Traffic control for the area is provided by the Bristol Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) Centre located at Avonmouth, call sign ‘Avonmouth Radio’.

Inward bound commercial vessels report their ETA at Portishead Point to Avonmouth Radio on VHF channel 12 when passing the ‘English and Welsh’ buoy and ‘Welsh Hook’ buoy.

Outward bound commercial vessels report to Avonmouth Radio on VHF Channel 12 at the following positions.

Prior to leaving Avonmouth or Portbury Docks.

When passing Shirehampton (for vessels leaving River Avon).

When passing Lower Shoots Beacon (for vessels leaving Sharpness).


Small craft in the estuary should maintain a listening watch on VHF Channel 12 for the above information.

Small craft awaiting an outward lock at Portishead Marina should obtain this information by monitoring VHF Channel 80 and the lock-side public announcement system.