The eagerly awaited launch of Exmouth Gig Club’s brand new training gig went ahead on Saturday 28th March, on a windswept Exmouth Beach.
The windy weather didn’t put off a great crowd assembling, made up of members of the Gig Club, family, friends, members from neighbouring Gig Clubs and local dignitaries.
Exmouth Gig Club committee members have worked hard towards a much needed second boat since their launch only 12 months ago. Part of the funding for the new training gig came from Devon County Council and the new addition to the club will help increase the capacity for the club to take on new members and offer the sport to more people around the Exe Estuary.
During the naming ceremony for the new Gig, Chairman Ben Atkinson praised their members, committee and supporters: ‘In the very short time of a year, what started with a handful of enthusiastic founder members had grown to a club of over 40 rowing members. This success is really testament to the way this great sport captures the imagination of coastal towns around our country and to the hard work that our small committee puts in to the club’
The Reverend James Hutchings then blessed the new Gig ‘Avocet’ which was the name voted for by the members and the public before the Gig was launched to row home to its base next to Camperdown Creek. The new fibreglass Avocet will be used for most of the club training while their traditional wooden Gig Rodney Bey will be rowed at events during the regatta season where only wooden Gigs can compete.
In a really exciting year for the club, which sees them compete in their first ever World Championships on the Scilly Isles on May 1st, the club also faces some challenges as it expands. Storage is their single biggest issue with the impending development of the Lavis’ boatyard where the Gigs are currently stored. ‘We are looking at all the options for places to base our club in the future and would welcome any ideas on where we could operate out of while the yard is developed into the Sea Cadets building.’
For more pictures visit our gallery.
Exmouth Gig Club welcomes new rowers and anyone keen to come and try Gig Rowing or get in touch can contact us via this website.