Despite the grey blustery conditions last Saturday, Helford River Gig Club gathered to celebrate the completion and launch of their new wooden gig. Christened ‘Helford’ after her namesake, the first gig that the club ever owned, the boat was blessed by Bill Stuart-White, the Archdeacon of Cornwall. Also in attendance was Wendy Reading, Fund Manager, Sita Cornwall Trust, the organisation which assisted with the funds needed to purchase the new gig.
‘Helford’ was crafted by Dave Currah in Looe, who came along to the blessing with his wife Elaine. The gig was doused with champagne by club member Toddy before she took to the water. Dave Currah was given the pleasure of taking the helm as he coxed the current Ladies A crew as they took to the river in the new gig with the Archdeacon sitting in the bow.
‘She is a beautiful gig, very light, and ran really smoothly despite the windy conditions today’ explained Gill Ahearne, captain of Helford Ladies A. After having final preparations completed by members of the club ‘Helford’ will be shipped out to the Scillies over the next few weeks in preparation for her first real test, the annual World Pilot Gig Championships, which takes place the first weekend in May, where she will be rowed against over 130 other competing gigs.
Helford Gig Club runs allcomer sessions each Sunday morning launching from the beach in front of the Ferry Boat inn, Helford Passage. New rowers of all ages are always welcome, with more information available on the club’s website http://hrgc.co.uk .