The club started in June 2013, and is run voluntarily by its members – everyone mucks in to do their bit. Our chairman loves to describe our club as ‘like no other’ – and it’s true! It is a really special place with no pretences, and is where you can easily make friends and get involved with a club that is growing.
We currently have over 100 members. Just one of the many special things about our club is the social side. It is incredible how on one boat, you can meet a rich mixture of nationalities and people from all walks of life.
There is no typical age group within the club – there is a complete mixture of working ages, our oldest member is our president – none other than Bamber Gascoigne!
There are currently up to 8 club sessions each week. General rows usually involve a stop at one of the riverside pubs so everyone can get to know each other over a drink.
The ‘no pub stop’ rows on a Tuesday evening are for when members want a more challenging row – and socialise afterwards if they choose to.
There are organised rowing events throughout the year such as the Tudor Pull and Great River Race. Plus we organise our own club outings along the Thames.
We row all year round (apart from during the month long Thames draw off that starts in November, and unless the tide is dangerous.)
The club has a fully inclusive policy and is passionate about getting more people rowing. We are also involved with the Skerries for Schools project teaching school children to row.
We don’t just row boats…
We build them!
The Richmond Bridge Boat Club is fortunate to be located next door to master boat builder Mark Edwards MBE who built the Royal barge Gloriana.
Our chief Bosun, club member John Dilworth, oversees the final build and maintenance of our boats.
Image: Members working on building Rose.
Featured below: Weddle | Rose | Foxy
A skerry is a new design of boat by Richmond’s distinguished boat builder Mark Edwards MBE.
He built the famous Gloriana which led the flotilla in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant in 2012. But the skerry, his latest and most original design, is also special.
Mark continues the story……
“The name “skerry” was chosen for this new boat design as it combines elements of the traditional Thames skiff and wherry, but this is not the whole story. After many years of building essentially copies of existing rowing boats I realised there remained a gap, and possibly a need for the following:
allow up to 8 persons to row together with a cox to steer
have sufficient additional space for up to 3 passengers( including a coach)
be a safe boat for as wide a range of conditions as anyone would want to go rowing in
be as fast and responsive as possible, accepting the need to be safe
be easy to row and steer
be robust and easy to maintain
use a method of construction that could be at least in part built by amateurs
help continue the ancient tradition of wooden clinker boat construction
be adaptable ; picnic parties, ceremonial events and other riverine fun
Boat Type - Skerry
Boat Type - Cutter
Boat Type - Skerry
VENETIAN STYLE ROWING
New To The Club
The “Voga Veneta” or Venetian rowing, is the traditional Venetian rowing technique in which rowers are standing up, facing forward and pushing the oar positioned on a “forcola” or oarlock.
“Regate“, regattas in English, are Voga Veneta races performed on traditional Venetian boats. The first regattas took place in Venice in 942 C.E., over a thousand years ago.
The ``regate`` (singular ``regata``) are Venetian regattas or rowing races taking place in Venice since centuries, and our club now partake in this event once a year and offer training leading up to the event.
With our loan Sandalo Buranello, ‘Belladonna’ and with the generous help of an RBBC member who has two Maltese Boats, many more of our members are now learning the sheer joy of rowing Venetian-style!
In June 2017, eight members decided to dip their toes in this rather more exotic world of Venetian rowing and spurred on by two recent converts, the group entered the Venetian equivalent of the Great River Race – The Vogalonga. 34 km rowing all around the islands of Venice and more a parade than a race, but five-and-a-half hours in the almost tropical heat of Venice was a baptism of fire. With help from now firm friends from Row Venice in Venice, and egged on by their band of club followers, the team completed the course and celebrated as only RBBC people know how!