River Thames conditions - advice for boaters

Page Last Updated: 12 December 2019 17:25   

Thames Map Thumbnail

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 LockCaution stream decreasing
St John's Lock to Buscot LockCaution strong stream
Buscot Lock to Grafton LockCaution strong stream
Grafton Lock to Radcot LockCaution strong stream
Radcot Lock to Rushey LockCaution strong stream
Rushey Lock to Shifford LockCaution strong stream
Shifford Lock to Northmoor LockCaution strong stream
Northmoor Lock to Pinkhill LockCaution strong stream
Pinkhill Lock to Eynsham LockCaution strong stream
Eynsham Lock to King's LockCaution strong stream
King's Lock to Godstow LockCaution strong stream
Godstow Lock to Osney LockCaution strong stream
Osney Lock to Iffley LockCaution stream decreasing

Oxford to Henley Back to Map

ReachCurrent conditions
Iffley Lock to Sandford LockCaution stream decreasing
Sandford Lock to Abingdon LockCaution stream decreasing
Abingdon Lock to Culham LockCaution stream decreasing
Culham Lock to Clifton LockCaution strong stream
Clifton Lock to Day's LockCaution stream decreasing
Day's Lock to Benson LockCaution strong stream
Benson Lock to Cleeve LockCaution stream decreasing
Cleeve Lock to Goring LockCaution stream decreasing
Goring Lock to Whitchurch LockCaution strong stream
Whitchurch Lock to Mapledurham LockCaution strong stream
Mapledurham Lock to Caversham LockCaution stream decreasing
Upstream of Blake's LockCaution stream decreasing
Caversham Lock to Sonning LockCaution strong stream
Sonning Lock to Shiplake LockCaution strong stream
Shiplake Lock to Marsh LockCaution strong stream
Marsh Lock to Hambleden LockCaution strong stream

Henley to Teddington Back to Map

ReachCurrent conditions
Hambleden Lock to Hurley LockCaution strong stream
Hurley Lock to Temple LockCaution strong stream
Temple Lock to Marlow LockCaution strong stream
Marlow Lock to Cookham LockCaution stream decreasing
Cookham Lock to Boulters LockCaution stream decreasing
Boulters Lock to Bray LockCaution stream increasing
Bray Lock to Boveney LockCaution strong stream
Boveney Lock to Romney LockCaution strong stream
Romney Lock to Old Windsor LockCaution strong stream
Old Windsor Lock to Bell Weir LockCaution stream increasing
Bell Weir Lock to Penton Hook LockCaution stream increasing
Penton Hook Lock to Chertsey LockCaution stream increasing
Chertsey Lock to Shepperton LockCaution stream increasing
Shepperton Lock to Sunbury LockCaution stream increasing
Sunbury Lock to Molesey LockCaution stream increasing
Molesey Lock to Teddington LockCaution stream increasing

Information for boaters

For water levels go to https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/river-and-sea-levels 

For flow rates go to http://www.gaugemap.co.uk 


Customer safety advice

The river is still flowing very quickly following the wet November and December  that we have experienced. Red stream warning boards remain in place along the majority of the river. Please exercise caution when using the towpaths and accessing moored boats.

Please ensure that you check boat lines and gang planks for the safety of the vessel, and yourself.

Stay on a safe mooring and do not navigate.

Temporary Lock Opening 

Whitchurch lock will be open this weekend only from 9 am Saturday 14 December 2019 till 1600 Sunday 15 December 2019 to allow passage of vessels.  It will only be operable when the lock keeper is present. 

Navigation marks on shoals and underwater obstructions 

When navigating upstream, leave red buoys to the left and green buoys to the right. When navigating downstream remember that the opposite rule applies. Avoid yellow and orange buoys as they mark hazards. For further advice, ask the local duty lock keeper.

Service update

Hambleden lock is closed for winter repair works.

Benson lock electric charging point is unavailable.

Mapledurham lock pump out is unavailable.

Annual registration

If you keep your boat anywhere on the non-tidal Thames (including in marinas) you need to register your boat and pay the annual charge or risk being prosecuted for non-compliance and getting a criminal conviction. Most boat owners pay for their registration on time.

Contact the boat registration team on 03708 506 506.

Speed limit

The speed limit for all powered vessels on the non-tidal Thames is 8kph or 4.3kts or 5mph. Do not create wash whatever speed you are navigating at.


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.


Related Links

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