Following reports last week, the EA has halted any decisions on the sale or rental of lock houses for at least six months

The Environment Agency (EA) has announced that it has halted any decisions on the sale or rental of lock houses for at least six months.

Following intense protest from boaters and MPs the EA has decided to review its decision to sell six lock houses and rent out a further 16.

In a summary briefing sent out to Thames river groups it said,

“We have agreed to put on hold any changes proposed by the lock house review until we have completed our full review of Waterways staff roles and responsibilities, and terms and conditions.

No action will be taken to sell or rent lock houses until these negotiations on the full review are completed. We anticipate that this will take six months but this guarantee will continue until all negotiations are completed or January 1, 2009, whichever is latest. We will then review the position on lock houses with lock-keepers and their representatives and with the MPs group”.