ROWERS are again preparing to take to the river for the annual Rosconn Group Stratford Boat Club Regatta.
The regatta, held since 1879 and taking place this year’s on Saturday June 16, will welcome competitors, able-bodied and adaptive, and their supporters, from Cardiff to the Cotswolds.
Stratford Boat Club’s own crews are in training for the racing on the Avon from Holy Trinity Church to the club’s headquarters by The Tramway Bridge. Racing starts around 8.30am and finishes around 6.30pm.
And for spectators there will also be a barbecue and the beer and tea tent in the club grounds which will be open to all.
Paul Hazelwood, Stratford Boat Club treasurer, said: “We are so pleased to have the Rosconn Group sponsor our regatta again this year. Together with the co-operation of other organisations and companies who make their living on the river such as the Countess of Evesham restaurant boat, Canal & River Tours, Bancroft Cruisers, the Environment Agency, Avon Boating, the Sea Cadets and Avon Navigation Trust, Rosconn’s sponsorship is essential to make the regatta viable.”
Heart of England Mencap, which supports local people with learning disabilities, has been chosen as one of two nominated charities, alongside St Basils.
Heart of England Mencap already benefits from close links with Stratford Boat Club, as Cath Errington, the charity’s fundraising manager, explained.
“Enabling local people with learning disabilities to get involved in meaningful activities is a key part of what we do. One of those activities is rowing, working with Stratford Boat Club in adaptive boats. To be a part of the regatta for a second year is a real privilege.”
And the club is pleased to help.
Mark Dewdney, Stratford Boat Club’s adaptive coach, said: “The club has an outreach into the wider community and especially those with a physical disability, sensory or learning impairment.
“For these athletes, the club has equipment and training can be modified to meet their needs. The benefits for the club and athletes are that they make a new circle of friends and take exercise.”
St Basils provides support to young people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness across Warwickshire and the West Midlands.
Fundraising officer Sian Dhillon said: “The regatta is not only supporting St Basils and the young people we work with, but is showing all involved are committed to improving the lives of those in their communities.
In the evening, Heart of England Mencap will also host a night of music, food and drink at the boat club, which will also be open to all.
Email [email protected] for sponsorship opportunities.
Visit www.stratford-rowing.co.uk/regatta-2018 for further details.