Visiting Crew Protocol
As one of the largest and best-equipped clubs in the country with nearly 200 boats racked, use of two gyms and a tank, TRC prides itself on being an excellent base for training, and welcomes a range of visiting crews every year. However, because of the popularity of TRC as a training venue, there are a number of points for all of our visitors to bear in mind to ensure an efficient, safe and enjoyable visit is had, and that the safe running of the club is not compromised.
The Tideway is a dangerous and difficult river to navigate and most visitors are not experienced at doing so. Therefore, the club (and the Regional Rowing Council) require that all coaches have prior training for safe navigation and recommend that athletes have a good knowledge of the river. They should have read TRC’s safety documents before their visit and perform risk assessments before and during their time on the water. Coxes, as master of the vessel, should be fully briefed and trained for safe navigation. If the TRC captain, coaches or committee members feel that it would be unsafe for a crew to boat, they have the right to refuse the use of TRC facilities and equipment.
All visiting coaches must be assessed as appropriately competent under the TRC Tideway Steering Certificate. This will be determined by a TRC safety adviser, and all those using TRC equipment should have completed the necessary levels required of our own members. All coaches wishing to drive a TRC launch must also be RYA Level 2 (sea or river) qualified, or hold an equivalent qualification. The head coach or person in charge of groups using TRC will be asked for written evidence of this before being granted access to the club. Using a qualified launch driver when the coach is not suitably qualified is acceptable, but TRC must be informed of this and it is the visitor’s responsibility to organise an appropriate, approved driver.
For those hiring our boats or using their own boats, they are at liberty to use ours or other training tools, such as that of the region, as they deem suitable. Additional requirements may be applied to those who do not already have substantial experience of the Tideway which is up to date and in accordance with the 2015 Tideway Code. All boats must be covered by the visiting club’s insurance and the visiting club will be liable for any damage.
Visiting clubs are responsible for their own safety, although advice may be sought from the TRC safety adviser.
All loans of equipment must be agreed before arrival and are subject to withdrawal if the above experienced persons feel it is being misused. Please treat borrowed equipment as if it were your own and report any damage promptly to the head coach. In particular:
- All boats and launches must be signed in and out in the log books provided.
- All boats must be washed after outings.
- All launches must be put away on their trolleys after use, and trolleys stored safely while on the water.
- Please refill any fuel tanks you have used. If you are unable to do so, inform the TRC coaching team that this is the case.
If you are storing your own equipment at the club this must be by agreement with the captain. Storage space is extremely limited in the boathouse and it may be necessary to store boats elsewhere. During club training camps abroad (normally at Easter) there will be more space; please consult the captain as to when these take place.
Use of TRC facilities
Use of TRC facilities is by agreement with the captain and coaches. It is the visiting crew representative’s responsibility to ensure that your athletes and coaches are competent to use any facilities to which they have been given access (e.g. weights) and do so as safely as practicable. TRC will accept no liability for accidents caused as a result of a lack of competence. Please clean up after yourselves (wipe down ergos, put away weights and clean up litter from communal areas and changing rooms) as necessary. Please do not wear wellies or wet kit in the crew room, gyms or club rooms. Keep all outer doors shut and ensure you have locked up and returned the key if you are last out of the club or the sole user and out on the water.
Please bear in mind that the club is situated on a tidal stretch of water which has significant implications for navigation as well as activities on the riverbank. Take care that any launches do not float off and that cars and trailers are suitably parked to avoid flooding.
Our policy is that we only allow an equivalent number of athletes that is equal to a maximum of four visiting eights to boat from the club at any one time (save for major races where we are merely hosting crews). For the avoidance of doubt, this is the total of all visiting clubs at any time, not per club.
TRC provides catering for visiting crews by agreement with the House Manager. Please note that a minimum number of covers apply for this service to be provided, and any short fall will be added to your fees. Please clean up any rubbish and place any used crockery on the bar for washing up.
Charges and donations
These are agreed with the captain in writing before your visit. This will have reference to the number of athletes attending, facilities required and length of stay.
TRC is a busy club and our members have private use of the facilities. Therefore, making sure our visitors do not interfere with the members’ use of the facilities is a priority. Please note that for this reason there may be restrictions on when you can use facilities for this reason, and that you may be required to vacate facilities if an organised session is scheduled for club members. To avoid clashes, please speak to the captain and coaches to agree timings before your visit.
Please treat everyone else on the river with respect and courtesy, especially if you are using TRC boats or launches. It goes without saying the rules of the river should be obeyed at all times. Please leave the boathouse as you found it and accommodate our members as you would your own.
To discuss using Thames for a training visit make contact with the Captain.
To request to boat from Thames for a race or other event contact firstname.lastname@example.org.