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July 2022 Newsletter


Kerri Williams Recognised in Queens Birthday Honours

Kerri (nee Gowler) received the NZ Order of Merit along with Olympic rowing partner Grace Prendergast, in the Queens Birthday Honours. Congratulations to both of these outstanding athletes!


Gus Scott – Whanganui Rowing Association Volunteer of the Year

AWRC Life Member, Gus Scott, was acknowledged at the Annual General Meeting of Rowing New Zealand as Whanganui Rowing’s Volunteer of the Year. Gus is a truly passionate rowing “junkie” and has devoted a tremendous amount of time over a long period to Aramoho Whanganui Club, Collegiate and Whanganui Association. Well done Gus – keep it up!


June Floods!

Our river decided to breach the banks and enter the Club House, not once but twice during June! In the first instance, there was sufficient opportunity to install our Club flood protection barriers, although the water and silt managed to breach our defences!

Sunny day but water everywhere!

Barely a week later, following working bees and the much-appreciated assistance of the Whanganui Fire Brigade to clean the premises, our club again was subjected to a deeper flood causing us problems all over again! Unfortunately, the Fire Brigade were unable to assist on this occasion and it was left to our tireless, mainly Master’s, rowing fraternity to again remediate the building and its surrounds.

A hearty thanks to everyone who contributed. Bruce Osborne commented that it is almost exactly 7 years since the building was devastated in the largest flood in Whanganui history and while our two June saturations were not of that magnitude, it is a salient reminder of the threat the river imposes on our Club.

A cheerful Charlotte Matthews helping to clear up after the first flood

Silt is available to anyone!



Last months Newsletter omitted that Pete “Oscar” Smith not only made a much appreciated financial donation when the new double scull boat was christened but also two virtually unused sculling blades that were owned by Pete were also donated to our Club. A new set of sculling blades is valued at over $1300 for a pair, so we are very fortunate to benefit from such generosity.

A second donation of a historic photograph and photo album was also recently passed onto the Club from the family of the late Johnny Armstrong. John and his wife Zelda were prominent members of the Aramoho Boating Club during the 1950’s. John was an oarsman before becoming a respected senior coach and being accorded Life Membership, while Zelda was a dedicated member of the Ladies Committee over that time.

John kept a very detailed photographic album of his rowing career – the first page shows that he was a member of a very successful Junior Four in 1949/50 and obviously was a member of the winning Mitchell Shield that season

The Aramoho Boating Club Senior Eight in 1953 featured Johnny in the 3 seat. This crew won the Senior Eight at Jury Cup, the Wellington Regatta and the Head of River at Wanganui


New Ergometers

The Club recently received 6 brand new rowing ergometers, which was greatly assisted by a generous grant from Grassroots Trust. A new ergometer is worth over $2000 and the new acquisitions will enable a couple of our older models to be sold off.

The new ergs are lined up and ready for their first athletes!


Elite Regattas

Georgia Nugent-O’Leary raced in the NZL Women’s Quad at the World Cup 2 event in Poznan, Poland with the crew achieving 8th place.

This crew then moved onto the Henley Royal Regatta on the Thames where they competed in the Princess Grace Challenge Cup (W 4X-) being eliminated in the Semi-Final by a crew from the Chinese National Rowing Team.

Jackie Gowler and sister Kerri were also originally to compete at Henley however withdrew from their respective events.

The NZL contingent will continue onto the World Cup 3 Regatta in Lucerne which is scheduled to take place between 8-10 July.



Our Club recently received $5000 from the Lion Foundation which will go toward our annual insurance costs – only another $15,300 to find!

We have several initiatives underway to help with the Clubs income. This includes the sale of “Dads Pies” which will be a welcome addition to everyone's winter food supplies. Orders are being coordinated by the ever-busy Annie Pawson.

Grader will be undertaking the annual 100 Club Raffle and will touch base with previous ticket holders shortly.

Our biggest fund-raising activity will be an ergathon and a team is committed to ensuring this event is a great success – more info very soon!


Athletes Development Pathway

Philippa Baker-Hogan has been appointed by Rowing NZ as the Regional Development Coach to oversee Year 12 rowers and above, from within the Whanganui Rowing Association area, including Clifton, who have the results, ability and desire to progress on the Rowing NZ Pathway ie to ultimately wear the NZ Black Singlet.

Included in the squad is Aramoho Whanganui Messina Su’a who is in her final year at Whanganui High School and has been dedicated to rowing since joining our Club 5 seasons ago.



Your Committee have set this years AGM date for Monday 22 August 2022. All Members are requested to attend so please note in your diaries now.


NZ Universities Regatta

This event was postponed from April and NZ Rowing have requested that the Whanganui Rowing Association conduct this fixture on Friday 23 and Saturday 24 September.

The local facilities have become very run down and a dedicated crew including Des, Brocky, Uppy, Bruce, Murray Carey, Philippa, Luffy and Jane McGympsey have been very busy upgrading the Rowing Camp facilities over the past week. We are grateful to these volunteers who will ensure the off-water facilities are up to standard for this prestigious event.



“Winning medals is good, racing is better, loving the sport is best!”


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