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Our priorities are:

  • Scrutiny of planning proposals and building projects to ensure that people, the environment and the river benefit

  • Encouraging maintenance and improvement of locks, navigational structures and flood control measures

  • Protection and improved accessibility of entry points such as stairs, causeways and drawdocks

  • Safeguarding of boatyards, dry-docks and other marine facilities

  • Development in a balanced way of commercial, recreational and transport use of the river.

RTS Papers

These subjects have been researched by RTS Members. They have resulted in papers that are now made available as we seek to share our knowledge.

Access to the Thames: Steps and Stairs

RTS Chairman, Peter Finch, has produced a report detailing Access to the River Thames: Steps, Stairs & Landing Places on the Tidal River. The access points include historic watermen's stairs and drawdocks, together with more modern sites. They are listed by local authority, working downstream, and include 15 London boroughs and five in Essex and Kent.

Download the latest edition updated in April 2022

Policy Towards Houseboats

Houseboats are seen by some as one of the answers to the housing shortage, and by others as a way to make a quick profit. Whatever, the number and variety of Thames houseboats seems to be increasing. The RTS has drafted a policy statement about houseboats on the Thames, updating a policy from 35 years ago.

Download the report originally published in January 2019 and most recently updated in March 2021.

Advice for Houseboat Buyers
Hilary Pereira, RTS member and chair of the Upper Tideway Branch, outlines some of the pitfalls potential houseboat buyers might face and provides a comprehensive list of questions that should be asked prior to contract exchange, from whether the boat and moorings are fit for purpose to what would happen if it all went wrong.
Download the report last updated in March 2021


Visiting The Thames Tideway by Boat
Published in January 2022, RTS is pleased to provide up-to-date advice to help those planning an adventure on the tidal Thames.

Download the RTS paper.

Planning Guidelines

The Society has always taken an interest in planning, on or by the Thames. Guidelines have been drawn up, under five themes based on our overall aims:
• Improve/maintain public access to the river
• Protect the natural environment
• Promote the best built environment
• Keep the river active
• Support like-minded others.

The RTS has a special contribution to make as we incorporate all those interested in the Thames and its active users. We cover all parts of the river and can bring expertise from many quarters. Unlike many amenity societies we cover both banks, we have no commercial interests and believe we are uniquely placed to present a balanced view.
Download the RTS Planning Guidelines.

RTS Projects and Papers

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