Environment Agency announces plans to improve moorings and facilities on the River Thames

New lock gates and better mooring facilities are just some of the benefits motorboaters will see from a £3.8 million upgrade for the River Thames later this year.

Eighteen structures have been marked for improvement, with the largest projects on the lower Thames at Hurley and Sandford, where work will be carried out to replace lock gates and refurbish lock chambers to the tune of £1.55 million.

In total, fifteen locks will be affected by temporary closures, with work scheduled to take place between October 2010 and March 2011.

Other projects include upgrading the short stay moorings at Weybridge, opposite Shepperton Lock, to improve safety and provide better access for disabled people. The work should be completed in time for the August bank holiday weekend.

Short stay moorings at Surley hall point, near Boveney Lock in Dorney and the boat rollers at Sunbury Lock will also be improved.
 
Paul Power, Environment Agency engineering manager for the Thames, said, “Following six years of hard work and continued investment, the navigation infrastructure along the River Thames is in good shape.
 
“We have a full programme of works this year and I’m sure boaters and other visitors will enjoy the improvements next boating season and for many years to come.”

To help boaters plan their journeys on the river Thames while the works are underway the EA has produced a handy map, detailing the work taking place and how long locks will be closed.

The map will be regularly updated during the winter and the latest version can be downloaded from www.visitthames.co.uk/winterworks.

Find out our favourite spots to shore-up on the Thames in our London Marina Guide.

Photo credit: Shimgray