River Rother (Rye)

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The Rother at Newenden, Kent

The River Rother (originally named the "Limen" is a river 35 miles long in Sussex and on the borders of Kent, entering the English Channel at Rye.

The source of the Rother is near Rotherfield in Sussex and it flows down into the low-lying ground of the coast. The reach below Bodiam Castle is navigable and below this point are the Rother Levels, where the sea once penetrated in a broad marsh. The river marks the borser with Kent for several miles almost to the sea. The Isle of Oxney lies to the north.

Near Rye is the Walland Marsh, part of the Romney Marsh, on the eastern bank.

Once the Rother had a very different course through Romney Marsh. It created the marsh and a vast, sheltered estuary within it on which were ports wealthy in the Middle Ages, one of the oldest being Romney, Kent. However, as the channels silted up there was created further down a new town at New Romney, which has itself been lost to the land and lies a mile and a half inland. The river no longer seeks the sea here and its old estuary is now dry land. Instead, its course has been diverted far to the west, back into Sussex.

The Rother enters the sea in the town of Rye, in Rye Bay on the English Channel.

The river is navigable by canoes and kayaks as far up as Etchingham. The River Rother passes by or near the villages of Etchingham, Robertsbridge, Bodiam, Northiam, and Wittersham.

Another river of the same name is found in Sussex, which western Rother is a tributary of the Arun.