Row The Orwell


Row The Orwell

10th April 2022


Working with the Ipswich Maritime Trust (IMT) we received an interesting invitation to row the Orwell from the Royal Harwich Yacht Club.

 The idea was to have a Gig race and some come & tries to promote our sport locally.

Using this invitation we approached several HYGA clubs to gauge their interest in attending. 

Manningtree, Mersea and the UCSC all responded positively and attended with 5 Gigs.

Racing would be one round and only for mixed teams. 

In support the IMT had arranged for sailing barge Victor to be in attendance, they would bring  observers and potential come and try people along. 

Both IMT & RHYC advertised this event on their social media pages in support.

The response was brilliant with many people attending. 

The Orwell is a wide expanse of water which allows small breezes to grow into something a little more.  While the sea was ‘choppy’ it was just within limits for experienced rowers to race. 

A mass start took place using the RHYC starting hut and team to coordinate timings.

An interesting race through some interesting swells with spray breaking the bow often. 

Spray leaving the end of the oar and dispersing in the breeze was an interesting and unusual sight!

All Gigs completed the course and moored back safely on their jetty. 

Brightlingsea UCSC managed to out perform the rest to take first prize. 

They were awarded ‘Russell’s Rusty Rowlock’ kindly donated by … you guessed it ...Russell!

Once racing was complete an amazing queue of people appeared, each wanting to ‘try rowing’.  An estimated 30 people took to the water in a Gig for the first time.  While some struggled, others took to it like a duck to water. 

The feed back was excellent with many wanting more information on Gig rowing.

The idea of this event was two fold, one was somewhere different for us to take the Gigs for a fun day .  The other was to showcase our sport to the people on and around the Shotley peninsular.

Both were well achieved.

Closing comments were ones of a brilliant day enjoyed by all.

As in the Commodores words from RHYC on Gig rowing….. Watch this Space!