Gravesend Regatta attracts the crowds
PUBLISHED: 10:48 09 June 2011
»There was blazing sunshine one day, black sky the next, but come rain or shine the crowds were treated to a weekend of entertainment at the Gravesend Town Regatta.
Rowing teams from pubs, clubs and the Port of London Authority took part in races on the Thames, while charity stalls, musical entertainment and a strongman competition filled the riverside promenade.
Traditionally, all races are held in the regatta committee’s four Clayton Skiffs, but a Waterman Cutter race was also organised – won by a team of rowers who last year competed in the London-to-Paris boat race.
Ian Stevenson, the chairman of the committee, said: “We had a wonderful turnout on the Saturday, up to 2,000 people. With the weather on the Sunday, we didn’t quite get the same numbers but the rowers and strongmen still put on a great show.”
Wins were achieved by The Wheatsheaf in the men’s pubs and veterans’ races, Prince Albert in the men’s novice event, The Ascot Arms in the men’s newcomers, The Rum Puncheon in the ladies’ contest and TJ’s pub in the mixed race.
Newbridge Limited triumphed in the men’s clubs and inter-trades races, and then emerged victorious in the champions’ race held at the end of the day to be declared overall champions.
The Reporter last week published concerns voiced by regatta organisers over the event’s future after numbers slumped, but Sunday brought good news.
“We had a man volunteer to join the committee off the back of the news article. It is a small step but much appreciated,” said Mr Stevenson.