River Thames conditions - advice for boaters

Page Last Updated: 19 May 2022 08:31   

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Welcome to the Environment Agency's online River Thames conditions update service which displays our current advice to river users. We display warning boards at our locks to inform river users of conditions that may make navigating difficult and dangerous.

This page shows our current advice for each reach of the river between Cricklade and Teddington. We will update this information regularly when warning boards are being displayed at locks and as river conditions change.

Lechlade to Oxford Back to Map

ReachCurrent conditions
Upstream of St John's LockNo Stream Warnings
St John's Lock to Buscot LockNo Stream Warnings
Buscot Lock to Grafton LockNo Stream Warnings
Grafton Lock to Radcot LockNo Stream Warnings
Radcot Lock to Rushey LockNo Stream Warnings
Rushey Lock to Shifford LockNo Stream Warnings
Shifford Lock to Northmoor LockNo Stream Warnings
Northmoor Lock to Pinkhill LockNo Stream Warnings
Pinkhill Lock to Eynsham LockNo Stream Warnings
Eynsham Lock to King's LockNo Stream Warnings
King's Lock to Godstow LockNo Stream Warnings
Godstow Lock to Osney LockNo Stream Warnings
Osney Lock to Iffley LockNo Stream Warnings

Oxford to Henley Back to Map

ReachCurrent conditions
Iffley Lock to Sandford LockNo Stream Warnings
Sandford Lock to Abingdon LockNo Stream Warnings
Abingdon Lock to Culham LockNo Stream Warnings
Culham Lock to Clifton LockNo Stream Warnings
Clifton Lock to Day's LockNo Stream Warnings
Day's Lock to Benson LockNo Stream Warnings
Benson Lock to Cleeve LockNo Stream Warnings
Cleeve Lock to Goring LockNo Stream Warnings
Goring Lock to Whitchurch LockNo Stream Warnings
Whitchurch Lock to Mapledurham LockNo Stream Warnings
Mapledurham Lock to Caversham LockNo Stream Warnings
Upstream of Blake's LockNo Stream Warnings
Caversham Lock to Sonning LockNo Stream Warnings
Sonning Lock to Shiplake LockNo Stream Warnings
Shiplake Lock to Marsh LockNo Stream Warnings
Marsh Lock to Hambleden LockNo Stream Warnings

Henley to Teddington Back to Map

ReachCurrent conditions
Hambleden Lock to Hurley LockNo Stream Warnings
Hurley Lock to Temple LockNo Stream Warnings
Temple Lock to Marlow LockNo Stream Warnings
Marlow Lock to Cookham LockNo Stream Warnings
Cookham Lock to Boulters LockNo Stream Warnings
Boulters Lock to Bray LockNo Stream Warnings
Bray Lock to Boveney LockNo Stream Warnings
Boveney Lock to Romney LockNo Stream Warnings
Romney Lock to Old Windsor LockNo Stream Warnings
Old Windsor Lock to Bell Weir LockNo Stream Warnings
Bell Weir Lock to Penton Hook LockNo Stream Warnings
Penton Hook Lock to Chertsey LockNo Stream Warnings
Chertsey Lock to Shepperton LockNo Stream Warnings
Shepperton Lock to Sunbury LockNo Stream Warnings
Sunbury Lock to Molesey LockNo Stream Warnings
Molesey Lock to Teddington LockNo Stream Warnings

Information for boaters

Coronavirus information

Please find the latest guidance for all boaters on Environment Agency managed waterways here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/environment-agency-waterways-coronavirus-covid-19-update.

We aim to offer assisted passage to our boating customers during the boating season from 1 April to 30 September. We will also provide assisted passage during the Easter bank holiday weekend and spring and autumn half terms where these fall outside the season. Each lock will be manned by a resident, relief or seasonal Lock Keeper and/or volunteers, as appropriate and, wherever possible, to provide cover for staff breaks, weir work and maintenance. There may be occasions when we are unable to achieve this due to circumstances outside of our control such as staff illness.

Out of season between the 1 October and 31 March assisted passage may be available but cannot be guaranteed.

Our Lock Service Rota can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/river-thames-lock-keeper-service

Lock keepers’ hours of duty 

  • July and August: 9am to 6:30pm
  • May, June and September: 9am to 6pm
  • April and October: 9am to 5pm
  • November to March: 9:15am to 4pm

One hour lunch break taken between 1pm and 2pm when cover unavailable.

Public power to be provided at all locks except at Teddington Lock and the beam locks upstream of Oxford, when assisted passage is not being offered by a Lock Keeper or volunteer, unless we are unable to do so due to circumstances outside of our control such as power outage or breakdown.

The levels of service will be reviewed regularly. Our staffing levels are currently reduced as a result of coronavirus and long term sickness absence.

Service announcements


Some of our services are restricted due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency. Go to locks and facilities for boaters for more details.

Other service updates (Updated 09:43 Hrs 16/05/2022) 

  • Marsh Head Horse Bridge - The towpath bridge upstream of Marsh Lock will be closed until further notice due to safety concerns. Our operational teams and framework specialists will be inspecting the bridge to determine necessary actions to safeguard bridge users.  We apologise for any inconvenience this causes and will be working with the local authority to implement a footpath diversion as soon as possible.

  • Sonning Upstream Visitor Moorings - Our contractor is continuing to refurbish the visitor moorings at Sonning for the benefit of our river user customers. This work is programmed to be completed on Friday 10 June 2022. The layby is planned to be re-opened on Saturday 11 June 2022.

  • Goring Downstream Visitor Moorings - Our contractor will commence refurbishment works to the towpath adjacent to the visitor moorings downstream of Goring Lock on 19 May 2022. The works are planned to be completed on 30 June 2022. During this time the visitor mooring will not be available for use and we ask our customers to make alternative arrangements. 

  • Sunbury Lock will be closed outside of lock keeper hours due to a lock breakdown on public power and hand wind. If emergy access is required please report on incident line 0800 80 70 60. Sunbury Head, towpath side, does not open fully. Please be aware when entering and exiting the lock

  • Hurley lock public toilet facilities are currently unavaiable until futher notice due to issues with safely accessing the toilet block.
  • Molesey Lock pumpout is out of service until further notice. 
  • The pump-out facilities at Mapledurham Lock are available during lock keepers hours.
  • We are replacing the water point at Cleeve Lock, alternative supply is available boaters need to bring their own hose, it must be less than 7 metres long with a regular hoselock connection.
  • Boulters Lock gates on the pedestal side open the majority of the way. Please be cautious when entering and exiting the Lock.
  • Payment for moorings should be made and reported at the nearest staffed lock. Card is our preferred payment method.
  • Boveney pump-out and Elsan facilities are out of service until further notice.
  • Rushey lock the Pumpout facilities remain closed until May.

Navigation markers

  • When travelling upstream keep red obstruction marker buoys on your left and green buoys on your right.
  • When travelling downstream, keep red buoys on your right and green buoys on your left.
  • Single yellow marker buoys can be passed on either side.

In all cases, pass well clear of marker buoys, and take care. You should also be careful in the margins of the river and around bends, where river and weather conditions have resulted in shoals and tree debris collecting and some shallows forming. 


Caution strong stream
We advise users of all boats not to navigate because the strong flows make it difficult and dangerous.
Caution stream increasing
We advise users of all unpowered boats not to navigate and users of powered boats to find a safe mooring. This is because river flows are likely to strengthen and red boards could be displayed very soon and without warning.
Caution stream decreasing
We advise users of all unpowered boats not to navigate and users of powered boats to navigate with caution.


This information is also available on Floodline. Call 0345 988 1188 and select option 1 for river information for boaters.


  • Contact Name: The Environment Agency

    Tel. 03708 506 506 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm)

    E-mail: enquiries@environment-agency.gov.uk

  • Contact Name: Incident Hotline

    Tel. 0800 80 70 60 (24 hour service)

Related Links

Thames Locks MapThames Locks Map Names OverlayClick here to view current conditions for:
Lechlade to OxfordOxford to HenleyHenley to Teddington