Overview of 2021

How did we do?………

2021 was a trying year for everyone, we set ourselves some ambitious targets to motivate recovery from Covid-19, however, we went back into lockdown and 2021 was another difficult year, but we still did some amazing things!

Congratulations to all of our paddlers who won medals in 2021, 26 rostrum finishes, not bad for a competitive season devastated by the pandemic. But the year belonged to Rick Moore, our slalom coach, who took second place in the Veterans rankings for Men’s K1 Slalom.

For paddlers promotied, Aaron Nolan to Division 2, Joe PawleyDavid Spikings and Kurt White, all promoted to Division 3 Men’s K1 Slalom.

Khaleel Ziauddin, was our top ranked paddler in 2021 for slalom.

We introduced several paddlers to racing for the first time and many returning, although we only attended 11 competitions we did really well at them. Congratulations to everyone who took part.

Our engagement strategy has paid dividends, creating positive relationships with 22 other organisations, throughout the year and already have a lot more ready for 2022. We were rewarded by British Canoeing for this achievement.

January 2021 was a slow start to the year, with restrictions in place and facilities closed, however, we were working in the background to try and help people stay active, we also made a few changes to our infrastructure and made plans.

February was a cold Month and then it was a wet month, we were lockdown, but we did some interesting stuff, including helping the BBC make an episode of Countryfile.

In March some restrictions were relaxed and some paddling could commence.

In April we resumed our Osterley Sessions, and things were getting back to normal, but still no competitions.

Some competition was returning in May and we were at the heart of it, running one of the first slaloms in the Covid era, The Sharks again leading the way,

As more things opened up in June we were able to take part in more activities, including a Marathon race at Royal Canoe Club, we started time trials and races at NW10.

The return of the London Youth Games in July saw four Sharks from three boroughs racing (Brent, Ealing, and Harrow). We started a new partnership with Let’s Go Southall, who were brining 40 people a week to paddle with us. On top of that Let’s Leap Holiday clubs were adding another 40 children a week to our numbers in Southall.

However, we had to move out of the Undercrofts and our hopes of making this our home ended. We moved back to Three Bridges School and with the positive attitude we always have when faced with a problem, we started to look at how we can build a home of our own here.

We also added extra sessions to our operations at NW10 and Wednesday sessions for the school Holidays at Osterley Park.

Holiday programmes were in full swing in August, working with a number of partners to deliver sessions to over 400 people each week!

After the rush of Summer, we kept the momentum going in September, with some new paddlers racing for the first time, back to our schools programme and as well as our normal sessions we ran two days of activities for the OPDC at Harlesden.

October 2021, saw the return of the Harefield Slalom, with a number of new Shark competitors making their debuts and three promotion as well!

We also undertook some canal cleaning activities with C&RT at Harlesden.

By November Winter had definitely arrived and we started or Winter timetables HarefieldHarlesden, and Southall. We also had a visit form members of the British Team to Harefield.

We carried on paddling into December before braking for Christmas, December saw us awarded with the 2021 Engagement award from British Canoeing, and also working on plans for next year, which will be bigger and better.