Long Row plan

The plan for the sponsored Long Row on 3 June is firming up. We will row an eight, Mark Hayter, and a coxed quad, Bob Bushnell,  32 miles from the City of Oxford Rowing Club to our current base at the Oratory boathouse. We will have Keith Jackson’s 6 meter rib and Murray Bracewell’s 4×4 to support us. There are 18 rowers, who will alternate between the two boats and our support rib and 4×4, with as many as possible taking a turn to cox one boat or the other.

The route involves the passage of ten locks. We have agreed stopping points at Abingdon Rowing Club (mile 8) and Wallingford Rowing Club (mile 21). On the basis of an average speed of 5 mph and 20 minutes at each lock and stopping point, the row would take 10.5 hours, as per the schedule. So leaving at 7:30 am we should be home just before 6 pm. But in reality it could be quicker or slower and much will depend on getting away on time and queues at locks.

If anyone wants to come along and support us at any point, they are very welcome!

The purpose of the row is for everyone to have a great, if testing, day out and to raise funds for the new boathouse. If anyone would like to donate they can do so on our MyDonate page.

The sponsorship form gives a bit more detail.

Calling all punters!

It’s nearly Summer! Who wants to go punting?

Goring Gap Boat Club has 2 punts (and a dinghy) at the Swan at Streatley that are available for members to use between End April and October.

Ros getting punted about. Note sensibly clutching paddles.

Who can use the punts?

At least one member of the punting party per boat must be a member of Goring Gap Boat Club for insurance purposes. You don’t have to be a full members – social members can take the punts out (social membership is £30 per year). Each punt can hold 5 people max (dinghy 3).

Where are they?

The Punts are locked up behind the Swan hotel in Goring. Go past the hotel reception and continue to the car park at the back of the hotel. In the far right hand corner cross a patch of grass next to a small outbuilding and the boats are on your right, either in the cut or on the bank.

How do I book?

A booking system operates by either writing in the log book in the locked cabinet or phoning Geoff Horne on 01491 873117. You can just turn up but if you do you must check that the book is not showing a reservation for the same day/time. If it is busy you cannot take a punt out.

Using the punts

A locked cabinet (combination code is available from Geoff or in the club handbook) holds paddles, (always take at least 2 paddles out with you even if intending to punt – the river is too deep for the Quant or pole as most people know it) in the middle if going upstream, bailers, buoyancy aids, log-book and keys to the punts. Ensure the key to the punts are returned to the cabinet and the punts and area are left in a tidy condition. Report any damages to Geoff by phone and write in the log book. The punter might want to be barefoot (for grip) and wearing shorts (to avoid wet trousers!).


You are punting at your own risk. Please read and comply with the safety and practical instructions in the cabinet/punts and on the GGBC website and in the club handbook. Non swimmers (unable to swim 50m clothed) and all children under 18 should wear a buoyancy aid. Only very experienced punters should go anywhere near the weir.

Happy Punting!

Sponsored row from Oxford to Pangbourne

17 members of the club are going to take turns to row an eight 34 miles from Oxford to Pangbourne on Saturday 3rd June. It’s all sponsored in aid of the new boathouse appeal. Other members are supporting by boat and car, so there will be a big group and it’s bound to be a great day.

If you want to take part in any way then please get in touch with Nick Josephy.

Captain’s Log

Update from Alastair Davies, Joint Captain of Rowing:

The clocks go forward tonight, and British summer time begins, which means GGBC club rowing sessions can restart on Thursday evenings at 6pm.  The first session is on the 30th March and they’ll continue all summer until the clocks go back in October.

This Sunday 2 April will be our next Go Row! day when we welcome new members to the club and help them get started on the water.  From now on, the first Sunday of each month will be promoted with a Go Row! invitation: if you have friends who would like to start rowing, please pass this on.  These will run alongside the usual club session at 10am.

If you’d rather watch someone else rowing, also this Sunday 2 April the world-famous Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race will take place.  The Catherine Wheel pub in Goring is showing the race on their big screen, and they’ll have the barn open for fun events, including a sweepstake with bottles of bubbly for the winner.  Come along from 4pm to join the party.

Our spring Learn to Row course started today, with 12 eager new rowers signed up.  A strong breeze against the stream made for choppy conditions but they all did very well, and we look forward to welcoming them to the club at the end of the course.  The next Learn to Row course will be in August and is already filling up fast, so if you know people who would like to do it, please ask them to get in touch with me soon.

The Explore Rowing squad has been competing in a Sunday league against other recreational rowing clubs along the Thames Valley, including Marlow, Maidenhead and Molesey.  The final event of the 2016/17 season was our own March Mad Dash regatta last Sunday.  The GGBC squad ended the league in a very creditable 4th place, of the 12 crews that competed.  If you would like to join the Explore Rowing squad for the next season – and it really is open and fun for everyone – then please let me know and I’ll add you to the session invitations.  There’s no commitment, but it really can open your view of rowing to new horizons.

An absolutely fantastic turn-out of volunteers ensured the March Mad Dash regatta itself was a great success, and a wonderful advert for the club as we hosted our visitors, including British Rowing’s area representative.  We raised over £300 on the day, from the raffle and the sale of hot food – it was a tremendous effort and thank you to everyone involved.

The weather gets better, and the river banks more beautiful, every day from now on.  Come and join in!