Try the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation Walk
Things To Do
Heybridge Basin is where the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation meets the Blackwater Estuary. It is a great place to moor your boat, with long and short term moorings available.
The Basin attracts a mix of visiting boats and long term moorers.
Visitors are always welcome at Heybridge Basin. However, during the summer months it is very busy, so please book in advance to reserve a berth.
Shower, toilet facilities and electric hook-up are available.
There is plenty to do at Heybridge Basin. Food and drink is available from our kiosk located on the towpath above Daisy Meadow car park. If you want to eat out, there are two pubs and a popular tea room run by the world-famous Tiptree Jam Co just a stone’s throw from the Sea Lock.
There are scenic coastal walks and a wildlife lake to explore. The village is served with busses to get you to the nearest train stations at Chelmsford or Hatfield Peverel. The nearest town, Maldon, is a 45 minute walk, or a short bus ride, away.
While there are no shops in the village, there is a large Tesco supermarket one mile away and a small shopping centre just a little nearer. Visitors often take their own dinghy or tender upstream to the shops. Craft up to 57 foot long can navigate the 14 miles upstream to Chelmsford (Springfield Basin) by arrangement.
Get in touch with our Lockkeeper at Heybridge to book your mooring or passage through the sea lock.
Shower, toilet, water and electric hook-up are available. Elsan disposal facilities are situated adjacent to the facilities block, and there is also a portable pump-out facility – ask the lockkeeper for details.
Space for vessels over 3 metres draft and over 20 metres in length is restricted.
The sea lock is 55 metres long by 7.5 metres wide. There are three sets of gates which means there are three lengths of lock that are operable; they are the long lock at 55 metres, a medium size lock at 33 metres and a short lock at 17 metres. On most lockings, the middle sized lock is used. However, on really busy summer weekends the long lock may be used, but if only one or two boats are expected, then the short lock is used to conserve water in the Basin.
Long and short term moorings are available at Heybridge Basin.
The Sea Lock is available for use on high waters occurring between 06.00 and 20.00 hrs from 1st May to 30th September, and 07.00 and 17.00 hrs between 1st October to 30th April. Locking times are displayed on the notice board outside the Lock House.
The Sea Lock only operates approximately two hours before high water. The first locking is always outwards, to create space in the Basin. Locking then continues alternately until all craft wishing to enter or leave are through. Please note, we try to fill the lock with vessels to maximise water conservation by locking as few times as possible on a given tide, so punctuality is appreciated.
Please contact us to book your passage through the lock.
Approach the green starboard hand buoy called Lock Approach; from here you will see the lock entrance please call ‘Heybridge Lock’ on VHF Channel 80 and wait in the vicinity of the green buoy. Normally locking out occurs first. The navigation channel to the lock is very narrow, so you could go aground on the mud if you stray too far. Please do not obstruct this channel, as boats with deep drafts may be leaving.
When instructed on VHF Channel 80, you can make your approach. Leave the lock approach buoy close to starboard, and proceed towards the withies (wooden sticks in the mud). These withies need to be kept about ten foot from the boat, on the port side. The withies are always port hand markers as identified by their red tops.
Be prepared to moor on either side of the lock. Ropes around ten metres long, with plain ends, are best. The lockkeeper or assistant will help you moor up by passing your rope round bollards on the quay and passing the end back to you. Have plenty of fenders rigged, as the lock side is unforgiving granite and brick.
The rise in the lock varies depending on the tide; on neap tides it may be as much as 2.5 metres.
While you are in the lock the lockkeeper will explain which berth in the basin you have been allocated. This may involve rafting up to other boats. We try to keep boats in the order that they plan to in, so boats staying the longest will go inside boats that are leaving the next day. We also try to give berths on the quayside to boats crewed by less-agile people, and those with children and pets .
If you are less agile or have children or pets on-board, please let us know when you book your berth. You will be asked to fill in a registration card and will be given an information sheet with details of the codes for the shower block, laundry and other details.
The following terms and conditions apply to any vessel moored on the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation, other than those at our Long Term Moorings, for which a separate mooring agreement is held. Any boat owner mooring a vessel on the Navigation is considered to have accepted these terms and conditions.
Heybridge Basin Moorings
Basin Rd, Heybridge Basin, Maldon CM9 4RW
Canoeing & Paddleboarding
Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation
Heybridge Basin & Paper Mill Lock
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