Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant

The ‘Gloriana’ with Sir Steve at stroke on starboard side and Sir Matthew at stroke on port.

HTBS’s Royal Correspondent Tim Koch reports from the River Thames in London:

In the last few months HTBS has posted several items about the Thames Diamond Jubilee Flotilla, the 1,000 plus Amerada of small craft planned to be one of the highlights of this summer’s celebrations to mark the 60th year of Queen Elizabeth’s reign. Yesterday, Sunday 3 June, two years of planning came together. The main interest for HTBS were the ‘manpowered’ boats, those that were rowed, sculled or paddled. These led the flotilla and at the head of this section was the Gloriana, rowed by Steven Redgrave, Matthew Pinsent and sixteen others. The BBC has a nice online report, here.

HM The Queen (in white) arriving by launch. The Queen’s Watermen are in red. The Waterman on the starboard side is the Queen’s Bargemaster.

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh boarded a small launch at Chelsea Harbour and this took them to the Royal Barge which was to take them from Cadagon Pier to Tower Bridge. Usually a ‘Royal Barge’ is something more like the Gloriana, that is a craft rowed by the Queen’s Watermen. However it was felt this was not a practical or secure type of boat for this particular event and the privately-owned charter vessel, The Spirit of Charwell was converted for the occasion. However, even though the Royal Party was not rowed at any stage, they were still accompanied by Queens Watermen. Enough text, with an event like this the pictures speak for themselves.

The Queen’s Bargemaster, Paul Ludwig.
The Queen’s Watermen in the bow of the Royal Barge. The Royal Standard flies from the bow staff.
Manpowered boats.
More manpowered boats.
And some more manpowered boats.
Even more manpowered boats.
Australian Surf Boats
18-oared gondola

(Photograph & copyright: Tim Koch)

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