River Lemon

The River Lemon is a 9.9 mile (16 kilometre) river in the county of Devon in southwest England. It is a tributary of the River Teign, starting on Dartmoor by Haytor, and ending in Newton Abbot.[1] It rises on the south-east side of Dartmoor near Haytor, joins with the River Sig and the Langworthy Brook at Sigford, then passes the village of Bickington. Lower down, it is joined by the Kestor Brook and it then flows through the woods in Bradley Valley, past the manor house of Bradley, and through the town of Newton Abbot where it flows through a 440-yard-long tunnel below the town centre. Just below the town, the river joins the River Teign at 50.517°N 3.607°W / 50.517; -3.607, near the head of its estuary.

River Lemon
The River Lemon flowing through Bradley Woods
Physical characteristics
  locationSoutheast side of Dartmoor, near Haytor
Length9.9 miles (15.9 km)

The name Lemon is a derivative of a Celtic word meaning elm.[2]


The river has several times caused major flooding in Newton Abbot, most notably on 19 December 1853, 14 November 1894, 6 August 1938, and 27 December 1979. To prevent further occurrences, a flood-control reservoir and dam were built in 1982, just below the confluence with the Kestor Brook at Holbeam.[3]

In December 2013, Nick Mutton, a local primary school teacher, died while trying to rescue his dog from the river. He was dragged from where he fell in to near Tucker's Maltings, on the other side of the town. The river was high due to torrential rain, causing the River Lemon to overflow.[4]

Industrial use

During its operation from 1898 to 1974, the Newton Abbot power station discharged its used cooling water into the Lemon, having extracted it from the River Teign.

See also


  1. "The River Lemon: From Haytor to Lyme Bay, Devon". BBC. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  2. Gover, Mawer and Stenton (1931). The Place-names of Devon. Cambridge [Eng.]: CUP.
  3. "Commemorating the 25th anniversary of Holbeam Dam". Torquay Herald Express.
  4. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-02-02. Retrieved 2014-01-26.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)


  • Judy Chard (1993). Along The Lemon. Chudleigh, Devon: Orchard Publications. ISBN 0-9519027-4-1.
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