Why I love living in Ham…..The Great River Race 2018.

How did I ever miss this annual event before? Seemingly, it has been happening every year for the past 31 years! I have lived in Ham for over 33 years -and only this year have I witnessed The Great River Race. It was absolutely wonderful – hundreds and hundreds of people, locals and others alike, from all walks of life, of all ages and from all over the world. (Romania and Holland especially) on the Thames towpath near Ham House cheering on boats of different shapes and sizes with their teams of oarsmen (and oarswomen and oars-students!)

It was a lovely happy and colourful event held on a lovely warm and sunny September afternoon.

Then there were the marques selling food and drinks- all adding to the conviviality of the day. Not an arrest in sight, too! Then there was the local mayor and dignitaries, an. M.C., over the sound system, giving a running commentary on each of the boats crossing the finishing line with little snippets of interesting, and often comical, facts. I forgot to add that there were also foreign T.V. companies conducting interviews… and the olde worlde cannon that boomed and seemed to startle people every time its operator, in traditional dress, set it off.

The little numbered boats and their crews had set off earlier that day from Central London.

I love my weekly Saturday morning walk and picnic with friends down by the Thames- and this event just added to the enjoyment of my day down by the Thames riverside at Ham.

Linda M Holland, Ham