See & Do
Places to Stay
Places to Eat
Cruise the Shannon
Events Near You
33 Loup RoadToomeCounty Antrim
1 Townhead StreetBallymoneyAntrimBT53 6BE
135a Shore Road Ballyronan, Magherafelt, Londonderry, BT45 6JA
Cranagh Marina, 78 Coleraine Road, Coleraine, BT52 1SD
12 Lismurphy Ave, Coleraine,Co Londonderry,BT51 3QN
33 New Row, Kilrea, Co.Londonderry, BT51 5TA
Coleraine Town Hall, 35 The Diamond, Coleraine BT51 1DP
The Marine 4,Portstewart Road,Coleraine,County Londonderry BT52 1RN
Kinnego Marina , Kinnego Marina Oxford island Annaloiste Road, Lurgan, Co Armagh, BT66 6NJ
36 Glenstall Road Ballymoney BT53 7QN
Flowerfield Arts Centre, 185 Coleraine Road, Portstewart, Co Londonderry, BT55 7HU
The River Bann is navigable from the sea to Lough Neagh. It is enjoyed by cruising boats, anglers, canoeists, waterskiers, wakeboarders and others. Zoning is in place to ensure the safe accommodation of all users.
The Lower Bann has two navigation authorities. Coleraine Harbour Commissioners manage the 8km of river from the Millennium Bridge in Coleraine to the sea and are responsible for Coleraine Harbour.
Contact Coleraine Harbour onTel no +44 (0)28 7034 2012(V.H.F. Ch.12. Admiralty Chart Number 2499)
Waterways Ireland manage 52km of navigation from Lough Neagh to Coleraine Town Bridge.
Contact Waterways Ireland Coleraine Office on
Tel no +44 (0)287034 2358
Length & No of Locks52km from Toomebridge to Coleraine (5 locks (1 double))8km from Coleraine Centre to Barmouth (Managed by Coleraine Harbour Commissioners)
Navigational CriteriaLength: 35 mBeam: 5.5 mDraft: *1mAir draft: 1.5m at high water Coleraine 4.2m at low water Coleraine
Draft dimensions are given as a guide only and cannot be guaranteed.
*Masters of deep drafted boats are asked to contact the Operations office in Coleraine before travelling. Tel no +44 (0)28 7034 4342.
Along the Lower Bann the navigable channel is marked by red and white markers. Please keep to the white side of the markers.
All boats should have suitable lifejackets for every adult and child on board. Waterways Ireland promotes the wearing of lifejackets by all users.
The International Regulations for the Prevention of Collision at Sea apply on the Lower Bann Navigation.
The main navigation guidelines on the Lower Bann are:
Keep to the right of the Channel when going upstream;
Keep well clear when passing or overtaking;
Make your intentions clear by early and distinct action;
Give way to craft converging from the right;
Give way to craft going downstream at bridges and channels;
Give way to bigger, less manoeuvrable craft;
Power must give way to sail, oar and paddle;
Do not cross the bows of oncoming craft; and
All users should be careful approaching locks and weirs, especially when the river is in flood.
A copy of the Regulations is available from most major book retailers.
Voluntary Code of Conduct
NOTE: Currently no bye-laws apply to navigation on the Lower Bann. A Voluntary Code of Conduct applies until navigation bye-laws come into operation.
The river is used by cruising boats, fishermen, canoeists, water-skiers and others,. To ensure that everyone can safely enjoy the river, please observe the following General Voluntary Code of Conduct:
Respect other river users;
Slow down when passing small craft and boats at jetties and slipways;
Keep wash and wake to a minimum;
Wear a buoyancy aid appropriate to activity;
Use a kill cord/cut-out switch on sports boats;
When skiing, have an observer or wing mirror;
Only ski or jet-ski in appropriate zones;
Ringoes and Biscuits should be used in ski zones only, at 32km.p.h./17 knots maximum with a rope no longer than 10m;
Avoid damaging banks, vegetation and disturbing wildlife by minimising wash;
Do not pollute the river with any kind of waste;
Give due respect to others engaged in competitions;
Slow down and keep clear of anglers and wading fishermen; and
Respect all designated zones.
The zones are designated on the navigation guide by the coloured lines down the edge of each shore. Please check the colour code against the Key to ensure use of the correct zone.
Landing jetties at locks are provided for users waiting to pass through the locks. These jetties are not intended for overnight mooring.
The water level in Lough Neagh and flow in the Lower Bann are substantially controlled by large sluice barrages across the River at Toomebridge, Portna and the Cutts. In periods of very wet weather the inflow to Lough Neagh rises substantially above the maximum flow that can be released through the sluice gates. The excess is ponded in the lough. Following a period of intense rainfall the river will remain in spate for days and if necessary weeks, until the water in Lough Neagh falls to the appropriate level. When the river is in spate the approaches from upstream to the navigation locks at the Cutts in particular and the locks at Portna, Movanagher and Carnroe can be dangerous and there may be dangerous eddies and currents at the bridges.
Navigation Guides and Brochures
Detailed information on all the inland waterways is provided in the navigation guides and brochures produced by Waterways Ireland. In addition information is provided in Waterways Ireland booklets on places to eat, events and angling hotspots. Visit the Waterways Ireland webshop for further details www.shopwaterwaysireland.org
Maps and Charts
The Lower Bann is covered by three Ordnance Survey maps at 1:50,000 scale. These are:
Number 4 (Sea to Castleroe)
Number 8 (Castleroe to Portglenone)
Number 14 (Portglenone to Lough Neagh)
Admiralty Chart 2494 'Plans on the North Coast of Ireland' covers the Bann Estuary.
Admiralty Chart 2163 covers Lough Neagh.
Emergency Services - Dial 999
On the water - ask for the Coastguard - Dial 999
Textphone - 18000 (for the hearing impaired)
PSNI non-emergency number - 101
There are a number of fixed & moveable bridges over the Lower Bann Navigation with the navigation channel clearly marked with a downward arrow(s) above the navigable arch of the bridge. Be aware that all of the navigable arches are open to traffic from both directions and approach with caution. Check the airdraft of your boat to ensure your craft can pass safely under each bridge. A side perspective of each bridge on the Lower Bann is provided on the map showing the bridge from the downstream side and illustrating the navigable channel(s).
Air draft 1.5m* at high water Coleraine4.2m* at low water Coleraine.
*For guidance only
Mast Lowering Facility There is a mast lowering facility at Coleraine Marina.
A Dry Dock Facility is not available from Waterways Ireland on the Lower Bann
Water is available on the jetties at:
Coleraine Marina (CBC)
Christie Park (CBC)
Cutts Lock (Waterwats Ireland)
Drumaheglis Marina (BBC)
Movanagher Lock (Waterways Ireland)
Kilrea Bridge Jetty/Portneal (Waterways Ireland)
Portna Lock (Waterways Ireland)
Portglenone Marina (BBC)
Newferry West (MDC)
Newferry East (BBC)
Toomebridge Lock House Jetty (Waterways Ireland)
Waterways Ireland does not provide electricity on jetties on the Lower Bann.
Fuel is available at Coleraine Marina
For information on navigating and boat queries contact the Inspectorate:
Inspector of NavigationWaterways Ireland, The Docks, Athlone, Co WestmeathTel no +353 (0)90 649 4232
LocksThe 5 locks on the Lower Bann are operated by Lock keepers. Please follow their instructions and ensure the safety of all your passengers when the boat is in the lock. Lock passage costs 1 smart card unit. A Smart Card has a chip and uses similar technology to that of a bank card. A list of Smart Card retailers can be found here or you can order them online at www.shopwaterwaysireland.org Please contact them on the following numbers before travelling:
Locks Telephone No.
Toome +44 78 7603 2891 Portna +44 28 2954 0214Movanagher & Carnroe +44 28 2954 0570Cutts +44 28 7034 2999
Supervisor +44 (0)78 7603 2891 Opening Hours of Locks1st April to 31st May: 10.00 to 18.301st June to 31st August: 09.00 to 20.001st September to 31st October: 10.00 to 18.001st November to 31st March: 10.00 to 16.00Lunch (locks closed): 13.00 to 14.00
Maintenance works on the Lower Bann are whenever possible, carried out during the winter. Before navigating any waterway between 1 November and 17 March you are advised to contact the Operations Division during office hours to confirm that the section of waterway you wish to navigate is open.
Coleraine: +44 (0)28 7034 4342
Headquarters: +44 (0)28 6632 3004
Marine Notices are used by Waterways Ireland to inform the public of changes to the usage of the waterways and may be permanent or temporary. Temporary notices are followed by a withdrawal notice to inform customers of the end to the impediment to navigation. They are issued by the
Inspector Of Navigation to whom all queries can be directed.
There are no Bye-laws in place on the Lower Bann. A voluntary code drawn up by stakeholders is in place and has created zones for activity. Boaters using other waterways often register there, for example on lough Erne which is free of charge. You can register online here.
No time limits are in place.
Toilets, Shower and Laundry services are provided by mutiple organisations on the Lower Bann.
Pump-outsPump-outs are provided at Drumaheglis Marina to enable the pumping out of sewage safely and cleanly removing the pollution risk to the waterways.A pump-out service is available on Fridays at Coleraine Marina, Tel no +44 (0)28 7034 4768. There is a fee for this service.
Slipways facilitating access to the Lower Bann can be found at:
Seaton's Marina (Private)
Cranagh Marina (Private)
Coleraine Marina (Coleraine Council)
Somerset Slipway (Waterways Ireland)
Loughan Marina (Private)
Hanna Boats (Private)
Drumaheglis Marina (Ballymoney Council)
Portna Lock (Waterways Ireland)
Portglenone Marina (Ballymena Council)
Newferry East (Balllymena Council)
Newferry West (Magherafelt Council)
Toomebridge Lock (Waterways Ireland)
Fees and restrictions may apply on slipways owned by organisations other than Waterways Ireland.
Smart Cards can be used to pay Lock passage on the Lower Bann at a cost of 1 smart card unit per lock. A list of Smart Card retailers can be found here or you can order them online at www.shopwaterwaysireland.org
The Lower Bann is navigable from the sea at the Barmouth. Care should be taken at the entrance as in rough conditions there can be breaking waves. Coleraine Harbour Commissioners manage the 8km of river from the Millennium Bridge in Coleraine to the sea and are responsible for Coleraine Harbour.
From the Sea to Coleraine
The information in this section relates to the navigation from the sea to Coleraine Town Bridge and has been kindly supplied by Coleraine Harbour Commissioners.
River Bann Entrance
The entrance to the River Bann from the sea lies between two stone piers. The sandbanks forming the bar change positions considerably with varying weather. In strong winds from North (N) to West North West (WNW), or after prolonged winds from West (W) to South West (SW) which cause a heavy swell, the entrance is difficult and at times impracticable. The river entrance is maintained at 3.5m Low Water Ordinary Spring Tides (LWOST) but is subject to silting. Breakers on the West Pier (Castlerock) are common; breakers on the Portstewart Pier may indicate that the bar is impassable. Do not attempt to enter
River Channel from the Barmouth to Coleraine Town Bridge
The channel to Coleraine is 8km in length with a minimum width 45m and is maintained at a depth of 3.4m. The International Association of Lighhouse Authorities (IALA) Buoyage System (Region A) - Red to Port is in place.
Coleraine Harbour (55 08'.10 N,006 40'.45 W)
Coleraine Marina (55 08'.64 N,006 40'.55 W)
Seaton's Marina (55 09'.22 N,006 41' 76 W)
Railway Bridge (55 08'.35 N, 006 40'.36 W)
The Railway Bridge is a lifting bridge and is operated by Translink staff (Tel: Coleraine +44 (0)28 7032 5400; VHF Ch 12). The bridge is controlled by the Coleraine signal box and bridge operation is dependent on the location of trains.
Bridge clearance heights at zero reading on Coleraine Harbour Tide Gauge
Railway Bridge 7.0m
Town Bridge 4.2m
WHEN IN THE LOWER BANN ESTUARY ALL VESSELS SHOULD MAINTAIN A LISTENING WATCH ON CHANNEL 12.
Coleraine Harbour Radio- Ch 12;
Seaton's Marina- Ch 37;
Coleraine Marina- Ch 37
In the River Bann the weak in-going stream, is reduced both in strength and duration after heavy rain, correspondingly increasing the out-going stream. During the in-going stream the coastal stream at Spring Tides runs strongly across the entrance. The outgoing stream forms ripples and overfalls where it meets the coastal streams. Leisure craft should be aware that large commercial vessels up to 85m transit the river as far as Coleraine Harbour.
Coleraine Harbour is situated 8km inland from the Barmouth, 55 08' North longitude 6 40' West. Prevailing winds are westerly.
Tidal rise at Spring Tide 1.9m and at Neap Tide 0.9m;
Maximum size vessel 85m length, 13.5m beam, 4.0m draft. Draft restrictions may apply;
Working channel vhf 12 (office hours only);
Pilotage is compulsory for commercial vessel on the River Bann. Pilots board from the pilot cutter 'Borderer' (vhf 12) which is stationed at Portstewart. Fair weather anchorage just west of pilot boarding station anchorage. Also Skerries Roadstead and Lough Foyle;
The port has three quays 217m in length and three transit sheds totalling 2610 square metres. A 45 tonne crawler crane is available for general/bulk cargos. One twin screw tug 'Confidence' 900 hp 11t bollard pull available.
Coleraine Harbour offers lift-out facilities for yachts up to 16 tonnes;
Hard standing and undercover storage are available;
Repair facilities are available on site.
Coleraine Harbour Commissioners
Tel no +44 (0)28 7034 2012
Fax no +44 (0)28 7035 2000
Marine Notice 49 of 2019 - Lower Bann - European Course Angling Competition - 29 & 30 June 2019
Notice Number 49 of 2019
Marine Notice 29 of 2019 - Lower Bann - Payment for passage through Locks and Bridges
Notice Number 29 of 2019