What is an accommodation licence? And why do you need one?

What is an accommodation licence? And why do you need one?

We have built dozens of moorings up and down the Thames, for both private and commercial clients. Two of our most frequently asked questions are;

“What is an accommodation licence?”


“How much will the Environment Agency charge me for having a mooring?”

The Environment Agency will charge you for owning a mooring on the River Thames and some tributaries. To own a mooring space on the River Thames you must have an accommodation licence. An accommodation licence covers all manner of mooring construction types. Here are some examples of moorings that require an accommodation licence;

  • Landing stages.
  • Finger moorings (also known as jetties)
  • A boat house
  • A cut into the river bank
  • A mooring post, or mooring pile.
  • Some riverbank protection, or riverbank spaces for tying off on.


Whether you are planning to build a new structure, later a current mooring structure, or you have an existing mooring, all of the aforementioned require an accommodation licence.

There is a simple application for to complete, that can be downloaded for free directly from the .gov.uk website here: Application Form.

The form can be emailed directly to the E.A. or posted.

There is a handy “how to” for guidance on completing the form, that can be found here:  How to Guide.

What are the fees for an accommodation licence?

There are two categories of tariff, you’ll either pay a corporate rate, or a private rate. Depending on whether you are ‘making money’ from your mooring, or using it for commercial gain.

For the latest private accommodation licence tariffs click here: Private Tariffs.

For the latest commercial accommodation licence tariffs click here: Commercial Tariffs.

What happens next?

Once you have completed the form and paid the appropriate fees directly to the Environment Agency, they will send you small unique accommodation badge to affix to your mooring space. This allows Environment Agency Waterways Officers to check that your fees are paid and the licence is up to date. If you require a quote to alter, renovate or build a new mooring then please get in touch.




If you would like further information or a chance to talk to someone, please get in touch.

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