PREPARATIONS for the Rosconn Stratford Boat Club Regatta this coming Saturday are now all but complete.
Jobs have been allocated, the grounds and building have been tidied up, rowing and sculling blades have been painted and boats checked to competition standard.
“A lot of hard work goes into planning the regatta. We’ll be putting up our marquees this week and getting in stocks for our barbecue and tea tent from local suppliers, said regatta secretary Kjersti Rogneflaten.
“Additional furniture, equipment and services have to be hired in and this is why we’re so delighted that The Rosconn Group is our main sponsor.”
The regatta has been taking place in Stratford since 1879 and, as well as Stratford’s own crews, the event this year draws competitors – able-bodied and adaptive – and their supporters from clubs such as Bewdley Rowing Club, Cardiff & Vale Schools Rowing Association, Evesham Rowing Club, Nottingham & Union Rowing Club, Royal Grammar School Worcester, Stowe Sculling Club and Warwick Boat Club.
There are also newcomers from Becket School Rowing Club, Cotswold Rowing Club, Holloway Scullers, Leicester Rowing Club, Merton College, Monkton Combe School, Monmouth Comprehensive School and Northwich Rowing Club.
Racing is on the town stretch of the river from Holy Trinity Church to the club grounds by The Tramway Bridge.
As well as the rowing contingent, the regatta attracts a lot of interest from visitors to the town who come down to Bancroft Gardens and the Recreation Ground to enjoy the racing, barbecue and the beer and tea tent in the club grounds which are open to all.
Racing will start by 8.30am and finish around 6.30pm and there are 162 entries this year.
Stratford Boat Club treasurer Paul Hazelwood said: “The regatta and also the Fun Regatta in July are very weather-dependent events and without our sponsors we couldn’t risk holding the regattas.
“We are also amazingly lucky to have help from other river organisations such as Avon Navigation Trust, Sea Cadets, Avon Boating, Environment Agency, Bancroft Cruisers, Canal & River Tours, the Countess of Evesham and also the co-operation of those who make their living on the river.”
Club president Paul Stanton said: “Stratford Boat Club looks forward to welcoming competing crews, VIPs and guests and especially Stratford and Warwickshire residents and visitors to the town to watch and enjoy what is going to be an action-packed day.”