Action 4: Enhancing the Boat User Experience

December 2019 Update:

The Lake District National Park Authority (LDNPA) is working together with South Lakeland District Council (SLDC), the National Trust (NT) and Windermere Lake Cruises (WLC) to improve access and facilities for users of both powered and non-powered boats on Windermere.

In June 2019, the group invited registered boat users to take part in a survey about the public jetties on Windermere. 527 people responded. We are using the feedback to this survey, together with the findings from the Lake Windermere Services Users Survey 2018 to inform our decisions.

Public Jetty User Survey 2019: Summary


  • We have prioritised Waterhead and Bowness as priority sites to improve public jetty access.
  • We are working with the private sector to increase public jetty provision at Waterhead.
  • We need to gather physical evidence that there is not enough capacity at the public jetties at Bowness.  So we are monitoring their use.  To date, our research shows that even at peak times, there is still some capacity on these jetties but that misuse (overstaying waiting times and inconsiderate mooring) is a significant factor in preventing some boaters from using these jetties.  We will carry on monitoring jetty usage and are exploring options to encourage better use of the jetties so that all the mooring spaces are accessible.
  • We have confirmed that there are jetties at YMCA Lakeside and Fell Foot available for public use.
  • Water-depth is an issue for some boat users.  Dredging may be an option at some sites.  People asked whether we could put a depth gauge on the public jetties, but as most large boats have their own depth gauge, we will prioritise funds on improving access and other site information.
  • We are looking at how to adapt the jetties at Bark Barn and YMCA Lakeside so that they can be used more easily by small boats.
  • Most people (70%) who responded to our recent survey said that the 2 hour waiting time on public jetties (4 hours at Ferry Nab) was sufficient.  We are managing this more closely so that more boat users have access to the public jetties during peak times.
  • We are exploring sites for additional short term swinging moorings.
  • We will install a secure kayak lashing point at Cockshott Point.
  • Dinghy storage on the west shore of Windermere has been increased with improved security. 

Facilities and Information

  • We are looking at improving the boat washing facilities and installing a disabled hoist at Ferry Nab.
  • We are putting new signage on the public jetties so that they can be easily identified.
  • We are updating the Windermere Lake Chart to clearly show the public jetty sites. This will soon be available online.
  • We have put more warning buoys in the shallow parts of Bowness Bay.
  • We are looking at signage to encourage more considerate mooring on public jetties.

How you can help

  • Please be considerate of others when using the public jetties. Stay within the waiting times and, where possible, leave space for others.  If you are in a tender or small boat, moor your vessel at the shallowest / shore end of the jetty.
  • Do your bit to protect Windermere’s water quality and habitat by following greener boating principles.