotments. The far eastern boundary is the Old Vicarage gardens. The tower of St Andrew’s Parish Church is a prominent part of the backdrop to the Meadow and there are also views of Farnham Castle and the spire of the United Reform Church in Farnham town.
The land has been owned by the Bishop’s Meadow Trust since 2012. It is not public land, but the Trust allows unrestricted public access and the Meadow is popular with dog walkers, joggers, photographers and those seeking a quiet space. Two public foot paths cross the site and there is a permissive path running around the periphery. The only access for vehicles is a locked gate off Crosby Way.
The Bishop’s Meadow takes its name from the Bishops of Winchester to whom the land once belonged as did Farnham Castle and Farnham Park. The land is still in agricultural use and produces an annual hay crop. In past times, it was flooded deliberately to encourage the early growth of grazing grass.