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Looking after our club members - Skiff rowing in Scotland
Updated: 2 months 3 weeks ago

Safety kit

Mon, 09/06/2021 - 17:10

It’s been great seeing postings of skiffs back on the water over the summer and enjoying taking part in the Row Around Scotland, regattas and other local social events.

As we move into the autumn we want all clubs to take a moment to check their safety equipment and remind themselves of what they should have in the skiff, not just when racing but also when taking part in general day to day rowing and for longer expedition rows. It’s so easy when looking out on a sunny calm day to forget that the weather can change quickly and being prepared with the right equipment and knowledge is essential.

There is a link on the website to the required equipment for racing which you will find here

We have have also prepared a list of items you may like to consider taking with you / using which will be beneficial when either rowing in your local area or planning longer expeditions rows.


We want to ensure you enjoy rowing but most of all, stay safe.

The post Safety kit first appeared on The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association.

Covid Update 19 August – Beyond Level Zero

Thu, 08/19/2021 - 11:00

The latest guidance from the SCRA follows the move to Beyond Level Zero by the Scottish Government which came into effect on Monday 9 August. Aside from some necessity for face coverings in certain settings, and test and protect details, many of the other restrictions placed upon rowing have now been lifted. 

Should there be any changes to the overall situation, we will update the rowing community. However, we hope that this will be our last iteration of the guidance as things continue to improve.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all who are involved in the SCRA committee’s Covid subgroup for the time and effort they have put into this aspect. It is not one which was ever foreseen when volunteering to help on the board. I would also thank all the clubs, and especially your covid officer, who no doubt has had a tough time keeping up with the guidance this pandemic has provided, often changing daily. 

Details are posted below with the current Beyond Level Zero guidance, together with a useful link for the in-depth information.

Our thoughts are with all those who have lost loved ones through this pandemic. We know the coastal rowing community is strong and will bounce back as strong as it was before, and we thank you all for playing your part; enjoy the rest of the season.

Stuart Mack

Convenor SCRA

Below is a link to the Beyond Level Zero guidance provided by Sport Scotland which has the finer details. An important change is around point 13. For much of the pandemic Coastal Rowing has been classified as a contact sport due to our inability to meet a 2m social distance criteria. This criterion has been downgraded to 1m therefore we fall into the non-contact sport criteria going forward. The criterion was downgraded after our return to rowing but for future guidance this is worth noting.

The post Covid Update 19 August – Beyond Level Zero first appeared on The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association.

5 Miles From Home

Mon, 07/12/2021 - 08:49
Winners of the Median Trophy, Broughty Ferry Boating

The 5MilesfromHome series has come to an end, a collaboration over three separate weekends with Castle to Crane, Cork Harbour Festival & Ocean to City and Welsh Sea Rowing. The series encouraged rowers to get back into training and to compete on their own home waters, whilst knowing that they were part of a big international challenge connecting fixed seat rowing communities across the world; results came in from four continents, all participants sharing the love of being on the water.

After this past weekend of worldwide time trial racing, the winners of the Median Trophy from the Welsh Sea Rowing leg of #5milesfromhome are Broughty Ferry Youth, from Broughty Ferry Boating! Congratulations to this young crew who have rowed in all three legs of the series.

Well done to all the Scottish Clubs that took part this time round: Ullapool Coastal Rowing Club (well done the Flying Dawsons – 7th overall, second mixed crew), Catterline Coastal Rowing Club (fastest male Scottish-based St Ayles); Wormit Boating Club (Fastest Mixed St Ayles); Newburgh Rowing Club, (second mixed St Ayles); Eastern Amateur Coastal Rowing Club (third mixed St Ayles) Queensferry (second Scottish-based male St Ayles) North Berwick Rowing Club, (first Scottish-based female St Ayles crew), Avoch Community Rowing Club, Firth of Clyde Coastal Rowing Club (First Junior crew); Broughty Ferry Boating (Median Trophy Winners); Orkney Rowing Club Sco47947 (fastest Shetland Yoal); Burghead Coastal Rowing Club (rudest pun name); Collieston Offshore Rowing Club; Isle of Seil Coastal Rowing Club; Stranraer Coastal Rowing Club; Chanonry Sailing Club.

Thank you to all those who took part in this international gathering, including our St Ayles communities in Australia, Northern Ireland and Netherlands. Full results available Here:…/fivemilesfromhome-wsr…/…

The post 5 Miles From Home first appeared on The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association.

Arran Regatta

Tue, 06/29/2021 - 09:53
A winning crew made up of ‘borrowed’ rowers from FOCCRs, Cumbrae, Prestwick and Arran – all in an Arran skiff. Photo, David Ingram, Arran Photography

Six Clyde clubs including Arran, Cumbrae, FOCCRs, Prestwick, Royal West and Troon took part in our scaled down Arran regatta which once again showed the camaraderie and friendship that our sport encourages. Six clubs with a maximum of ten rowers, three skiffs, eight races all drawn out of a hat, the only rule was that all crews had to be mixed. The weather was good the water flat calm and the racing was close. Troon were overall winners with Arran and Cumbrae in joint second. A big thankyou to Prestwick for bringing their skiff over which helped make the day a great success.

The first of many adult regattas to be able to take place this year in Scotland.

The post Arran Regatta first appeared on The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association.

Junior Muster at North Berwick

Wed, 06/23/2021 - 22:35

Achieving the impressive task of mustering twenty six teenagers on the beach by 10.00am on a Sunday morning was just the start of a fantastic day which marked a welcome return to inter-club rowing.

Eastern Amateur Rowing Club and South Queensferry travelled to our beautiful coastal waters in North Berwick to venture round the island of Craigleith in Enid Blyton style and take part in mini sprints round the bay.

The row in company saw five boats disappear round the harbour wall, the most skiffs seen together in North Berwick for over a year. Lizzie Cowan, from NBRC, who coxed a mixed club crew of girls thought she might need to fill in some awkward gaps in the conversation but her worries were unfounded when the girls readily chatted across a diverse set of topics including mascara, kittens and algebra during their row.

On returning to shore the junior rowers took on some refreshments, generously provided by the NBRC’s club mates, and studied the crew lists for the sprint course set up by North Berwick’s Robbie Wightman and Dave Davidson.

The girls went out first and Eastern’s crew showed their power and rowing style which gave them the advantage for a win against a North Berwick/South Queensferry mix. North Berwick’s older boys came out with the fastest time of the day in the next set of races with all three crews discovering how buoy turns work for the first time. The final races of the day saw NBRC younger boys coxed by Jacque Turner take the win over a South Queensferry/Eastern mixed crew that included some of the youngest rowers to take part.

The effort and determination of every crew was a delight to see and they were rewarded with a burst of sunshine during further refreshments and presentation of the beautiful medals made by the very creative Cowan family. Taking home your first coastal rowing medal is a memory to cherish.

Everyone agreed it was a delight to be back mixing with other clubs and seeing so many young people, the future of our clubs, leading the way.

This is our normal.

Claire Simpson

The post Junior Muster at North Berwick first appeared on The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association.


Tue, 06/15/2021 - 09:24

Peter Doyle, of the Royal Geelong Yacht Club in Australia, is delighted and very proud to have been invited by the Refugee Council of Australia to tell the story of the Geelong St Ayles Skiff project as THE launch event for ‘National Refugee Week’ along with the leader of the Syriac Community of Geelong, Mukhlis Habash and Syriac community member, Shahad Bahnan.

‘Baots (sic) are bridges between communities’

Mukhlis came from a very different place and culture, 30kms south-east of ISIS-headquarters in Mosul. He told Peter that the focus of engaging in building a beautiful boat together, and the warmth they received from everyone they met, was seminal for settling their community as was the partnership with Geelong’s (Muslim) Persian community. He said that the naming of the skiff ‘The Bride of Bakhdida’ after their home town, where his staunchly Maronite Catholic community survived for three years under ISIS, was deeply moving for them all.

Peter comments: “Syriac Iraqis and Iranians are desert people who’d never seen a boat before (and had/have no interest in rowing one, BTW!!!) but they absolutely ‘got it’ as a means of unifying their displayed community (of ~300) in a very strange country/culture.”

This project seems the quintessential proof statement of our St Ayles Skiff motto, ‘Communities build boats. Boats build communities.’

( … although Mukhlis says that because they so understood this statement “… we would have said ‘Yes’ if someone had suggested that we build an aeroplane or a submarine!”) 

That this will be the anchor of National Refugee Week is a clear recognition of the many and diverse contributions made by everyone in the community.

Go to to find out more about it, to book to attend the event online or to view the recording after Friday 18 June. 

Also, Neil Oliver’s ‘Coast – Australia’ featured one episode about Port Phillip Bay and Geelong, which spotlighted the build of ‘The Bride of Bahkdida’ with the Syriac community.  FInd it on a streaming service.

The post REFUGEES & SKIFFS first appeared on The Scottish Coastal Rowing Association.