The Hackney Cut is an artificial channel of the River Lee Navigation built in 1770 by the River Lea Trustees to straighten and improve the Navigation. It begins at by the Middlesex Filter Beds Weir, below Lea Bridge. It is in the (modern) London Borough of Hackney.
Excess water from the Navigation passes over the weir into the former natural channel of the River Lea that passes in a large meander to the east of the modern water course, forming the boundary with the London Borough of Waltham Forest. The natural water course travels 2 miles (3.2 km) and rejoins the Navigation below Old Ford Lock.
From 1829, water was abstracted at Lea Bridge, from the natural watercourse, by the East London Waterworks Company, to avoid the increasing pollution of the Navigation.
Coordinates: 51°33′00″N 0°01′43″W / 51.5501°N 0.0287°W / 51.5501; -0.0287