'Strictly' before the race

‘Strictly’ before the race

Thanks to everyone who came along to Maldon Hythe Quay on Sunday 27th December to support this event and to cheer us on.

Fortunately, the strong winds we had been experiencing recently, abated for the race and it was a fairly smooth course. There was a great atmosphere being with so many rowing boats, kayaks, gigs and a paddle board on the water and to see so many spectators along the quay.

As usual we made a colourful splash with our ‘Strictly’ theme. Thanks to the support from the members of our RNLI 200 Club we handed over £3,750 and won the trophy for the boat which  raised the most sponsorship. We were the first women’s multiple crew to finish and were runners’ up in the fancy dress competition.

It was heartening to see so many people supporting this race and we’d like to thank John and Diana Rogers from the Maldon Little Ship Club for organising it and all those who helped make the event so successful.

We’re also grateful to the West Mersea lifeboat crew who came along in ‘Just George’. We couldn’t resist the invitation to pose on the life boat – after all we did help to fund it!

Strictly 'Just George'

Strictly ‘Just George’

Row4AReason Round Northey Island Row 2015

Thank you to everyone who came along to watch and cheer on the race on Saturday 26th September. We enjoyed near perfect weather conditions and had a great row round Northey Island.

This year our theme for Pirates of the Blackwater was the Pirates of Parliament and we had great fun deciding outfits with a play on different roles of office within Westminster which included a Spin Doctor, Permanent(ly) under Secretary in a State, Lord Privy Seal(t) and Chief Whip.

foto 3 IMG_3737 - Copy IMG_3715 - Copy

Row4aReason charities this year include MacMillan Cancer Support, Action for Family Carers and First Responders.


Oars and Paws Dog Show 13th June 2015

Our fun dog show in aid of ROW4AREASON was held on Saturday 13th June 2015 in Daisy Meadow, Heybridge Basin.

Despite the weather starting out damp we had a great turnout.

This is our 12th year of running the show and it’s grown in popularity year on year to become one our village’s established annual events with the sole intention for everyone to have fun! Its other main aim is to raise valuable funds for the annual sponsored rowing race around Northey Island, organised by Row4AReason, which is to be held on 25th September.

There was a strong crowd with 59 dogs which were entered into  numerous classes totalling 194 entries.

The emphasis of this show is FUN for all the family, with child handlers being actively encouraged.

The judges this year were Carole and Keith Lawson and Peggy and Dave Howard.

During the interval the Burnham Collaborators Flyball Team gave an insight into this exciting sport.

The results were:

Best in Show – Charlotte Maynard and Reuben, Reserve Best in Show Master Wood and Tia.

Best in Show and Reserve





The Best Partnership – awarded by the Heybridge Parish Council to Steve Sumner and Bella. Best Partnership




Class 1 Prettiest Bitch – Madda and Mark Osbourne

Class 2 Most Handsome Dog – Archie and Diane Smith

Class 3 Most Appealling Eyes – Jarvis and Sue Wadwell

Class 4 Best Condition – Rueben and Charlotte Maynard

Class 5 Fastest Sausage Eater – Jambo and Daryl Flint

Class 6 K9 Kids – Harvey and Tadhg Leeson-King

Class 7 Perkiest Pensioner – Cookie and Vanessa Mallow

Class 8 Agility Stakes – Zebbie and Nina Gibson

Class 9 Dog Judges would most like to take home – Reuben – Charlotte Maynard

The amount we raised was just over £850.00!! The monies coming from entry fees for classes and the agility arena, the refreshment tent (hot dogs and home made cakes), home made dog biscuits and home made crafts. We also had two smaller competitions, Guess How Many Dog Biscuits in the jar and Name the Cuddly Toy. This a free entrance event and we’d like to thank those people who very kindly put donations into our bucket.

The team and all their loyal helpers, work so very hard for these few hours of fun. Heartfelt thanks to all.

RNLI Sponsored Row and Gig Race 2015

Thanks to everyone who came down to Maldon Hythe Quay on Sunday 4th January to support the sponsored row. It was an early start with the race starting at 11.00 and we had a cold but very calm day. The conditions were so good that we finished the race in 25 minutes – the first ladies’ multiple team back! We were second in the fancy dress and won the trophy for the boat raising the most sponsor money. This is virtually all down to our RNLI 200 Club. We raised over £3,200 so thank you to all our members!

Where does Santa go after Christmas? ON HOLIDAY!

Where does Santa go after Christmas? ON HOLIDAY!

Just a bit faster than rowing

Just a bit faster than rowing

With the West Mersea Lifeboat Crew

With the West Mersea Lifeboat Crew

Row4AReason Round Island Race 2014

The sun managed to shine for the Row4AReason event – Pirates of the Blackwater fun weekend over 12-14th September. We rowed out in style in our pirate outfits! It was choppy in places, but we still managed a respectable 55 minutes to row the course around Northey Island.

Our fundraising efforts through the running of the annual Oars and Paws Fun Dog Show in June meant we raised the most money by a single boat – £720.

More information can be seen on our Charities’ page – Row4AReason

Final hydration intake

Final hydration intake

Ready to row

Ready to row


Last few strokes

Last few strokes

Oars and Paws Fun Dog Show 2014

Thank you to everyone who came to the dog show on Saturday 14th June.

Well the rain held off and although it was fairly cloudy, it was warm and the event was hailed a success!Through the support we had from everyone who came along and took part, watched and helped we thought we had raised over £600 but it is now £720 for Row4AReason. Thank you everyone!

There were over 60 dogs including unusual breeds, cross breeds and many colours amounting to 149 entries across the classes.

The Best in Show was Gus, a Springer X Cocker Spaniel, owned by Sarah Green.

Gus, Best in Show

Gus, Best in Show


Reserve was Louie, a Greek Akbash, owned by Chris and Tony Saberi.

Reserve, Louie

Reserve, Louie

The winner of the Heybridge Parish Council Best PartnershipTrophy was Stella Botham with her two rescue dogs and a friend’s dog who entered every class!

Best Partnership and Heybridge Parish Council Trophy winner

Heybridge Parish Council Best Partnership Trophy winner

Here are a few more pictures from the show:

The Agility Stakes Winners

The Agility Stakes Winners


Show on the Go

Show on the Go









Below is Jolly, the Guide Dog we helped raise funds for last year. It was lovely to have her make an appearance at our show!



Row 4a Reason

Thank you to everyone who came down to the Basin on Saturday 7th September for Row 4a Reason.

This year’s theme was Heybridge Basin Pirates of the Blackwater. The race was the usual course around Northey Island and in aid of the following charities being supported by Row 4a Reason: Guide Dogs for the Blind, Bipolar UK and Life Education.

We had a good row despite some tricky weather and very strong winds on the far side of Northey making progress through the water very slow and challenging. However, we made it!

We enjoyed having the excuse to dust off our pirate outfits we wore when we took part in the Great River Race on the Thames in 2009. Here are a few pictures from that race, which bring back memories of a terrific day messing about on the river, all done in the best possible taste as ever!

Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge

Almost done!

Almost done!


Pirates of The Thames

Pirates of The Thames

Dog Show Saturday 29th June

Thank you to everyone who helped make our 10th Oars and Paws Fun Dog Show a barking success!


We enjoyed a fantastic afternoon with fabulous weather and a terrific turnout. We had about 78 dogs entering across the nine classes and in excess of 200 people.

We are very pleased and proud to announce that you helped us raise almost £1000 for Row4AReason.

Best in Show went to Lisa Styles and Alfie, Reserve Best in Show went to Jan Clark and Sam.
Other awards went to the Dodds family and Bella for the Best Child Handler and the Mills family and Monty for the Heybridge Parish Council Best Partnership cup.

The Guide Dogs for the Blind were there and we had alternative grooming in the intermission!

Our thanks go to everyone who helped with the show and to everyone who came along. Thanks also to Marie Swan for donating a new tunnel for the agility.

You can see more pictures from the show on our Dog Show 2013 post

Dog Show 2013


We began with humble ambition back in 2003 just to have a little bit of fun with our dogs and our friends and their dogs and maybe raise a little for charity. Each year the show has grown and become an annual village event, always the following weekend of the Blackwater Show.

Whilst it is still essentially a village show, people come from neighbouring villages and towns having heard about it through seeing our posters in the village, local shops and vets, word of mouth and by having a flyer thrust in their hands by us when we see them walking with their dog(s)!!

The Oars and Paws Dog Show supports Row 4a Reason each year and to date we have raised in the region of £6000.

Here are some photos from this year’s show, 2013 including alternative grooming!












Here are a few pictures from last year’s show: