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The River Colne at Rowhedge is part tidal, and widens to the Colne Estuary .The location of the camera may be found here.

The camera is pointing towards the Wivenhoe Woods on the opposite bank of the river. In the foreground are the Rowhedge mud moorings. Colchester is to the left (1km), with Wivenhoe (300 m) and Fingringhoe (800 m) to the right.

As a tidal river the Colne at Rowhedge is affected by the positions of the earth, moon and sun. The atmospheric pressure and wind is a variable that also contributes to the tide. As with the river Thames, the river Colne was selected by the Environment Agency (EA) to have an artificial barrier constructed, thus limiting the tide heights and reducing the risk of surge tide flooding as in the infamous 1953 flood. As a result the high tides seen in the archive are buffered to a height acceptable by the EA. 

The webcam archive clearly shows a constant plateau of high water over a period of time during the highest tides.

Rowhedge is steeped in maritime history, and until recently has always had an active port, as did the Hythe at Colchester. As these activities have now ceased, the river is no longer regularly dredged and is becoming shallow sided. The river is now used mainly for pleasure craft, including the Wivenhoe ferry.  Recent years have seen a revival in the Rowhedge Regatta.

There is an old book from 1977 with lots of fascinating pictures of bygone Rowhedge .It is called Rowhedge Recollections and is available in an online format for viewing. The book is available from the Rowhedge Heritage Trust.  

Situated mid-way between Fingringhoe and Wivenhoe Nature Reserves plus the Hythe Lagoon, the area includes sites of special scientific interest (  1,  2  ). The river and mud banks attract a wide variety of migratory and native birds, fish, and the occasional mammal.

Move your mouse over the left image below to demonstrate the difference in tide heights.

The latest still image is shown below on the right. 

The webcam has an archive, and you can see a small time-lapse video showing the mists of the Colne Valley receding into the Blackwater estuary. The video (XviD) can be obtained here




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