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Sir Anthony Hart

Dear All

It is with great sadness that we share the news of the death of Lady Victoria Boat Club’s Patron, Sir Anthony Hart, in London on Tuesday, at the age of 73. He was a true friend of rowing, and a memorable and charming presence.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Tony’s wife Mary, and the family. May he rest in peace.

Further details will be shared when available.

Yours in rowing

Barry McWilliams

Honorary Secretary, LVBC



Tom Noble

Enniskillen Royal (Portora) Boat Club

Tom died suddenly on 30 March 2019, aged 68.

Tom learned his rowing at Portora in the mid-sixties under the eagle eye of George Andrews. He rowed successfully on the first eight before moving to DUBC where he became Captain in 1973.His year of captaincy in which the club won the Maiden eight championship in Waterford, was the beginning of a revival of DUBC which culminated in the winning of the Ladies Plate at Henley in1977. In 1978, after a short spell as an accountant, Tom began teaching Business studies at Portora and naturally got involved in the boat club and was coach in 1982 when a famous incident happened at Henley in the Princess Elizabeth Cup; Portora broke an oar on the first stroke but were not allowed to re-row the race under the Henley rules despite vigorous protestations by Tom to the Stewards.

The story has not lost anything over the intervening years as Tom has retold it over and over again; the oar is on display in an Enniskillen restaurant as proof! He coached successfully for 16 years before being appointed first head of the new Integrated School in Enniskillen. On retiring from that post he returned enthusiastically to coaching and has been an essential part of the club’s recent successes. The results at the Schools Head in London in March were immensely satisfying to him and his congratulatory address to the crews was inspiring. Tom’s skills went beyond coaching; his school masterly skills were often put to good use as a wise mentor to coaches, volunteers and parents and anyone else who came under his wing. Every athlete mattered to Tom and as a powerful and moving tribute to his influence, the club held a silent row past on a fine spring afternoon on 1st April when over 100 members turned up and no coaching was allowed. He will be sorely missed and the Club’s sympathy goes out to his very supportive wife Mary and their five adult children. ‘






1935 – 2019


 After a long illness, Dusty Anderson died on Monday 25 March 2019 at the age of 83. With his passing, Irish rowing, and in particular Belfast rowing, lost one of its greatest characters.

Dusty was a product of Coleraine Academical Institution, learning to row at the school. In 1954 he came up to Queen’s to read Economics and joined the boat club. In 1955 he stroked the Junior VIII (now Intermediate), and in 1956 he stroked the Senior VIII which won the Senior Championship of Ireland. This was a strong, powerful crew, possibly the best Queen’s crew of all time. In 1956 he was elected captain of the club, and stroked the Senior VIII again. This crew was very fast but lacked power in the final stages of a race. Nevertheless, 1956-7 was the most successful years in the history of Queen’s University Boat Club. Dusty also coached the Queen’s 1962 crew, which was the last Queen’s crew to win the Senior Championship. Dusty’s opinion of rowing at Queen’s at this time is to be found in the chapter he wrote for the club’s history.

Dusty joined the Civil Service and continued to row and coach for the rest of his life. He was instrumental in starting veteran rowing at Belfast Rowing Club and ran the veterans outings for many years thereafter. He organised their entries at events all over Ireland and Great Britain as well as long distance rows for charity on the Shannon, Erne, Bann, Foyle as well as through the Shannon-Erne canal just before its official opening. He also organised Belfast Rowing Club’s trip to Boston for the Head of the Charles in 1994.

Dusty also had a long stint as president of Lagan Scullers club, a club dear to his heart and probably his favourite.He was well aware of the benefits of sculling in the development of oarsmen and oarswomen. At other times Dusty served as vice president of Belfast Rowing Club and as captain of Lady Victoria Boat Club.

Whatever his skill with an oar, his wonderful rhythm as a stroke, or his organising ability, he was nevertheless a very private person. He had a great knowledge and love of opera and Italy. He had an encyclopaedic knowledge of Boat Club songs and a good tenor voice to sing them. This was coupled with a great sense of humour. Asked to speak at a Queen’s Boat Club dinner one year, he sang his speech which was not only very funny but quite an achievement! Dusty had a strong opinion, often disguised, but he was unafraid to voice it if he thought it necessary – as when he publicly corrected a senior civil servant who was making a factually incorrect speech at a rowing dinner.

It would be hard to find a more loyal, humorous, logical person that Dusty Anderson. He was a leader and will be sorely missed. But whatever he was, he was supported by his loving wife Roz, she was the rock that gave him the strength to do all the things he did. They loved each other dearly, and our sympathies lie with her and family on Dusty’s passing.

Dusty’s funeral will take place on Monday 1st April at Roselawn Cemetary, 



All of us at Carrick-on-Shannon Rowing Club were deeply saddened to hear of the news of the passing of our esteemed and beloved Honorary Life President Mr. Tony Keane on Sunday last after a long illness.  Where do you even start to remember a man who lived, loved and fought for Carrick Rowing Club over 8 decades and how could we begin to thank him for his dedication to generations of Carrick rowers and his endless loyalty to the town and the club he adored.

Tony began his relationship with Carrick Rowing Club in 1946 at the tender age of 11.  Tom Lowe introduced him to the basics of a sport that would capture his imagination and instil in him a lifelong obsession.  Tom’s grand-niece Aoife is a current junior in the club.  He rowed in his early days in a junior four with Freddie Moran, Cathal Gilroy and J.J. Dottory at events around the country and at the then legendary Carrick Regatta.  He went on to row with many more great men from the town of his generation; John Desmond Keenan, Cecil Kiernan, Jim Maguire, Aidan Nangle, Cecil Harman and Joe Cregg, to name but a few.  His proudest rowing achievement was stroking an eight which represented Connaught in the Interprovincial Championships on the Liffey in 1957 only to be beaten by the Leinster crew (the Guards) in the semi-final who went on to win the title.  His fellow team mates become lifelong friends and they continue to visit Carrick Regatta to this day.

Tony moved to London after the mid 50s with the love of his life Peggy nee Regan, who he met in Marty Beirne’s in 1952. He left behind his beloved town and club but not his rowing career.  In 1959 with the help of Liam Lynch, Mary Mulvey, Cathal Gilroy, Joe Regan, Noel O’Driscoll, John Corrigan, Eamon Reynolds and Jim Cummins, he founded the London Irish Rowing Club in Hammersmith.  Lucky for us, he returned to Carrick in ‘63 and took up a position in General Plastics in St. Patrick’s Park where he worked for many years and was a very popular work colleague.  He settled down with his darling wife Peggy to raise their family on the Boyle Road.  With his family’s patience and endless support, he dedicated all his free time to the rowing club and created the legacy that he leaves behind today, working constantly to grow the club, coaching numerous generations of young people in the intricacies of the sport, organising the infamous regatta days and heads of the river and fighting tirelessly for the club’s financial and sporting survival.

His achievements within the club are too many to mention but the name a few; he was instrumental in developing the growth of women rowing in the club and a number of crews went on to great success nationally and internationally in the 60s and 70s, including Carrick’s Olympian Francis Cryan.

In 1968 he coxed along with Gabriel Cox, a four of men from the club (Noel McDermott, John Joe Beirne, Sean Layden and Al Monaghan) who were the first crew to row the length of the Shannon facing the almost insurmountable challenge of rowing across Lough Allen and Lough Ree in treacherous conditions and all to raise money for charity.

For many decades, he brought crews to heads of the river and regattas all over the country.  He made friends everywhere.  He built a long-lasting relationship in particular, with many of the Northern clubs, especially Bann Rowing Club and that relationship became even stronger during the troubles as a mutual love of the water superseded any sectarian divide.

He realised over 40 years ago the potential of Lough Rynn as a premier rowing centre and that belief has been appreciated in recent years with the development of the impressive national rowing venue Lough Rynn has become today.

He fundraised during lean times for the town and they gave him their full support, which he was always very grateful for.  A proud achievement for Tony was the building of a new boathouse which was opened by then President Mary McAleese in 1993 and she became one of Tony’s biggest fans.

But what he will be most remembered for by his many fellow rowers and friends is his open laughing face, his stylishness, his immense kindness and inclusiveness, his generosity and his wicked sense of humour.  Without Tony, we would not have the club we have today. He leaves behind a vibrant, active rowing club with over 80 members and a legacy that will continue for many years to come.

The committee and members of the club old and new would like to pass on their sincerest sympathies to his daughters Annette and Michelle and his son Tony Jr, his grandchildren and great grandchildren and all the extended family at this sad time.

We loved him dearly, we miss him and we will never forget him.

Rest in Peace Tony.




The death has occurred of Gerard BUCKLEY, Waterfall, Cork
Buckley (Waterfall, nr Cork) on 8th July 2017, peacefully at Marymount University Hospital and Hospice after a long illness, Gerard, M.R.C.V.S. dearly loved husband of Lily (nee Murray), loving father of Shivaun, Declan and the late Garry and dear father in law of Deirdre and Declan. Sadly missed by his loving wife, family, his adored grandchildren Garry, James, Anna, Stephen, Ruth, Niamh, Aoife, Dervella, Matthew, Ben and Garry, brothers Denis, Ted, Michael and Noel, sisters in law, brothers in law, relatives and a large circle of friends.
Reception prayers on Monday evening 10th July at 7.00pm in St. James’ Church, Ballinora. Requiem Mass on Tuesday at 12 noon. Funeral afterwards to St. James Cemetery, Chetwynd. Family flowers only please. Donations if desired to A.C.T. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam dilís

The late Gerry Buckley was a distinguished oarsman, coach and a life long stalwart of Cork Boat club. He won a maiden eight championship ship with Cork Boat Club in 1957, rowing bow in a fine crew stroked by his brother Ted.
Gerry moved to Dublin to study at UCD and rowed for a number of years with the College winning 2 senior eight championships and racing at Henley Royal Regatta. After graduating from college he joined Neptune Rowing Club and rowed in their Senior 8. He served as Captain at Neptune and coached there before returning to Cork in the early 70’s and once more becoming involved in Cork Boat Club.
Throughout the 70’s and 80’s Gerry was a very hardworking and successful coach at Cork Boat Club, coaching several championship winning crews and scullers and taking crews to Henley in the 80’s. He was a sculling enthusiast long before it became popular. Gerry was one of the first winners of the Cork Sculling Ladder and raced regularly in it up to the mid 80’s.
In his later years he was very much involved with the Cork City Regatta Committee holding Officer and President’s role as well as a long term umpire. He will be sadly missed by all who knew him.


One of Ireland’s most decorated rowers, Lieutenant Paul Giblin, was laid to rest in a State Funeral in Galway on Wednesday 14th June 2017.

Tributes have poured in for the 34-year-old Galway native who sadly passed away after a five-year battle with cancer.

The Galway native was a force to be reckoned with on the rowing circuit where he won 17 senior Irish Championships and had two wins at Henley Royal Regatta as well as being part of senior eights wins at the Irish Championships in 2002, 2006, 2009 and 2010, and senior coxless fours wins in 2002 – 2007, 2009 and 2010.

For the full tribute to Paul published on the Galway Independent, click here. RIP.


February 14th 2017
DUBC is greatly saddened to learn of the death of Robin Tamplin. Robin, who represented Ireland in the London Olympics in 1948, was Captain of DUBC in 1949, and later went on to coach the DUBC crew that won the Ladies Plate in 1977. Robin also served as President of DUBC, and has been actively involved in the club until recent years.

Robin’s commitment and influence laid the foundations for much of the club’s success over the past 40 years, and he was much loved by generations of oarsmen.

Funeral Service will take place on Saturday 25th February at 11am in St. Kevin’s Church, Dunganstown, Co. Wicklow, followed by burial in the adjoining Churchyard.



Rowing Ireland is saddened to learn of the recent passing of Paddy Kemp on 19/10/2016, age 87.

Paddy had connections with all the Belfast clubs, and was respected everywhere as a knowledgeable coach.

Funeral arrangements tbc.


It is with deep regret that Colaiste Iognaid Rowing Club marks the death of Bobby Molloy – a tremendous cox for the Jes during his student days in the 1950s. Bobby was a lifelong supporter of Jes rowing and rowing in general and a person who distinguished himself nationally during a lifetime in politics. Our sympathies to the Molloy family on the occasion of their loss.


Rowing Ireland is deeply saddened to learn of the death of Ailish Sheehan on the 9th September 2016.

Ailish, a postgraduate student at Goldsmiths, University of London representing the University of London Boat Club, was involved in an accident after the culmination of the 2016 FISU World University Championships for Rowing in Poznan, Poland on Sunday evening, 4th September. Ailish had been competing in the Women’s Four (W4) at the Championships, where she won a bronze medal.
On behalf of everyone at Rowing Ireland, we wish to extend our condolences to the family and friends of Ailish and our thoughts are with them at this difficult time.

Ailish will lay in repose at her family home in Kildimo from 12pm Friday 16th Sept. Her funeral mass will take place in St Josephs Church, Kildimo on Saturday at 12pm. Ailish will be cremated following a private ceremony at Ringaskiddy Crematorium, Cork on Monday.


McELLIGOTT (Athlone and Ballinasloe) – February 16, 2016, (unexpectedly), Dr. Morgan (Edmund Morgan), “The Paddock”, Hillquarter, Coosan, Athlone and formerly of “Kilgarve House”, Ballinasloe; sadly missed by his loving wife Rena, daughters Aedamar, Melisa, Miranda and Sharon, sister, sons-in-law Christian, John, David and Vincent, grandchildren Christophe, Jacques, Charles, Georgina and Meaghan, in-laws, nephews, nieces, relatives and many friends. R.I.P. Requiem Mass in The Church of Our Lady’s Queen of Peace, Coosan tomorrow (Saturday) at 1.00pm with burial afterwards in Kiltoom Cemetery.
Family flowers only. Donations if desired to the Irish Heart Foundation. “House private please”.


We are saddened to announce the death of Ann O’Connor wife of Tony O’Connor Snr (Neptune Rowing club) Mother of Tony O’Connor Jnr (Neptune/Shannon and former Rowing Ireland HP Athlete and World champion).
The O’Connor family have many friends in Irish Rowing in particular Limerick, Dublin and Clonmel, who will be saddened by Ann’s passing.
May she rest in peace. Please see funeral arrangements below:

Ann O’Connor (née Fallon) of Shankill, Co. Dublin and formerly Strokestown, Co. Roscommon died on 31st January, 2016, peacefully, in the wonderful care of St. Vincent’s Private Hospital, loving wife of Tony and beloved mother of Tony Jnr., Eva (Mitchell) and Niamh; sadly missed by her brothers John and Des, her sister Mary, son-in-law Ben, daughter-in-law Rachel, her treasured grandchildren Matthew, Catherine, Phoebe, Peter, Grace and Lucy, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, nephews, extended family and friends.
Removal on Tuesday evening, 2nd February at 5.15 o’clock from Colliers Funeral Home, Old Connaught Avenue, Bray to St. Anne’s Church, Shankill arriving at 6.00 o’clock. Funeral on Wednesday morning, 3rd February after 10.00 o‘clock Requiem Mass to The Garden Chapel, Mount Jerome Crematorium, Harolds Cross, Dublin 6W. Family flowers only, please. Donations, if desired, to Breast Cancer Ireland.


Jim Ahern -St Michael’s Rowing Club (23rd Jan 2016)

It was with great shock and sadness that we learnt of the untimely passing of our Vice President. Jim, or “Monty” as he was more popularly known was the husband of our Captain Antoinette and brother of our coach Niall Ahern. Jim started rowing for the club as a schoolboy. His greatest rowing achievement however was stroking the 1984 Intermediate Championship winning eight. In recent years he was ever present in the club as Captain, coach and helping out wherever he was needed if not paddling with the Masters. He will be sadly missed by his wife Antoinette, son David and daughters Ellen and Emily as well as his large circle of family and friends.

Funeral arrangements here


It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing away of Walter F Mitchell. He died suddenly on Thursday 7 January at 96 years old and had been a member of the Belfast Commercial Boat Club and then Belfast Rowing Club since 1940.
Walter was Secretary of BCBC from 1944-1970 and President of Belfast Rowing Club from 1975-1988. He was the Club’s historian and in the years after his retirement he meticulously researched the history of the Club and published a book in 1994. As a Life-long member of Belfast Rowing Club Walter continued to stay involved with the Club, christening boats last June and driving himself over to the Club nearly every Saturday afternoon to enjoy the craic in the bar.
Walter served on the Ulster Branch Committee for years and became Branch Chair. He was always willing to get involved to sort issues which impacted on rowing, particularly on the River Lagan and he also served on the IARU Executive in the 1980’s. He was heavily involved as an Umpire and organiser of the Belfast Regatta and assisted annually with the draw for Belfast Sprint Regatta until well into his 80’s.
His contribution to rowing in general and BCBC/BRC in particular was truly immense. He will be very much missed.
A funeral service will be held in St Mark’s Parish church, Holywood Road, Belfast at 3pm on Tuesday 12 January (following a private family committal).

Brenda Ewing
Belfast Rowing Club


We were shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the tragic loss of Queens University Belfast student and rowing coach, Chris Rice, on 7th October 2015.
Details available here.


Molly Stevens (20th July 2015) – Wife of the late Wally Stevens, Past President of Rowing Ireland.
Details available here.


Luke Johnston (14th July 2015) – DUBC rower and son of past President Micheal Johnston.
Details available here.



27 DECEMBER 1933 – 14 May 2020

 Arthur Lewis, Queen’s rowing ‘Blue’ died on 14 May 2020 at home in the Napa Valley, California at the age of 86. Arthur was the younger brother of John Lewis, captain of the boat club in 1953. The two brothers were born in Swansea and Arthur spent the first 15 years of his life there before moving to Belfast where he attended the Royal Belfast Academical Institution.

Arthur learnt to row at school and when he came up to Queen’s he joined the Boat Club a decision he later considered to be one of the best  he was to make in his life.  He read Chemistry and graduated with a BSc in 1955, and later a PhD. On graduation he went to Cornell University, then two years later, to Oxford University for further research which dominated his life thereafter. When he finished at Oxford he returned to New York where he lived for five years. In 1974 he moved to California and joined the McKesson corporation, possibly the largest pharmaceutical distributer in the United States. He retired as president of the international division and he and his wife Angela went to live in the Napa Valley, California.

On joining the boat club at Queen’s, he rowed at 7 in the 1952 Maiden VIII (now renamed Club 1 ) and the following year he rowed in the Intermediate VIII at 7, sitting behind Michael Thomas, another Welshman. In 1954 he rowed at 3 sitting behind his brother John. In 1956 Arthur was at 3 in the Senior VIII, a crew that won the Irish Senior championship. They also competed at Henley Royal Regatta. This was one of the best Queen’s crews possibly of all time. In 1957 Arthur rowed at bow in the Senior VIII – a fast crew but lacking power in the later stages of a race. In that year he was also in the Ulster crew in the Irish Interprovincials, rowed through Dublin on the lower Liffey.

Arthur is survived by his wife Angela who shared their travels far and wide and they lived in a fine house in the Napa Valley in California. He remained, though, a keen supporter of the Boat Club, a rowing ‘Blue’, a loyal Queensman, and member of the Lady Victoria Boat Club.  He rowed for most of his life, including for Belfast Rowing Club in the Head of the Charles in 1994 and when age finally caught up with him, he donated his scull to a charitable rowing club in San Francisco.


Dr Ivan Nelson




Jimmy and I met in October 1960 having both just arrived at Queens as Freshers. Having been recruited during ‘Freshers’ Week, we turned up at the boathouse and were both in the Maiden VIII very soon after. Jimmy had rowed competitively at Coleraine A.I. and was therefore quote experienced. I had begun to learn to row in my final year at Methody but had never raced.

It was clear from the start that Jimmy was a very able and determined fellow, and with his abilities as an oarsman no-one was surprised when he was given the Stroke seat in the VIII, a position which he was to retain for the next three years, at all three levels in Irish Rowing at the time (Maiden, Junior and Senior). For whatever reason I became the ‘Seven’, so got to know Jimmy intimately, mostly from watching his back! Indeed, it got so that I was able to follow his timing, not by watching his blade but by responding to the movements in his back muscles.

For the first two years the VIII was a very most successful crew indeed, winning the vast majority of our races. Indeed, in the Maiden year we were never beaten. In those days, of course, nearly all races, including the Championships, were two-boat races. This meant that at any one regatta, a winning crew had multiple races, often doubled up if they contained a winning IV as well. At the June 1961, at Trinity Regatta, we raced seven races over two days, in VIII and IV, and won them all, Jimmy stroking, and doing as all strokes do, berating our cox, Paul Newman, for any deficiencies.

Jimmy was a great tactician, who usually had a plan for how we would deal with each crew that we faced. At the 1961 Maiden Championships, held in Belfast, the course was from where the boathouses are now, down to near the ‘old weir’. There were some very good crews, including from the schools, and the one we could see would provide the stiffest opposition was that of Jimmy’s old school, Coleraine Inst. As usual, he knew how to handle them. His plan was that we would go flat out from the start and row as hard as we could to the King’s Bridge, and then take it from there. At the “Are you ready? Go”, we were off like a shot and by the bridge were two lengths up. We enjoyed that row very much. After that race we went through to win the final without much difficulty.

In our second year as Juniors there were some changes to the crew and while we were still very good we had not quite the same edge as that of the previous year. Once again at Trinity Regatta we had multiple races, which must have taken it out of us, because when we got to the final against UCD, we could see that we had our work cut out. In the event we set off strongly, but found UCD too strong for us, and they came past us on the final bend. However, as it happened that year, the Junior Championships were held two days later, at Carlow. We drove from Dublin to Carlow, immediately put the boat together, and went on the water to recce the course. Once again, Jimmy had a plan, we came down the course to approximately the point in the race where UCD had rowed past us on the Liffey. There was a pipe coming out of a wall alongside the river, and Jimmy gave the instructions that we when we raced UCD next day, as we knew we would, we would row our normal race until we got to that pipe. Then, just as UCD would reckon on overhauling is we would give it our all. Next day, the plan was executed perfectly, we dug deep, and Jimmy kept us ahead to the finish! Two Championships in two years. It was no surprise that Jimmy Riddell was elected Captain of the Club for the 1962-63 year.

Our third year together was not so successful, but Jimmy never lost his competitive edge. He was a most dedicated oarsman who devoted himself to the Club, and was respected for all that he brought to his role as Captain.

One more story. In those days, at the Annual Dinner in the old Students’ Union, – now the Harty Room, the Captain was required to deliver his speech while pausing to drink whatever potion was set before him, and not allowed to continue till he’d done so. Jimmy managed both the speaking and the drinking very well, but by the end of the ceremony was showing the obvious consequences of meeting the drinking challenge. It was at that point that the Vice-Captain (EW) performed his most important duty, and made sure that Jimmy made it safely back to his flat.


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