The Wharf House Development

The Wharf House at Over Basin was built on the site of the old lock cottage that once stood overlooking the banks of the River Severn.

The shell of the building was constructed for the Trust by Swan Hill Homes. Inside, Trust volunteers have completed the entire fit-out, much of it using material recycled from the Hospital buildings that once stood near by.

The Wharf House fit-out created a restaurant, tea room,  offices and a visitor centre.

The Wharf House Company was formed in 2003 to manage the running of the building and provide an ongoing income stream for the Trust.

Later work by the volunteers added seven luxury bedrooms providing high quality accommodation for visitors to Gloucester, Cheltenham, the Canal and surrounding area.



Prestigious CPRE Award
In 2010, The Council for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) presented the Herefordshire and Gloucestershire Canal Trust with an award for the creation and restoration of The Wharf House and the Over Canal Basin at Gloucester, as a local project outstanding in its contribution to the environment or to the local community.

Red Rosette
For the past few years the Trust is very proud that The Wharf House has been honoured annually with the AA’s esteemed Red Rosette for culinary excellence, and received an impressive four stars for the seven bedrooms.

The Wharf House Fit-Out – The Volunteers take over!

Some of the many volunteers who helped with the first part of The Wharf House fit-out.

The two story building had no internal walls except around the stairwell. It also had no electricity, plumbing etc. The challenge was for the H & G volunteers, who had previously been working outside on canal restoration, to turn their hands to some serious DIY.

The plan was to include a restaurant, a visitor centre, a commercial kitchen, toilets, stairwell, corridor, seven visitor bedrooms, seven visitor bathrooms, a manager’s four room flat, a small lounge, an office and staff room.  Much of the materials used were recycled from the old hospital that had occupied the nearby site. This salvage included internal doors, skirting, architrave and thousands of wooden floor blocks.

Funding the project was a major challenge and grants were obtained from DEFRA for much of the work on the ground floor, Heritage Lottery for the Visitor Centre.  Other grants and donations came from various Trust members and the Inland Waterways Association.

Work on the fitout of The Wharf House was lengthy, not least because it largely relied on volunteer labour. However, in June 2005 the ground floor was opened as a Restaurant and Visitor Centre. Five years later 6 luxury bedrooms were also opened, with the seventh in 2012.  Now fully functioning The Wharf House is a flagship to the Trust’s volunteers.


The Wharf House Fit-Out Story…