Skip to content

Article: HENLEY ROYAL REGATTA X COALTOWN H VAN

HENLEY ROYAL REGATTA X COALTOWN H VAN

HENLEY ROYAL REGATTA X COALTOWN H VAN

Ben works at Coaltown as one of our Wholesale Ambassadors and is also a Paralympic rower, due to compete in the Olympics for GB this summer. Ben headed up our Coaltown H Van last week at the Henley Royal Regatta. While we were there, Ben interviewed two of his friends: international commentator Camilla Hadland-Horrocks and her husband Will Horrocks. They are going to teach us a little bit about Henley Royal Regatta and its history.


Ben: So first things first, what are these funky blazers about?

Camilla: We are representing our clubs, schools, and universities. I’m wearing my old university blazer from Durham, and Will’s wearing his old school blazer from Kings College. Kings College Women have just competed for the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup. We wear our blazers to the Henley Royal Regatta to support and represent where we have come from.



Ben: What makes Henley so special? Why does it attract 300,000 people over the six days?

Camilla: Whenever I’m asked this question, the only way I can describe it is that this is sort of a festival of rowing. It’s all the elements around rowing that make it so historic, special, and memorable, elements that haven’t changed since 1839 when it first started. The same mechanisms are being used to record the races, and the bars and the iconic boat tents are where they have always been too. I think that’s what makes it so special, the tradition and the real atmosphere of everyone coming to experience this festival make it what it is today.

Ben: It’s like a gladiatorial event, isn’t it? Side-by-side racing, and you don’t really get 1 versus 1 in international or domestic racing. It’s normally six days. So what’s been your favourite race in the regatta so far?

Will: I got to go on the launch for one of the races yesterday between Upper Thames and London Rowing Club. London was down pretty much through the whole race, rowed on through, and then won by just a foot. We had no idea in the launch boat who won until we were told. So seeing those super exciting races, where you’ve got no idea who’s going to win, is thrilling.

Ben: And Camilla?

Camilla: I’ve just had a couple of cracker races on the commentary actually. My favourite one of the section I just had was Methodist University vs. Boston University on the Island, which is the student women’s eights. It was basically level the whole way down the course, and then Boston managed to create a great sprint at the end. It was a cracking race the whole way down.

Ben: The next big question is, have you visited the Coaltown H Van down at Lion Meadow?

Camilla: I have. I got my flat white from there this morning, first thing! Just in time before my prep for my commentary today. The H Van was my coffee of choice today, and I’ll be going all week.

Ben: Thank you both for sharing your insights into the Henley Royal Regatta and your experiences here. It's clear there's a lot of excitement and tradition surrounding this event. From the iconic blazers to the thrilling races that keep spectators on edge, Henley truly embodies the spirit of rowing. Whether you're enjoying a historic race from the launch or grabbing your morning coffee at the Coaltown H Van, there's something special about being part of this festival of rowing. Until next year, see you then!

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

All comments are moderated before being published.

Read more

Y SHED: COFFEE & CONVERSATION
stories

Y SHED: COFFEE & CONVERSATION

Welcome to Y Shed, a charming cafe nestled in Gowerton, right next to the golf course. Here, you can enjoy delicious brunches and lunches paired with our Coaltown Coffee. We recently spent some tim...

Read more
EXPLORING THE SOUL OF THE VALLEYS: A JOURNEY OF HISTORY
Conversations

EXPLORING THE SOUL OF THE VALLEYS: A JOURNEY OF HISTORY

The exhibition "The Valleys" celebrates the profound impact of the South Wales Valleys on artists from around the world since the 18th century. From Ammanford to Pontypool, the exhibition features ...

Read more