With a roughly 22-degree gradient incline, this residential road in the Totterdown area of Bristol is said to be England’s steepest street. Trekking to the top is a feat for the strong-legged and healthy-hearted.
Vale Street has such a dramatic incline that people park their cars perpendicular to the road to keep them from rolling downhill. Some residents even tie their vehicles to lampposts when the road gets icy to stop them from sliding all the way to the bottom.
But the street’s steepness doesn’t deter people from dropping by. Cyclists view the drastic incline as a challenge. They’ll give themselves a fast start then attempt to pedal as hard as they can to the top.
Loose cars and out-of-control cyclists aren’t the only things to go wildly rolling down the hill. Locals also use the street as the stage for an annual Easter egg race. Each year, residents head to the top of the hill, armed with an egg. They then roll the eggs down the hill to see whose entry can make it the farthest.
Know Before You Go
Keep in mind that this is a residential street, so respect people's private property. If you attempt to drive down it, be sure your brakes are in good working condition!
The street is a roughly 20-minute walk from the Bristol Temple Meads train station. Would recommend this for ONLY the fittest, as there are more than 150 steps to climb on the Thunderbolt Steps access. There is a pleasant footpath that runs along the River Avon that will take you from Temple Meads to the steps. Just be aware that this area is used by cyclists, runners, and dog walkers.