|Canoeists float their boats for Christmas dinner|
25 canoeists kicked off the Christmas season with a splash by kayaking the Oxford to Cambridge Boat Race course for Christmas dinner.
Wearing Santa outfits, the Putney Bridge Canoe Club members paddled the four-mile course from Barn Elms to The Ship pub in Mortlake, on Sunday 27th of November. It was a choppy start but the river became calmer as the wind dropped beneath Barns Bridge.
The Ship pub, built in 1781, is best known for being the pub at the end of the Boat Race.
Upon arrival, the kayaks were stacked in the beer garden, while the canoeists enjoyed a three-course meal in the warmth of the pub.
Once the sun had gone down and the tide had turned, the canoeists returned to Barn Elms, paddling on the inky black Thames; a flotilla of little boats, each lit with white lights and some wrapped in strings of colourful Christmas lights, reflecting on the water.
Chairman of PBCC, Geoffrey Onyett, organised the event several months ago, planning it to coincide with the tides.
Mr Onyett said ”We needed an incoming tide to help us reach The Ship by 1pm for the Christmas dinner and an outgoing tide for the return journey after dark. The Ship is a good location, distance wise, from the club's base at Barn Elms for a kayaking trip suitable for all abilities. It has very good food at a good price, professional staff, nobody was given the wrong dinner and everyone enjoyed it.”
Putney Bridge Canoe Club has eighty-five members and is based at Barn Elms.
The River Within - Thames source to sea
Follow my photographic exploration of the Thames from source to sea from a kayak