Branch News

Donation to Wey & Arun Canal

October 2017

IWA's North and East London branch has given £1000 to the Wey & Arun Canal Trust to support their restoration of the canal's Summit Level.  
On receiving the cheque trust chairman Sally Schupke commented “We are really grateful to North and East London IWA for their donation, and for the efforts of their members on Waterway Recovery Group working parties. They make a huge contribution to the project.”
Tim Lewis, IWA North & East London Branch chairman was with other volunteers from London WRG who spent a weekend working on final landscaping tasks at Compasses Bridge, which is at the Alfold entrance to the Dunsfold Park aerodrome and business complex.

North and East London Branch donation to Wey & Arun Trust 2017Photo: IWA's North & East London Branch chairman Tim Lewis with Wey & Arun Canal Trust chairman Sally Schupke

New Finger Pontoons

IWA North and East London Branch is running a campaign against BWML’s plans to insert new mooring finger pontoons along a section of the South-east Limehouse Basin wall.


We object to the proposals because:-

  • Limehouse Basin is a point of refuge if there are problems on the river,
  • The proposed restricted space for turning craft, created by inserting the pontoons , is likely to create problems of boat contact, especially as the wind tends to be strong across the basin due to the high rise buildings,
  • The South-east Wall is used as the muster point for flotillas making Thames transits. The existing arrangement allows more boats to be moored alongside than the proposed finger pontoons will accommodate,
  • The proposed pontoons are of varying lengths and do not maximise mooring space available nor offer the flexibility needed for longer narrowboats.

The new mooring finger pontoons along the wall will extend out into the basin as far as the roped buoys shown in the photo.

Get Involved: You can support the campaign by write an objection to the BWML London’s General Manager and to the CRT London’s Waterways Manager

East London Waterways Are Open for Cruising

28th August 2017

The East London Waterways Festival on August Bank Holiday Monday (also see North & East London Branch report) celebrated the long awaited opening of Carpenters Road Lock with two Olympic medallists cutting the ribbon.  Fifty boats formed a flotilla to mark the event in the Olympic Park and 500 people enjoyed a free trip on passenger boats through the lock.  Around 700 people took advantage of the waterways to kayak, row, paddle board or dragon boat race around the site watched by over 10,000 visitors.  

The Olympians, rower Jessica Eddie and kayaker Joe Clarke MBE, said they were delighted that the legacy of the 2012 London Olympic Games was now being realised with the park and waterways now accessible to all. 

olympiansPhoto: Olympians, Jessica Eddie and Joe Clarke, perform the opening ceremony at Carpenters Road Lock in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park accompanied by CRT's Richard Parry and members of the East London Community ChoircarpenterslockPhoto: CRT's boat, Jena, working through Carpenters Road Lock during its first official day of opening

olympicwaterwayPhoto: Vessels taking advantage of the newly opened Olympic Park waterways in the shadow of the iconic swimming centre

Trial run through Carpenters Road Lock

5th August 2017

CRT's boat Jena was spotted on Saturday 5th August having a trial run through Carpenters Road Lock ahead of the official opening at the East London Festival

jenacarpentersrdlockPhoto by Roger Squires:  Testing Carpenters Road Lock

Carpenters Road Lock is significant from an engineering point of view, as it had the only ‘double radial lock gates’ in the country. Built in the 1930s, this design included two convex-shaped gates that lifted up vertically to enable boats to pass through. In the second half of the 20th-century, the Bow Back Rivers fell out of use and the lock became unusable, with the last passage by boat through the lock recorded in the 1960s. The advent of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games saw major works bringing new life to the waterways in what is now Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
Any boaters keen to take part in the festival are encouraged to get in touch with

Images of Carpenters Road Lock


For more information and news about branch activity and the local waterways take a look at the branch newsletter - Meridian Cuttings.