Durham School Boat Club

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Durham School Boat Club
Durham School Boat Club - boat house summer.jpg
Image showing the rowing club's blade colours
Motto Mileage Makes Champions
Location Durham School Durham
Coordinates 54°46′19.39″N 1°34′48.29″W / 54.7720528°N 1.5800806°W / 54.7720528; -1.5800806
Home water River Wear
Founded 1847

British Rowing

Northern Rowing Council
Website dsbc.synthasite.com/

Durham School Boat Club is a school club offering rowing to students, parents, friends and other local schools. Based at Durham School in the city of Durham, England.


Durham School Boat Club (DSBC) was founded in 1847.[1] However, there was rowing at Durham School before that - the club was a founder of Durham Regatta in 1834[2] and it is, therefore, one of the oldest clubs on the River Wear in Durham. Record keeping in the early days was non-existent[3] and the first reference to a School boat was to the four oared wherry Argo in 1838.[4] At the regatta, the Club went on to win its first Challenge Cup in 1865.[2] The first Club rower to win a blue for Oxford or Cambridge rowing in The Boat Race was W. King who rowed for Oxford in 1854.[2]


The Club operates from its own boathouse situated just downstream of Prebends Bridge, this was built in 1892.[5]

The Club has a range of boats ranging in size from singles to eights and octuples. Durham School boats use the three letter boat code DUS.[6]


The Club is not selective, that is it is open to all students: "All year groups at the school have the opportunity to row at the appropriate level for their physiological and physical development".[7]

The Club also offers rowing to The Chorister School[8] and parents and friends of Durham School.[9]

International Representation[edit]

The Club has been successful at international level, the athletes having represented their home countries and Great Britain at olympic, world, university and junior level, most recently being GB representation, winning a silver medal in the junior women's 8,[1][10] at the 2010 Coupe de la Jeunesse in Hazewinkel, Belgium; England in the 2010 Home International Regatta in Cork, Ireland;[1] the World Rowing Junior Championships[11] in Brive-la-Gaillarde, France in August 2009; the Coupe de la Jeunesse[12] in Cork, Ireland in 2008 and England representation at the Home International Regatta in 2006.

National Events[edit]

The Club enters a number of local, national and international events. In addition to wide ranging representation at the various north eastern heads and regattas oarsmen and women of different ages are regularly entered in events further afield.

The Club was successful in the British Rowing Championships in 2010 with Gold in the Open Junior Coxless Pair[13] and also with silver and bronze medals.[14]

In the National Schools Regatta in 2010 the Club won silver in the Fours Cup for First Coxed Fours.[15]

Recent years have also seen the club at Henley. The women's 1st Eight entered Henley Women's Regatta in 2010 for the first time in The Peabody Cup,[16] losing to Headington School Oxford who went on to the final. The 1st Eight rowed in the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup at the Henley Royal Regatta in 2008[17] for the first time in over 40 years. Having pre-qualified again, the 1st Eight was in action in the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta in 2009, achieving a win over Reading Blue Coat School in their first race before being knocked out by Abingdon School (one of the country's premier rowing schools who went through to the final) on the second day. The school achieved pre-qualification into the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup again in 2011, being knocked out by the Sophie Barat Schule. In 2013, Durham School Boat Club was the only club in the North-East of England to have a J18 boat qualify for an event at Henley Royal Regatta, pre-qualifying a first eight for the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup. They were beaten by Bedford School in the heats.[18]

There are also frequent trips to various events held on the Tideway in London, the Holme Pierrepont National Watersports Centre and Dorney Lake. In 2012, the school achieved its first success at the School's Head of the River race on the Tideway, with the women's J16 4+ winning their category.

International Events[edit]

The Club also trains and competes internationally.

Each year there is an annual training camp, previously to Gent with entry into the Gent Spring Regatta[19] in Belgium. In 2010 the Club won gold, silver and bronze medals in a number of categories.[20][21][22] In 2011 the camp was on Lago d'Iseo in Italy, based in Lovere. Since 2012, the club has held its training camp annually in Soustons, France.

In addition, the Club visited the USA in October 2008 to row in the Head of the Charles Regatta,[23] achieving an excellent result for their first visit.


  1. ^ a b c "Durham School Boat Club". Durham School Boat Club. Retrieved 5 August 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c "Rowing North East Rowing - A History Time-line". North East Rowing On-line. Retrieved 6 September 2009. 
  3. ^ Macfarlane-Grieve, Captain A.A., ed. (1922). A History of Durham Rowing. Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Andrew Ried and Company, Limited. p. 8. Durham School, like the D.U.B.C. possesses no early record of its rowing. 
  4. ^ Macfarlane-Grieve, Captain A.A., ed. (1922). A History of Durham Rowing. Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Andrew Ried and Company, Limited. p. 8. In a letter of the late Canon Tristam we read "The first boat the School ever put on the river was a four-oar wherry named the 'Argo' in 1838". 
  5. ^ Malden, John (1996). Let Durham Flourish. Durham City: The Friends of Durham School. p. 8. ISBN 0-9528670-0-1. During 1892, a temporary gymnasium was opened and the School Boathouse was built. 
  6. ^ "Durham School BC (DUS)". Amateur Rowing Association. Retrieved 6 September 2009. 
  7. ^ "Rowing at Durham School". Durham School. Retrieved 1 September 2009. 
  8. ^ "Extra Curriculum". The Chorister School, Durham. Retrieved 10 August 2010. Sporting activities such as Football, Cricket and Netball consolidate the work done in Games lessons. Additional clubs include Rowing... . 
  9. ^ "DSBC". Durham School Boat Club. Retrieved 10 August 2010. Parents Rowing is now in full swing. 
  10. ^ "JW8+ FINAL" (PDF). coupe de la jeunesse. Retrieved 5 August 2010. [dead link]
  11. ^ "2009 World Rowing Junior Championships, Brive-le-Gaillarde, France". Amateur Rowing Association. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  12. ^ "2008 Coupe de la Jeunesse, Cork, Ireland". Amateur Rowing Association. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  13. ^ "2010 CHAMPIONSHIPS - RESULTS OF SUNDAY RACING". British Rowing Championships. Retrieved 29 July 2010. 
  14. ^ "Previous Wins". Durham School Boat Club. Retrieved 29 July 2010. 
  15. ^ "NSR Results 2010". National Schools Regatta. Retrieved 29 July 2010. 
  16. ^ "HWR Race Results". Henley Women's Regatta. Retrieved 29 July 2010. 
  17. ^ "Henley Royal Regatta - Princess Elizabeth Cup Results 2008". Henley Royal Regatta. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  18. ^ "Henley Royal Regatta - Princess Elizabeth Cup Results 2009". Henley Royal Regatta. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  19. ^ "Wedstrijdprogramma - Race programme". Gentse RS. Archived from the original on April 4, 2010. Retrieved 25 August 2010. 
  20. ^ "Durham School Boat Club". Durham School Boat Club. Retrieved 25 August 2010. Ghent Spring International Regatta (Sun): J8+ Bronze; W4x- Silver; u23 4x- Gold; J18 4- Silver; JM16 4- Gold; J 4+ Silver; JW4- Bronze. Ghent Spring International Regatta (Sat): JM16 4- Silver; u23 4- Silver. 
  21. ^ "Wedstrijduitslag - Results" (PDF). Gentse RS. Retrieved 25 August 2010. [dead link]
  22. ^ "Wedstrijduitslag - Results" (PDF). Gentse RS. Retrieved 25 August 2010. [dead link]
  23. ^ Powers, John (October 20, 2008). "Some of these race lengths were almost gone with wind". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 28 August 2009. The Durham School Boat Club (back) and Cleveland Scholastic Rowing Association compete in youth men's eights.