Return to rowing update

Club captain Anne P writes: No doubt you’ve seen the slightly unexpected, but welcome news that rowing can resume!

The RTR Subgroup met yesterday and the Shed is nearly ready for a return to boat maintenance in the first instance, and soon a return to rowing for those who want to do so.

Rowing will, unfortunately, feel very different to before, with the social element that we all enjoy absent – no bacon rolls or coffee in the Shed yet.  However, we will be back on the water and that is great news!

The Return to Rowing Group and Committee are busy working out how to implement the SCRA advice on the return to rowing and to get new procedures out to you all.  It may be a little while yet, but please be patient with us.  We’ve spoken with a number of other clubs to share approaches and we are all working hard to make this work!

As usual, we will be relying on the goodwill of our skippers to enable boats to go out, and our coxes to make sure our skippers also get to row! However, no one, skippers, coxes or rowers, should feel any pressure to do anything you are not comfortable with.  

Most of all, we will be relying on every member who goes out to follow all the rules and guidance we put in place.  We may have to adjust them as we go along, and if you any feedback, it will be welcome.  Please remember that there are a group of people working extremely hard behind the scenes on this (with all the other demands they have on their time), and that it is not an easy task – be honest, but kind in your comments!

A reminder of happy rows past and those still to come -a cheery crew tackled Loch Lomond in September last year. Photo by Douglas Carse

Baby Lass going to Zambia

Peter writes: A friend asked me if I knew of any second hand boats as he had a neighbour, Pota Kalima, who is a bacteriologist originally from Zambia and working in Edinburgh. Pota is working on a project to build a new clinic in a remote part of the country. Any patient who requires more than basic treatment has to be taken to the nearest hospital by dugout canoe.

The canoe being used at present. Picture courtesy of Pota Kalima

I mentioned Baby Lass, thinking it would be too small, but Pota is delighted with it and is researching a suitable outboard motor for it. He should be taking it away in the next few weeks.

A rare image of Baby Lass in action: Mike McD is placing a dummy for the crew to use for their Man Overboard drill. Photo by Louise Innes

Thanks to Stuart Ridge, who donated the wee boat to the Club. It was originally owned by Stewart Hutchison, who lives on Dundas Estate. I hope you will all agree that this is a good way to see Baby Lass off, as its future was uncertain. Thanks too, to the Committee who approved the plan.

Clicking on this link gives some information, but the ‘Just Giving’ page is inactive. Pota is working on a Facebook page which will take donations, so when I have that I will share it with you.

Update from Peter: Baby Lass started her journey to Zambia on 4 September. I met with Dr Pota Kalima, his wife Maria also Dr Kalima, Stuart Ridge, Mike McDowall and Neil McKinley of the Rotary who had put Pota in touch with us. In between heavy rain showers Mike took some ‘happy snaps’ then we wheeled the wee boat along to the car park to await the courier. She is being taken to Portsmouth then loaded with other goods and equipment for Pota’s Clinic Project onto a shipping container for Africa. Pota will keep us informed. Thanks to Mike for refurbishing the oars.

Peter, Neil, Pota, Stuart

Constitution and EGM

Tansy, on behalf of the club secretary, writes: As agreed at our 2019 AGM, the committee have made some amendments to the club constitution. The new constitution is attached to this email and you will find the changes highlighted in green.

As you will appreciate, the usual governance processes for the club are complicated by the fact that we cannot as yet meet in person. The committee have explored the alternatives and decided that this vote and the following meeting to formalise the result should be done with a Survey Monkey poll and a Zoom meeting.

The links for both the survey and the Zoom meeting have been sent via email.

QRC “virtual shed” back in April. Thanks to Val, these meetings are still happening, 10am on Saturdays

As the constitution requires for this kind of change, there will be an Extraordinary General Meeting on Thursday 27th August 7.30pm via Zoom. We ask all our members who are able, to attend this short meeting to present the result of the poll.

We recognise that this move to digital proceedings might exclude some club members who do not have internet access, so if you know of any members who would require a postal vote instead, please let myself or another member of the committee know. Also, if anyone is unfamiliar with Zoom or worried about the technical aspect, please let us know – we are here to help each other.

We hope that lots of you will be able to attend the EGM on the 27th August, as it will provide a ‘rehearsal’ opportunity for the AGM on 27th October. It will also be nice to see everyone’s faces!

NOTE: The duly amended constitution can be accessed by clicking here.

ON THIS DAY – Episode 7

The as-it-happened story of how our club was born, ten years ago.

Mike (with help from Sheena and Peter) writes: We held the third meeting of SCRP -Q on the evening of 9 July. Peter told us we had £720 in the kitty, thanks to a further donation from Rotary Club and a cheque from Ranald and Sheena – all as reported in the J&G (see below). With enough for a deposit, he had mailed Alec Jordan to order our kit, putting Queensferry 16th on the list.

In the previous month we had sent letters to all businesses asking for donations. Mike and Stuart had spent a lunchtime session at the High School with the display boards and got a lot of interest from the students about the project. We had further discussion with Scotmid, offering us a 3 month lease with one month extension, but we still had to find out if QCRP – Q could get rates relief. Mel had finalised the agreed constitution and we were now in a position to open a bank account.

Graham L agreed to look into getting a website up and running (queensferryrowing.org) and we all agreed to go down to Eyemouth on 11th to witness the launch of ‘Unity’.