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About This Group

A group to connect gay and lesbian rowers in the London area. What started as Outriggers, an informal club formed to create a team for the 1998 Amsterdam Gay Games transitioned into Orion Rowing Club. As the founding members began to scatter, and the burden of maintaining a club without a boathouse became to onerous, Orion RC dropped off the radar. London rOARs, as a social and rowing group, serves rowers, coxies, coaches, and race officials, active and inactive, throughout the London area. Its members row in all manner of existing clubs, some of which are listed in the shared links box below. Share this group: http://londonroars.glrf.info
  1. What's new in this group
  2. happylittlechap

    London Roars - Night Out #1

    Hi Dean, I'm really keen on getting back into Rowing this year, so I'll see you all down there :-) Simon.
  3. jay_s

    London Roars - Night Out #1

    Hi Dean Looking forward to the first social outing of the New Year...Happy New Year to everyone and I hope we'll be able to welcome some new members too. Jay
  4. Hello All, I'll start by wishing everyone a Happy New Year. As I'm sure some of you know our last social for 2010 was dogged by treacherous snow and I know there's a good few of you who had planned to come but couldn't make it due to half of the tube not working. Not to worry though as we're planning our next one! Our first night out for 2011 is going to start UPSTAIRS in The Yard Bar, Soho on Friday the 11th of February. We'll be there from 8.30 p.m. but will probably move on after a couple of hours so bear that in mind. I know there's a lot of new people who have expressed interest lately so we hope to see you there whether you're new to rowing or an old hat. Some of you might not know any of us so I'll commit myself and say in advance I'll be the tall one wearing the pink and white stripy shirt if you cannot spot the group of hotties in the corner. Don't be shy and come and say hello. See you there and RSVP! Dean
  5. Hi All, It's time for our Christmas Night Out, the last of the year which has seen our London rOars group grow from around ten members to fifty five members. A truly remarkable level of growth going far beyond what any of us could have expected. So let's all celebrate by having a massive night out to end a fantastic year and bring in what will hopefully be an even more remarkable year. This time we're doing something different. We're off to the Royal Vauxhall Tavern in... Vauxhall for the famous Duckie. It's on Saturday the 18th of December from 9 p.m until late. So, whether you're already rowing with us, want to, or just want to see what it's all about, come along! Any questions get in touch and please RSVP. See you there. Dean
  6. So are you going to make this a calendar event or do you want me to do it?
  7. Dear All, Time flies and our popular One Year Anniversary Social already seems long ago... Since then as you know we've had a problem with a broken boat but we wanted to call you out for a drink to celebrate the fact that we now have a new boat to row with! Please join us for drinks at the Duke of Wellington for our next rowing social at the Duke of Wellington in Soho at 08:30PM on Saturday November 6th. We may well move on to a couple of other bars afterwards so don't be late if you don't want to be left behind. As always the social is a great chance to get to know one another better, confirm future rowing plans, network with other gay rowers from across London, and for those of you who are new a great chance to meet everyone in a friendly and informal setting - as well as good fun! Also, if anyone has ideas for future rowing socials, we'd love to hear your ideas, please do get in touch. Hope to see you all there on Saturday 6th for our November social. All the best, Mark
  8. Hi All, We've decided to have our 1st Birthday Party exactly one year after our first meeting. It falls nicely on a Saturday night! We will start at 8.30 p.m. on Saturday the 18th of September in The Duke of Wellington, UPSTAIRS as usual, but this time we are going on a Mystery Pub Crawl. We will stay in the Duke for the first hour or so before heading off into the abyss that is SOHO. Make sure you arrive on time to avoid losing us. Anybody who is new and has not yet met any of us please do come along whether you have experience in rowing or not. We've received a lot of emails from people in the last few months who are interested in getting involved but we have not had a social for a while because we have been focussed on getting on the river. This is a great chance on our first birthday to all meet up. The past year has seen quite rapid growth. Our group on GLRF now has 43 members, dwarfing any other groups on the site (If you haven't joined yet please do!). There are about 10 of us who have been rowing regularly and we have been lucky enough to have the support of several volunteers who have been coxing and coaching us on the water with more interested in helping out. We are now in a position to expand the amount of rowers we have however these, for now, will be experienced rowers who want to change club or have not rowed for a while but want to restart. The crews are quite mixed at the moment but with more members we hope to establish crews based on ability so that rowers of all levels can start to train, improve technique and move towards competing effectively. Recreational rowers should also be accommodated but without losing sight of the fact that we are a rowing club that wants to be recognised as strong on rowing. Based on this I'd like to ask everyone whether new to rowing or not, to please complete and return the attached form. In other news, London is in the process of launching a bid to host the 2018 Gay Games. Anybody interested in getting involved in the bidding process, specifically from a rowing angle, please let us know and we will keep you posted on further developments. Manchester is also bidding to host the 2015 Euro Games so it seems as though British Gay sports will be raising its profile in the coming years and we hope rowing will have its place and play a significant role. Again though, this all depends on the level of interest and the amount of commitment people are willing to give. See you all on the 18th and please RSVP.
  9. It's time for our third meeting!!! This time it's in The Duke of Wellington Pub in Soho, from 8.30pm, Saturday the 30th of January. We'll be at the back of the upstairs bar! This will be our first social of 2010 and we are hoping to attract a big crowd. We are advertising the group and this event separately, in the press and online and you can now find our group, website, and email address listed on many sites like: Outsports.com Gaysport.info Outforsport.org Gmfa.org.uk Blaggs.org Outinireland.net Londongayman.co.uk Pinkclassifieds.co.uk Gaydar.co.uk Rainbownetwork.com Of course you coming, and if possible, you bringing a friend who rows would be a great help too. For the moment we are going to focus on being a social network that brings together London's gay rowers at social events like this one. We have formally established ourselves as a Club whose Committee consists of, in true rowing club style: The Captain: Dean The Deputy Captain: Mark A The Treasurer: Mark S The Secretary: Luc and we hope to attract as many new members as possible in the coming year. We will have membership forms, for those who wish to become members, to fill out on the 30th, which will be similar to those filled out at our first meeting. We have also established a group of us who row together. We have rowed twice already and plan to row more and more often in the future. We also hope that, with the approval of those who are letting us use their equipment, we can include more people who want to row, however if this does happen, experience and commitment will be imperative. Our ultimate aim will be to compete at gay sporting events like the OutGames, GayGames and EuroGames. Not to mention other rowing events in the UK. We look forward to seeing you all there! http://londonroars.glrf.info The Committee
  10. It's time for our second meeting!!! This time on a Saturday in the same place - Upstairs in The Duke of Wellington, 77 Wardour St, Soho, W1V 3TH. All those who are interested in getting involved in gay rowing, who have experience and are wondering why there isn't any gay rowing network or crew in London then please come along!!! Our first meeting centered on discussion to establish what people would like to see. This time will also aim to do that but will focus mainly on getting to know each other and getting as many people to attend as possible. So if you are coming along and know any other experienced gay rowers, please encourage them to come along too. Numbers will be a key to the success of any gay rowing network, crew or whatever comes of this. Also, look out for advertisements in gay/rowing papers and websites! Kicking off at 20:30, 7th November 2009!!! http://londonroars.glrf.info
  11. Helandro, thank you so much for the encouraging news about recreational rowing to come to us soon! (I am still trying to figure out exactly where I stand in the whole recreational-versus-competitive continuum, it's not nearly as clear-cut as my standing in the gay-straight continuum, where I'm definitely at one extreme :) As for the boats, I learned to row in Hanover, New Hampshire, USA, on boats that even college freshmen had rejected, so pretty much if it floats, it's okay with me ;-) Sounds like fun times at the Lea - too bad I'm a bit too far in West London :( Latcho
  12. There's a project starting really soon for clubs to support recreational rowing. (For those too small! or too busy for that commitment) Funding allowing new friendlier equipment to be bought, apparently it still feels like a proper boat. I know that the Lea are one of the clubs participating in the scheme. And talking of gay friendly, I ran London's 2nd biggest lesbian nightclub out of the Lea for a while in the early 90's. The old fuddy duddies didn't know whether to laugh or cry. More money across the bar than ever before, but some struggled with where it was coming from! Us out East, can be full of suprises! :rolleyes: And if any of you are coxes, we'd love you to come to us! In fact, you'd be adored at 8.00am tomorrow!
  13. I think Jay has completely nailed it on the head there. As you know, Dean and I are in discussions with various bods with regards to finding a home - things are progressing, albeit somewhat slowly for various reasons, but we're confident we can 'pull off' a set up like the one described by Niels. Incidentally, I rowed in a similar set up at Glebe RC in Sydney and it was quite successful. It was fun watching the straights at regattas trying to work out who in the Glebe colours were the ones to look out for and those that were 'normal' haha Cesare - I am getting into the under 6ft boat with you! Together, united, we'll never be defeated... well, perhaps not, but at least none of us will stand out as being the short ones in the crew... :)
  14. It’s great to get an insight into how things developed in Copenhagen – thanks Neil. The good thing about this model, assuming we find a willing club for the “lost souls” who are not rowing at the moment, is that we can get things started soon and capitalise on the current enthusiasm. As those currently without a club will be thrown together on a regular basis (i.e. for training) there will be ample opportunity to debate and nurture an individual identity for the group. This approach gives a “home” to those that want one now with GLRF networking, club-specific networking and social get-togethers forming the glue that binds the wider London community together.
  15. I think Niels’s suggestion is great – it shows how much more advanced they are in Denmark in all regards (20 years ago – WOW!) The question is – could it be done here in London, where the big rowing clubs (not to name names) are not exactly famous for their gay-friendliness (though, having recently come out of the milieu of ”degenerate” Ivy League intellectuals, my standards for gay-friendliness might be somewhat unreasonably high :D . But let’s be optimistic perhaps – by the way, Dean, have you had any responses from any of the clubs you e-mailed? One other good thing about Niels’s scenario is that a larger club could accommodate all kinds of gay rowers – from highly competitive to purely recreational. After all, not all of us are six foot tall and have impressive 2k scores, and I am of the opinion that rowing should be a sport open to everyone who can hold an oar (just like you don’t need to be a Michael Phelps to swim or a Venus Williams to play tennis!) But the question again is whether there is a club in London that truly caters to all levels of rowers (even just straight ones) – so far I have been unable to find one, but hope still remains. Sorry for the slight jadedness, just been having some unfortunate things happen to me recently (involving disastrous 5k tests among other things :D .
  16. I agree, Niel’s suggestion is probably the best way forward. It allows the group to cater for differing abilities/commitments as they are part of the larger rowing club. If the group of gay rowers grows large enough, then the idea of forming a stand alone club becomes more feasible given the expense of racking fees for boats, registering with the ARA etc
  17. I think Niels suggestion is maybe more attainable, at least in the short term. It would be easy for those who want to to join a club together.
  18. glrfcentral

    Discussion About Gay Rowing In London

    Hey - Great post from Niels on the group wire. I am so stoked that he took the time to post on the group wire and to show everyone that belonging to a group is certainly not restrictive to a location. I wanted to add a comment from the point of view of the individual member in the larger rowing community. Niels laments the lack of visibility. I really think that with this type of group in particular, you have a unique chance to create just that visibility by bringing individual rowers together from a number of clubs in a shared community setting. In today's internet-driven culture, a large group is bound to have an impact on the broader rowing community. With the GLRF dedicated group subdomains like http://londonroars.glrf.info, you can add the link to any number of directories. Additionally, for some rowers who are loyal to their current club, they can form their own "networks" through another group, perhaps called 'GayRowers_at_LRC,' or the 'Thames Rowing Club boys network,' and so on. As I have tried to emphasize, there is room for any number of groups in a given area and a rower can belong to multiple groups, one for his/her club as well as a broader community group. This is just a fundamental part of the whole social network infrastructure. Forward thinking club presidents will see the immediate value to these multiple networks because it creates an added feature to attract new members to their clubs. These multiple networks would also serve to show visibility in the gay community where rowers see a thriving gay culture at more than one club and multiple options for finding a home that they might prefer. By forming these separate groups which Niels describes as networks, the existing rowing clubs are not "threatened" by a sub club organization. I know that a good number of the London rOars would like to find a home of their own but perhaps an alternative, and might I suggest more palatable option, would be to use Niels model and find a very welcoming [read accepting] club environment where a majority of the rowers can participate together but still belong to the overarching club. These members would be tied together by a network/group just for that club, in addition to the London rOars. Just offering my thoughts and ideas from the perspective of someone who has spoken to a good number of rowing club board members and presidents both in North America and also overseas. Thanks again Niels! - Brian at GLRF
  19. Hi all I just joined the group to leave the comment, as I’m not a Londoner, but live in Copenhagen, Denmark. We’ve had a structure much like the one you propose here i Copenhagen for more than 20 years, and I think I might share a few experiences. In the mid eighties some people in the gay sports organisation here wanted to take up rowing, but as you note yourself the cost of a new club is prohibitive. So they asked DSR, a large and established club, for a co-operation. That was actually turned down, but the answer was also that all members were welcome and they were also free to form whatever networks in the club they wanted. But they were to be members of one club and representing that as rowers. This policy has been consistent ever since and the gay rowers have been a visible and active part of the club, but with no special formal status. This actually frees up the network we have, organised around a website, that also includes a tool for booking rowing dates, to be open to rowers from other clubs too. In reality they are few though, as all our activities are out of DSR. The construction has some obvious advantages and a few drawbacks. DSR is a very large club with a full array of activities ranging from Olympic gold level to recreational. This means that nobody really have to choose between rowing on the level of skill and commitment they want and rowing with fellow gays – or more correctly you are free to make the choice from day to day. Thus some of us row exclusively with other gays and others form teams with other club members and row with the gay group now and then. The other big advantage showed at Outgames this summer. A small club with maybe 70 members could never have organised the rowing for the event this well. It goes for the club internally where a lot of other members showed up for volunteer tasks and I guess it also goes in getting officials at the Danish rowing federation, the national rowing stadium etc. on to the idea. The drawback is reduced visibility. This goes in the rowing community, where no gay club is showing up, and to some extent also in the gay community. Curiously the gay sports club here, Pan, does link to our website under rowing, even though we’re not part of the club, but the DSR website doesn’t as it only lists club activities open to all members, and not private networks, of which there are several. I also think, that a few potential members, who prefer an exclusively gay sports environment stay away. What we have instead is a straight club with a larger than usual and much more visible gay element, than most others. And to some of us, that’s actually an interesting everyday integration project for both parties… Hope this was good for any inspiration. Good luck in your project.
  20. After Niels’ original post on the group wire, I created this discussion topic . With Brian’s help logging in as both himself and Niels and others, we have set the discussion posts in proper date sequence so that everyone can follow the logic properly.
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