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Attention Skiffies! Rowing The Waves Questionnaire

All Scottish St Ayles Skiff Coastal Rowing Clubs should now have received a questionnaire from the Rowing the Waves project at the University of St Andrews, either by email or via their Facebook page.

Please could we request that you complete and return these as soon as possible to allow the researchers, Nina and Jen, to analyse the results before the end of their project in March.

You can contact them on Twitter at @RowingTheWaves or by emailing with any queries you may have about the questionnaire, or the wider project. Many thanks!

Find out more:

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SCRA South West Challenge 2018 Dates Announced!

The South West Challenge was launched in 2017 as a series of 8 events at 6 venues over 4 weekends in September, aimed at boosting attendance across some of the regattas in Scotland’s South West. It was well attended by many Scottish clubs as well as some from Northern Ireland and the Netherlands, and was won by Sketrick Coastal Rowing Club. Now it’s back – bigger and better.

This year, the South West Challenge returns with four added events and now stretches across the Summer, finishing with Castle to Crane – Scotland’s biggest open water rowing race. All events are run independently, with results entered into a separate league and points awarded for participation as well as performance.

Any clubs participating in more that one of the events included in the South West Challenge will automatically be entered and has the chance to win the trophy – a beautiful salver, six engraved whisky glasses and of course a bottle of malt. The winning club will also be awarded a Quaich – the Scottish drinking cup of friendship – to retain. Dates and contact details to enter each regatta are below. See you there!

SCRA South West Challenge 2018

Coordinator: Cameron Hughes


5 May – Royal West Regatta (Greenock)

2 June – Troon Regatta

16-17 June – Arran Regatta

14 July – Largs Regatta (Firth of Clyde)

11 August – Nith Navigation (Dumfries)

12 August – Bell Ringer’s Raid (Annan)

18-19 August – Stranraer Regatta

8 September – Exciseman’s Chase (Carrick)


15 September – Castle to Crane



SCRA South West Challenge 2018 Poster

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Western Isles Regatta – Lochboisdale 26th May 2018

Lochboisdale on South Uist is the location where the Uists Coastal Rowing Club are holding their inaugural regatta on the 26th of May.

8 Hebridean skiffs will be there, plus Ullapool and possibly a few other lucky mainland clubs.

Entry is by invitation, but if you are feeling adventurous and want to undertake the difficult journey to Lochboisdale, give Robert Taylor a call on 01870603754

You can cross in the ferry pictured from Mallaig to Lochboisdale, or take the shorter crossing from Uig on Skye to Lochmaddy in North Uist and drive down to Lochboisdale.

The scenery is astonishing.

The venue is a very sheltered bit of water with a modern marina to launch from and a friendly group of people who are keen to see what skiff racing looks like.

The Lochboisdale Hotel which overlooks the harbour is where the evening Ceilidh will be.

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Meeting to Set Up the Loch Tay Skiff Rowing Club

Meeting to Set Up the Loch Tay Skiff Rowing Club

30th January 2018

7.30 P.M.

Upstairs at Birks Cinema

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St Andrews CRC – Adaptive Rowing – Letter from Disability Sport Fife

St Andrews Coastal Rowing Club received the following letter from Disability Sport Fife – Adaptive Rowing

Coastal Rowing – a Sport for All

Disability Sport Fife recognises the St Andrews Coastal Rowing Club as a strong partner with members who are fully committed to inclusive practice. There are 300 affiliated boats all over the world. The St Andrews club is affiliated to the Scottish Coastal Rowing Association (SCRA).

The St Andrews club attracts members of different abilities from a range of backgrounds. Members build and maintain club boats and have the responsibility of lifting their equipment in and out of the water at every session. Members had their first introduction to adaptive rowing through the Newcastle Gateshead Club when the two clubs met up at the Great Tyne Row and shared their experiences.

The St Andrews Club members built their skiff, named the Blue Bay, to accommodate an adapted / removable seat. Key supporter, the St Andrews Harbour Trust installed the first phase of pontoon development that crucially provides open access for those with mobility challenges. The club also acknowledges support received from the Fife Countryside Trust and the University of St Andrews through the “rowing the waves project”.

Normally all equipment has to be made of wood but the SCRA committee waived the rules to offer full and free participation for adaptive rowers in regattas. Several non rowing disabled individuals volunteered to trial the adapted equipment and skiff modifications were carried out accordingly. An adaptive rowing group was formed of members with different skill sets. Access training was established for individuals and also as members of a 5 person crew. Club members learned by trial and error. They must be congratulated for their commitment and determination to include all communities, regardless of ability.

The St Andrews Coastal Rowing club members already include members with double leg amputations and progressive medical conditions that result in loss of power and balance challenges. Equipments modifications have to made to accommodate different members. In some instances the only modification that will have to be made is to schedule entry at high tide. The St Andrews Harbour Trust plan to install a winch and when that happens, skiff access will be so much easier for members with mobility difficulties.

Club members with disabilities have already competed in regattas and one member was part of the team that completed the great river race

Members hope to encourage more adaptive rowers to join the club and experience the thrills and pleasures associated with the sport. Access may take a little longer for some but members are patient and committed to an inclusive ethos and practice. I was informed by the club adaptive rowing coordinator Julie Hardisty, that a sense of humour is essential and that St Andrews Coastal Rowing Club hopes to encourage other clubs to set up local programmes. Julie can be contacted for further information at

Richard Brickley MBE – President Disability Sport Fife

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Frostbite Regatta Kinghorn

Preparations started way before the day with willing volunteers within the members who agreed to made it a” good social day for everyone “with a bit of a competitive edge “.  So we had to have Andrew Rendle there to ensure scoring was spot on!  The crunch came the day before with a “Pitch Inspection”.  There was NO ICE on Kinghorn Loch on Saturday…… great!….. and so we let the other clubs know that we are good to go ahead with the mini regatta.

Thanks to Wormit, Pittenweem, North Queensferry and Newhaven Coastal Rowing Clubs for joining us in our first ‘frostbite’ regatta.Kinghorn

Everyone had a great day at Kinghorn Loch where Kinghorn Coastal Rowing Club held their first regatta of the year…under the snow.

It was great to see the clubs braving the cold and snow for a great day on Kinghorn Loch, an ideal venue for this kind of winter event with easy launching and relatively sheltered water. It is a well-used community asset enjoyed by the rowers, the sailing club, canoe club, model radio-controlled yachts and open water swimmers. On the banks can be found carp fishermen, bird watchers and a number of attractive walks.

All things came to pass and we had a splendid afternoon – in the snow!

Five boats in the water plus another club who sent oarspersons to join in the rowing.  Five timed races on a circuit of the Loch and two straight sprints. A very jolly afternoon.  The general opinion is that we must make it an annual event.

The skiffs were

The Flying Boat Wormit –

Yolande Kinghorn

Wee Michael Newhaven

Ferry Sonnet North Queensferry

Catalina Wormit

Also with Pittenween Rowers

The winners of the time trial of the day were Newhaven who declared

“What a fantastic day we have had today. It was an intrepid crew of 6 that headed north to Kinghorn loch and some friendly time trials and sprints. It was very cold as we set off – but we were met by the friendly faces and fantastic catering of Kinghorn Coastal Rowing Club. An easy boat launch thanks to a loan of their launch trolley (i could get on board with the idea of a system and slipway that works on the principle of tilt trolley and shove boat !) and we were off! A well organised event meant everyone who wanted to row – did – even those who came boatless! There was a limited amount of hanging around in the blizzard and short, sharp sprints meant we all kept as warm as possible. In the end – it turned out – we won! Cheesy grins all round from a surprised Newhaven crew who had rowed their thermal socks off and we are now very proudly in possession of a fantastic glass trophy – hand made by a very talented member of their club. Many thanks to Kinghorn to inviting us – racing in a blizzard is hugely invigorating and we’ve all had the best day! at Kinghorn Loch.


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SCRA Club Development Weekend 31st March / 1st April 2018

The Committee of the SCRA are pleased to announce a Club Development Weekend to be held across a number of venues in Anstruther.  The central base will be at the Scottish Fisheries Museum, where the SCRA was founded in May 2010.  The workshops and seminars will be held on Saturday 31st March and Sunday 1st April.
Proposed workshop topics include:-
Great Fixed Seat Rowing Technique
Race Coxing
Event Organising
Cold Water Shock
LifeJacket Workshop
Club Fundraising and Grant Funding
If there are any other topics that you would be interested in please advise us.  We will do our best to address any popular suggestions.  The final programme will be announced nearer the time.  There will be a reasonable fee for each attendee to cover costs (to be advised).
Clubs are requested to express interest  by e mailing the Secretary SCRA (please state Club Name in Subject), reserving places  for up to a maximum of THREE persons per club in the first instance.  A registration form will be sent to those clubs once seminars have been finalised.  Attendees will be given a choice as to which of the seminars and workshops they attend.
Limited accommodation is available at reasonable cost at the Murray Library Hostel and other accommodation is available in the vicinity.
Andy Rendle
Secretary SCRA

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Build a Skiff in Kirkcudbright- Meeting on 23 January 2018

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Stranraer to Host Skiffieworlds 2019

Stranraer in South West Scotland has been chosen as the venue for Skiffieworlds 2019.  The hosts of the competition are the Stranraer St Ayles Skiff Project.  The championships will run from 7 July 2019 through to 13 July 2019.

Stranraer and Loch Ryan

Skiffieworlds is the World Championship for the St Ayles Skiff class of coastal rowing boat.  The Championships are held every three years.  Ullapool in North West Scotland hosted the inaugural championship in 2013, and  Skiffieworlds 2016 was held at Strangford Lough in Northern Ireland.  Previous championships were attended by crews representing local communities from as far apart as Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Netherlands. England, Northern Ireland and Scotland.  Over 1000 competitors are expected to take part at Skiffieworlds 2019, and it is hoped that newly built boats will encourage participants from Eire, Denmark and France to attend, along with anywhere else that builds a St Ayles Skiff before July 2019.

Robbie Wightman, SCRA convenor, said today:  “International delegations went to all the potential venues for Skiffieworlds2019. We were  very impressed by the proposals put forward by Stranraer and are delighted that they have accepted the offer to host the championships. The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association looks forward to working with the local organisers to put together a memorable event for locals and visitors, featuring safe, spectator friendly, exciting and enjoyable racing along with giving everyone a chance to experience the beauty and the welcome that Stranraer, Loch Ryan and the wider area of Galloway have to offer.”

Raymond Mundle, Chair of the Stranraer St Ayles Skiff Project said “We are all delighted with the news of Stranraer’s successful bid, and look forward to working hard with all concerned to deliver an outstanding World Championship.”  Wendi Cuffe, also from the working group added “This will bring a real buzz to Stranraer.  It presents a great opportunity to showcase the wonderful Loch Ryan and will be fantastic for the town , the people and the area”


Skiffieworlds2013 at Ullapool (photo Kathy Mansfield)


Strangford (Photo: Allan Robertson)

Stranraer was chosen after a careful selection process which involved each of the potential venues being visited by a delegation of five experts, with each delegation having rowers from at least three different countries and  key organisers from the previous skiffieworlds’ hosts.  Thank you to those delegates, and thank you to the unsuccessful bidders, either of whom could we are sure host an excellent championships and will hopefully go on to host great events in the future.

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2018 Events on the Forth and the Tay

Eskmuthe Regatta Start Line

There are several regatta already slated in for 2018 in the South East.  The first of the season is the opener for the SCRA Youth Series, hosted by Eastern ARC at Portobello on 7-8 April.  We are eagerly awaiting the dates for other Junior regattas on the Southern Youth circuit.  The South East opener for the senior events is Cockenzie and Port Seton, where the event is hosted by Boatie Blest on 28 April.  The racing is tight and good coxing is rewarded at this most friendly of regattas.  Get it in the diary!

Taking the Air at Anster

Anstruther‘s regatta on 12 May is already fully booked as is the Queensferry regatta 2 weeks later on 26 May.  Well worth a visit to cheer on your favourites, but the success of these regattas demonstrates why we need more clubs to host local regattas, so that folk taking up the sport can have regattas to aim for.  Hosting a regatta can be hard work, but is very rewarding and builds a stronger club.  Please do let us know when regattas are, so that we can share them on the SCRA calendar.

Action moves to the Tay on 2 June, where Broughty Ferry host their Regatta on their tidal waters.   Races will be 2 km long.  Contact details are in the calendar.    RowPorty welcome crews to their regatta on 23 June.  Races from the beach with plenty of space for spectators there and on the prom.  A week later and a short trip past Leith Docks will take you to the Newhaven Midsummer Challenge.  An entertaining event featuring running and sailing as well as rowing.

Thereafter there is a bit of a gap in the calendar (which hopefully some other clubs can fill with an event or two) before Eskmouthe welcome visitors to Musselburgh and Fisherrow on 11 August, and then there is the small matter or racing round the rock at North Berwick brings the SE regatta calendar to a conclusion on 25 August.

So lots to look forward to on the Forth and the Tay in 2018, but equally space and enthusiasm awaits for other events!  Lets be having you, and lets enjoy a whole year of social fun in coastal rowing boats.

North Berwick

Do support as many of your local regattas as you can, as well as travelling a distance to some outwith your region, to help ensure the diversity of these events.  Make sure you buy cake and possibly beer to help to fund the activities that you are taking part in.  Some of the events listed above will be limited in the number of skiffs or the number of clubs that they can accommodate, and some are invitation only, so it is worthwhile checking early doors that your club can attend.  Keep checking the 2018 events tab, for other events being added.  Two more posts will be added shortly, with summaries of events in the South West and in England.

Enjoy planning your clubs’ year ahead!



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