On the third day of January…

Jenny, Alan, Richard, Rob and Tom braved the predicted January weather but as Alan’s photos and words tell they were duly rewarded. 

“Although the twelve days of Christmas are not yet over it was good to shake off some of the festive excesses.  (Please don’t look too hard at the mince pies being devoured at Neatishead coffee break!)

As often happens, we were sharing the water with the fishermen, both parties being considerate of each other.  We apologised for disturbing their tranquility and maybe upsetting the fish but were reassured that sometimes our boat brings the fish up.  Then taught lines or what?  – a sizeable Pike caught and released, all within a minute (see photos).

Plenty of time spent sharing stories about our individual Christmases, ending with a good rowing workout on the way back.”


Looking at it is not going to get it in the water!


Ah, that’s better…IMG_9340.jpg

That is one of those great posts that suddenly rise up out of the water when you are not looking. Just like I said they did…IMG_9341.jpg

Taking on carbs at the mid-row stop…IMG_9342.jpg

It’ll probably just be an old boot…IMG_9345.jpg

Well there you go. A fine specimen… and the fish looks pretty good too!  Well caught, Sir.IMG_9349.jpg

How many times have we said it? If you make the effort to go out and have a row, the rewards tumble in.

Thanks to Alan and crew.

Welcome to 2017…

Amy took photos as she, her family and other early birds set out to enjoy the first row of the year.





Chilly, but beats a hangover and nostrils full of firework smoke!

Looking forward to another great year’s rowing in our two fine St Ayles skiffs.

Happy New Year to all.

Carrow Cup 2016…

Alan sets the scene on the river in Norwich, and he took the photos:

“It was a fun day out with many crews donning elaborate fancy dress.  Everyone pulling together, getting everything ready to launch.  Even the threatened rain kindly held off.  Before the start and outside the Red Lion we shared the loving cup or was it Robin’s home made Sloe Gin of the 2012 vintage, served from his father’s old hip flask!  The officials organised us well and flawless starts; Hoi Larntan crew were apparently very pleased with their flying start.  The race, even on an ebbing tide,  is longer than you think, especially as you row passed Carrow Yacht Club where we launched, and then realise you have to race for a further seven minutes.  And this is precisely where the energy and enthusiasm is beginning to drain and there are boats to overtake or boats to beat to the finish line!  Bluejacket pipped a Lower Thames craft to the finish line by perhaps two seconds.”

Results will be available later. In these notes Alan includes the stop off at the River Garden Public House for a little light refreshment.  

“Suitably rehydrated, we returned by boat to the Carrow Yacht Club and helped each other to get the boats out of the water and onto their road trailers for the homeward journeys.”

Getting ready:IMG_9313.jpg

The teams:IMG_9311.jpg

That man upside down again:IMG_9306.jpg

Gathering for the start with Kings Lynn:IMG_9321.jpg

Recovery – of boats:IMG_9328.jpg


Recovery – of people:IMG_9327.jpg

Say no more:IMG_9326.jpg

Well done all who took part.

Of ships and shoes and sealing wax…

Our tireless travellers Rosemary and Robin called in to Perth, Western Australia to check on the St Ayles skiff scene – as one does. Some thousands of kilometres across Australia in Victoria Robin managed to cadge an outing with the snappily-named Warrnambool St Ayles Skiff Community Rowing Club – who are planning to ship their boats down to Tasmania in February.

The weather at sea was unforgiving so a gentle row up the Merri River was in order. Even got the photo to prove it:


Meanwhile back in North Norfolk UK a strange event. While calmly rowing back across Barton Broad in pleasant sunshine a large object like a telegraph pole suddenly leapt up out the water right in front of Bluejacket. The cox’s re-actions were woefully inadequate and a nasty crunching noise was heard. Luckily this was not Tom’s ribs cracking as he was flung backwards on to bow’s legs! It was the sound of one of our beautiful oars giving in to a superior force.

Without wishing to name names, the photo of a well known kitchen and dog (below) may be a clue as to the identity of the above-mentioned cox! Repairs under way:



As a reminder of our foray into the realms of competitive racing at the Skiffie Worlds on Strangford Lough near Belfast in the Summer, a few survivors gathered for a light supper…


Or, maybe, that should be a dark supper?

The antidote…

Trump, Brexit, Ed Balls leaves Strictly and Norwich come second in their game on Saturday!!

Fear not, we have the answer to gloom and doom: row at sunny Barton!

Alan tells the tale of Saturday’s row:

“The enthusiasm of Alan, Amy, Barry, Catherine and Diana outweighed the small drops of rain while launching at 10 o’clock today

We all took turns as cox, stroke, seat 3, seat 2 and bow.  After the initial rusty start and some practice dipping the oars in time with stroke, the team started pulling together.  We enjoyed gliding through the recovery stage of the row cycle!  Eventually when we found our rhythm we even enjoyed the drive part and were hitting the catch point together.

Picnic at How Hill gave opportunity to take team photos and exchange stories.  Best story has to go to Catherine’s turning up to a dinner party with a newborn pig in tow!

It has to be said that the row back with Catherine and Diana taking it in turns as cox and stroke got the best out of the team.

Amy spotted the Kingfisher, which does appear in the photograph but it has just taken to flight!”

That which has to be done…


With the paper-work sorted, heading out across the Broad with a patch of blue sky.


Relaxing and serene.


Errrr? No comment:


No prizes, but can you spot the kingfisher?


Tidying up afterwards:


Again I have to admit – No comment!!


If you haven’t tried rowing at Barton, well….!


P.S. Thanks to all who came to turn the boat on Saturday – first coat of varnish on.

All in a day’s work…

A good team turned up to help lift Hoi Larntan on to the building frame and then turn her over. Before I had time to say “Put the kettle on…” five pairs of hands were feverishly working away with sandpaper.

Someone had to tidy up…always pays to get a man who can handle machinery!



Brief stop for a cup of Andrea’s delicious tea (and a biscuit) then on with the undercoat…


Thanks to all who helped today.

If we are going to make it to the Carrow Cup we shall need to turn her over again next Saturday (26th), so more help please. I know one or two are away, but please come at 14:00 if you can, just to help turn. After that it’s varnishing and touching up the blue and yellow.


A little birdie tells me our friends at Wells are ready to fit the stems to their now fully- planked hull. Good news!