There are plans to reintroduce the dam at Strathclyde Park to create an open-swimming area. We have been assured by Scottish Rowing that this will have NO IMPACT on rowing at the park. We will continue to provide any updates over the coming weeks as we receive them.

For those that have not yet seen the article can do so below


Merry Christmas to all our members, families and friends. We would also like to thank everyone for their support through 2014 and wish you all a happy New Year and all the best for 2015. 

We look forward to seeing you soon

Strathclyde Park Rowing Club


History was made in early September with the introduction of this new event held on the Forth and Clyde canal at Auchenstarry. A number of our Juniors took part with some of them racing for their schools and some the club.

Hamilton Grammar School recorded its first ever crew boat win when Jennifer Ord and Rosie Payne sculled strongly in the Schoolgirls under 16 event. The girls were joined by Cara McSherry and Emily Weir in the under 16 quad event in division 2 to win a second set of pennants.

Well done to all who took part and performed well! It was a challenge after so little water time over the summer months and a reward for the Sunday trips to Castle Semple.

The Scotland Rowing Team produced its best ever performance at the 2014 Home International Regatta in Cork, Ireland, winning gold medals in a record 17 events as well as taking the senior men’s and women’s matches and the overall team event. On the 2nd of November, Ailie Ord and Gillian Connal travelled to London to take part in the Veteran Fours Head. This event featured approximately 200 crews from Vet A-G and comprised of coxed/coxless fours and quads. Ailie and Gillian joined up with fellow Scots Sally Pollok-Morris (Reading) and Claire Halley (Marlow)in a Vet B Quad. The crew rowed strongly overtaking the majority of women's crews in front of them. This was a great sign which resulted in the crew not only winning WVetB 4x but also being the fastest women's crew of the day, coming 21st overall.

Scottish Rowing has enjoyed a very successful year winning the Home International Regatta in Cork and topping the medal table at the Commonwealth Rowing Championships, so the Scottish Rowing Awards were always going to be hotly contested this year. The Scottish Rowing Awards were presented on Saturday the 25th of October at the Millennium Copthorne Hotel in Aberdeen.
After dinner speeches were led by Scottish Rowing President Mike Morrice. Commonwealth Rowing Champion Lewis McCue toasted a wonderful year for Scottish Rowing. Lewis particularly thanked the Team Manager, coaches and support staff for giving them the platform to go out and perform at the highest level. The reply from Scott Meenagh, British Armed Forces Rowing Team Captain at the recent Invictus Games and SPRC member, was equally inspiring and he spoke of the positive impact rowing has had on his recovery and his pride in representing his country at a sport he has become passionate about.

The Award for Masters Rower of the Year was won by Aillie Ord of Strathclyde Park Rowing Club, who has competed far and wide again this year picking up Gold medals at the Scottish Championships, the British Masters, the European Masters and Henley Masters.

The Scotland Rowing Team produced its best ever performance at the 2014 Home International Regatta in Cork, Ireland, winning gold medals in a record 17 events as well as taking the senior men’s and women’s matches and the overall team event.

With ‘Flower of Scotland’ belting out and the Scottish Saltire making a regular appearance on the podium at the National Rowing Centre at Farran Wood, the Scottish team built up some momentum and local rowers Gillian Connal (Strathclyde Park Rowing Club) and Graham Ord (Edinburgh University / Strathclyde Park Rowing Club) succeeded in their respective events, the women’s and men’s coxed fours.  Both crews were out in front by 1km gone and held on to win their races comfortably, beating the other home nations and stamping Scotland’s authority on the rest of the field.

Natalie Irvine (Strathclyde Park Rowing Club) was joined by Sam Fowler, Karen Bennett (both Molesey), and Rowan McKellar (Broxbourne RC) to race the women’s coxless four.  This produced one of the performances of the day to completely leave the rest of the field for dead in the first 1,000 metres, allowing the Scots to take control of the race and paddle in to the finish line over 10 seconds clear of their nearest rivals, England.

Scotland was also represented in the mixed trunk and arms single sculls event by Scott Meenagh of Strathclyde Park Rowing Club and the former Paratrooper from Cumbernauld, who lost both of his legs in Afghanistan, demonstrated his fighting spirit to overcome the 22 second head start granted to his female opposition, to win by clear water in 4 minutes and 21 seconds and set a new personal best by over 20 seconds.

Going into the ‘big boat’ races following the afternoon break, Scotland had already attained enough points to secure the senior women’s overall title having won 6 of the 8 races earlier in the day. The senior men had a 2 point lead over the hosts Ireland to defend but with a win in the quadruple scull, it was all over for the other nations.

With both senior titles in the bag, the final two races of the day became more of an exhibition with bragging rights at stake for both the men’s and women’s team. The women’s eight (featuring Gillian Connal and Natalie Irvine, and coached by SPRC’s Fraser Quinn) came down the course first and true to form had all but won the race by the half-way point, cruising through the finish line with clear water to spare and in doing so ensuring that every member of the 13-strong women’s team picked up a winners medal on the day.

The men’s eight (featuring Graham Ord)  were not to be outdone and in the final race of an excellent championships, the crew from Edinburgh University burst out of the blocks intent on leaving their mark on the day.  They crossed the finish line in first place to complete an historic day for the Scotland Rowing Team.

There were a sense of real pride throughout the whole team as it was the first time since 2002 and 2006 respectively that Scotland had won the overall senior men’s and women’s titles and the first time since 1990 that both had been won in the same year. 


From June 14 to July 23 the Queen's Baton Relay will travel around Scotland, inviting everyone to be part of the excitement, celebrations and countdown to the Commonwealth Games. Our very own Ailie Ord has been chosen to run with the Baton next Sunday June 22nd.

Ailie will be carrying the baton on Muir Street, Hamilton (A72 - main road from Furlongs roundabout to west of Asda) from lamp post L28 to R16. R16 is located just at junction with Lower Auchengramont Road. They didn't identify the start point but believe it will be approx 200m uphill so somewhere near the Furlong roundabout. We are trying to get people together to cheer Ailie on and WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT!! If you are available between 6 and 7 can you let Alistair or Mary know as they are trying to get as many people as possible and arrange a crossed blades arch for Ailie to run through.


On 31st May/1st June, the Scottish Rowing Championships were held at Strathclyde Park.  Slightly earlier than normal due to the Commonwealth Games Triathlon event, the Championships saw a new format being piloted.  Following success at British Championships, the pilot for singles and pairs was aimed at raising the profile of the Championships and providing a better, more competitive racing experience for all participants. It meant that all singles and all pairs from Junior 16 through to Open would compete in a time trial and then be seeded into semis and finals, to have some more nail-biting racing than before.

A number of Strathclyde Park Rowing Club members, ages 15 – 51, took part in this new format and showed strong determination and stamina across the event.  Following successful time trials in the women’s single event, both Gillian Connal and Natalie Irvine reached the A Final and came 4th and 5th respectively (out of over 50) – hopefully a good sign for Scottish selection later this month.  In addition, in the pairs event, Natalie joined up with Sam Fowler (Molesey Boat Club) and Gillian with Ailie Ord (SPRC) to once again show strength on home turf.  Having reached the A Final, both crews set off in one of their toughest races yet and it was the composite crew of Natalie and Sam who pushed through the pack and took Gold, claiming the title of Scottish Champions.

On the Saturday, a number of our others crews were very successful with the women’s Veteran B-D Quadruple Scull of Ailie Ord, Eva Rankin (Loch Lomond), Julie Marshall and Liz Davidson sculling strongly to pull through the pack and take gold ahead of fellow SPRC members and a Castle Semple crew.  Ailie continued this winning streak jumping in the Women’s Open Quad with Natalie, Gillian and Edinburgh University rower, Liz Crighton, to power home comfortably and take the Scottish title (retaining the title for Strathclyde Park Rowing Club).

Not to be outdone by the ladies, Tom Hewitt joined up with Clydesdale Amateur Rowing Club friends to record a number of successful results.  Due to a lack of competition of a similar age, Tom and Les Johnston gave up their handicap to race against much younger competitors in the Veteran B-D Pair and held off a number of crews to clinch silver.  This was then followed up by a strong row to again hold off young guns and win the Veteran Eight title.  Tom’s final event was again with Les and the two had no trouble in winning yet another gold in the Veteran E-G Double Scull.

On the Sunday, it was time for our younger members to show what they were made of.  A new crew of Cara McSherry, Emily Weir, Rosie Payne and Castle Semple member, Elspeth Grant, coxed by Rebecca Scott, pushed through to take home a very well deserved Silver in the WJ14 Coxed Quadruple Scull.  Rosie then headed out by herself to compete in the WJ14 Singles event – having already won at Strathclyde Park Regatta in April and Clydesdale Regatta hopes were high for one of our youngest members.  And she didn’t disappoint!  Rosie, rowing for Hamilton Grammar School, stormed home and took the Gold, a clear 6 seconds ahead of her nearest competitor.  

The day didn’t end there for the club, with another two golds on their way.  In the Veteran double sculls event, Ailie Ord and Liz Davidson gave away their age handicap to start alongside the younger Veteran C crews.  This experienced crew led the field comfortably and had no issues in winning yet another Scottish title for the club.  Not to be outdone, Natalie Irvine and Gillian Connal headed off to compete in the Women’s Double Scull in a bid to retain their title from 2013.  Although down on their nearest competitors at the start, the pair got into their rhythm and took back the distance stroke by stroke.  With 500m to go, there were two crews in the fight for the title – SPRC and Edinburgh University.  However, Gillian and Natalie used their experience and pushed to the finish, retaining their title in a nail-biting finish.

Although there was a lot of success on the water, the club was having success in the tea tent catering for the regatta and providing hot and cold food and drink to the Scottish Rowing Community.  Once again, thanks to the huge number of volunteers, Jamie Chapman Butchers and ScotMid, the club raised over £3,000 to help pay for water use fees, storage and equipment to keep the club going from strength to strength.


On 17th May 2014, a SPRC contingent, primarily juniors, headed into Glasgow to race on the Clyde as part of Clydesdale Amateur Rowing Club’s annual summer sprint regatta.  This saw crews racing over 500m or 1500m in one-on-one racing.  The crews competed strongly with crews advancing to semis and finals in a number of events.

Particular success was had by our Novice Junior Coxed quad of Ewan Bradley, Cara O’Donnell, Nathalie Seagrave and Katie Watt (coxed by Makayla Francis) who won their event with a strong row down the home straight.   Also victorious was the Women’s Novice Coxed Quad of Rowan Duffy, Emily Weir, Cara O’Donnell and Ruth Ferguson (who had to be substituted by Jenny Ord in the final due to injury).  The composite crew of Claire O’Toole and Megan Connelly (Castle Semple) progressed through various rounds of the J18 double scull to win this event, a great result in advance of Scottish Championships.  Then it was the turn of our single scullers.  Jenny Ord, one of our more experienced junior rowers, held off her competition in the finishing straight to win the J16 single.  This was closely followed by Rosie Payne, who again showed her determination in winning the J14 event.


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