• York Rotary

Stylish Finish To 2021 Dragon Boats

Updated: Nov 18

Brian J reports...



The traditional “finish” to our Dragon Boat Challenge event is the formal presentation of the trophies and certificates, and it was a great feeling to be doing this again after last year’s “hiatus”.

Over 60 people attended the event on November 10th at the Mansion House, generously hosted by the Lord Mayor of York and his Consort. Also present was the Sheriff, Ashley Mason and his consort.

Representatives from 20 of the competing teams were there to see the 2021 Challenge Trophy received by 2 Signal Regiment, represented by Robert Hitchmough and Ryan Barker.


(pictured left)





The Lord Mayor, Rev Cllr Chris Cullwick, also presented trophies to A B Graphic International, Merchant Taylors, HQ1(UK) Division and Family Fund, the latter picking up the popular “Tailenders Trophy” as the slowest team on the river!


Jon Bell and Jim Loft (A B Graphics) - right

Peter Moody and Jo Wright (Merchant Taylors)



President David was delighted to present a certificate (and donation to their charity) to the Merchant Adventurers team, represented by Alastair Barron and Jim Richardson, who despite this being their first year in the event, topped the fundraising charts having raised over £6,000 in sponsorship – a fantastic achievement. Several other teams were noted as having raised £2,500 or over, a tremendous effort by all.



Jim Richardson (l) and Alastair Barron (3rd from left)

from Merchant Adventurers


The “Best Dressed” award was then presented to York in Recovery whose team (York in Rowcovery) had dressed as bees on the day. Mark Green and Hope Matthews were visibly delighted to collect their trophy.

As well as the trophy winners, we had representatives from this year’s Rotary Nominated Charities, namely SASH and The Hut. Each received a cheque for £11,000, the initial payment of their share of the sponsorship money raised by all the teams.


left: Catherine Porter and Emma Little (The Hut)





In total, this year’s event will raise over £74,000 for local charities, with 27 charities – nominated by the teams taking part – benefitting.



Jo Stevens and Linsey Trower (SASH)

Considering the difficulties of running the event this year, particularly the impact of COVID on the teams’ ability to gather teams together and the communication challenges, plus the delay from July to September, we are delighted with such a successful result.


The gathering was also the opportunity to announce the Rotary Nominated Charities for the 2022 event, taking place on Sunday July 10th.

These are Antibiotic Research UK – a very topical subject for which this York-based charity supports Antibiotic Resistance research funding and promotes public awareness - and Accessible Arts and Media, who provide sensory and musical experience for the disabled, with amazing positive results and benefits.






Prof Colin Garner and Vicki Joughin





We heard a brief summary of the work of these charities from Professor Colin Garner, who founded Antibiotic Research, and from Kirsty Halliday from AA&M.





Kirsty, Lewis, Kirstie and Rose from AA&M

The positive and fun atmosphere of the evening was greatly enhanced by a wonderful buffet spread prepared by Hazel Hart, with assistance from her niece. Many thanks to them for the work they put in to make this happen.


Our thanks also to the Civic Party, who have been fully engaged with this year’s Dragon Boats event at all stages, for their support and their generosity in providing the Mansion House location for this great evening.

And thanks to all the Dragon Boat team members who helped make the evening run so smoothly!





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