On the 25th September Pound Gates and our client Crown Worldwide stepped up to the challenge of Dragon Boat racing. Dragon boat racing is an ancient Chinese tradition and the fastest growing water activity in Britain today – as well as the most fun.
Up to 10 people paddle each 30ft boat with a drummer at the front beating time and a helm at the tail steering a straight course. Fortunately no previous experience required.
Pound Gates and Crown Worldwide both have strong beliefs in the value of charity and community projects. For some time now, both have been trying to find a way to incorporate this ethic into a joint event.
Despite many ‘creative’ suggestions from street dancing, ballet and parachute jumps to name just a few it was decided to raise money for St Elizabeth Hospice, an amazing cause, and have fun at the same time.
It was a beautiful, warm and dry day at Alton Waters. Crown having mostly travelled from West London and beyond, with just a few staying over for a pre-event, nutrient-rich night out on Saturday, were welcomed by fantastic Suffolk weather.
Mixing the Crown and Pound Gates personnel worked well with Karen Carwood and Dave Collins taking on the respective captaincies.
Each of the three heats had the teams against one another head to head. Bystanders were shocked by the level of competitive spirit, particularly between the drummers, Jodie Claxton and Suzanne Gordon-Brown. Crown won every bout, with the second race being the most highly contested.
Sadly neither of the teams made it through the heats to the semi’s but Crown’s improvement in the final heat puts them in contention as ‘the one to watch’ next year. Sadly the Pound Gates boat came in 19th, out of 19. Dave Collins from Pound Gates commented “I’m gutted; I knew we shouldn’t have all swapped sides for the final heat.” Everyone agreed that it was a dangerous tactical move and one that really didn’t pay off.
Everyone had a fantastic day and most feel an annual event has now been established.
For more than 20 years, St Elizabeth Hospice have provided an invaluable service for people with progressive illnesses. Whether at home, in the community or at the Hospice, St Elizabeth’s experience, dedication and expertise let people know they are in safe hands. They offer advice and practical support for the person and their family around issues such as palliative care, pain and the anxiety caused when a loved one is ill.
At the time of writing Pound Gates had raised over £1750 for the charity and the figure was still rising.