The Company of
Watermen & Lightermen
of the River Thames

The Company of Watermen and Lightermen of the River Thames was founded in 1514, when the earliest Act of Parliament for regulating watermen, wherrymen and bargemen received Royal Assent from King Henry VIII.

Under a further Act of 1555  the Company introduced apprenticeships for those wishing to learn the skills of the Watermen. In 1700 the Lightermen (carriers of goods/cargo) joined  the Watermen’s Company. 

In 1780 The Company moved into its own purpose built hall in St Mary at Hill, where we can still be found today. The Company is a working guild and is very actively involved with the life of the River and those who work on it. The Company is governed by a Court of Assistants, led by the Master and four Wardens, who are elected annually by the Court.

Mr Tony Maynard HMW was installed as the 193rd Master of the Watermen’s Company on 10 July 2019. (picture below).

The Wardens for the year are Senior Warden Mrs Gina Blair, Junior Wardens Derek Mann, Ted Gradosielski and Sir David Wootton.

You can follow the Master’s year by reading The Master’s Blog

Some helpful links –
Freemen’s Events 
The Company Calender 
The Doggett’s Coat and Badge Wager
The River Thames Lunch Club
The Watermen’s Company Shop 


Apprentices Update

Apprentices, You will be aware that Watermen’s Hall is closed until further notice. This means that we have had to stop our classroom training. This closure is temporary and will be reviewed on a regular basis. All Company events and meetings are also cancelled for the time being, at least to the end of April.

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Coronavirus and the Watermen’s Company

Listening to the Prime Minister and Government advice yesterday evening and knowing the spread of coronavirus is only going to get worse, regretfully the time has come to cancel our events and meetings for the foreseeable future at least until Easter. Many other businesses and most other Livery Halls together with the Corporation are all

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The Company of Watermen and Lightermen, Watermen's Hall, 16 - 18 St-Mary-at-Hill, London, EC3R 8EF

© 2020 The Company of Watermen and Lightermen