View Full Version : Lock Closures

14-12-08, 14:09
Hi ,I`m new here so first of all a big hello.
This was my first year on the thames having been using boats on the sea etc for some years and have just found out about the lock closures over the winter. I have a major problem in so much as my boat is "locked in" at Windsor and need to move her to Reading . I`m told Cookham lock is closed until the end of March for repairs. I had not anticipated any closures and it was only a chance conversation at the boat show that I found I can`t move my boat over the xmas period as planned.
Does anyone know if the EA have any arrangments in these circumstances to allow passage through the lock if pre arranged or is the lock completely out of commision for this period.
If there is no way of moving by water then its gonna cost a small fortune in mooring fee`s for a boat I`m miles from and could be mooring for free or a small fortune in moving her by road.

Any help please guys

14-12-08, 14:31
Far as i know the gates are off at Marlow , so no passage through there .


The closure list is well publicised beforehand. You could try speaking to the lock keepers or the middle Thames nav office to see if there is any possibility of passage , but it's unlikely if they have started work .

We had a boat come through about a just over a month back which was going to have the same problem ( mooring at Reading , but the locks are closed ) .

Good luck

14-12-08, 14:41
You could ask - try the Navigation office at Reading.

I asked a similar question to the guy responsible for the maintenance programme - I queried the lack of a Christmas open period this year and was told in no uncertain terms that it was just too expensive to move plant and equipment just for a tiny amount of traffic.
Both Cookham and Marlow are closed for what looks like fairly extensive works. The famous keeper at Cookham said that his works were pretty extensive, and I wouldn't be surprised if his lock cut was being dewatered.

Marlow's gates are being resheeted - which usually means removing the gates off site.

On the other hand EA may have some provision for moving plant around, so again ask.

You also should be aware that the river is in flood at this time of year (and at the moment), so it would be silly for a newcomer to try to navigate.

The maintenance programme is an annual event and well known - so not a surprise event....

edit: drat - beaten to it by that nice man "at the end of the river"

15-12-08, 09:03
Assume you at one of the Windsor marinas, probably the only option will be to ring round and try and find a cheaper mooring until March, try some of the smaller yards or even your local EA navigation office, one of the lock island moorings might be free over winter. Unfortunately its very rare to be able to go any distance on the river through the winter.

18-12-08, 12:16
Email me: angela.quayle@environment-agency.gov.uk with what you want to do and when (moving the boat) and I'll see whether Paul (who manages the engineering side of things) can help. I know he was hoping to get Cookham and Marlow open between xmas and new year - probably handwinding - get in touch.

23-12-08, 17:21
I emailed Angela Quayle yesterday and received a message back today as follows:

Mr Crosby,

At present we have lock closures in place at Hurley, Marlow and Cookham Locks. Although the work does not finish until the New Year we are able to allow passage through the locks from the 24th December 2008 to the 4th January 2009.

Please contact the locks directly prior to starting your journey and when you are approaching each lock. Hurley will be on hand wind operation only.

Hope your journey goes well.


So its good news.


23-12-08, 17:43
But I'm somewhat hacked off 'cos Mr. Power told me quite categorically in November that there would not be a Christmas break from maintenance.

So I organised my holidays (not) accordingly.

Perhaps it's time I took an Apollo view.


(My journey(s) are not essential, whereas Furnivalents' is)

23-12-08, 20:14
This is good news ...

I just dug out our records for the lady who i mentioned in my first post and gave her a call . She's over the moon , says it's made her Christmas !

Thanks to Angela for sorting this out and thanks to you ( Outinthedinghy ) for letting us know.