29th July 2011
... Comments



St Neots proved to be the most successful club at the Cambridge Town bumps last week, landing the ultimate prize of the John Jenner Trophy for the most bumps per number of boats entered.

The Cambridge Town bumps are a form of rowing race in which a number of  8-man boats chase each other in single file on the River Cam, each boat attempting to catch and "bump" the boat in front without being caught by the boat behind. The rowers had to race on four consecutive evenings  from Tuesday 19th July to Friday 22nd, with each bump resulting in two crews swapping places.

For the first time in it’s history, St Neots entered 3 crews into this hugely popular event. A men’s eight and 2 womens’ crews raced every evening, with all crews bumping on 3 out of the 4 nights.

St Neots mens tarted off 19th in division 2 but managed to beat 4 other Cambridge Clubs to move up to Division one, ending 15th & in Division 1, whilst the first ladies boat  moved from a starting point of 14th last year to finish in 6th position this year. The highlight of the week had to be for the second ladies crew. (A brand new entry to the bumps, they started bottom of Division 2 but bumped on every single night, earning themselves ‘blades’. Only 4 other crews out of 97 total managed to achieve this accolade.

The combined bumping prowess of St Neots resulted in the club winning the prestigious John Jenner trophy – the first time a non-Cambridge town club has won. The event was brilliant preparation for St Neots Regatta, that followed immediately this weekend.

Crew: a combination of Huw Jarman, Ed Porteus, Clive Emmerson, Graham Mailer, Mick Staddon, Simon Winter, Kevin Sadler, Steve Fox & Josh Dexter.

Jo Fitzsimons, Beth Astell, Polly Hetherington, Tash Wilson, Helen Knowles, Samantha Lawrence, Alison Brown, Mia Hartwell

A combination of Sarah Davies, Sarah Porteus, Lynne Taylor, Vanessa Ponter, Louise Shorten, Robyn Staddon, Dionne Page, Ruth Twynam & Marlene Taylor. 

 The first Cambridge town bumping races took place in 1868 & evolved on the Cam because it is a narrow river, only wide enough for side by side racing for short sections. It is also a very twisty river and has a number of sharp corners in the first half of the course. The races run on a 2km course from Baits Bite lock near Milton up-stream to Chesterton, with finishes at different points for each Division. More information about the Cambridge Town Bumps can be found at


St Neots Rowing Club was founded in 1865 and has championed competitive rowing since its first annual Regatta in 1874.  The Club effectively runs four squads: the Junior Beginner/Recreational Squad; the Junior Development/Elite Squad; the Senior Men’s Squad; and the Senior Women’s Squad.  The two Senior squads primarily consist of those who have taken up rowing later in life, some for recreation and others with a view to competing.


Contact details are as follows: St Neots Rowing Club, Priory Lane, St Neots PE19 2BH; telephone number 01480 472302;


Below picture: St Neots receiving the John Jenner Trophy in Cambridge on Friday night. From left to right:

Club Captain Mia Hartwell, Ruth Twynam, Josh Dexter, Marlene Taylor,Huw Jarman, Tash Wilson, Louise Shorten, Sarah Davies, Robyn Staddon, Lynne Taylor, Vice Chairman Ed Porteus (with trophy), Sarah Porteus, Alison Brown, Dionne Page, Steve Fox, Helen Knowles.

About the Author

Phill @ The Best of St Neots

Member since: 10th July 2012

Lived in St Neots since 1975 and boy how its changed, always looking to promote everything great in and around our town.

Popular Categories