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03 December 2020

Environment Agency issue COVID update on boating within the Tier Restrictions

 
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update for waterway users – 2 December 2020 Government has announced important changes to the national measures in England from Wednesday 2 December, to control the spread of Coronavirus.

This means we will move from a country-wide lockdown to a local restriction tier system. The latest Government guidance on the tier system, including a postcode checker for the current tier of any location, can be found at https://www.gov.uk/find-coronavirus-local-restrictions

From Wednesday 2 December, Government is no longer advising against non-essential travel or overnight stays, instead the tier system will set out what activity can be undertaken in each area. Cruising the waterways aboard your boat is permitted – subject to tier restrictions.

For waterways in tier 1: Travel on waterways is permitted and overnight stays are permitted with your household, support bubble or up to six people.

For waterways in tier 2: Travel on waterways is permitted and overnight stays with your household or support bubble are permitted.

For waterways in tier 3: Travel on waterways and overnight stays are only permitted where the boat is your permanent residence or it is necessary for work, education or similar reasons.

Travelling to maintain your boat is permitted, however you should not visit a tier 3 area from another area or travel from a tier 3 area to another area to visit your boat.

We will continue to lift time restrictions on the short stay moorings we own or manage in tier 3 areas to assist those who live aboard their boats so they can access essential services, however time restrictions will resume in all other areas.

Paddle sports and rowing are permitted – for all tiers subject to social contact rules specified for each tier at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-meeting-with-others-safely-social-distancing

We will continue to support this national effort through these challenging times and will, as always, make protecting the safety of our customers and staff our top priority. Our staff will continue to work, managing and maintaining our waterways within the safe ways of working we have implemented this year. This may include some asset closures for maintenance.

As of today’s date, most of the waterways we manage fall within tier 2 with the exception of the Upper Medway Navigation (tier 3) and some of our Anglian waterways (tier 3).

Please check the full list of local restrictions to see how your area, or the area you would like to visit, is affected at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/local-restriction-tiers-what-you-need-to-know

We will continue to keep you updated with advice and guidance as the national situation develops. We remain committed to doing this and making the information available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/environment-agency-waterways-coronavirus-covid-19-update.

Andy Wilkinson
National Navigation Manager