Dudley celebrates Let’s Get Rowing launch

On Sunday 1st June, Dudley Watersports Centre celebrated the official launch of its Let’s Get Rowing project – funded by British Rowing and the Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council.

With guests including local community groups, the Mayor of Dudley and British Rowing Deputy Chairman Gary Harris, the launch event provided free coaching opportunities and taster sessions using the Centre’s new Explore Rowing boats.

As well as the new boats, funding for the project has enabled the Centre to purchase new oars, racking and equipment for water rowing, as well as 15 indoor rowing machines – which have been placed in four local schools and a college – and a part-time coach, Matthew Brighton. The Centre has also won a Swift elite carbon single scull from Rowing Centre UK, which was presented to the Mayor on the day of the launch.

The aim of the Let’s Get Rowing project is to get more people active on and off the water. In its first six months, the project has seen more than 250 11-25-year-olds taking part in indoor rowing at local schools and colleges – many of whom are now taking their skills to the water with Dudley Watersports Centre.

As well as training up 10 new Rowing Leaders, the project has also set up three new satellite indoor rowing clubs at Ellowes and Ridgewood Schools and Stourbridge College.

Following the launch event, the Centre will now be offering free public water sessions – funded by the Council – which will take place on Mondays, Thursdays and Sundays and are already proving very popular. There will also be paid rowing courses, run by British Rowing staff.

“This is a great project, giving people the chance to get active and try rowing for the first time,” said Chris Farrell, British Rowing’s local Project Officer who has been working closely with Dudley Watersports Centre. “The support has been great so far in Dudley, and I imagine it will only get better and better.”

For more information about Dudley Watersports Centre, visit www.dudleywatersports.com/dudley-watersports-centre.

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