The iconic Windermere Ferry will be taken out of the water next week for a full inspection.

From Monday, April 15, ‘The Mallard’ passenger ferry will be out of service for approximately five weeks for a mandatory inspection that is required for maintaining its license to run.  

Operated by Westmorland and Furness Council, the vessel is in need of its five yearly refit, which will be done alongside the inspection.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) will lead the work to check the integrity of watertight enclosure of the ferry, particularly its hull. 

The agency will also review the mechanical, electrical and operational records, ensuring the vessel is fit to continue providing the service.

The ferry has been operating in the region for over 500 years.

It links the busy eastern shore of the lake at Bowness to the gateway to areas such as Sawrey, Hawkshead and Coniston on the west.

It has grown to be a vital part of daily life for locals, as well as being a significant tourist attraction.

The Council has already invested in significant improvements to the ferry in January this year to enhance reliability of the service in winter months.

Works involved modifying the ferry ramps and installing longer chains to allow the vessel to operate in higher lake levels.

Because the Windermere Ferry will be out of service from Monday up until Friday, May 24, customers who have purchased a quarterly or annual fare prior to the inspection will receive a one month complementary extension.

Whilst the ferry is out of service, road users are encouraged to follow the signed diversion via the A591 to Ambleside then onto the B5286 to Hawkshead.

For daily service information and regular updates on the inspection and refit, you can follow Windermere Ferry on Facebook and X (formerly Twitter).