Griggs’ Report 1844: No 3 Lock called Lakes or Colemans Lock. A cart bridge attached to it old but in fair condition. Depth of water on the lower sill 4’ 0’’; headway under the bridge 5’ 9’’; lower gates in good repair. Brickwork under bridge in good order except stopping and pointing wanted on one side. Side timbers and lock piles indifferent. The upper gates and the brickwork around them in very bad repair. Mr Seymour is preparing new and with the exception of the lower part of this lock it is in bad condition. Depth of water on the upper sill 4’ 8’’. No 2 Lock house at Lakes or Colemans Lock in good repair.
Beardmore’s Report 1870: Roydon Lock is in bad repair
Childs’ Report 1880: Roydon; Upper gates & woodwork very bad & requires renewal urgently. Sides of lock open and dilapidated. Lower gates old & require renewal. Brickwork bad. Altogether in bad repair and should have £500 spent on it within a couple of years. (Lock house) 2 stories, basement brick, upper story plaster, in fair condition.
Childs' Report 1884: ''Upper gates and woodwork very bad and requires renewal urgently; sides of lock open and dilapidated. Lower gates old and require renewal. Brickwork bad. Altogether in bad repair and should have £500 spent on it within a couple of years, plenty of depth over the sill. Lock-house: 2 stories high, Basement Brick, upper storey plaster, in fair condition.
Tween's Report 1901: "Upper gates and woodwork very bad and requires renewal urgently; sides of lock open and dilapidated. Lower gates new 1900. Brickwork, fair order, to renew cost £300. Lower sill requires lowering about 1 foot. Lock-house: Two stories high, Basement Brick, upper storey plaster, in fair condition"
The lock has previously been known as Lake’s Lock (in 1772) and Coleman’s Lock (1812-1833). John Coleman was the Collector of Tolls, who lived in the original lock house. The house continued in the occupation of the Coleman family up to the 1860’s. There is no puzzle over the current name.
There is a brick-built 4-stall stable on the towpath side of the lock with a stone plaque "Erected 1864 J. P. Davis R.S.N Surveyor"
The photograph above shows the turf-sided lock with what appears to be a maintenance barge in the chamber. This suggests a date of about 1911, after the Stort was taken over by the Lee Conservancy, since little maintenance was carried out in the latter years of the privately owned Navigation. It is possible that the men were engaged in the renovation programme that lasted from 1911 until 1923.
The image below shows the original 1787 lock house. It is larger than the others, housing the collector as well as the lock keeper.
Set in the wall of the downstream end of the present house, built in the 1960's, there is a crest dated 1787 with the arms of George Jackson (Duckett), the first sole proprietor of the Stort Navigation, rescued from the original house. The plaque can be seen just under the eaves in the photograph above.
Roydon Lock House
This site was last updated 19-Aug-2014