Canoe Days Out

Somerset - Parrett - Huish Episcopi (near Langport) to Oath Lock & return

This page was submitted by Keith Day (E-mail this submitter)
How to get there -

Get a map with driving directions to start (enter the postcode of your starting point at A)

Suggested Launch Site - There is a concrete slipway and a small car park next to the river

General Description - This part of the Parrett, as it crosses Aller Moor, was scene to the earliest known dispute between those navigating the river and a riparian landowner seeking to restrict navigation - in 1280 ‘The burgesses of Bridgwater complained that Acton had stopped them “towing their boats on the waterway of Peret, along the moorlands and meadows between Bruewat’ and Langport.” ’ The court ruled in favour of those using the river.

In the 19th century the river formed part of the Parrett Navigation with locks to facilitate passage by larger craft but in 1878, following competition from the railway, the navigation was transferred to the ownership of the Somersetshire Drainage Commissioners.

The Somerset Waterways Develoment Trust actively campaign for the restoration of this navigation and believe "A “Highway” Right of Navigation exists on the Rivers Parrett, Isle and Yeo where formerly navigation improvements were made but there is no liability or responsibility on the current management body, ie The Environment Agency to maintain navigation structures such as locks, even though the locks at Middleney and Thorney appear structurally sound and could easily be reinstated."

The trip to Oath Lock (now a weir) is 3.4 miles (6.8 return) with no portages.

Comments on this trip

Steve Warwicker
21 Jan 2019
No sign on the new gate at the slipway which is planned to have more work done on it in the next few months. Langport in general are trying to encourage people to the river and town and are planning some accesssteps more in the town centre

28 Jun 2018
I plan on having a paddle here, I've noticed signs on the gate bt the slipway, is they're any other launching point

James Thurtle
04 Jun 2018
You can now hire Canoes, Kayaks and Pedalos from Langport Boat Hire though out the summer.See website for details

Martin Aspinall
14 Apr 2018
Update from August 17 trip, (bit late sorry). As far as access at the putin goes, nothing has changed since I paddled there in 2012. We managed to get a disabled paddler on the water. It seems, from a conversation that one of our Club members subsequently had, that Langport Town Council were very pleased that we used the facility. They have plans to develop and improve the access to the river. Also mentioned that there is a key available to open the gate at the putin at Huish Drove. Not sure who to ask though.

Martin Aspinall
21 Aug 2017
Can anyone confirm that the access around the gate is still there Looking to launch a group, including a disabled paddler, from there this weekend.

Chris Hill
26 Jun 2012
The gate at the top of the slipway is always locked, so either go round, or over it. I have never had any objections to using it, and whether the red sign is up or not, I would carry on. The only time I would consider not using it would be if the river was in flood state, but that would depend on people's own judgement regarding their safety and ability.

Barbara Knight
04 Jun 2012
We did this today (4th June 2012) and it was great. Current nonexistence making it easy paddling both ways. There is a locked gate blocking the slip way at the car park but you can drag your canoes round it easily. Not many features along the route but very relaxing countryside. We would recommend the cafe by the river at Langport on the way back it's just next to the eco houses and road bridge. You can get out on their wooden landing stage. This web site is excellent and just what we have been looking for when exploring new areas everything you need to know in terms of where to launch, park etc. Really useful if people can give guidance on the current in terms of ability to paddle both ways.

Martin Aspinall
29 May 2012
I checked the putin a couple of weeks ago, and although there was a gate across it, there is access round it.Going on Monday 4th June, so I will update afterwards!

Brian Silk
28 May 2012
Last time I was down here (Jan 2012) this putin was closed off and marked as dangerous!!



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The last trip loaded was Great Haywood to Great Haywood (Circular Route) on the River Trent / Trent & Mersey Canal by Peter Robinson