Monmouth Rowing Club announces passing of president Alec Woods

Alec Woods

It is with great regret that Monmouth Rowing Club has announced the passing of club president Alec Woods on Sunday 2 October 2011, in a room overlooking his beloved Wye Valley – where he came to live in the 1970s. 

His 35-year association with Monmouth RC saw him fill many roles, including captain and chairman. It’s fair to say that without his support in so many ways, the club would not be in the healthy, thriving condition it enjoys today.

Alec wasn’t one to talk about his achievements, but as a soldier in World War II, he fought at the battle of Arnhem, and after being captured, spent nine months in a German prisoner of war camp, escaping twice.

He went on to parachute jump with the Arnhem vets into his late 70s.

After the war, Alec then enjoyed a long career in the oil industry, serving in Persia and Singapore before settling in the Wye Valley, and luckily for us, joining the club.

For those with long memories, a legendary night at the club in 1979 saw Alec uncork copious bottles of champagne to celebrate the club’s West of England Challenge Vase win at Bristol Regatta, and there were many other memorable nights along the way.

As well as rowing and coaching, Alec was unceasing in his support for Welsh rowing – thinking nothing of towing fully laden trailers half way across Europe and to Ireland and Scotland, and occupying the position of Honoury Vice President on the Welsh Rowing board.

It was fitting that, at the time of his passing, the Monmouth RC boat carrying his name was out on the water on the most beautiful of mornings.

The funeral is at Dixton Church beside the River Wye at 12 noon on Friday, October 14, followed by a reception at Monmouth RC. Please contact Nick Hartland if you plan to attend.

Nick Hartland

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