Breary Marsh Pauls Pond on a sunny day

Breary Marsh

Peaceful woodlands backed by rolling fields, a maze of paths crossing marshland and a calming space overlooking the Pauls pond.

Breary Marsh entrance sign against a blue sky and grass

A mix of woodlands backing against rolling fields with a maze of paths across marshland and a peaceful space overlooking the pond. All bursting with endangered animals which has led to it becoming a site of scientific interest.

There is plenty to do in the area as it borders onto Golden Acre park and just a short walk away from Adel Nature reserve, you will have plenty to keep you busy.

Location Details

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Take a look around

  • Breary Marsh walk
  • Breary Marsh nature trail
  • Breary Marsh Lake Pauls Pond
  • Breary Marsh nature trail
  • Breary Marsh entrance sign
  • Breary Marsh Lake Pauls Pond
  • Breary Marsh path

Things to Note

Breary Marsh has the following on-site or nearby:

  • Nearby Food & Drink
  • Nearby Shops
  • Nearby Toilets
  • Rubbish Bins


Breary Marsh is located between Bramhope and Lawnswood along the A660 on Otley road, around a 21 minute drive from Leeds City Centre. There are many routes and paths from Bramhope and Cookridge leading here and the marsh area is also a part of The Meanwood Valley Trail and The Leeds Country Way.

The Golden Acre Park is moments away as it borders the marsh and the Adel Dam Nature Reserve is also nearby. These are great places of interest venturing to Breary Marsh.

Things to Do

Breary Marsh is a favoured spot for hikers, cyclists and dog walkers enjoying a casual stroll and ride whilst admiring the wildlife in the area.

For those desiring a longer journey, people often visit the marsh land as part of The Meanwood Valley Trail and The Leeds Country Way route.

There are many species of birds to watch out for whilst visiting such as Herons, Longtailed Tit’s and Kingfishers to smaller creatures such as Common frogs, Alder Moths and  Large Skippers. You may even see some Roe Deer. Discovering the wildlife within Breary Marsh engaging for a lot of visitors and is a site of scientific interest.

If you’re looking for some stress relief whilst enjoying the great outdoors, Paul’s Pond allows fishing. Located towards the southend of Breary Marsh, some visitors enjoy casting a rod. A licence and a club permit is required if fishing here.  Pauls pond is a great location for walking the dog. It is a very popular spot for dog walkers with dogs allowed off the lead. There are a few bins dotted around to get rid of any waste and plenty of dog friendly pubs within the area.

Many runners are attracted to Breary Marsh as a more scenic route to their fitness regime. You can also include other surrounding areas into your journey. The Breary and Weetwood Running’s are two ideas for different routes you could use.

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The Breary family owned the land during the Norman times when it used to be known as an “impossible swamp”. Monks of Kirkstall Abbey had the area granted to them in the 14th century and by the 15th century the Arthington family had the land passed to them.

Later Blackhill, Golden Acre and Breary was exchanged between Edwin Lascelles of Harewood to the Cookridge Hall estate of Sir John Sheffield.

In the 1820’s the pond was dug and later named Paul’s pond after William Paul (The owner of the estate in the 1890’s). The owners of Cookridge hall, a former stately home (now the Cookridge Golf Club) used the pond for boating and fishing. In the winter months the pond helped to supply ice to the house which was then stored in the ice house.

Today Breary Marsh is a local nature reserve owned and managed the natural habitats team operated by the Council in consultation with Natural England.


There are public toilets located just to the outside of the Golden Acre cafe opposite the car park, close to the starting point of Breary Marsh.

There are many shops within close range if you need to top up on your supplies. In Adel you have a Marks and Spencers Simply Food, a Co-op and a large Asda or in Cookridge there is a Tesco and a Nisa.

Food and Drink

You will find the Golden Acre Café right at the beginning of the Breary Marsh located opposite the car park where you can enjoy breakfast, brunch or lunch whilst admiring the scenic views of Golden Acre Park.

If you want to indulge in some scrumptious desserts there is The Yummy Yummy Yank or perhaps an afternoon tea at Crag House Farm – The Granary Restaurant.

There are also plenty of pubs in the area for you to relax, socialise and enjoy some hearty pub food. The Lawnswood Arms, Brownlee Arms and The Fox and Hounds all have outdoor seating areas and are dog friendly with car parks onsite.

If you fancy a sit down restaurant meal then you’re also in luck. There is a great choice of different restaurants nearby. Fikos Mediterranean Kitchen and The Olive Branch, Alwoodley both serve Mediterranean dishes and Gusto serving Italian cuisine.


Breary Marsh is alongside Golden Acre Park and the Golden Acre car park and can be used when visiting here. This is a free car park with around 6 disabled bays available. If using sat nav use the post code LS16 9JY to get to the car park.


A lot of work has been carried out to make Pauls Pond accessible. The path is wheelchair/pushchair friendly and fairly wide.

Breary Marsh is not as accessible, due to the nature of the location. The footpaths can become muddy and have the occasional tree root. However, there are a selection of paths higher up that are more wheelchair and pushchair friendly all year around.

Bikes are allowed at Breary Marsh.

How to Get To Breary Marsh

Google Map Directions


Horsforth Train Station – (3.3 miles) 9 min drive and around a 1 hour walk from here.


There are two stops close to Breary Marsh. The main stop being Leeds Road Golden Acre Park and the other a little further up being Leeds Road Parkway Hotel. Busses PH2, X84 and X85 go along Otley Road and stop at these drop-offs.

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