Chairman’s Waffle

It’s been a terrible winter. Since the last Trasher hardly a drop of water has fallen from the sky and the rivers have been dry. As a club members have only been able to do; the Gene17 APWE weekend at the Dart, a couple of Dart Trips, a Teifi Trip, a Tryweryn Trip, a First Aid course, a trip to the Cardiff White Water Course, a Coaching Symposium and  several presentation evenings. Plus the normal Abingdon, Sutton Courtenay and other Thames rambles. Okay maybe it wasn’t all that bad really, and I might have missed a few things.
Anyway now spring is here, the evenings grow longer and hopefully as the temperature improves it’s time to start thinking about our programme for the rest of the year. Regular Wednesday evening sessions start up again as soon as the clocks go forward and Louise is running a 2 star course from the 28th March. The annual beginners courses starton Tuesday 8th and Thursday 10th May, again Louise is organising these. Later in the year the improver’s course will start on Thurs 9th Aug.
Add in to the mix the Blastathon (12th May this year), Triathlon and beginners BBQ the calendar begins to look quite full, and that’s not including the various foreign trips lined up! Most of these events will be based from our hut at Wilsham Road and of course we aren’t the only users of our site, or indeed the river in Abingdon, and this year is going to be especially busy.
The Army Rowing Club will have an increased presence in Abingdon this year as they move their main operations to the site that we share with them until their new base is ready next year. Can I ask that everyone keeps in mind that we are not the only users of the site and doesn’t get surprised or offended if they find a large contingent of army rowers on site when they go down there.
To help make the site more usable a large amount of ground work has been done to provide extra parking space and make more space generally. Parking is now on the left hand side (next to the Sailing Club). Additionally we have set up an on-line calendar along with Abingdon and the Army Rowing clubs, Abbey Sailing Club, and Pathfinders to keep track of activities on our site and the water. You can find this here:
If there are any events that you want added to the calendar let Louise or myself know. The other clubs will be updating it so hopefully we can avoid events clashing where possible.
Looking at the calendar you can see we have our regular Sunday sessions marked in it. These seem to have fallen by the wayside lately, which seems a shame really as they are great for those members who want a gentle paddle along the Thames or maybe a little bash in the weir at the weekend. So is there any appetite to these up and running a bit more regularly, and would anyone like to step up to organise them?
Moving on, we’ve some encouraging news regarding the proposed hydro-scheme at Abingdon Weir and the lease of our site. The former has been obliged to take the concerns of paddlers into account in their plans so we’re currently working with them to get an outcome where the hydro-scheme and paddlers can co-exist happily. And it looks like at long last the legal and bureaucratic hurdles have been cleared and we should have a formal lease in place soon.
Finally (though I haven’t seen it yet) thanks to Guy for another smashing edition of the Trasher. And please everyone if you’ve been out paddling share it with the club by sending a note to Guy. It doesn’t need to be more that a couple of paragraphs long but it would be great to see people sharing their paddling exploits with the club.