Davy Down Riverside Park


Davy Down Riverside Park has 32 acres of varied landscape including open areas, woods and ponds and is the gateway to the Mardyke Valley. It forms part of the Thames Chase Community Forest and as such, provides an opportunity to explore and enjoy the wider countryside.

The park

The site is owned by Essex and Suffolk Water and Thurrock Council and the area became a riverside park in 1993. All footpaths are suitable for wheelchair users. Seating is located every 200 meters and a change of surface highlights the location of resting points for the visually impaired visitor. All seating areas are surfaced and designed so wheelchair users to sit next to family and friends.


The park is open 24 hours a day, all year round. Features of the park include:

  • free car parking
  • a warden on site most days
  • toilets
  • areas that are ideal for walkers and ramblers
  • hard surfaced paths that are wheelchair and buggy friendly

Please keep dogs on leads or under control. Expect to see cyclists or horse riders on the path linking North Stifford and Aveley.


The park is home to an amazing variety of wildlife and habitats. The ponds and wetland at Davy Down and the surrounding reaches of the Mardyke River are particularly good areas for water vole. Marsh frogs have made their home here having been illegally introduced to the river and ponds. If you are very lucky you might see kingfishers as they zoom up and down.


The Mardyke River is a long, slow flowing river with a gradient of approximately 1:7500 (which is very low). As a habitat is suits species adapted to still or slow moving water environments. In the wetter months the level of the river can rise, which then provides habitat suitable for floodplain or water meadow loving species.

This area acts as a floodplain and stores water that might otherwise flow into the River Thames and contribute to flooding in other areas where the effects may be damaging. The floodplain lies at the bottom of a relatively steep sided valley, the Mardyke Valley. This area is covered by ancient woodland.

Further information

Davy Down Riverside Park
Back Lane (off Pilgrims Lane), North Stifford, Essex RM16 5UL

: 01375 383 744