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Avoch Regatta

Entries now open. Spaces will be decided by ballot if necessary. The club write:

Entries are now open for Avoch regatta 2020. If you are interested in attending please send details to our club email . All club names will be drawn from a hat, but priority will be given to 7 NE region clubs we have 13 places in total . Our race format is going to be a bit different this year
Under 17’s (1km) Girls, Boys and Mixed
Under45’s Men, Women and Mixed
Over 45’s Men, Women and Mixed
Novice U 45 Mixed
Novice O 45 Mixed
Decades Men , Women and Mixed
230+ Men, Women and Mixed
We thought we would mix things up a little bit.
Please have all entries in before the 29th Feb, names will be drawn on the 1st of March and clubs will be notified the week of the 2nd march.
We are looking forward seeing everyone in the forth coming season.

Laura and Kathy Avoch Community Rowing Club

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Ocean to City, Cork, 6 June 2020

Always a great race that many crews from Scotland have travelled to an enjoyed before, with some trophies but more importantly much fun. Early bird discounts available!

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South Skye and Lochalsh Open Day 8 February 2020

One of the gaps in our coastal spread of St Ayles Skiffs is being filled with the launch of Saucy Mary by the South Skye and Lochalsh Coastal Rowing Club. They are inviting everyone to come along and find out about the club at Dornie Village hall on 8 February.

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In Praise of Club Regattas

Scottish Coastal Rowing Regattas are fun and sociable, and we would love to see more rowers being able to enjoy competitive events in our sport. It is not the be all and end all of course, and social rows (including massive ones going all the way round Scotland) are great and bring much enjoyment. However club regattas are the glue that holds our large community together, they are where we meet and learn from folk in other clubs, they are where many members of our own club can travel together, watch and cheer on each other, they are where we can play host to friends old and new, they are where we can find out how effective we are at moving our boats through the water, they are where we can have fun, where we test ourselves, where we reinforce the importance of working together, and where we can show off our sport to others.

Turning Buoy at Port Seton Boatie Blest Regatta

We are all in favour of regattas and would like to encourage more clubs to organise them, more club members to be involved in running them, and would like to help improve the quality of all the regattas that are already on the circuit. For all these reasons SCRA is organising a Regatta Organisers Course on 7 and 8 March 2020 in Kinghorn, Fife, and you are warmly invited to attend. There is plenty to learn from the experienced regatta organisers that will be there, and you can be sure they will be learning from each other and sharing in the enthusiasm.

Events do not need to be on the scale of Skiffieworlds or Castle to Crane. The first ever St Ayles Skiff regatta featured six boats and was a huge success. A very well appreciated event can be organised using only 2 or 3 boats. So do please give it a go, get a date in the diary and invite other clubs along. See the previous post for details of how to sign up for the Regatta Organisers Course.

Umpires Having a Laugh
Finish Line in Dumfries
Communities Together at Portsoy
Shieldaig Regatta
Seil Regatta: Remember to Share your Results
Eskmuthe Regatta
Eskmuthe Regatta Start Line

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Cork: Ocean to City – 6 June 2020

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Celebrating Community Spirit with RowAround Scotland 2020

We are all looking forward to our community effort to row all the way around Scotland during 2020 to celebrate 10 Years of the Scottish Coastal Rowing Association. The project is supported by Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters. Two beautiful batons have been created to pass travel round with the rowers, and have recently been named as “Community” and “Spirit”.

Thanks to all those who contributed ideas for names for the two batons – almost 80 pairs of names were suggested. But the committee felt that ‘Community’ and ‘Spirit’ was so appropriate for this particular ambitious endeavour, and indeed, to the whole of the Scottish Coastal Rowing project. We hope that you agree!

Sue Fenton, Event Director, RowAround Scotland

The initial idea of design and a hybrid of material for the baton of wood / resin with a model encased within came from Richard Wemyss.

Shona Muirhead of the SCRA committee explains “The batons are made in sections, the first being the blue and white resin mix to form the sea. The pewter skiff was cast and placed in the centre and encased in clear resin. The batons were then handed over to Colin Muirhead who added on the sections of black walnut and oak which were to be the handle sections. The parts were assembled together and turned on a lathe to give to the finished shape which was then all polished before being passed over to BlackRoseDesigns who laser engraved the names onto the batons.”

SCRA and RowAround Scotland logos were added on the ends of the baton to complete the craftwork. We think they are beautiful, and are sure that rowers will be very proud as they hand them from club to club, skiff to skiff, community to community in RowAround Scotland 2020. Thank you to all involved in creating and naming batons “Community” and “Spirit”.

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Subs Due: Help Us Keep Up the Good Work

Introducing our New Treasurer, Wendy Clements:


For those of you who don’t know me, I was one of the founding members of the Portsoy Skiffettes (now Portsoy Coastal Rowing Club), a group of women who got together to build the very pink Soy Quine, launched back in March 2013, just in time to join the first SkiffieWorlds in Ullapool. I joined the SCRA committee as representative for the North East Region in 2014. Just before the November 2019 AGM,  I volunteered to take over the role of treasurer, to help Topher free up some time for his new duties in SASI, the international organisation. I had forgotten that RowAround could make 2020 a somewhat more complicated year, but I am sure I will soon get the hang of it!
Currently 32 of our possible 100 clubs have paid their subs for the year to the AGM in October 2020. Thank you to those clubs who have made prompt payment. I realise some clubs have been holding out, until they had clarity over where they should send their payments. However, if your club has not yet paid, I would really appreciate it if you would do so as soon as possible. The rate has been held at £60, with a concession of £40 for small clubs (with under 20 members). 
Payment can be made either by a cheque made out to the SCRA and posted to the address in the link, or by BACS to Scottish Coastal Rowing Association,(details in the link). If you choose this way to pay please label your payment with the name of your club, and email me to tell me you have done it. Click on the link to be reminded of some of the great things that we achieve as a community because of your (fairly modest) subscriptions.

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Tour the Norfolk Broads 29 June to 3 July 2020

Coastal Rowing Association of Blakeney invites other St Ayles clubs to join them for a tour of the Norfolk Broads from 29 June to 3 July.

The previous such tour was back in 2014 and was fun, sociable and involved a good deal of rowing in interesting, but untaxing water. The plan is to row from place to place. Transport will be provided to get to and from the boats. There will be sessions in the pub, picnics, a barbecue and a dinner for all participants. No races unless people want one ( Last time they did and we had 2).

The Norfolk Broads is an area of meandering rivers and lakes famous for its wildlife.Some spare seats may be available, if participants struggle to bring a full crew and a skiff. Camping, self catering and b&b accommodation is available. It would be possible to combine the tour with the Round Canvey Island race on Saturday 4th July for anyone with ambitions to row in the Thames Estuary.

For more information and to enter please contact Adrian Hodge soonish: adrianhodge-at-doctors.org.uk

See the report from the 2014 tour by clicking here.

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REGATTA ORGANISER’S COURSE – MARCH 2020

Is anyone interested in joining a Regatta Organiser’s course? This event was very popular when it was last held it in 2016 and this time will be held at the Eco Centre near Kinghorn in Fife.

The outline plan is to have a workshop on Saturday 7th March, looking at such matters as categories, courses, racing rules, umpiring, starts, taking entries, results, publicity… anything else you will need to know to run a successful event. Hopefully, having done some planning the day before, we can hold a successful and enjoyable mini-regatta the next morning Sunday 8th.   Dependent on the numbers wishing to attend we will try to accommodate a limit of 2 per club.

There is plenty of accommodation in airbnbs, hotels, B&Bs and a camp site close by for those willing to travel and also good rail and bus links to Edinburgh, St Andrews, Perth and Dundee, only 45 min away.

The cost of the course for the two days will be £20 per head which will include your lunch of soup and a sandwich and we will also arrange refreshments of teas/ coffees.

To book your space on this course please contact edithrendle@gmail.com by the 5th February and ensure that you put “Regatta Organisers Course” in the subject line.

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A Look Ahead to the Scottish Coastal Rowing Season 2020

Wishing you all a happy new year and a happy new rowing Season. And it all kicks off fairly soon with two events in January: The Nairn Coastal Rowing Club River Regatta takes place on 11 January and will see 9 local clubs from the North East Region getting together for a series of races. Also in January in Fife the Kinghorn Frostbite Regatta is back again on 19 January, with six clubs squeezing into the tiny Kinghorn Loch for an early season get together.

Kinghorn Frostbite Regatta

The great variety of regattas and events makes Scottish Coastal Rowing so enjoyable. We try to list them all on our 2020 Events Guide, so do refer to that when planning your year ahead, and please make sure that your own events are included in it as soon as possible so that others can set the dates aside, and can plan other events around them to avoid local clashes. Finally it is great for the outside world to see just how much SCRA and its clubs put on for the benefit of communities around Scotland and beyond. There are already over 30 events listed around our coast. Something for everyone and more besides. We are delighted to be supporting and supported by Scotland’s Year of Coasts and Waters.

There is no Skiffieworlds in 2020, which gives an opportunity for clubs to spread their wings and go to other new regattas. Lets all try to bring in new rowers, and encourage them to take part in regattas.

There is of course a major event going on throughout 2020: RowAround Scotland. The aim with that event is to join up every one of our 70+ SCRA clubs. It is an event for everyone to take part in. Keep up with progress on the RowAround website, and contact your local Section Pilot to ensure that your club is included. There are some special sections on the RowAround, which are not on the circular route. Some of these special sections are also on the events calendar, including Loch Lomond, Loch Katrine, the Lowland Canals for the Falkirk Flotilla, Firth of Tay and of course Castle to Crane which takes place on 19 September. Castle to Crane is open to all classes of fixed seat coastal rowing boat, and we hope to welcome many visitors from around UK, Ireland and mainland Europe in Cornish Pilot gigs, Celtic Longboats, Shetland Yoals, Harkers Yard Gigs, East Coast skiffs….. it is what floats our boat.

Castle to Crane

Every region has its own events on the Events page already, perhaps with more to come. The Western Isles is one of the biggest growth areas in Scottish Coastal Rowing with seven groups already involved and at least one ore skiff in build. So far we have Lochboisdale Harbour Regatta on 22/23 May; Stornoway Rowing Club Regatta on 29/30 May, and Isle of Harris Festival of the Sea on 1 August.

Eskmuthe Regatta
Eskmuthe Regatta Start Line

The South East has Newhaven’s Forth Midsummer Challenge on 13 June, Eastern Leading a long distance route challenge around the Forth, the F120, Queensferry Regatta and on 22 August, and North Berwick Regatta on 29 August. Fife meantime has a new event at Kinghorn on 15/16 August, in tribute to the Miners who built and raced their own boats in the area, and gave some of the inspiration to the Scottish Coastal Rowing Project. There are events listed in the North East for Portsoy, Cromarty, Avoch, Broughty Ferry and Golspie. The South West has Stranraer’s multi lane regatta on 18/19 July as well as events at Royal West, Arran, Troon, Prestwick, Largs and Dumbarton. The Bell Ringers’ Raid makes a comeback to Annan. South West clubs are either the busiest or the best organised in getting their events into the diary.

North West and Argyll have events lined up at Sheildaig, Orkney and Loch Awe so far. Hopefully more to come. The big Ullapool Multilane regatta is already oversubscribed.

Skiffieworlds2013 at Ullapool

Please do let us know when and where the events are going to be so that we can get them onto the calendar. It is great that so many clubs are holding regattas. We are a growing sport, and we need to make sure their are events for all the new clubs and new members to take part in. We are so big that there is little prospect of getting all the clubs together, apart from perhaps at Castle to Crane. Our new clubs and new members will welcome small events for local clubs, and should hopefully be organising such events too. Some of our popular regattas are already oversubscribed or restricted now to invitations to local clubs. SCRA is holding an Regatta Organiser Course at Kinghorn on 7 and 8 March. Get that into your diary if you would like to improve your regatta or start a new one that others can attend.

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