September saw the launch of “Cruachan”, a new skiff to join the existing “Mingulay” skiff in Kilchrenan, Inverinan and Dalavich Coastal Rowing Club (KIDS). A successful grant application to the Carraig Gheal Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund resulted in £4,090 being awarded allowing completion of the project.
Gordon Leveratt, an ex-submarine commander who has managed the project said, “A brief period of sunshine occurred in Argyll at Tervine, Loch Awe, on Sunday 1 September, and the Kilchrenan, Inverinan and Dalavich Coastal Rowing Club (KIDS) seized the opportunity to launch their new skiff “Cruachan” for the first time.
The addition of this second St Ayles skiff was only possible because earlier this year KIDS was extremely fortunate to win both a “Scottish National Lottery Awards for All” grant enabling the bare wood boat to built by the Tall Ship, Riverside, Glasgow; and Green Power’s Carraig Gheal Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund grant enabling the boat to be beautifully finished and made operational with new oars, trailer and lifejackets for the crew.
“Cruachan” now joins her sister skiff “Mingulay” and the two boats will now enable KIDs to increase it’s membership, further strengthen community relationships in this rural part of Argyll and help everyone, regardless of their physical or mental ability, to achieve their potential in the extremely popular sport of coastal rowing. On 21 September, both “Cruachan” and “Mingulay” entered the Castle to Crane (C2C) race up the Clyde starting at Sandpoint Marina opposite Dumbarton Castle and finishing at Finnieston Crane in the centre of Glasgow.
“Cruachan” had an all ladies crew in the Open entry and with new light weight oars purchased with Carraig Gheal grant money was the 24th skiff to start in a field of 75 and finished in just under 31/2 hours which for a first time was very respectable. The all men’s crew in “Mingulay” started 70th and were 5 minutes faster though rowing into a stiff head wind during the later stages of the race. This too was a respectable time though there is much to do to compete with the better crews which came all over the UK and even abroad to participate in a challenging event.
Now that that KIDS has experienced the excitement of its first competitive event we want to enter more regattas. Meanwhile, our priority is to try to get permission to build a boat shed somewhere where we can safely store both skiffs and avoid having to tow them a significant distance to launch them.”
The next round of funding for main grants from the Carraig Gheal Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund opens on 1st November 2019 with further information available on the Carraig Gheal website.
Photos courtesy of Mick Atkins Photography