IT’S STRANGE how things happen sometimes, isn’t it? A chance meeting on the river between a member of The River Thames Society and an oarsman from Weybridge Rowing Club has resulted in the donation of a single scull boat to the club by the Teddington to Old Windsor branch of the society.
Earlier this month, an informal presentation ceremony was held at the rowing club at which RTS branch treasurer David Lambert presented a cheque for £1,500 to club captain Caroline Tu.
The money was used to fund the craft, which was then named ‘Run A’Wey’ by Elmbridge deputy mayor Cllr James Vickers in front of a large group of members of both organisations.
The 26-foot Stampfli single scull had been badly damaged in an accident and broke in two. Chertsey-based restorer Andre Munday seamlessly repaired the four-year-old craft and the club now looks forward to using it to train a whole host of youngsters in the sport.
In the short time that the Club has had the scull, its regular user, 16-year-old Jack Shepard has won a bronze medal in the Junior 16’s double sculls at the National Championships with fellow club member James Coxhead. They only just missed the Silver. Well done lads, and hopefully ‘Run A’Wey’ will encourage more folk to follow your example.
I’VE RECEIVED an email from David Pope who tells me that when he was a youngster he remembers seeing a barrel with pointed ends in the garden of a house downstream from the Swan public house by Staines Bridge. He says he was told that the barrel had been used by somebody who went over Niagara Falls in it and he wonders whether any of our readers can tell him more about it. So come on folks, can anyone shed a bit of light on this story? Sounds a bit unlikely to me that a barrel with that history should end up in Staines but you never know. It is certainly true that in 1901 a 63-year-old woman who wanted fame and fortune did the trip – along with her cat – in a barrel. Somewhat amazingly, she survived and several others have followed her example over the years…
THANKFULLY, the weather finally gave the hard-working organisers of Sunbury regatta a break at the weekend and the crowds flocked to Rivermead Island to enjoy a full racing programme and a wealth of attractions and stalls. For lots of pictures of the event, buy this week’s edition of the Staines and Ashford News or the Surrey Herald or visit our website at www.surreyherald.co.uk
IN A few week’s time, the Association of Dunkirk Little Ships will be staging its annual veterans’ cruise from Kingston to Weybridge. Organiser Ian Gilbert is keen to contact as many veterans of the Dunkirk evacuation as possible to invite them to take part in the event. If you were there – or perhaps you know of someone who took part in this iconic event – please contact Ian on 07828 812648 or email him at papillon1930 [at] yahoo.com.