FAQ'S

All water activities

What should I expect?

Let the adventure begin...

We’ll take good care of you from the moment you arrive. Please arrive at your booked time as this is the check-in time at our reception. Please do not arrive at reception before this; additional time has been allocated within this check-in to allow for potential queues at our reception and changing rooms. One of our qualified members of staff will kit you out with all the equipment and clothing you’ll need and introduce you to your instructor and group for the relevant session you have booked.

Your instructor will run through a full safety briefing and demonstrate the basics of your activity before taking you onto the lake. For white water activities you’ll also take part in an activity assessment which includes a swim assessment. During this we’ll cover rescue techniques, paddling techniques and how to protect yourself in moving water. From this point on its action all the way!

Is there a minimum age to take part in the activities?

 Each activity has a minimum age restriction, please check this information before booking.

  • Rodeo Rafting the minimum age is 14 years (currently unavailable)

  • Rafting Unleashed the minimum age is 12 years

  • Family Rafting the minimum age is 8 years

  • Hydrospeeding and Hot Dog sessions the minimum age is 12 years

  • For all other activities, participants will need to be a minimum of 8 years of age

Participants under the age of 16 will also need a parent or legal guardian accompanying them whilst at the venue with a ratio of  one adult per four children. 

All participants under 18 years of age will need a completed parental consent form to take part in any moving water based activity on the Legacy Course or the Olympic Course at the centre.

Is there a weight limit?

To take part in all activities you must be under 18 stone.

What do I need to bring?

All necessary equipment is provided unless otherwise stated – just bring your swimmers and a towel. However, if you’d prefer to bring your own wet boots and/or wetsuit, we’ll have to check they’re suitable for the activity, but please feel free to bring them along (wetsuits must be full length and wet boots must cover your ankle). Free lockers are available for you to store all your belongings.

What time do I need to arrive at the centre and how long should I allow for my experience?

Your booked time is the check-in at our reception. Please do not arrive at reception before this; additional time has been allocated within this check-in to allow for potential queues at our reception and changing rooms. Please refer to information of the activity you’re taking part in for session lengths on our activities page.

I have a disability, can I take part?

Yes, wherever possible we offer equal access to all people. Please contact the centre to discuss your individual disabilities and requirements.

I'm bringing a group of children to take part in an activity at your centre. Can I sign the parent consent form for children that I am not the parent/legal guardian of?

No. You can download the parent consent form and have it completed by each child’s parent/legal guardian prior to your visit and hand it into reception on the day of the activity.

If I require medication can I still take part?

We advise that you check with your GP before taking part in any of our activities. Please bring any medication that you may need with you on the day (for example inhalers and epi pens).

Do I need to be able to swim?

For all white water activities you’ll need to be able to adopt and maintain the Defensive Swim Position, an orientated body position away from danger (lying on back, feet down stream, with legs kept up on/near the water’s surface). To see what this entails please see our video on our activity assessment page. For lake activities water confidence is required with the use of a buoyancy aid.

Do I need to be fit?

A reasonable level of fitness is required to take part in any physical activity.

Can I wear my glasses?

If glasses are a necessity for the participant of the activity plastic lenses or contact lenses will need to be worn as glass lenses are not permitted. Prescription goggles can also be worn.

What happens if I fall out?

Dependant on your activity you could well take a tumble into our rapids, so be prepared. Our bank safety team will be on hand to rescue you and safely help you out of the water before helping you back to join your group. You’ll have been taught the safe swimming position and how to get out of the water in your earlier activity assessment.

Can I bring a camera or 'Go Pro'?

For safety reasons we don’t allow anyone to attach anything to their person which can increase the risk of entrapment or collision with other participants so chest harnesses and helmet mounts are not allowed. The best option is to give the camera to your support crew or take advantage of the excellent on site photo and video offers.

Rafting Unleashed

How many times will I go down the course?

This will be tailored to meet your needs but if you are looking to go around the course as many times as you can rather than surf the rapids, then Rafting Unleashed is the activity for you.

My friends have rafted before, can I still go in the same raft as them?

Yes absolutely, our raft guides are fantastic at judging what each group want and every experience is tailored to each group.

How many people go in a raft? Will I be with strangers?

A raft contains up to nine people. Unless you book a whole raft, you'll be teamed up with other individuals for the duration of your session. Unfortunately we're unable to guarantee your group will be kept together unless you book to charter a whole raft.

Is Rafting Unleashed a suitable experience for a Stag or Hen do?

Yes, Rafting Unleashed is the perfect way to celebrate yours or your friends' upcoming stag do or hen party with loads of fun to be had. We're currently unable to offer our full range of standard packages however that won't stop the celebration as you can book our normal activities still enjoy those special times check out our activities.

Canoeing / Kayaking

What distance is the course?

There are two courses at the centre:

  • the 300m Olympic Standard Competition Course with a nerve jangling drop of 5.5m from the start pool to the finish

  • a 160m Legacy Loop with a gentler drop of 1.6m from the start pool to the lake.

Conveyors will carry your raft/canoe back up to the start pool - so there's no need to get out and carry it back.

Why are there two courses?

Between the two courses and the lake, the centre has a full range of white water grades from one to four. This allows opportunities for all levels of paddler to access the facility with opportunities to develop their skills.

 

I’m new to kayaking what should I wear?

We can provide a wetsuit so you only need to bring a towel and swimwear. You can wear your own wetsuit if you have one or if you have your own kayak specific waterproofs you may bring these too.

 

How do I become a member?

You’ll need to prove your ability by taking our Competency Assessment where you will demonstrate the key skills necessary to navigate the white water safely. Upon successful completion you’ll become a member of the Lee Valley White Water Centre and will be able to book future kayaking sessions online.

I hold a paddle sports qualification. Am I able to use the white water course?

You’ll need to prove your ability by taking our Competency Assessment where you will demonstrate the key skills necessary to navigate the white water safely. Upon successful completion you’ll become a member of the Lee Valley White Water Centre and will be able to book future kayaking sessions online.

What can you do on the lake?

People will be able to use the lake to get used to the canoes and kayaks, perfecting important techniques and strokes required on the courses, or they can simply have a relaxing paddle. We offer Explore Kayaking sessions at the weekend and in school holidays.

If you'd like to paddle our lake outside of our standard sessions you'll need to have passed our Lake Assessment

Does the centre offer instructor lead Paddlesport sessions?

We offer a full paddlesport development programme designed to take people at every level from complete beginner all the way through to taking on the Olympic rapids. We also offer bespoke tuition for individuals and groups and sessions can be fully tailored to your specific requirements.

 

Please note, at the moment we are unable to offer our Paddlesport Development Programme. Please keep an eye on the designated page for updates.

If I book onto the Paddlesport Development Programme (including junior) and feel it isn’t the right one for me, can I move to a different programme?

We’ll do our best to accommodate each individual’s needs, however each stage has a set coach to client ratio which we can’t exceed, so a place needs to become available before we are able to move anyone.

 

Does the course have a freestyle surf wave?

Yes, the course has a full range of features. 

 

Can I bring my own kayak?

Yes you can, but it will need to be in appropriate condition for use on the white water channels. We also ask that it's clear of any objects such as rescue equipment and throw ropes so as not to cause any problems with the centre's pumping system.

 

Would I ever need to revalidate my assessment?

We have no periodic revalidation process however if your standard drops below the required level we would ask you to re-take your assessment at a convenient time to ensure yours and others safety. 

 

I can’t see Legacy or Olympic paddling times on the website?

Log in to your membership portal using your member number and either your surname or postcode. Here you'll be able to see all the relevant courses and paddling sessions available for your level of kayaking. 

If you do not know your membership number, please email us with your full name and postcode and a member of our staff will respond as soon as possible.

Gift Vouchers

How will I receive my gift voucher?

You will automatically receive an e-voucher to your specified email address. 

 

How long will it take for my gift voucher to be delivered?

You will automatically receive an e-voucher to your specified email address once your transaction has been completed. 

How do I redeem my gift voucher?

To redeem your gift voucher select the activity for which you have receive your gift voucher for and click book now. Choose the date and time you'd like to visit us, enter your voucher code when promoted and press ‘apply’. You can then continue with your booking as normal and the voucher activity will be discounted from the final price.

Please ensure you read our Essential Information and Terms and Conditions before redeeming your voucher.

If you have received a White Water Activity Gift Voucher for Two and wish to book Hydrospeeding, please select Hydrospeeding for Two instead of just Hydrospeeding.

 

When will my gift voucher expire?

Our gift vouchers are valid for two years from the date of purchase. You can find the expiry date on the front of your voucher.

I have a voucher from a third party company - how do I book this?

If you have third party gift voucher, you will need to book your activity in with our reception team as you cannot redeem this online. Please take a look at the relevant activity for your voucher and see our availability. Once you know what date and time you would like to book, please email us with the following details:

  • Voucher Reference number

  • How many people you are booking for

  • Date and time of booking

  • Full name

  • Postcode and first line of address

  • Contact telephone number

  • Confirm that all participants are over the age of 12

  • Confirm that all participants weigh under 18 stone

  • Confirm any medical / additional information we would need to know beforehand

Once we receive these details, assuming availability, we will redeem your voucher against your activity and send you a confirmation email.

The Centre

When is the centre open?

Please check our opening times.

 

Can I park at Lee Valley White Water Centre?

Please see our car parking tariffs for more information.

 

Where can I walk my dog?

Dogs are permitted in the grounds of the centre however they must be on a lead at all times. Unfortunately dogs are not allowed in the building or on the terrace with the exception of assistance dogs.

Can I hire the centre for a party?

Yes there are function rooms that can be hired out for functions, events and corporate training or away days. For enquiries please contact our sales team.

Is there a café? Can anybody use it?

Yes, The Terrace Bar & Café is open for both visitors who are rafting, canoeing or kayaking and also those that just want to watch the action on the centre's terrace whilst enjoying hot or cold food and beverages.

 

Please check our café opening times before your visit.

 

Are there showering facilities available?

Yes, showers are located within the changing rooms and there are hair dryers available to use too.

 

Do you have camping or overnight facilities?

No, but there are a number of campsites and hotels near by. Check out where to stay.

Can I bring in external catering onto site?

We don't allow any external caterers on site. You can arrange catering with us through our Sales team or alternatively you can order food on the day from The Terrace Bar & Café. You can bring a picnic to be consumed in our non-catering areas.    

Booking

How do I book my activity?

Please see the relevant activity for booking instructions. You can book online for all of our activities. Please ensure you read our Standard T&Cs of Sale.

 

Can I pay a deposit and pay the remaining balance on the day?

No, to book any activity we'll need full payment at the time of booking.

 

Can I pay cash?

We are accepting card payments only at the moment, no cash will be accepted. All activity bookings must be pre-booked online.

 

How much does it cost?

For all of our latest prices and special offers please see the relevant activity.  

 

Can I book one of the promotional offers?

All our offers are subject to availability and any Terms and Conditions stated in conjunction with the offer. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to keep up to date with all of our promotions. 

 

How do I cancel or reschedule my booking?

If you wish to cancel or reschedule your booking, please email us. Please refer to our Terms and Conditions for our refund and rescheduling policy.