Open the doors and let Thames Tradesmen's Row!
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Hounslow council gave Thames Tradesmen's Rowing club just 4 weeks notice of eviction (with no prior discussion or advanced warning). This is because they plan to knock down the building and put a new one up.
However, the council have no funds to do so and so this will not happen for another 2-3 years. Yesterday, they locked the doors on Chiswick Boathouse, stopping Thames Tradesmen's from rowing for the first time in its proud 121 year history.
The council are challenging the club's lease that runs until 2033, wanting the club to instead capitulate and sign a rolling 6 month licence. In effect they are saying, 'Unless you sign this license, you cannot row'.
The club believes it is only fair and right in a democratic, legal based society that we are allowed to protect the long term survival of the club by holding onto our claim for a longer term lease that had been agreed by the council (and never before contested over the past 33 years).
Established in 1897, Thames Tradesmen’s Rowing Club has a proud heritage of international representation stretching back to the 1960s. The Chiswick-based club is a keystone of the UK rowing community. Olympic medallists Sir Steve Redgrave CBE, James Cracknell OBE, and Martin Cross are just a few of the rowing stars who raced for Thames Tradesmen’s Rowing Club.
In a sport often labelled as elitist, the club has always succeeded in championing rowers from all levels and backgrounds – from young children to veterans and everything in between.
The club has now been forced to spend a past President's hard-earned legacy to seek legal clarification from the High court over the lease.
The club asked the council last week to delay the eviction until this legal judgment had been heard. They refused. Yesterday they again refused to even talk directly with the club representatives.
We want to ask your help in petitioning the council to reconsider the premature eviction order, re-open the doors, and allow our club members to carry on doing what they love - row. So please - Open the doors.
Thank-you for your generous support. Can I please invite you to add your comment as to why you are supporting this petition (as I think your narrative really helps add weight to the strength of feeling people have about this issue).
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