Beware when mooring on the Thames

Published: Monday, 14 December 2020

BOATERS mooring on the Thames should be aware of new significant penalty charges to be enforced.

The Environment Agency, some local authorities and riparian land owners are making increasing use of third party contractors to manage their moorings on the non-tidal Thames.

Significant penalty charges

Terms and conditions, regarding registering on arrival, length of stay and charges, vary, but almost all provide for the issuing of significant penalty charges by the contractors, District Enforcement Ltd, if boaters fail to comply.

thames jan14In most cases the first 24 hours may be free of charge but there is usually a requirement to register on arrival and failure to do so may result in a penalty charge of up to £150 being issued.

Visiting narrowboats owners to the river should, when mooring, take care to read local notices and ensure they comply with the terms and conditions that apply at the location.

'Register' by mobile phone

This often requires boaters to 'register' by mobile phone immediately upon arrival at a short stay mooring or face the consequences.  So they have to hope there is a good signal!

There appears to be no provisions by the contractors as to what happens at such times as now when the Thames is in flood or boats break down and  are unable to move.  This leaves the real worry that there would be a lien on the 'offending' boat if the third party who have the contract, wish to pursue what they might regard as an unpaid fine.