Weekly meetings resume on 2 June following a relaxation of Government corona virus restrictions. Groups are currently limited to six people. Paddlers are asked to comply with restrictions on social distancing and on use of public transport to reach the canoe shed.
We meet most Tuesdays throughout the year. The “weekly thames rota” page has specific details of who’s in charge and anything specific that’s planned.
Our regular spring, summer and autumn Tuesday evening sessions are normally on the Thames at Chiswick start around May and run until the the end of September 6.30pm (for a 7.00pm launch)
How and when to get there…
Ideally get the train that arrives at Barnes Bridge at about 6.15 pm. We prefer not to have to wait for latecomers on the next one, particularly early and late in the season when hours of day light are shorter.
We are based at the Civil Service Sports Ground, on Riverside Drive, Chiswick. Normally everyone is welcome, no matter how inexperienced or experienced, and there’s no need to book a session in advance – just come along with suitable kit. However, some tides are more challenging than others, so contact the club secretary for advice on when would be a good Tuesday to paddle with us for the first time. In general, we finish by about 9-9.30pm.
There is a charge of £1 to members for use of a Club boat (£5 for guests who want to try it out before joining).
What do we do on Tuesdays?
Our usual aim is to paddle up or downriver for a mile or two (according to the tide). We often stop at a riverside pub for refreshments before returning with the tide, but the agenda is by no means fixed. We try to include specific training or coaching opportunities and games whenever we can.
What kit do I need?
We provide boats, paddles, spraydecks and buoyancy aids. Unless it’s very hot weather, clothes of man-made fibre are warmer than cotton, so wear these. Most people paddle in hiking trousers/top, old gymshoes or wet suit boots (bulky trainers don’t fit inside a kayak very easily), and a light waterproof anorak or cagoule over the top. If in doubt, take an extra layer in the boat – it can often be chilly by the time the session is ending. The club has some lights for the occasional evening when we don’t manage to get back before sunset, but if you have your own head torch please bring it. Capsizing and getting a drenching is rare, but getting slightly damp and grubby is normal, so make sure you’ve a towel and a change of clothes for your journey home.
Our boathouse is located in the King’s House Sports Ground on Riverside Drive, Dukes Meadows in Chiswick (W4 2SH). The best way to get to our boathouse from central London is by train to Barnes Bridge station (from Waterloo, Vauxhall or Clapham Junction). From the station (see sketch map):
- Cross the Thames using the bridge which can be accessed on foot from the platform used for catching London-bound trains.
- At the bottom of the steps on the far (Middlesex) side of Barnes bridge turn left. (Not straight on down the river footpath).
- Then walk about 50 metres along the footpath running parallel to the railway embankment.
- Bear right, cross a road and you will see a large blue sign and a gate to its left at the entrance to a footpath. The sign states the King’s House Sports Ground (see photo below).
- Walk about 250 metres along this narrow footpath which passes between thick vegetation and the dilapidated wall of a private tennis centre. (Not straight on down the river footpath – if you come to the Civil Service Rowing Club boathouse, you’ve gone the wrong way)
- You will then reach a private road. The building in the Sports Ground where we meet is part of the fenced-off groundsmen’s compound, on the right hand side as you emerge from the footpath. There’s a big white CSCC Canoe Club sign on the front exterior wall of our shed..
- If you need to get changed into your canoeing gear, you can change in the pavilion opposite the groundsman’s compound (on the other side of a car park).
If you’re travelling by car, Riverside Drive is a turning off the main A316 road. Coming from the A4 at Hammersmith/Chiswick, it’s the second “real” traffic lights. If you get to Chiswick Bridge you’ve gone much too far. Coming northwards up the A316 from Richmond, turn right at the second traffic lights after you’ve crossed Chiswick Bridge. The King’s House Sports Ground is the last entrance on the right before you get to the river Embankment. There is usually ample parking. If you need any further directions, contact us.
For a map of the site via Google maps – click here!
… will resume in the autumn.