Posted 27 February 2015
Despite no water to call their own, the Harper Adams University Rowing Club is going from strength to strength, recently securing a permanent place to train on the River Severn.
There has long been an interest in the sport at the university in Shropshire, but due to a lack of natural facilities, students have only been able to train on land or occasionally on water.
Now, members are able to train three times a week on the water, as part of Pengwern Boat Club on the River Severn in Shrewsbury.
Having rowed for more than five years at home, second year student James Plumb was keen to formalise the club and improve its training regime, once he joined Harper Adams.
The 21-year-old, a qualified level two coach, said: “Students have been training on land for around a year, but we wanted to set up a formal arrangement for actually training on water, and therefore establish a permanent club.
“We have members of all ages from across all courses both male and female. You don’t need to have a sporting background, just a passion to try something new.
“Being able to train at Pengwern has overcome the barrier of there being no open water near to the campus, so it has been great to be able to establish good links with the boat club and formalise our training.”
Training takes place on Monday evenings and Wednesday and Friday mornings. There is also an opportunity to train indoors on Wednesday afternoons on campus.
The club has also arranged a race against Lady Margaret Hall College in Oxford, taking place on March 11.
James, a BSc (Hons) Agriculture with Farm Business Management student from Eye in Peterborough, said: “The early morning training sessions don’t deter us, and we fit them around lectures specifically.
“We welcome any new members, particularly those interested in perhaps trying out being a cox. Just contact myself or Andy Jefferies from Student Services.”
Student Services Support Officer for Sports, Societies and Participation, Mr Jefferies, said: “It’s great to see the rowing club establish their formal base, it’s been a tough process but the students have shown time and time again that they’re determined to get the club going.
“The exec team are in a fantastic position to boost the club to new heights with the upcoming race against Oxford and secure Harper Adams’ place in one of the most popular university sports.”