Navigation to Cobblers Lock
Opened in 1794, the Sleaford Navigation ran from the River Witham at Chapel Hill to the centre of Sleaford.
The waterway is navigable as far as Cobblers Lock, where full length narrowboats can wind. On the far side of the village of South Kyme there is a low bridge at Ferry Farm, 1.8 miles above the village. The height of this bridge is indicated on the guillotine gate at Taylors Lock, the first lock up from the Witham. There are visitor moorings in South Kyme and a winding hole 1.2 miles beyond the village for boats unable to negotiate the low bridge.
Restoration of the Sleaford Navigation
Sleaford Navigation Trust has restored the waterway from the River Witham to the current head of navigation at Cobblers Lock. Two of the seven locks have so far been restored.
The first of these, Taylors Lock, was originally restored in the late 1980s and has since been refurbished in conjunction with the Lincolnshire Waterways Partnership. Cobblers Lock was restored by volunteer labour in the 1990s, but flood protection works on the banks above the lock need to be completed before gates can be installed. More recently, with support from IWA’s Waterway Recovery Group, the Trust has worked on the bywash at Haverholme Lock.
Visitor moorings have been created along the Sleaford Navigation in the village of South Kyme.
Navigation House, in Sleaford, has been restored. A project to create a new head of navigation in the town in 2010, saw a low concrete footbridge replaced by a new steel lift bridge and the building of a slipway.