|Tim with blades of Remenham Club.|
HTBS’s Tim Koch reports from Henley-on-Thames:
Yesterday, Wednesday, 27 June saw the start of the 2012 Henley Royal Regatta. Eighty-eight races, starting at 8.30 a.m. and ending at 7.40 p.m., took place in humid conditions with the occasional light shower. As is usual in the first couple of days of the Regatta, there were few close races and many ‘processional’ ones. Therefore, I felt little guilt in attending more to the social side of Henley. I was lucky enough to be invited into Remenham Club where I spent a very agreeable morning. Remenham is sometimes described as ‘a rowing club without boats’ but it is more accurate to call it, not a ‘rowing club’, but a ‘club for rowers’. As this letter shows, the club was founded in 1909 ‘with the definite object of strengthening the membership and resources of Metropolitan Clubs by consolidating their oarsmen and giving them a common meeting place at Henley’.
The rules state:
The object of the Club shall be the provision of a Social Club in Remenham Lane, Henley-on-Thames or elsewhere for Members of the following Clubs known as “Founding Clubs”, viz.: London Rowing Club, Thames Rowing Club, Twickenham Rowing Club, Molesey Boat Club, Kingston Rowing Club, Staines Boat Club and Vesta Rowing Club.
The rules go onto say that full members must have ‘a proficiency in oarsmanship’.
|The Mound at Remenham Club.|
Remenham Club is sited halfway down the Henley course. There is a delightful permanent clubhouse, fronted by ‘the mound’, a raised piece of ground which allows members a good view of the racing and to look down (perhaps in more ways than one) on the crowds passing along the towpath. Sadly you cannot see the finish from Remenham but it does have advantages over the Stewards’ Enclosure. It sells alcohol at considerably cheaper prices and, unlike Stewards’, you can watch rowing and drink at the same time. Also unlike Stewards’, all of the members of Remenham have a genuine interest in, and connection with, rowing. This is best demonstrated by the ‘Remenham Roar’, which comes from the crowd on the mound when two of the founding clubs race past. The Roar is fiercest when arch rivals London and Thames are involved.
Wednesday’s results are here.
|Thoughts on the start from a member of Nereus, Holland, in the Temple Challenge Cup.|
|Thames Cup: City of Cambridge and Putney Town off the start.|
|Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup: Radley races Winchester.|
|Are they ahead?|