Exeter Ship Canal

The Exeter Ship Canal runs for 5 miles from Exeter Canal Basin to Turf Lock on the River Exe.  Its origins date back to 1566, since when the canal has been owned continuously by Exeter City Council, which is currently formulating plans for the canal’s future development, along with the River Exe and the Exe Estuary.  The canal boasts two locks, including a tidal lock and a connection from the River Exe adjacent to the Canal Basin.  It is heavily used by walkers and cyclists but there is only a modest amount of boating traffic due to the difficulties caused by the low swing bridge and lifting bridge on the A379 Exeter bypass and the costs involved in operating these.

The Friends of Exeter Ship Canal was formed in 2016 and is lobbying for improvements to the canal and undertaking volunteer work parties along the canal to help assist the Council’s canal maintenance team.

Exeter City Basin is a Silver Propeller Challenge location.  Find out more about this Challenge now. 



IWA Branch

West Country

Navigation Authority

Exeter City Council
River and Canal Office, Civic Centre, Paris Street, Exeter, Devon, EX1 1JN
T: 01392 265791
Exeter City Council website