Gone With the Wind
To the Quay! …on Saturday afternoon for the annual Wivenhoe Regatta – via Papa’s Chip Shop first, another annual tradition. The queue for Wivenhoe folk waiting to get their lips around one of Mr Papa’s king size saveloys was a good sign for the afternoon ahead. The Regatta overspill was similar to an exceptionally high spring tide creeping up Rose Lane.
Also creeping up Rose Lane, and *possibly* with a king saveloy tucked away with his truncheon was Sgt Lou Middleton.
‘evening all, etc. Or even afternoon all. The good Sgt was fresh from a Friday night patrol out in Sunny Colch, if one ever returns fresh from a Friday night patrol out in Sunny Colch.
The Regatta was a breeze, so to speak.
But actually it wasn’t. A dead still air descended over the Quay, which ‘aint actually ideal for those lovely Wivenhoe One Designs, gracefully making their way down the Colne from Brightlingsea.
Is there a more gentile sight to be seen Quayside? Steeped in hyperlocal history, and still given pride of place in the Wivenhoe Regatta to make the connection between past and present.
The Wivenhoe weather has been woeful all summer, apart from those events where we need sunshine for the smiles. Open Gardens, May Fair, the Jubilee Celebrations and now the Regatta. More of the same for the Outdoor Shakespeare next week would be most welcome.
The ACE Colchester Brass Band kept the ambience of the Regatta flowing along. There’s a time and a place for your traditional pufffing and blowing of a brass band, but it’s good to mix it up with some more contemporary tunes. Rule Britainia has the tradtion, but then so does the theme from Hawai-Five-O.
A short walk along West Quay and the stalls stretched all the way along the front. It was great to see a presence from WivGigs, as well as planty of local interest in signing up for the new crew.
The first outing, so to speak, took place earlier in the afternoon. Team WivGig had no shame in coming home second, sandwiched in between the two Brightlingsea boats.
But the main event for the afternoon that bought the crowds out for the Regatta was the annual raft race. The rules were simple: build your own raft using leftovers in your garage, and then may the best boat win. Or even the last man / woman standing / floating.
The four men in two baths tubs was ambitious; a few teething problems off the old hard, then the two bath tubs were surprisingly rather buoyant.
Raft design secrets were apparently up for grabs to be sold in various boozers around the town the night before. If any potential Wivenhoe rafter wants the slipstream to success, The Station is the best place to drink.
And so shortly before 4pm and the Wivenhoe Regatta came to a close with The Station picking up the Shovel Trophy from Madam Mayor.
Can you dig it?
Wait until you see the *shhh* saveloy style raft already in production for the 2013 Wivenhoe Regatta.
Full flickr feed.