Coronavirus Statement – River Wey & Godalming Navigations – 21st December 2020
These are unprecedented times and the National Trust Wey and Godalming Navigations has been working hard to make sure our response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic follows Government advice, in the best interests of the health of our staff and volunteers, visitors and all river users.
Since the first lockdown ended over the summer, we have done our best to maintain our sites and services as close as possible to business as usual, keeping waterways and facilities open for everyone to enjoy afloat and on land, subject to following Government guidance. However, following the announcement from the Government about the England’s new restrictions on 19th December, we have made the difficult decision to re-introduce limits to the use of the Navigations once again to support the instruction to stop all non-essential travel. As the country moves into new tiered restrictions the majority of our Navigations are now in Tier 4, preventing powered boats traveling along most of the waterway. However Waverley is a Tier 2 area, so powered navigation is possible upstream of Unstead Lock, but you cannot travel from a Tier 4 area to a Tier 2 and if you travel these pounds you must not socialise with anyone you do not live with or who is not in your support bubble in any indoor setting, including boats, and you must not socialise in a group of more than 6 people outside, including an open outdoor boat space (the rule of 6).
We will keep these limitations under constant review in the light of the developing situation and advice from Government. Our priority is to keep our staff, volunteers, visitors and river users safe, and we will be working to make sure that everybody can continue enjoying everything our waterway has to offer whenever possible.
Our lengthsmen and maintenance team are continuing to take care of the Navigations for everyone during this difficult time. Please keep your distance from them as they work.
Please help us by getting in touch only if it’s essential. If you do need to contact us, we encourage you to email us at email@example.com
For the full Government guidance on coronavirus go to http://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Thank you all for your co-operation during these very challenging times for everyone.
How will these restrictions affect powered boats?
Licenced powered boats may not be used on the River Wey & Godalming Navigations from Saturday 19th December 2020, until further notice, other than upstream of Unstead Lock. However the government recommends you should reduce the number of journeys you make wherever possible.
You must not travel if you are experiencing any coronavirus symptoms, are self-isolating as a result of coronavirus symptoms, are sharing a household or support bubble with somebody with symptoms, or have been told to self-isolate after being contacted by NHS Test and Trace.
We advise river users to stay at home rather than self-isolating aboard, unless your boat is your primary residence. This is so you do not put yourself at increased risk or place additional burden upon our facilities or the emergency services.
We will do the very best we can to keep open the essential facilities we provide (e.g. water supply and chemical toilet disposal), for those who need them. However, we will not be able to offer the sale of keys at this time other than at Thames Lock.
Thames Lock office is closed and you will need to book boat passage in writing in advance. When our team are operating the lock, it is essential that social distancing and other public health advice is observed at all times, for the safety of our staff and lock users.
How will these restrictions affect self-propelled craft?
The public may currently use the Navigation in line with government guidelines for exercise providing social distancing measures and other rules are observed at all times.
How will these restrictions affect fishing?
Fishing is a permissible form of outdoor recreation which requires an Environment Agency rod licence. You can only leave home to fish with members of your own household, your support bubble or with up to five others, and social distancing measures must be observed at all times.
How will these restrictions affect use of the towpath?
The public may use the towpath in line with government guidelines and social distancing measures must be observed at all times. Please be aware that in places the towpath is narrow, and the public will need to collaborate to keep the mandatory distance from others.
Do I still need to license my boat?
A reminder that boat licensing on the Wey is for a full year from January to December, so if you have a boat on the navigation it should be paid for. This income helps us to care for the waterway for everyone for ever.