River Thames conditions - advice for boaters

Page Last Updated: 8 April 2020 11:09   

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 stream decreasing
Buscot Lock to Grafton LockCaution stream decreasing
Grafton Lock to Radcot LockCaution stream decreasing
Radcot Lock to Rushey LockCaution stream decreasing
Rushey Lock to Shifford LockCaution stream decreasing
Shifford Lock to Northmoor LockCaution stream decreasing
Northmoor Lock to Pinkhill LockCaution stream decreasing
Pinkhill Lock to Eynsham LockCaution stream decreasing
Eynsham Lock to King's LockCaution stream decreasing
King's Lock to Godstow LockCaution stream decreasing
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 LockCaution stream decreasing
Caversham Lock to Sonning LockCaution stream decreasing
Sonning Lock to Shiplake LockNo Stream Warnings
Shiplake Lock to Marsh LockCaution stream decreasing
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 LockCaution stream decreasing
Penton Hook Lock to Chertsey LockCaution stream decreasing
Chertsey Lock to Shepperton LockCaution stream decreasing
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 (COVID-19) update

During the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency, you must not make any journeys on your boat other than to access essential services and facilities. 

Until further notice, we will not provide assisted passage or powered operation at locks. If you need to go through a lock, you will need to hand wind it.

Marsh Lock has a tree blocking vessel passage. Sunbury Lock cut has a sunken boat blocking vessel passage. These will be removed as possible when our operations teams are able to recommence their activities.

Hambleden, Cookham, Bell Weir and Teddington Locks do not have suitable hand-wind functionality.  Passage through these locks is by prior arrangement and on an exceptional basis only.  This can be sought using the email address or phone number below however there may be considerable delays in facilitating requests.

If you need to use these locks and feel your journey is essential and in line with the current government restrictions please email us at WaterwaysThames@environment-agency.gov.uk or telephone 03708 506 506

Please note: this email inbox is monitored during normal business hours from Monday to Friday. It is not monitored at weekends.

Many of our other services are restricted. Go to GOV.UK for more detail.

Obstructions in the river

As a result of prolonged strong stream conditions, many hazard marker buoys have been moved out of position. River and weather conditions may have also created new hazards.

Due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency, we cannot currently reposition or install marker buoys, or remove hazards. Boat movements should be restricted to essential journeys only. Any such journeys must be carried out with extreme caution.

Temple Lock has restricted access due to a fallen tree. At Temple Lock a section of the tail layby and half of the downstream lock cut are blocked.

Service update

Benson Lock electric charging point is unavailable.

If you need to use our sewage pump-out facilities, please email WaterwaysThames@environment-agency.gov.uk. You should provide a contact phone number and tell us which pump-out you need to use. A member of the team will call you to discuss arrangements for using the facility. The pump-outs currently open are those at:

  • Eynsham
  • Abingdon
  • Mapledurham
  • Shiplake
  • Boveney

All other pump-outs are currently closed.

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.

Water levels and flow rates

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.


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