WLARC Regatta



WLARC Safety Adviser – Gilly Dean – Safety Channel & via Race Control

Emergency Mobile Contact Numbers for the Regatta are:

- 07799 644609 Gilly Dean (Regatta Safety Adviser)

- 07932 746371 Viv Jackson (Regatta Secretary)

- 07778 668019 Elaine Green (Race Committee Chairman)


Competitors must read this WLARC 2015 Safety Plan for instructions on boating from WLARC and the Elmbridge Canoe Club and should follow the circulation pattern on the attached map.  The map shows the course and surrounding river.

Proceeding to the Start

Boating from WLARC Boathouse (Fours & Eights)

  • Crews will boat bows upstream, row past any moored boats, turn away from the towpath, but avoiding the entrance to the River Wey, and navigate downstream towards the top of D’Oyle Carte Island, and then along the towpath side of the island. Towards the end of the Island look out for any rowing craft approaching and if clear cross to the Middlesex Side, row alongside Desborough Island, and join the navigation channel alongside the race course.
  • Crews boating from WLARC must be aware that normal navigation rules apply until they reach the main regatta area, identified by the yellow “Regatta” notice boards.

Boating from Elmbridge Canoe Club (Singles & Doubles)

  • Crews boating from the Canoe Club will boat bows upstream, immediately crossing to the Middlesex side, but not crossing the line of buoys between D’Oyle Carte Island and Desborough Island. Listen for directions from the marshal’s boat in this area, and being aware of any fours and eights, turn and merge with these craft and boat downstream; to join the navigation lane beside the racing course.

All Boats

Navigation Lane Beside the Racing Course

  • The race course and navigation lane are in an area between the upstream and downstream bridges on the Desborough Channel (alongside Desborough Island).
  • This area is closed to other river traffic during the Regatta; from one hour before the start of racing until 30 minutes after racing has ended.
  • Practice starts and warm ups are not permitted in this area.
  • Proceed with care under the bridges, stopping first if requested by a marshal and paying particular attention to the posts on either side of the bridge abutments, into the buoyed navigation lane alongside the regatta course, keeping as close to the bank as possible.
  • A Marshal will be positioned on the start bridge; observing crews making their way along the navigation lane towards the start. Competitors must listen for instructions from this Marshal, and may be asked to stop rowing.

Warm Up Area

  • Warm up and practice starts may take place in the area between the Start Bridge and Cowey Sale.
  • Do not go under Walton Bridge and do not turn your boat immediately above the bridge.
  • This area is outside of the regatta course and is subject to normal navigation rules.
  • You should be aware of other river traffic in this area at all times and obey instructions from marshals.

The Race Course

  • The course is approximately 900 metres, upstream.
  • Please wait in the marshalling area (indicated on the Circulation Pattern map) to be called to the start; with your opposition.
  • Proceed with care under the bridge, paying particular attention to the posts on either side of the bridge abutments.
  • The start is a short distance above the bridge. The starter, positioned on the Surrey (towpath side) will align crews and start the race.
  • The finish is a short distance before the bridge at the top of the Desborough Channel. The finish judges are positioned on the Surrey (towpath) side.

Returning to the Canoe Club and WLARC

  • At the conclusion of the race, crews must navigate carefully under the bridge above the finish keeping slightly towards the towpath side of the river, and look out for crews approaching on the Middlesex (now towpath) side.
  • Singles and Doubles will return to the Canoe Club, approaching the landing stage bows upstream.
  • Fours and Eights will make their way further upstream towards the WLARC boathouse, keeping on the right- hand side of the closed channel alongside D’Oyle Carte Island. At the top of the Island keep out, towards the Weybridge Mariners side of the river until safe to cross to the Weybridge Ladies landing stage. A marshal will be positioned at the top of D’Oyle Carte Island. Please listen for instructions.


The following are highlighted to assist competitors to keep safe whilst on the water and are identified on the boating plan and circulation pattern. Please be aware of:

  • Shepperton Lock (very large gates). Be aware of other river traffic using the lock. They should use the area marked “non-regatta traffic” behind D’Oyle Carte Island, but be prepared for them trying to cross to the regatta side.
  • Cruisers and narrow boats entering and emerging from the River Wey. Be aware and give way.
  • Wooden Posts either side of the bridges just above the finish and below the start (a line of buoys will be positioned to guide you away from the post as you approach from the navigation channel).
  • Other river users in the non-regatta areas; in particular, in the area below the start, where non-regatta traffic will merge from the left (old river) and approach upstream from Walton Bridge and need to enter the old river (marked “non regatta traffic) on the map). Please be aware and maintain normal navigation rules in this area.


In the case of an accident on the course, racing will be stopped. The nearest umpire will summon Safety assistance, stating the nature and location of the accident. The nearest safety boat will attend. Racing will not recommence until the course has been cleared. The safety boat in attendance will advise Race Control when it is safe to recommence racing. Race Control will then advise all umpires.


In the event of severe storms or adverse weather conditions, racing will be suspended and crews will be instructed to leave the water. Competitors in the warm up area and near to the start should remove their boats from the water at Cowey Sale (marked on the map). Shelter can be taken under Walton Bridge or the lower Desborough Channel bridge. All other competitors should return to their boating area. For all other competitors, shelter may be taken upstairs at the Elmbridge Canoe Club or at Weybridge Ladies boathouse.


A safety boat will be summoned by a regatta official to attend any medical emergency, on the water. Casualties will be taken by boat to the First Aid Station at the Canoe Club. Medical emergencies off the water will be attended by the land based first aiders situated at Elmbridge Canoe Club.

The nearest A&E department is St Peter’s Hospital, Guildford Road, Chertsey, KT16 0PZ Tel: 01932 872000

Dial 999 for incidents requiring assistance beyond the scope of that available on the Regatta site.

A mobile telephone for emergency use will be available at Race Control.

WLARC Regatta



WLARC  Boat House

Thames Tow Path

Walton Lane



KT13 8LU





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