Do you want to cruise the Foss in York?

The entrance to the River Foss at Castle Mill Lock in York. PHOTO SUPPLIED

CASTLE Mills Lock on the Foss in York is operated on request by members of IWA North Riding Branch, as a free service to all boaters. This has been agreed with the navigation authority, which is York City Council.

All passages are subject to water levels in the Foss.

To book a passage from the Ouse through Castle Mills Lock, at least two days’ notice is needed. Telephone: 07588 236597, and leave a mobile number with brief details, especially the date you want to use the lock. Use the same number for any other branch query, or email:

There is no overnight mooring available on the Foss, so it is necessary to book both passages. It is, however, an attractive mile-and-a-half of secluded and interesting waterway for a return trip within the day. The Foss was a canalised river running up towards Sheriff Hutton, but only the lower stretch is now navigable.

Larger boats are advised to turn at Wormalds Cut; a 40ft narrowboat can turn further upstream; or two narrowboats breasted nose-to-tail can use one to drive up and the other to drive back.