Lucy Lloyd |

‘My aspiration is that pupils grow to love rowing like I do’

Ciarán Longmore coaches at Gorse Boat Club and is passionate about introducing as many juniors to the sport, whatever their background. Lucy Lloyd from Junior Rowing News finds out more

We all remember our first day at the boathouse. After all, for many, it’s a formative moment. Some of us simply found ourselves awestruck by the racks of sleek shells that seemed to stretch up to the sky and beyond, whilst others took a moment to reflect on the glistening waters of the local lake or river. As time progresses, the everyday fascination with the building may fade, but the camaraderie and collaborative nature of the sport continues to light our lives.

This passion and principle of unity inspired the founding of the Gorse Boat Club in September 2016 as a partnership between Row Leeds and the Gorse Academies Trust.

The boat club boasts an enviably simple aim: to get as many students involved in rowing as possible regardless of experience or ability. With five secondary academies and one post-16 college, in normal times almost 3,500 pupils experience indoor rowing for eight weeks each year. If they enjoy it, they can then try indoor racing and progress to Gorse’s on-water programme, with the most promising rowers moving to the elite squad at Elliott Hudson College.

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