top of page


Rowing Club

Mail white small
Twitter white small
Facebook square white small

T: 01952 432798

WhatsApp Image 2024-02-25 at 12.09.36 (1).jpeg
WhatsApp Image 2024-02-25 at 12.09.24.jpeg

Ironbridge Junior Squad Coaching Team Presented The High Sheriff's award for Outstanding Service to the Community of Shropshire.

On Sunday 25th February 2024, the High Sheriff of Shropshire presented the Junior Coaching Team with the High Sheriff's award for Outstanding Service to the Community of Shropshire. The award recognised the hard work carried out by the coaching team to restablish junior rowing at Ironbridge after COVID.


In September 2022 they started by contacting a list of previous junior members, but only 4 returned to join the squad with these being 2 WJ18 females, 1 WJ17 female and 1 J15 male. A local recruitment in October 2022 saw the addition of 4 more junior members in the form of 2 J15 males, 1 WJ12 female and 1 J17 male. Making a total of 8 junior rowers for the club. In March 2023, they ran a local Learn 2 Row course that engaged with juniors from a wide ranging social economic background. With rowing often being seen as an elite sport, part of the engagement plan was to introduce juniors to a sport they may never have considered before. A further Learn 2 Row was held in September 2023 with another one planned for April 2024. They are also hoping to engage with local schools in 2024 across Shropshire to promote the sport of rowing.

The result of this was the addition of almost 20 new juniors to the squad. Now numbering 27 juniors in total from all over Shropshire; including Minsterley, Cressage, Much Wenlock, Ironbridge and Telford, it also brought in new members from as far as Wolverhampton. Promoting not only the club but Ironbridge as a whole and the county of Shropshire. Training every week over the whole year on Monday and Wednesday evening and all morning on Sunday, the squad has raced at events with the most recent win being for the J15 quad at Bewdley Regatta in 2023 in only their second ever race. They have also recruited 3 more coaching assistants in the form of Edward Dugdale, Mat White and Matt Fletcher.

Whilst this alone is well worth recognition for the coaching team as part of the community award, it does not stop there. The coaching team faced with a surge in members and a lack of boats have worked tirelessly on grants for new equipment, securing a Rowing Foundation Grant to buy two new single sculls, and through contacts in the rowing community managed to secure 2 older quad sculls and a double scull to be able to recruit new members into the squad. In 2024 the squad will be taking part in the West Midlands Team Junior Inter Regional Trials with the view to qualifying to represent the West Midlands Region at the British Rowing Junior Inter Regional Regatta in April 24 at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham. Stewart, Mike and Simon are also often found working on the older boats to bring them up to speed for the juniors to be able to race in them and maintain them. With a new boat costing more than £15,000 it is vital that older boats are maintained and fixed, often with long hours spent in the cold weather to keep the fleet of junior boats afloat.

Stewart, Simon, Sandra and Elizabeth are also full-time racing members of Ironbridge Rowing Club, training themselves on Tuesday, Thursday evening and Saturday morning. In 2023, Stewart and Simon went on to win 2 events for ironbridge Rowing Club on top of coaching the juniors. Stewart also arranged for BBC West Midlands to cover the Junior Rowers as part of Ironbridge Regatta 2023, which saw a new report on prime-time BBC One promoting the club and squad.

Junior Squad Co-Captain Christie said “Without the countless hours of support and huge personal investment from the coaching team, rowing at Ironbridge would have ceased to exist. We now have a junior squad that can compete all over the UK and it has brought not only juniors back to the river, but also allowed us to form friendships with people we would never have known without the junior squad.”

Emily, a returning WJ18 member who went to Cambridge University in September 2023, said “The work of the coaches enabled me to go straight into rowing at Cambridge as part of my college and I even had my first race for them in October. Without the work of Simon, Stewart, Liz and Sandra I would never have been able to go on to enjoy rowing at university. The work they did to bring back rowing at ironbridge is amazing.”

Junior Rowing

Arrow white large

Register your interest now by completing the Join Us form

bottom of page