The River Medway is a historic waterway much associated with the Navy, and stretches inland from the entrance at Sheerness some 13 miles to Rochester. At this point it is bridged and masted vessels will find their progress blocked. Motor vessels and small craft can continue up the Medway to Allington lock. From here it is possible to navigate as far as Maidstone.
Huge ships use the entrance at Sheerness, Sheerness docks, the Liquid Natural Gas terminal, and the container facilities at Thamesport. These shipping facilities are all within the first few miles of the entrance.
Once clear of these, large (but not huge) shipping can still be encountered all the way up to Rochester. There is however quite a large expanse of water and it's not too much trouble to keep out of their way. ... read more
The entrance is landmarked by the 244m chimney of the Grain Power Station on the west side of the entrance. This is absolutely unmistakable being visible from many many miles away. At night the chimney has four red lights arranged vertically, the top ones flashing.
The eastern side is marked by Garrison Point and the Port of Sheerness. The port control office sits atop the large fort, and displays a bright light (Fl.7s) to warn of shipping movements. The light is directed to seawards if shipping is leaving the Medway, and directed inwards if shipping is approaching the Medway.
Pilotage details: ... read more
For the yachtsman or motorboater, entry to the Medway also leads to Queenborough. Otherwise in the section described it's out with old "cold-nose", and anchor. Possible spots are now described where you may lay afloat. For those able to take the ground opportunities abound. Or you can pass quickly through on your way to the fleshpots of Gillingham, Chatham and Rochester ! ... read more