Bingley Five Rise Locks on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal is known as one of the Seven Wonders of the Waterways and as such is a fantastic site to visit with the family. It was officially opened in 1774 and is the steepest staircase lock in the country with a gradient of about 1:5 – a rise of 59 ft 2 in (18.03 m) over a distance of 320 ft (98 m). The best way to access it is by walking along the canal towpath from the town centre. This circular walk starts from the train station and should keep everyone in the family happy as there are so many things to see and do along the way; like feed the ducks, explore the locks, admire a beautiful mural illustration, watch the wildlife and get an ice cream! We hope you'll enjoy your visit and don't hesitate to leave a comment!

Five Rise Locks in Bingley by Regine Geldhof

View of the Five Rise Locks on the Leeds and Liverpool canal near Bingley, West Yorkshire

Essential info about the walk

Start: Bingley Railway Station

Difficulty: Easy – 1 hour – 2.1 Miles

Toilets: There are public toilets on this walk and are located on Myrtle Place (by the market square) in Bingley.

Refreshments: there are many shops, cafés, restaurants and pubs in town but below are specifics businesses which we recommend if you go on this walk. Feel free to visit their site and contact them.

Bingley Five Rise Locks 250-year celebration

On Saturday 23rd March Bingley is really going to come to life! The Bingley Five Rise Locks will turn 250! Festivities will run from 10:00am to 3pm.

WaW supporters along the walk

A charming little café serving dairy ice cream and located in the former stables of the Five Rise Locks.

A trendy family friendly pub located in the town centre and offering a wide range of food.

Map, elevation profile and downloadable files

Where to start?

Bingley Railway Station

Wellington Street
West Yorkshire
BD16 2NA

Grid Reference SE 108 391

Unfortunately, we can't provide the route on an Ordnance Survey Map. Although we have provided digital versions of the track below, we still recommend that you acquire an O.S. Map for backup.

Elevation profile

Elevarion Profile of Bingley Five Rise Locks Family Walk

Downloadable files for mapping applications or GPS devices

Find out more about these downloadable files and how to use them

Walk description - Bingley Five Rise Locks Canal Family Walk

Last edited: 10th September 2023

1. Railway Station to footbridge over the bypass

Starting at the train station on Wellington Street, take left passing the car park and towards Aldi Supermarket. Cut across the supermarket's car park to find yourself on Dubb Lane, a cul de sac hosting Bingley & Five Rise Private Hire, a local mini cab company. Walk to the back of this street and towards the bypass, you will soon find a zebra crossing. Be careful when crossing the road and then go straight on the footbridge over the bypass.

Sunset view of the Damart Bingley Mill

Damart Bingley Mill in the Sunset - Photo: Nigel Lumb

Close-up of bottom lock at Bingley Five Rise in Black & White

Bottom lock of the famous Five Rise Locks in Bingley (Leeds and Liverpool canal) - Photo: Nigel Lumb

2. Walking on the canal towpath

At the end of the footbridge, turn left onto a path leading towards the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. Once on the canal towpath, turn left. Before walking along the canal, please remind everyone walking with you to keep SAFE (Stay Away From the Edge)! If lucky you should see the first signs of wildlife with many swans, ducks, water-hens and geese known to be on this stretch of the canal. It is recommended to avoid feeding wild animals with bread. Instead Canal & River Trust suggest replacements such as oats, peas, lettuce, seeds, rice or corn.

3. Towards Three Rise Locks

Carry on walking on the towpath and once you pass under a bridge, you should now see the Damart Mill on your right hand side. Quite often boats are moored here, waiting to go through the Three Rise Locks which is at the bottom of Damart Mill. This flight of locks was built at the same time as the Five Rise Locks and at the top, there was once the site of the lock keeper cottage.

4. Soon after the Three Rise Locks, look on your right hand side for some steps leading towards the North Bog.

Please note: if you have a pram, instead of going down the steps, carry on along the towpath up to the bottom of the Five Rise Locks. Then you should see a kissing gate which is large enough for a normal pram to go through.

Damart Mill from Five Rise Locks in the sunset

Sunset picture of top of Five Rise Locks with Damart Mill in the background

5. From North Bog to Five Rise Locks

There, you should look out for more wildlife such as, small birds, herons, dragonflies and damselflies, frogs and toads and all sorts of bugs! Look up in the trees for the bat-boxes too! There are some picnic tables, so it's also a perfect spot for a bit of a break. On this walk, instead of going up the steep Five Rise Locks towpath, you will go around it on a smoother incline remaining on the North Bog path. At the top of the North Bog, go through another kissing gate leading onto Sleningford Road. Go right, towards the canal towpath and right again towards the Five Rise Locks where more ducks should wait for you to be fed. Once at the Top of Locks, don't hesitate to visit the Five Rise Locks Café, have a chat with the friendly lock keeper or simply admire this industrial wonder!

6. Back in town!

Once you are ready to leave the site, just walk back down the towpath up to the Three Rise. On your right hand side, take the footbridge going over the bypass – which was named after Bingley born astronomer Sir Fred Hoyle – and leading towards the All Saints Parish Church. After the bridge, turn left and you are now back in town on Main Street. There are many pubs, café and shops in Bingley which are walkers and family friendly, so don't hesitate and pay them a vist! To go back to the train station, walk up Main Street to the set of traffic lights, turn left on Park Road and then right on Wellington Street where you should see the railway station building.

Easy Walks in Bingley

Didn't find what you wanted on this page? We have a great selection of easy walks in Bingley. Many of them are pram friendly and family friendly. Take a look now!

Walks in Bingley

There are a lot more self-guided walks in Bingley to discover. Why not have a look at them too?

More about the Five Rise Locks and Three Rise Locks:

Interesting Facts:

The Leeds & Liverpool Canal is celebrating it's 200 anniversary in 2016 but the Bingley Locks were open 42 years before the full length of the canal was completed. So Bingley had a second party to celebrate the event and on 16th October 2016 the Bingley Canal Festival saw the town buzzing with activities!

Bingley WaW have organised Family blogger walks in partnership with Wynsors and Canal River Trust on that same route. Take a look at some of the comments on Wynsors blog.

The French company Damart was established in 1953 in Roubaix which is twinned with Bradford. In 1967, they bought the Bowling Green Mills in Bingley and made it their UK headquarter. Now known as Damart Mill, the Three Rise Locks are located at its foot.


Useful links:

Bingley Wildlife Explorer Trail [.pdf]: a very nice brochure made for the young ones with information about the wildlife around the site

Canal & River Trust Factsheet and Maps [.pdf]: Easy to read and print maps of the sites

Bingley Family Trail [.pdf]: a trail deviced for teenagers and grown ups with many questions about the local history.

Family Bloggers Walk in Bingley

Kids enjoying themselves on the family blogger walk in Bingley

A new mural painting at the Tree Rise Locks

In August 2022, illustrator Sven Shaw was commissioned to paint a mural on the wall of the Damart Mill near the Three Rise Locks site. The result is really stunning and depicts local landmarks, historical figures and celebrities which come from the towns and villages of Riddlesden, Bingley, Saltaire, Shipley, Esholt and Thackley. All of which have the Leeds and Liverpool canal running through!

Where to park near the Five Rise Locks?

If you are coming to Bingley by car, it's worth knowing that there is limited parking near the five rise locks. The best way to access the site is on foot from the town centre as described in the walk above. There is ample parking space in town and we recommend the following car parks:

  • Main Street Car Park (BD16 2JJ). This would be the closest to the Five Rise Locks
  • Queen Street Car Park (BD16 2JS). Conveniently located near Market Square
  • Wellington Car Park (BD16 2NA). Very close to the railway train station

The map below will give you more details about the car parks locations and their capacity. For prices, please visit the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council website

Have you done this walk yourself? Don't hesitate to give us some feedback by leaving a comment below!

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