Rivers Welland and Glen: locks and facilities

Information for boaters on the Rivers Welland and Glen.

The River Welland flows eastwards through Crowland and Spalding and into the Wash at Fosdyke Bridge, crossing the area of Lincolnshire fenland known as ‘South Holland’.

The River Glen rises in the Lincolnshire Limestone Ridge, east of Grantham. It travels for 12 miles through the Fens where it meets the River Welland at Surfleet Seas End.

There is a general speed limit of 7 miles per hour (11.2 kilometres per hour) on the Rivers Welland and Glen.

Visit the Inland Waterways Association website to see the Fens Waterways map and about the Waterways Link project.

Read the recreational byelaws for Anglian waterways.

Rivers Welland and Glen bridge heights

Water levels on the Welland and Glen may change after rainfall. When you approach a bridge you must make sure there is enough space between your boat and the roof of the bridge to allow your boat to pass safely.

The following table shows the distance between the standard water level and the highest point of the bridge. These distances are approximate and river levels fluctuate throughout the year.

Location Headway (metres) Headway (feet)
Deepings Railway Bridge 3.24 10’63”
Crowland Bridge 2.27 7’45”
Four Mile Bar Footbridge 3.20 10’49”
A16 Road Bridge 2.93 9’61”
Bars Bridge 2.62 8’59”
Boadring Footbridge 2.45 8’04”
Money Bridge 2.0 6’56”
Railway Bridge 2.23 7’32”
Herring Bridge 2.21 7’25”
Crossgate Bridge (Flat Mill) 2.0 6’56”
Surfleet Iron Bridge 1.8 5’90”
A16 Bypass Road Bridge 2.75 9’02”
Little London Bridge 2.01 6’59”
Old Railway Bridge and Footbridge 2.42 7’93”
Balmoral Avenue Footbridge 1.85 6’07”
Love Lane Footbridge 2.54 8’33”
Pipe Line 3.31 10’86”
No. 3 Taku Footbridge 2.96 9’71”
High Bridge 2.38 7’80”
No. 2 Footbridge 2.74 8’99”
West Elloe Footbridge 2.24 7’35”
Twin Bridges 2.33 7’64”

Rivers Welland and Glen locks

There are 2 locks on the Rivers Welland and Glen. They are both staffed by the Environment Agency:

  • Fulney Lock in Spalding, which marks the boundary between the non-tidal (or freshwater) River Welland with the tidal Welland
  • Surfleet Sluice, which connects the River Glen to the River Welland

The river is tidal beyond Surfleet Seas End - only experienced sailors and boaters should go through this sluice and into the Wash.

You must not operate these locks yourself.

Call the river inspector before you arrive through the Environment Agency Customer Contact Centre on 0370 850 6506 (call charges).

Lock dimensions

Typically the locks on the Rivers Welland and Glen are 26m long and 4.6m wide.

Distances between locks

Distances and times between each lock based on the speed limit of 7 miles per hour and assumes that you will take 20 minutes to pass through each lock.

Name Distance to next lock downstream (km) Distance to next lock downstream (miles) Cruising time to next lock downstream
River Welland, Stamford to Peakirk (access to canoes and light boats only) 19.31 12 2 days in a canoe
River Welland, Peakirk to Spalding 23 14.29 7 hours
River Glen, Tongue End to Surfleet Seas End 19 11.80 5 hours

Public slipways

There are 3 public slipways on the Rivers Welland and Glen, located at:

  • Crowland
  • Fosdyke (this slipway is tidal)
  • Surfleet

You need a navigation key to lift the traffic control barriers that protect these sites. You can buy a navigation key by emailing the Environment Agency at or calling 03708 506 506 (call charges).

For more information contact the Welland and Glen river inspector through the Environment Agency Customer Contact Centre on 0370 850 6506.


Read the Anglian waterways guide for information on mooring.

Published 1 April 2014
Last updated 29 August 2023 + show all updates
  1. Updated the contact telephone number for the river inspector.

  2. Updated sections 'Rivers Welland and Glen locks' and 'Public Slipways' to add new mobile number for the lock inspector.

  3. We have increased the price of a navigation key to lift the traffic control barriers to £15.

  4. First published.