Wargrave & Shiplake Regatta 2021
With deep regret, we have decided to cancel this year’s Wargrave & Shiplake Regatta.
As you will appreciate, this was not an easy decision to take – so we were enormously grateful to those who responded to our April survey, asking people’s opinions about attending a regatta this summer.
From the feedback received, we were cautiously optimistic – indeed, a sub-committee has been working hard to examine how we might go about delivering a regatta appropriately this year. However, we faced several significant challenges …
In so many ways, Wargrave & Shiplake Regatta is a free-form, open event: as much a 2-village picnic – meeting friends, socialising and having fun on the riverbank – as a racing regatta. We pride ourselves on a relaxed family approach and delivering this in the face of current COVID requirements would have been a very real challenge without compromising the character of the event.
Of course, many expect that some or all of these restrictions will no longer be needed, come August. Those delivering the nationwide vaccination programme have worked wonders. But reality says that no-one actually knows – and the seven-week period between 21st June and our regatta date would have left us very little time to respond.
We also faced some significant organisational issues. Many event organisers are now looking to hold their event in the short window between June 21st and early September, most especially those restricted by the start of the new school term. People also want to organise family holidays in that short timeframe too. The event calendar – in particular, the river event calendar – has been turned upside down as a result, and that has inevitably added knock-on challenges to the availability of equipment, resources and people for the staging of Wargrave & Shiplake Regatta.
Above all though, the need to prioritise the health and safety of our subscribers, competitors, spectators, staff, contractors, suppliers and volunteers has been our primary concern throughout. We remain keenly aware of wider public health implications and our responsibility to continue to support society’s efforts to eliminate the spread of COVID-19.
Accordingly, our rafts, our boats and our best intentions will be given an extended rest …
Be sure though that come summer 2022, we will be back in full force!
Indeed, plans for an open, relaxed, traditional Wargrave & Shiplake Regatta 2022 are already under discussion, and you can be sure we WILL be back bolder, brighter – and maybe even better!
We look forward to seeing you, your family and friends back on the riverbank once again on Friday 5th & Saturday 6th August 2022.
Committee of Wargrave & Shiplake Regatta