Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Traditional boats race in the Carrow Cup 2012

On 15th December 2012 fourteen traditional boats    joined the fleet of modern boats in the Carrow Cup race from the centre of Norwich. The race, one of the oldest rowing competitions in the country, was first rowed on 6th May 1813, when crews in 4 four oared boats took to the river Wensum to compete for a silver cup.

Norwich Rowing Club first invited traditional boats to take part in 2010 and three crews took up the challenge. Following the 2011 race David Bolton, chairman of Norwich Rowing Club, extended the invitation once again and this year
crews from Langstone Cutters Rowing Club, Brightlingsea Coastal Rowing Club, Lower Thames Rowing Club and Norfolk Skiff Club continued the tradition of racing through Norwich in fixed seat boats, which had started almost 200 years before.

The traditional boats, ranged in size from Raineach a 15 feet 3 inch Norwegian faering  crewed by Roland Harris and his daughters to Sallyport and Bembridge, 30 foot Solent Galleys rowed by crews from Langstone Cutters. In between were a variety of rowed gigs and sculled
skiffs including the randan rigged Leigh Ho from Lower Thames, and  the vibrantly painted gigs Vanduara and Velocity from Brightlingsea.

Norfolk Skiff Club was represented by the veteran skiffs Cherub and Widgeon and Roland's Raineach.

Norwich Rowing Club added to the fun with the club tub double rowed by Santa's elves and Father Christmas himself; the boat beautifully decorated with Christmas trees and parcels. I'm sure that I was not alone to notice that Santa had chosen two

tidy and powerful scullers for his little helpers on this occasion.

All the boats received a handicap related to their size and crew composition. The slowest boat started first, a full 4 minutes ahead of the next to go.

The first half of the race follows the twisting course of the river Wensum through the city and under five bridges, where spectators had gathered to watch the event and encourage the crews. Beyond the Trowse railway bridge the river widens giving the faster crews an opportunity to overtake as they pass Carrow Yacht Club and the Whitlingham Boat Houses. From this point the race is on the river Yare and the crews can lengthen their strokes for the 1000 metre straight leading to the finish line.

By the time that all the crews had recovered their boats and made their way to Norwich Rowing Club, the results of all the day's races had been published.

Spirit of Dunkirk had secured the prize for the fastest boat on handicap and Renown, also from Lower Thames Rowing Club, was awarded the prize for the fastest sculled boat to complete the course.

All agreed that it had been a marvellous day and were making plans to return to Norwich next year.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Carrow Cup 2012 RESULTS

Congratulations to Lower Thames Rowing Club, which secured both prizes in the TRADITIONAL BOATS category, Spirit of Dunkirk winning fastest time on handicap and Renown winning the prize for the fastest sculled boat on handicap.

The race was rowed at a slightly faster pace than last year. Last year's winner Bembridge's crew taking 32 seconds off their pervious time and Millie's, also from Langstone Cutters RC, slicing a minute from their previous best.

Pictures of the event will follow in another post.

Club  Boat name  Boat Type  class Crew  hh:mm:ss 
Corrected Time 
2012 2011
Lower Thames RC  Spirit of Dunkirk  Hanningfield hybrid gig 4+  4+ F  4 00:19:01
Lower Thames RC  Dauntless  Hanningfield hybrid gig 4+  4+ F  4 00:19:11
Langstone Cutters  Bembridge  Solent Galley 4+  4+ F  4 00:19:12 00:19:44
Norwich RC  Tub double 2X+  2 00:19:20
Langstone Cutters  Sallyport  Solent Galley 4+  4+ F  4 00:19:26
Lower Thames RC  Renown  Hanningfield skiff 3X+  XF  3 00:19:53
Brightlingsea CRC  Velocity  Harker's Yard Gig 4+  4+ F  4 00:20:02
Norfolk Skiff Club  Cherub  Thames double skiff 26' 2X+  XF  2 00:20:22 00:20:24
Langstone Cutters  Millie  Teifi Skiff  XF  2 00:20:26 00:21:27
Brightlingsea CRC  Vanduara  Harker's Yard Gig 4+  XF  4 00:21:41
Norfolk Skiff Club  Widgeon  Double skiff 20' 2X+  XF  2 00:22:25
Norfolk Skiff Club  Raineach  Faering 15' 3" 2X+  XF  2 00:22:43 00:23:00
Lower Thames RC  Leigh Ho  Hanningfield skiff 3X+  4+ F  3 00:22:56
Lower Thames RC  Proud Mary  Hanningfield hybrid gig 4+  4+ F  4 00:26:23
Classes: 4+ = 4 oared, F = fixed seat, X = sculled

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Carrow Cup 2012 Traditional Boats

Club Crew Boat Type Classes Handicap
All Women
rowers base crct'd
Norfolk Skiff Club Raineach 2 1 Faering 15' 3" 2X+ X F 0.70 0.67
Langstone Cutters Millie 2 2 Teifi Skiff X F 0.85 0.77
Norfolk Skiff Club Widgeon 2 0 Double skiff 20' 2X+ X F 0.80 0.80
Lower Thames RC Proud Mary 4 4 Hanningfield hybrid gig 4+ 4+ F 0.92 0.83
Brightlingsea CRC Vanduara 4 4 Harker's Yard Gig 4+ X F 0.90 0.81
Lower Thames RC Renown 3 0 Hanningfield skiff 3X+ X F 0.85 0.85
Lower Thames RC Leigh Ho 3 0 Hanningfield skiff 3X+ 4+ F 0.85 0.85
Lower Thames RC Dauntless 4 2 Hanningfield hybrid gig 4+ 4+ F 0.92 0.87
Wivenhoe Gig Club Audacity 4 1 Harker's Yard Gig 4+ 4+ F 0.90 0.88
Lower Thames RC Spirit of Dunkirk 4 1 Hanningfield hybrid gig 4+ 4+ F 0.92 0.90
Brightlingsea CRC Velocity 4 0 Harker's Yard Gig 4+ 4+ F 0.90 0.90
Norfolk Skiff Club Cherub 2 0 Thames double skiff 26' 2X+ X F 0.91 0.91
Langstone Cutters Sallyport 4 2 Solent Galley 4+ 4+ F 0.96 0.91
Langstone Cutters Bembridge* 4 0 Solent Galley 4+ 4+ F 0.96 0.96
Norfolk Skiff Club Willow 2 Thames out-rigged gig 2X+ X 0.98 0.98
Norwich RC 2 Tub double 2X+ X 0.98 0.98
Delight 2 Cambridge out-rigged gig 24' 2X + X 0.98 0.98
Classes: X= sculled, 4+= 4 oared, F= fixed seat
* Winner 2011
Handicap: First column shows base handicap. .
Second column shows handicap corrected for crew composition M/F

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Norfolk Skiff Club fundraising success

Supporters of the Norfolk Skiff Club Great River Race crew raised £1257 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association in September. With gift aid this will mean that MNDA should benefit by more than £1500.

So, a big THANK YOU to everyone who supported us.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Jubilee Great River Race

On 15th September, JJ, Stuart, Rob and Adrian, representing the Norfolk Skiff Club competed in the 2012 Great River Races on the Thames from Millwall to Richmond through the heart of London. As far as we know this was Cherub, Adrian's 120 year old skiff's, first time in this annual event.
Truth to tell, our time over the course was moderate, coming in 157th in a field of 320.
As well as competing in the race, we were collecting money for the Motor Neurone Disease Association. On the day the donors out did the rowers and collected well over a thousand pounds for the charity.

(picture: JJ and Stuart take the choppy conditions in their stride approaching Tower Bridge)

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Broads slipways list

A picture is worth a thousand words according to the old saying. A few days ago we went to launch Cherub at a slipway in Repps, near Potter Heigham. One look told us that it was impossible, so with this event fresh in my mind I have started to compile a list of launching places suitable for skiffs. Each entry has a brief note and a big picture. The list is arranged river by river. I've only just started, but visit http://groupspaces.com/NorfolkSkiffClub/wiki/slipways to see for yourselves.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Explore the Broads. Barton Broad

The August meeting was held at Barton Turf. This time eight members and three skiffs took to the water at Cox's Boat Yard.
The weather was glorious with the gentlest of breezes. On Barton Broad some cruising yachts were being quanted with long poles. What a joy to know that there are still a few of us left who shun the internal combustion engine; well on the water anyway.
An anticlockwise circuit of the broad was sufficient for the evening, so, with the boats back on their trailers, five members visited the Wayford Bridge Inn for food, drink and wide ranging discussion.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Olympic Torch Relay

Above: Thames Traditional Boat Society's Sgian Dubh.            Below: In Teddington Lock.

With the help of some friendly members of the Ditton's Skiff and Punting Club, we launched Cherub down a 2 foot drop into the Thames. At 6 next morning we rowed up river to Hampton Court to wait for the arrival of Matthew Pinsent with the olympic flame. With the flame transferred to the bow of Gloriana, Cherub took up her position in the accompanying flotilla of skiffs and gigs for the row down to Richmond. On board were Dan, Mark, Lynne and Adrian. Once again Cherub proudly carried the Norfolk flag on the Thames.

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Head of Navigation Challenge 2012

Last year I decided to row to the heads of navigation of all the rivers of the Broads and to visit all the navigable broads.

It's taken until 17th July this year to tick more broads and heads of navigation off the list, but yesterday Lynne and I launched Cherub at Rockland St Mary slipway. The slip belongs to the local charity. Key for the locked gates, from the first house up the hill, costs £2 for launch and recovery within 24 hours, which is very modest. The charity also maintains a free parking area.  I understand that the fee will rise to £3 next year.
Getting the trailer on and off the slipway is not easy, because of its proximity to the road, but launching from the concrete ramp is straightforward. The New Inn is another attraction, which we were unable to enjoy on this occasion.

From the staith, with its free 24 hour moorings, a narrow dyke leads to Rockland Broad. We followed the buoyed channel to the left entering the river Yare near on old pumping house. Turning upstream we  rowed into a moderate headwind, encouraged by the thought of sailing back later in the day; we had brought the mast and sail with us.

With Strumpshaw Marshes to the north and Surlingham Marsh to the south there was not a building or person to be seen, with the exception of an occasional naturalist visiting the Mid Yare Valley Nature Reserve.

At Brundall, the riverside development encroaches on the natural scene. Notice boards, bungalows and marinas occupy the north bank. To the south, Coldham Hall PH and two weatherboarded boat sheds are less obtrusive. Beyond the boat sheds a narrow dyke takes you to the seclusion of Surlingham Broad and there, amongst the waterlilies and dragonflies, we dropped the mud weight for a picnic lunch in the intermittent sunshine.

On the return journey we raised the mast and sail once back in the main river, but a gusty beam wind prevented the leisurely passage that I had anticipated.

Two more broads visited and a section of the river Yare from Surlingham to Rockland navigated. Frustratingly the section from Paddy's Pump to Surlingham Broad remains for another occasion to complete the upper reaches of the Yare.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Explore the Broads, Horning

11th July and three boats were launched at Horning Sailing Club, by kind permission of the commodore and committee. Imogen and Tony joined us for the first time as did Victoria from Blakeney Rowing Club.

The thunderstorm, which had threatened retreated, leaving a still and pleasant evening for Widgeon, Raineach and Cherub to investigate the Bure.

Heading upstream from Horning we reached Black Horse Broad (Hoveton Little Broad on the OS map). An anticlockwise circumnavigation
brought us back to the entrance from where we turned upstream again, enticed by the distant view
of a thatched boathouse on the Salhouse bank.

We turned at the boathouse and were back to Horning SC in time to retrieve the boats and visit The Swan for supper.

Everyone agreed that it had been a pleasant outing and had been a good opportunity to forge links with Horning Sailing Club and Blakeney Rowing Club.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Norfolk Skiff Club visits Norwich

Thursday 14th June 2012 and Norfolk Skiff Club ventured into Norwich in the company of the new Explore Rowing fleet from Whitlingham Boathouses and our guest Robin de Vere Green, chairman of Beccles RC.

The river Wensum flows through Norwich and is navigable to the New Mills almost three miles from its confluence with the Yare at Trowse. 

From the Trowse (swinging) rail bridge, with its two red flags flying, the river is flanked by industrial buildings and new flats. The aroma of mint sauce indicating that you are passing Colman's factory. Past Carrow Road footballground, home of the Canaries, and under Carrow Bridge, which used to lift in the old days, you are surrounded by the old and the new. To the south, views of King Street and Dragon Hall, the medieval merchants house. To the north the new bars and restaurants of the Riverside development. 

Next comes Foundry Bridge and the Norwich Yacht Station, limit of navigation for hire boats. Opposite is the excessively picturesque flint building Pull's Ferry,  through which can be seen Norwich Cathedral. The river curves around the cathedral close and, once past Bishop Bridge the  scenery changes. With beech trees overhanging the river, it is hard to imagine that you are in the centre of a city.

Near the Swan Pit, where swans were lured in the old days on their way to the bishop's dinner table, we turned for the return to Trowse. We had not reached the head of navigation on this occasion, but the restaurant was booked and although swan was not on the menu, skiff club members were thinking of dinner.

Despite a good head start, the Explore Rowing boats soon overtook the skiffs. We hope to see more of them on all the Norfolk rivers in the future as recreational rowing is reestablished on the Norfolk Broads.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Queen's Diamond Jubilee Pageant pictures

Follow the link to see a short slideshow of our day at the Pageant. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdHz_x1U3LU&feature=plcp

These are the same photos as previously published, but with different music, for copyright reasons.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Queen's Diamond Jubilee Pageant

Well, we made it and Stuart, Adrian, Sarah and Baz kept up the 4 knots required and reached Millwall without the ignominy of being taken in tow. Those who watched the Pageant either on TV of from the Thames Embankment will know that the rain held off until we reached Tower Bridge. At that point we still had 3 miles to go, which we accomplished, arriving cold and very wet.
Cherub and the Norfolk flag received much admiration, but we have become accustomed to that.

Once warmed up and dried out we knew that we had been part of an historic event and will be ready for the next one, where and whenever it is.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Queen's Diamond Jubilee Pageant

Look out for Cherub on 3rd June. She will be flying the Norfolk flag and dressed with bunting from stem to stern. We have had some illness in the crew, which has necessitated a change. Fortunately Stuart has stepped in to add much needed muscle and stamina so the required speed of 4 knots looks achievable for the whole length of the course. We don't want to end up under tow, or in the Waifs and Strays division.

Provisionally Cherub has been positioned in the first row of the skiffs, with John Disley, Sgian Dubh, Willow and five others abreast across the Thames. Cherub will be on the most southerly station and Willow, from Beccles, the most northerly.

I'm also looking forward to meeting our old friends from Langstone Cutters and making new friends from amongst the fixed seat fraternity.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

2012 season underway at last

Widgeon and Cherub have started the season with two outings in the past week. The first was to escort the wherry yacht White Moth to Whitlingham for the Broads Outdoor Festival. This should have been followed by a picnic outdoors, but the two crews of Peter, Sarah, Frances and Jeremy and Adrian, Lynne, Robin and Rosemary were driven indoors by the cold. (wind chill +3 C).

Four days later the evening visit to Wroxham Broad was postponed because of bad weather. The following day, with the temperature just above 20 C Cherub and Widgeon took to the water again during a ferocious sqall. Peter, Sarah and Robin G in Widgeon and Adrian, Robin F and Ian in Cherub rowed across the broad trying to avoid a racing fleet of 420s. Once onto the River Bure rowing was more comfortable in the lee of the trees, which line the banks. At this moment the rain started, which stayed with us for the rest of the afternoon. A brew up at Salhouse Broad, thanks to Robin's pine cone fired kettle, gave us the energy for the return. We retrieved the boats at the public slipway without mishap.
Not a major expedition perhaps, but enjoyed by all.
Next outing will be on June 14th when we explore Norwich by water. see http://groupspaces.com/norfolkskiffclub for details.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Norfolk Skiff Club Summer Programme

The varnish brushes have been cleaned and put away, the 2012 river toll has been paid and a long hot summer is in prospect. What, you will be asking, is on the Norfolk Skiff Club list of events?
No doubt you have lots of plans for enjoying the summer on the water, but I hope you will find the time to join in some, or all, of the NSK events.
For the full programme see the EVENTS section at http://groupspaces.com/norfolkskiffclub.

There's a monthly evening meeting called Explore the Broads, which will be held on the second Wednesday of each month (except June) at different locations. The first meeting is at 6p.m. at Rockland, for an exploration of Rockland Broad and the river Yare. Future meetings will be held at Wroxham, Horning, Barton Turf and Trowse. Bring a boat if you can, but seats may be available for the boatless.

There will be several events occurring on the Thames, which may be of interest, including the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Pageant and the Great River Race. Nearer home we have been invited to accompany the wherry White Moth as she sails to Whitlingham to open the Broads Outdoor Festival on 5th May and to visit the national rally of the Vintage Wooden Boat Association at Beccles on 18th August.
So visit The Norfolk Skiff Club website and RSVP to any event which interest you.