Archive for February, 2012
We have already seen an amazing variety of places in which skiffs have been built, from South Queensferry’s palace to Pittenwemm having a bovine audience.
Now, what must be the smallest, and possibly most difficult building shed in Helmsdale’s old Coastguard store on the harbour.
They have moved on since these pictures were taken, and are just about to start painting. We’ll look forward to seeing them on the water before too long.
North Queensferry Boat Club’s first skiff is getting close to it’s completion stage due to the excellent productivity of the club’s principal boat builder Frank Wood. Just before Christmas 2011 Frank called Gordon Scobie, who kicked matters off at North Queensferry. Frank had read an article in the local press and offered his practical assistance in building the skiff. Not only did he have the skills he had all of his own tools, he was retired and could come along every day if that was ok with the others!!!
Gordon Scobbie comments “ OK with us!?! it’s been a gods send. The manner in which Frank has approached this project would give the new carriers being built in the nearby Rosyth Dockyard a run for their money. We took ownership of our second kit last Thursday and as the local Carnegie College Painting and Decorating apprentices complete the painting of skiff Number one Frank shall be laying the Keel of NQ skiff number two, like a good productive Scottish boatyard.”
North Queesferry Coastal Rowing Club has now been set up and will be affiliating with the SCRA, joining in with the 2012 regattas and looking to host their own regatta in the future. They are planning launch date for Sunday 06 May 2012 PM (time to be confirmed). There will be a party on the pier with music, barbecue and singing from the local primary school children. That is the second day of Port Seton regatta, but some may be able to drop in while passing on the way home, and hopefully plenty of locals will turn out to support their new commuity club!
North Queensferry are looking forward to the resurrection of the historic racing across the Forth between the new crew from the North and their very good friends from South Queensferry.
Here is a skiff down the carwash:
full story from Newhaven: http://newhavenrowing.wordpress.com/2012/02/22/eith-decides-skiff-goes-to-the-carwash/
It did not take long for someone to rise to the challenge of suggesting the oldest crew to have been out in a St Ayles skiff. The four rowers enjoying a gentle Saturday afternoon paddle in this pic are from South Queensferry. Without counting the cox (who is half the age of the next youngest crew member) the total age of this crew of four lads is 270. Can anyone beat that? I think it must be the salt water that keeps them all feeling young.
An octogenarian with octane, John Gray, at 80, is an active member of Queensferry Rowing Club. Here he is out for the new year’s day row in St Ayles skiff “Ferry Lass”. John is also helping out with the building of QRC’s second skiff which is due to launch in the spring. Age no object in Scottish Coastal Rowing. Who has had the crew out with the greatest combined age?
When it comes to oars, everyone will tell you that size is not everything. However you have to admire the magnificent sight of the huge oars on the Moray Gig. The picure above shows her being rowed with just eight oars, although the standard rig is with ten. The shortest at the bow is 14′ 2″, next oar 2 is 16′ 2″, oars 4/5/6/7/8 are 18′ 6″ and oars 3/9/10 are 17′ 5″. Gary Hunt of www.moraygig.com says that he is not sure how it works out but routinely the smallest person gets the biggest oar!
For more information about the experience of oar use and oar building for the St Ayles skiffs, click on the oars tab above (shortly to be moved to the” boat building” section of the website.
The Moray Gig is an Atlantic Challenge Gig, a class based on an 18th century ships boat, 38′ in length with a beam of 6’9″. The Atlantic Challenge is sail training organisation operating in a number of countries focussed on developing, sharing and encouraging the skills of the sea, with activities “bringing young people together with the intent of fostering cultural and global understanding and personal development through challenge and education.” The Moray Gig is available for bookings throughout the summer season at its home port of Findhorn.
The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association is pleased to announce that a British Rowing run and UK Coaching Council approved course for Fixed Seat Rowing Coaches will be run at Royal West in Greenock in April. The Official Course notice is attached to this message, the application form will be emailed to those who express an interest.
Please post the notice on your club website and in your clubhouses.
The Association is eager to see a good geographical spread of coaches so every club should consider this opportunity.
Please note that as we have to confirm numbers to British Rowing later this month we need forms and deposits in by 20th February.
Following the success of last year’s regatta at the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival Portsoy, the organisers feel that the St Ayles Skiffs made such a positive contribution to the event that they want us back again – more of us!
This year, the accomodation will be expanded so that 18 skiffs are invited. We are looking at options for a few more should there be the demand for places.
As clubs are starting planning for which regattas they are attending during the coming season, the draw for Portsoy is being made much earlier.
The Regatta will be organised by Jordan Boats in conjunction with the STBF under the Rules of the SCRA.
The race program will be for a similar course to last year, with the actual classes to be raced similar to 2011 but to be confirmed at a later date.
Priority of berths for Portsoy will be allocated as follows:
- Clubs north of a line drawn from Helensburgh to Perth.
- All other Clubs
- Second skiffs from any Club
In the event of more entries being received than there are places, a random draw will be made at whichever level of priority we are going to run out of spaces.
Applications from Club Secretaries should be made to Portsoy2012@jordanboats.co.uk by 6pm on Wednesday 22nd February 2012. Successful clubs will be notified by Friday 24 Feb. A reserve list will be maintained in the case that succesful applicants have to withdraw. At this stage we are looking for entries from skiffs. Successful applicants will be asked to list their crews and categories in which they would like to race nearer the time.
It is intended that new clubs will race in a separate “1st Year” category. New clubs may race in the “Senior” events if they so desire, but this will commit them to racing all their crews as “Seniors”. The Organisers may use their discretion to allow clubs who have rowed in a St Ayles Skiff prior to 2012 to row as 1st Years, and may also require clubs new to the St Ayles but with extensive previous rowing experience to row as Seniors.
Subject to consultation with the attending clubs, a shorter course will be marked for 1st Year Clubs and the older age classes.
Applications will only be accepted from Clubs with fully paid SCRA subscriptions for 2012. Subscription status will be checked with the SCRA Treasurer immediately following application closure. Applications are also welcomed from clubs outside the UK, for whom special arrangements will apply.
Clubs in the process of building their first skiffs may apply for places at Portsoy, and indeed are welcomed. However, the builders must have a realistic expectation that their skiff will be launched by 12 May to allow for sufficient practice time. If an accepted skiff has not been launched by 12 May, its place may be offered to clubs on the reserve list.
All senior clubs will be expected to supply at least one race Umpire. 1st year clubs will be expected to supply an assistant umpire to start learning the “trade”.
That is the formal stuff – now some detail about what will be happening…
There will be improvements in the race facilities, particularly the start.
Camping for all Skiffies will once again be at the Soy Loch site. The shower and toilet blocks are to be improved. The STBF are coming forward with other improvements relating to entertainment on the Saturday evening. We have been promised a definite time slot for the prizegiving on the Sunday afternoon.
More information on the Portsoy Regatta will be posted on a sub-tab of Events 2012.
Seamanship and Navigation are important skills for Coastal Rowers to develop. Although inland rowers can get by with an understanding of good rowing technique, for safe and fulfilling enjoyment of our sport skiffies will do well to develop an understanding of the sea. This is particularly so as we start to range further in training, racing and recreation.
With this in mind, Scottish Coastal Rowing Association is pleased to be able to announce that the SportScotland National Centre, Cumbrae is offering a special deal on the RYA online Essential Navigation and Seamanship Course. Members of SCRA clubs can enrol on the course at the discounted rate of £55 per head. The Course is delivered ONLINE, with the trainee working from home at their own pace.
Essential Navigation and Seamanship is an RYA certificated course. The Centre will provide course materials by post for members to work on, as well as access to the online materials, tutorials and test and the service of a tutor at the centre who can be contacted to assist the candidate with any aspect of the course. An explanation of the course can be found on the RYA site: http://www.ryainteractive.org/course/view.php?id=491 . A certificate is issued on successful completion of the course.
The course content includes charts and publications, safety, buoyage, tidal awareness, visual and electronic navigation, pilotage, rules of the road, anchoring, weather forecasts and passage planning.
A code is required for the discounted price, and will be circulated to secretaries of SCRA member clubs. Once they have the code, candidates should contact the National Centre Cumbrae at email@example.com or 01475530757.
They will be given a ‘key’ to access the on line RYA programme and a centre contact who will act as their tutor when required.
SCRA would welcome feedback from members and hope that rowers benefit from this opportunity.