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Cedric Sheppard memorial service on 13 December 2017

The Memorial Service for the life of Cedric Sheppard will take place on Wednesday 13 December at 12 o’clock at Chelsea Old Church; coffee and drinks afterwards.

Cedric was the Club's longtime investment adviser on a fairly sizeable portfolio which was used as the Club's contribution to the appeal for the development in 2005-7.  He joined in 1962. He coxed the LRC four in the Vogalonga in the ‘80s and ‘90s for some 20 times.  Cedric died on 9 November.

Among the mourners will be his friend Diana Yates Watson. She and Cedric enjoyed one another’s friendship for many, happy years.

A fuller obituary will be published in due course.


Rodney Bewes 1937-2017

Members will have been saddened to learn of the death at the age of 79 of Rodney Bewes, for many years a member of London Rowing Club, on 21 November 2017.  Rodney was an actor who came to fame in the 1960s as the character Bob Ferris in "The Likely Lads", one of the most popular BBC sitcoms of that era.  His main connection with the river was through his one-man touring production of "Three Men in a Boat", which won the Stella Artois prize at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1997.  He was a freeman of the Company of Watermen and Lightermen.

For many years Rodney was a very familiar figure at Henley Royal Regatta, invariably moored up close to the Progress Board, opposite Stewards' Enclosure, as shown in Mark Ruscoe's really excellent photograph above. 

Mile Preston recalls a recent encounter:

While I was doing an eight day skiff trip from Bourne End to Abingdon and back in July, we woke up one morning at Sonning lock to find that Rodney Bewes had tethered his motor launch next to us over night. Shortly after, the whole flotilla of Swan Uppers came up through the lock. As they emerged from the lock, Rodney greeted each boat and they greeted him in return.

I had a discussion with Rodney while we were standing on the bank watching,  although I hadn't met him before. He was clearly a proud member of LRC. He also explained that he had taken part in the Swan Upping week for many years - as I understood it he rowed in one of the skiffs on many occasions - and he was now following the event in his own cabin cruiser and, I imagined from what he said, taking part in the endless receptions and lunches that the uppers attend as they make their way up the river.

Over the course of the next few days, we came across the uppers several more times and saw Rodney on two or three occasions. He immediately recognised us and waved to us. By chance we ended up going through Goring lock with the uppers and enjoyed the endless chatter and banter.  All in all, he was very friendly and easy to talk to and I am pleased that I had a chance to meet him albeit only, as it transpired, shortly before he died.


Book now for the LRC Christmas Dinner 


Jess Eddie becomes Hon. President of Parliamentary Rowing Group

The All-Party Parliamentary Rowing Group announced on 9 November 2017 that London's Jessica Eddie has been appointed as their Honorary President.

Eddie won a silver medal at the 2016 Olympics, and also competed at the 2012 and 2008 games. After first representing her country in 2001, Jessica has been spent most of her senior career as a key member of the Great Britain women’s eight. She is a double world medalist at both under-23 and senior level, and became a European champion in 2016. 

As the Group’s first ever Honorary President, Eddie has been appointed for a term of one year in the first instance, and will work with Members to help support the sport at all levels. 

The announcement was made by Group Co-Chair and Member of Parliament for Hendon, Dr Matthew Offord MP. He said “on behalf of the All-Party Parliamentary Rowing Group, I am delighted to welcome Jessica Eddie as our inaugural Honorary President. Jessica has enjoyed some considerable success over the course of her career, and it is our intention to draw on her experience and hear from her about where she feels the Group can support rowing in Parliament. I am very much looking forward to working with her.”
In accepting the role, Jessica Eddie said “I am honoured to have been invited to become Honorary President of the All-Party Parliamentary Rowing Group. The Group plays a vital role in providing a strong voice for rowing in Westminster and Whitehall, and I look forward to supporting the work of MPs and Peers to tackle issues, and promote the excellent work being done in the sport. I am delighted to accept the role, and look forward to meeting with Members soon.”


Gold for Anne Cann at the Head of the Charles

At the 53rd Head of the Charles Regatta over the weekend of 21-22 October 2017 the Club was represented by Veteran sculler Anne Cann and by a Masters eight.

Anne and her partner Cathy Coffman from the local rowing club (Rivanna R.C.) took first place in the Women’s Grand Master Double Sculls event, setting the course record for the event and passing seven boats in doing so.  Neither Anne (stroke) nor Cathy (bow) had ever won at the Charles, despite having tried many times. Early this year both abandoned former partners and decided to train together with this goal in mind. In August with two months to go, they began to rise early and launch for their workouts on the water at 0545 each morning. After an exhausting outing, both went to their jobs and looked forward to the next day. This punishing schedule paid off, and now the key was to row a clean race with no delays at the bridges or rounding turns. The ladies were certain that they were strong enough and that their blade work was perfect enough to win. Most of the race was uneventful until the long turn leading to the Eliot Bridge, the last one of seven. The inside buoy line was so crowded that the ladies took a slightly more outside line to avoid the traffic and maintain speed. Through the bridge they were ahead by 30 seconds and decided to cut inside the buoy line to avoid traffic again. This meant a 5-second penalty for missing a buoy, but with a comfortable lead it was a conscious tradeoff. After so many tries, it was a sweet victory.Here is a photo of Anne (right) and Cathy (left) on the awards platform after having been awarded their gold medals.

London’s Masters 50 eight started 4th in their category.  The crew were hosted for the fifth year running by our friends at Riverside Boat Club whose boathouse is close to the start of the three and a half mile course.  Cox Theo Robinson, whose Head of the Charles debut this was, had two days to prepare and plot her route down the windy course ably guided by Riverside’s Ernest Cook and Canadian former Olympian Dan Dickison.

Taking the right line on the Charles is as crucial to a quick time as the Tideway Championship course and Theo nailed it with the right approach to each bend and with judicious use of the rudder.  LRC hoped to improve on last year’s 4th place finish and started behind Palm Beach Florida and ahead of locals Riverside.  Going off at a punchy 38 striding to 35, the crew maintained good speed to half way but couldn’t get on terms with winners Marin from San Francisco and UK rivals Molesey who took second place.   Potomac Boat Club starting 7th and Cambridge Boat Club (Mass) starting 28th finished 3rd and 4th, 18 and 17 seconds ahead of LRC with Palm Beach Florida 9 seconds up placing LRC 6th out of 41 in Masters 50 eights.

Thanks go to generous hosts Riverside Boat Club for the loan of boat and blades and use of their facilities and to Bostonian and LRC member Kathleen Curran and her parents for support and warm hospitality.

The crew: cox Theo Robinson, stroke Simon Harris, 7 Bill Baker, 6 Danny Harte, 5 Matty Bell, 4 Adrian Theed, 3 Ralph Humphrey, 2 CD Riches, bow Stewart Harries.