About Royal Canoe Club

We specialise in flatwater canoeing and we have the coaches and facilities to help you become competent as a flatwater canoeist. If you want to learn to race, Royal is the place to do it.

What we do

We have almost 200 members, of all abilities, and many regularly compete in sprint and marathon competitions.

There is a thriving race scene our local area and we hold three of our own races each year (The Paddling Challenge, the Hasler Marathon and the Sprint Regatta). We also hold a weekly timetrial and a number of fun races for members throughout the year.

A range of training sessions cater for all abilities and we also offer beginner courses to get you started. Our qualified coaches will help you progress and enjoy paddling to the max.

What we offer

We have all the equipment you need to get you started. That includes boats, paddles and buoyancy aids. We have a large fleet of K1s (single kayaks) and K2s (double kayaks), as well as K4s (four person kayaks) and some canoes, too.

Our £1 million clubhouse on Trowlock Island was completed in 2008. It has a gym, ergo room and changing facilities. It also houses the vast majority of the club boats and members’ boats. We also have access to the clubhouse on the mainland, which has a kitchen, a bar and a cosy clubroom.

The club is run by its members and coupled with the fantastic coaching team we now have in place, we are confident that you will feel involved and supported when you join Royal.

An established tradition

‘The Canoe Club’ (as it was known then) was established in 1866 by John MacGregor, who pioneered the modern sport of canoeing. It was the first canoe club in the world and, in 1873, it was renamed ‘The Royal Canoe Club’ under the command of Queen Victoria.

Ever since the beginning, the club has held its own races. In 1874, the Paddling Challenge Cup and the Sailing Challenge Cup were first held and they continue to be held today. They are among the world’s oldest sporting trophies in existence and they have been contested by countless Olympians and World Champions.

Competing at the highest level

We are known as a home for international paddlers. When canoeing was first introduced to the Olympics at Berlin 1936, Britain’s team was drawn from Royal. Our members have competed at every summer Olympic Games since.

Today, the Great Britain team continue to train at the club and we have been officially named a British Canoeing ‘Performance Hub’. This is testament to the standard of our facilities and it helps feed our positive atmosphere.

Most importantly, it helps to inspire our next generation of paddlers. Members that race internationally continue to give back to the club through coaching and mentoring, offering informal advice, sitting on the committee, allowing others to join their sessions and being all-round nice people.