Kingston Head and Oarsport (20 March) cancelled. Next scheduled events are: School’s HoRR (18 March) - 4 quads; Junior Inter-regional trials (21 March) –– Ethan (J15 1x), Jacob and Danny (J16 1x and 2x), Amelia and Jasmine (WJ16 1x and 2x); and Vet’s HoRR (22 March) – 2 eights and 2 quads. Good luck to all Junior and Veteran crews. 

As the coronavirus situation evolves, and government advice develops, we wish to take proportionate measures to protect our members, guests and visitors. We have therefore decided to postpone the Clubhouse reopening from 28 March to 19 September, and to suspend bookings for parties/corporate events until the government guidance is relaxed.

We succeeded in our Sport Relief challenge, and rowed from Lands’ End to Shetland, and onwards towards the Vøring Plateau – a total of 1,222 km logged against a target of 1,175km – from 55 members representing all squads. Great job everyone! The VetMen rowed 51% of the distance, combined Junior squads 14%, and Senior and Masters Women 12% each. Top contributors were John Steers (VetMen - 105km), Stewart Robertson (Rec – 87km), Karon Phillips (WMas – 46km), Max Bird (JM – 40km), Sofia Marelli (SW – 31km) and Izzy Sellers (JW – 20km). To date, we have raised a total of £3,297 to be split 50/50 between the club and Sport Relief. We will keep the fundraising pages open for a short while longer, so please encourage friends and family to make a donation on your behalf: Special mention to Stewart who rowed a full marathon (42,195m) on Friday, and John Steers who rowed over 100km in memory of his father who passed away this week. Many thanks to John, who organised this challenge for us.

As part of our community connect initiative, MRC was represented by Sam and I last Wednesday at the Lent Rise School’s Sports Relief Week. Lent Rise School is one of our local schools in Burnham for children up to 11 years. We received a very enthusiastic welcome as we introduced rowing to many children and their parents for the first time. Over 35 children rowed 100 metres on an ergo, competing furiously to achieve the top time, while many noted that the MRC Learn to Row programme might be their sports choice in a few years’ time.

The clubhouse redecoration continues, with John and Keith painting the rear lobby and stairs to the cardio suite, Ken replacing the quote with one that better reflects our membership’s diversity, and Roger and Caroline building out the picture gallery, including a couple more paintings from talented club members, Jacqui and Heidi, to join Derek’s artwork. Our Safety advisors, Chris and Diane, and Premises manager, Ken, conducted a full fire alarm test this week, and will be updating the policy to reflect learnings.

Claire will be resuming Tuesday suppers next week; please book on FitClub. Great way to refuel after yet another ergo.

Some ergo technical tips that will improve rowing when we eventually return to the water in this short video of Robin Williams (Helen Glover and Heather Stanning’s coach) recently coaching at a workshop,

Please continue to pay heed to the Coronavirus guidance our Safety Advisors circulate and post around the club, noting that this is a rapidly evolving situation. We expect all our members, visitors and guests to the Club to also follow the government advice. Please do not come to the Club if you are displaying any of the above symptoms or have been in close contact with anyone who has - stay at home and use the NHS 111 or NHS 111 Online Coronavirus help line. Ensure if using the ergo suite or weights room or the boat house - that you clean ergo handles and seats, weights, and blade handles - both before and after use with the sprays provided, to help prevent spread of this virus.