Worcester Spring Regatta

Dom, Milo, Jacob, Faith and Leah represented the Juniors and had a good day.

Dom  rowed superbly in the semi-final but just missed out on reaching the final.

Milo and Jacob rowed individually and dominated their heats and semifinals, meeting up in a Ross v Ross final.

They were neck and neck until the final 50m when Jacob managed to pull away from Milo and won by a length. It was a wonderful effort from both boys.

Leah and Faith were very impressive during their semifinal and qualified comfortably for the final. They gave it their all in the final but couldn’t quite achieve the win. 

???? Below Milo and Jacob

Dave and Graham win again. Going so fast they blurred out their competitors

Selfie prize to Greg along with his mixed quad crewmates Alice, Georgi and Alex.

Great day for all. Go Ross!!

Monmouth Regatta Weekend

A good weekend for all at Monmouth. The weather was fantastic and a well organised regatta made it a fun trip to our nearest neighbours.

The Juniors did well with Leah and Faith winning their WJ15 double comfortably. Fliss won her WJ16 single  comfortably. Milo and Jacob won their J14 double also comfortably.

For non-rowers “comfortably” is a racing term where you win by more than four boat lengths  

Tom fought to the very end in his J18 single final but missed out.

Tom Clatworthy and Dom Gabb’s double won in the much admired green boat.

Congratulations to Faith Thorpe-Willliams who also won the Monmouth School Ergo Challenge for her age group and got a prize of a crew room visor

In the “Masters” squad – ie anyone over 28 – the women’s eight in the morning included a septuagenarians in both crews, with the home team of Monmouth narrowly beating the crew from Ross.

Fantastic showcase of the health benefits of rowing that people can carry on rowing and competing whatever their age.

Women’s C (an age category that needs not be divulged here) coxed four of Alice Simon, Ellen Phelps, Alison Barker, Sheron Dean-Lucas and cox Sally Pettipher won their semi-final helped by a 4 second handicap over a younger crew from Penarth.

In the final against Llandaff, their opposition got the better start and took a 3/4 boat length lead. Ross laid on the power the second half of the race and rowed through their oppos to win by 1/2 length. 

Ellen, second from left above, was a novice so this win meant a traditional throw into the water by her crewmates.

Here she is, wet but happy

Ross is proud that it also helps out other clubs through the work of its officials. Many of our members have Umpiring Qualifications, and without their help regattas could not run.

Here is one, Dave Sykes on umpire duty on Sunday.

Former Ross Junior National Win

It was quite a celebration for Yas Howe winning at the National Schools regatta on Sunday.

Geoff Howell

Some may already have heard but for those that haven’t I want to pass on the sad news of the death of Geoff Howell (ex Rowing Club Treasurer and father to Ian Howell) on Friday 26th May. Geoff was recently taken ill with a heart condition and was in the QE, Birmingham awaiting an operation for a heart by-pass.

Our sympathies to Brenda and their three sons, Rob, Steve and Ian and their families.

Many, in the more recent membership would not have met or known Geoff, but he was one of our members who was heavily involved in the development of the rowing club in the 1970’s and 1980’s during the building of the clubhouse and boathouse.

Geoff was also a keen member of the Ross & District Motor Sports Club, through his days as a motorcycle owner and more recently, as a classic car and classic motorcycle owner, marshall and passenger on many car events. 

I had the pleasure of having Geoff as sidekick (navigator), en route to The Le Mans 24 Hour in France, the Classic Spa Endurance Race in Belgium and also as a colleague at Rank Xerox.

Geoff, Dave Wood and I spent many panicked hours at ‘The Rank’ preparing the Regatta programme and getting it printed, prior to regattas in the 1980’s. We rarely had any mistakes!

A long time friend and club member that will be sadly missed!

Written by Ian (Ianto)

Hot off the Press

History of Ross Rowing Club

1875 – 2000

There will be an informal launch event on 16th June for the newly published History of Ross Rowing Club.

This book has been painstakingly put together over the last 3-4 years by Jerry Whitehouse, Brian Dean and Dave Woods together with Julie Smith who did a wonderful job with editing the content and desktop publishing.

I’ve seen a copy and it is a fantastic read, packed with great pictures collated by the team and full of wonderful facts and anecdotes about the club and its members, collected from over the years. 

Copies of the book will be available for purchase at the launch, for the really reasonable price of £15. Invitations will go out to members, past and present, who will no doubt want to grab a copy of this piece of history.

More details (timing etc) will follow in future newsletters, but put the date in your diaries.

More details will follow via Spond

Many Thanks

Richard Gabb

Spotlight on New Members

We are delighted to welcome new members who have just completed their Learn-to-Row course. Here is a profile of two of them, Georgina “George” Gilbert and Bronia Bendall.

Hi, I’m Bronia and I have worked for Natural Resources Wales for the past 8 years and I’m currently in the world of corporate planning. I love to walk my dogs and when I get some spare time I am also a bit of a wood artist. I have always loved taking part in sports and in the past I have enjoyed horse riding, playing hockey, the odd triathlon (including a 70.3 in Mallorca – exhausting) and a bit of trail running, so rowing is my next challenge and really enjoying it.  The learn 2 row course has been great and everyone has been super lovely, welcoming and knowledgable. Really looking forward to get involved. 

Hi, I’m George and I’m a fire fighter with South Wales Fire and Rescue Service, stationed at Penarth. I’ve been a fire fighter for 25 years. 

I’ve always wanted to try rowing and now I’m close to retiring, it seems like the perfect time to start something new. 

Outside of work and rowing, I’m currently training for an expedition to Antarctica to the South Pole. 1130km from Hercules Inlet. It’s taken 4 years to plan and now the team is ready to go. Before this I competed GB age group triathlon. I still run canicross with my dog Pippa and way back over 15 years ago I played a lesser known sport called Underwater hockey for GB too, I’m just getting back in to that though! 

I’ve also ridden horses since age 4 and although I’ve not ridden for a few years now, the next plan is to have a go at Polo in a few years time, its also something I never got to try growing up!! 

Bronia and George we hope you feel very welcome at Ross, and carry on enjoying your rowing with us.

River Wye

Species declining but water quality maintained

We have had a letter and comprehensive additional information from Natural England about the state of our river. Here is the letter with links to more detailed information.


As an owner or occupier within the River Wye Site of Scientific Special Interest (SSSI) or the River Lugg SSSI, I am writing to tell you about a change in the condition of the watercourse. Designated SSSI status means that the River Wye and part of the River Lugg together form the ‘River Wye Special Area of Conservation’ (SAC), providing the rivers with the highest level of protection in the UK. Our aim is to have the rivers in good health so that they can adapt to climate change and continue to support the life that depends on them; as well as providing leisure activities such as fishing, health and well-being benefits for people 


What we have found

We have carried out an assessment of the SSSI and concluded that its overall condition status has changed from ‘unfavourable – recovering to unfavourable declining. This is on the basis that:

  1. the River Lugg is showing declines in salmon, water quality and white-clawed crayfish.

  2. the River Wye is showing declines in macrophytes, salmon and white-clawed crayfish.

  3. The River Wye is not showing a decline in water quality. 


The change in condition is an indicator of the health of the watercourses and clearly this change is of great concern for everyone who cares about these wonderful rivers. It is important to provide context to this assessment, these findings do not reflect a sudden decline in the health of the river but are the results of changing agricultural and industrial practices, climate change, urbanisation and a growing population over the last decades. We do not yet fully understand all the reasons for these declines, further investigations are being conducted to build greater understanding. The scale and complexity of the challenge in the Wye catchment means long-term solutions are required. These must be founded on a strong evidence base and developed collectively with a number of partners. Using new funding, regulation and innovation we can restore nature and ensure the health of these rivers for generations to come.

Part of this responsibility is ensuring you apply to Natural England for consent for key activities, such as the erection of permanent or temporary structures or changes to any natural or man-made features. A full list of activities can be found at https://designatedsites.naturalengland.org.uk/PDFsForWeb/Consent/1006327.pdf


If you have any questions around what the change means for you, please do not hesitate to contact us at west.midlands.enquiries@naturalengland.org.uk

L2R Graduation

This Friday night a social and barbecue to celebrate the “graduation” of our new rowers. Come and meet them and welcome new personally.

For sale

XS and M all-in-ones from former Ross Junior (female cut)
Very lightly used, in good condition. 
£30 for XS
£25 for M
(Retail around £55 each)
Email the editor or message Sally P on Spond to be put in touch. 

Rowing Dates

Hereford Regatta

Sat 3rd June

New 850m course

Plus stable boat “committee fours” for new rowers

Masters National Championships

Sun 11th June


Nottingham National Water Sports Centre

Mixed Ability Taster Session

Sunday 18th June, 10am-midday.

Club tour, basics on land, accompanied boat sessions

Ironbridge Regatta weekend

Sat 24th June



Sun 25th June

500m sprint

Mixed Ability Session 2

Sunday 25th June, 10am – midday.

Mixed Ability – Pool Confidence Session

1pm Sunday 25th June (after session above)

at Monmouth School Sports Centre.

Details from Dan Bailey.


Sunday 27th and Monday 28th August – our fantastic and much-loved regatta (Dragon Boats on Saturday – see social section below)

See Spond for details.

Socials – Hold the Date!!!

Learn to Row celebration evening

Friday 2nd June

RRC Bar – Come and meet our newest rowers – all welcome


Mixed Ability Board Games

Tues 6th June

A Mixed Ability evening with Leisure Link at RRC.

6pm – 8pm. All welcome


Book Launch – History of Ross Rowing Club

Friday 16th June

Details to follow on Spond


Yeehah ???? – American Karaoke night

Tues July 4th

A Mixed Ability evening with Leisure Link at RRC. 6pm until we run out of puff ‍


Roaring Megs Choir at Ross Rowing Club for the Summer Concert

July 8th


RRC DRAGON BOAT RACING – Saturday 26th August – followed by Ross Regatta on 27th and 28th August (see rowing section above)


  • EASY FUNDRAISING – this system allows you to buy things from Amazon and many others at exactly the same price as normal, but they send a small portion of their profits to Ross Rowing Club – it all adds up over the course of a year. The link is here: EASYFUNDRAISING

And finally …

“This one is less impressed with my medal but I’m so bloody chuffed!!”

– Ellen

For the live Webcam showing current river levels – hit the button below.



Ross Rowing Club welcomes new rowers, young and old, beginners, experienced or returners.
We welcome campers and visitors, and have occasional opportunities to hire our clubhouse and grounds.
Key contacts:


Rope Walk, Ross On Wye, Herefordshire HR9 7BU