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Cookham Lock on the River Thames

Cookham Lock

It is at Cookham that the powerful waters of the River Thames meet the Chiltern chalk at Cliveden Cliff. This causes the river to change direction suddenly. Centuries ago this area would have been a maze of narrow river channels between wooded, marshy islands.

The need for a lock here emerged in the 1700s when documents tell of the river at Cookham being a 'very dangerous place.' Three barges sank here. One of the problems was that large chalk stones fell from the 'Clifden Wall' (Cliveden Cliff). Eventually, the first pound lock was constructed in 1830.

Did you know?

The Queen's Swan Uppers visit Cookham Lock every year to record the swan population. This ritual began when swans were considered an important food for royal banquets and feasts.

Contact details

Telephone: +44 (0)1628 520752
Postcode: SL6 9SR

Find out more about the Cookham Lock facilities.

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