A way to avoid lock gate damage

Published: Wednesday, 22 November 2017

While I sympathise with boaters who have problems with lock gates opening or closing at inopportune moments there are other ways to help avoid damage, suggests Bob Hallam.


  • It doesn’t happen at every lock.
  • The infrastructure isn’t new!
  • You’re not in a great hurry.

Length of timber

I carry a length of timber which can be propped under the balance beam to hold the gate open or closed as appropriate. (Some props are already there on the L&L if I recall correctly.)

Tie a light line to it, leave the prop on the roof. Throw the free end of the line onto the bank, if you may need it.

Prop the gate. Fill or empty. Recover prop.

No frustration for boater. No damage to gates. Everyone happy!!