Henley Royal Regatta 2013

As I alluded to in my last blog post, myself and a big group of friends headed down south for five days last week to enjoy the Henley Royal Regatta. IMG_0686As I wasn’t competing as a cox this year, this freed up a lot more time to enjoy the sunshine and crack open the Pimms! We stayed a few miles away from Henley in the gorgeous old Rose Cottage.IMG_0545 IMG_0546 The cottage is about 400 years old and has a stunning country garden.IMG_0536 IMG_0543 IMG_0611Compared to the very urban environment that I live in, this was a very beautiful view to wake up to! WP_20130707_001Whenever we had some down time at the house, we enjoyed a relaxing swim in the pool…IMG_0612…or if we were feeling more energetic, making full use of the Tarzan rope to swing into the pool…IMG_0621 IMG_0619 …or bouncing like loons on the trampoline!IMG_0600 IMG_0578 IMG_0575So, err, back to the actual regatta! The Henley Royal Regatta is one of the most prestigious rowing competitions in the world, and for many, a win at Henley is seen as the ultimate achievement. Competitors come from national squads, clubs, universities and schools from all over the world, and include Olympic and world champions. It’s also a brilliant social occasion which many of my friends from university as well as my friends from up north attend every year.Shoulders PushingOff2 Eight2 Eight17Crowds line up on the bank to cheer on the crews and generally have a jolly good time.Remenham

IMG_0758 IMG_0762We mixed it up when it came to spectating, some days we went for picnicking on the side of the river bank and on other days we were lucky enough to wangle tickets to the Stewards’ Enclosure, which is reserved for members and their guests and has a strict dress code!WP_20130704_044

Dresses must cover the knees and men must wear a blazer and a tie at all times (even during the amazing heat wave we’ve been having!). Here are some of the girls at the house ready to go…

IMG_0680 …and here’s Darren making me look really short!IMG_0652In the Steward’s Enclosure you get a choice of relaxing deck chairs (where I spotted a few people definitely having afternoon naps rather than watching the racing!)…IMG_0689 WP_20130704_019

…or if the heat all gets too much and you need some shade, you can hop into the grandstand.WP_20130704_037 IMG_0731

Afternoon tea and Pimms is the staple nutrition for a day in the Stewards’ Enclosure…WP_20130704_012  WP_20130704_015 WP_20130704_027 WP_20130704_032

…with the rousing sounds of the British Imperial Military Band in the background.IMG_0748 IMG_0749

Meanwhile, on days down by the river bank, more Pimms, Sipsmiths and Champagne were the order of the day and there were plenty of pop-up bars and food stands to cater to our every needs.IMG_0502 IMG_0693 WP_20130703_006IMG_0659 IMG_0660 WP_20130705_003WP_20130705_005

We would grab a good spot down by the river bank, spread out our picnic blankets, slap on the sun cream, and settle in for the day.269802_10100585788482350_1738280626_n Dipping your toes in the river is a great way to cool off when the heat gets too much.IMG_0696 IMG_0695And mid-afternoon nap time is also required!IMG_0706  1005944_10152970045490322_836328877_nIf you’ve never visited before, I’d highly recommend a trip to the Henley Royal Regatta. If you sit out on the river bank, rather than going for any enclosures, it’s a completely free event. It’s essentially a great excuse to grab a picnic, some Pimms and relax with a bunch of your friends, whilst also watching a world-class sporting event. I’ve been every year for the past seven years and anticipate going for many more years to come!IMG_0534

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4 Responses to Henley Royal Regatta 2013

  1. Lucy, I completely forgot you were a rower and went to the Regatta too!
    Looks like you had the most incredible and times and it’s nice to see the experiences of another!
    You never know, might even see you there next year!
    Emily xx
    My Ginger Bread Journey

  2. such a great post
    love the photos
    new follower

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