The History of Weymouth Rowing Club

Weymouth Rowing Club is a phoenix risen out of the ashes of a tragedy.  On the 22nd September 2000, Tristan Douglas-Johnston set out from his home excited at the prospect of a day out at the Southampton Boat International Boat Show.  He never returned.

At the age of twenty, he was killed by a runaway RIB that, minutes before, had thrown out all its occupants into the sea whilst on a demonstration run.  Tristan was an affable young man and it was his colleagues at Kingfisher Marine who came up with the idea of building not one, but two Cornish Pilot Gigs as a long lasting memorial to him.  Friends and family rallied together and it was not long before we had a gig on the water and we were racing.

Where are we now?

We have come a long way since our foundation as a club and we are now a charity.  Amongst our charitable aims we are commited to providing a facility where people can partake in a healthy outdoor activity, no matter their circumstances or abilities.  We have built four wooden gigs and we also have two plastic training gigs, a harbourside boatshed and a very fine safety boat.  More importantly we have built a friendly club with a membership of over 150 people.  A well planned training programme, delivered by club coaches and supported by our team of coxons,  helps us with success on the water.  Our competitive squads consist of Ladies, Mens, Mixed, Youth (Juniors), Veterans (over 40s) and Supervets (over 50s).

Fun is the most important aspect of the club.  Rowing success will be a natural consequence as long as we can remember that without the fun and enjoyment, any results are only shallow.  All who would like to row, at whatever level, are welcome.  With tolerance, understanding and a team spirit I am sure that our club will continue to grow and be a fitting tribute to the memory of my beloved son Tristan.

Heddon Johnson

Club President

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