Middle Street Meadow

Middle Street Meadow - Meadow History

Middle Street Meadow is part of an old water meadow system along the River Nadder which was worked until the early 1900's. At that time the field was given by the farmer to Salisbury District Council to remain in its natural state for the enjoyment of the people of Harnham. Evidence of water-meadow ditches still remain, especially in the eastern end.

Historically, Middle Street Meadow was known as Rack Mead . The name refers to the woven woollen cloth which was brought to the meadow. The cloth was stretched on ‘ tenter hooks’ before being taken back to the Old Mill (Harnham Mill) where it was processed.

Flood protection bank During the winter of 1960-61 a severe flood threatened local homes and a chalk flood bank was constructed along the length of the river bank as part of a flood alleviation scheme. This also included dredging another channel for the river so creating Nadder Island. These schemes together altered the hydrology of the meadow lowering the water table. Only following prolonged winter rainfall do parts of the meadow still flood.


In the early 1980s a football pitch was constructed in the centre of the field by draining and leveling. The surrounding area remained as rough grassland.The filter pond








The pond

In 2008 the Environment Agency constructed a new flood bank, along the Nadder, to withstand a 1 in 200 year flood event and a pond to act as a filter for the surface water drains in Churchfields industrial estate.