Clergymen’s awesome effort has helped boost the coffers at centre - The Evesham Observer

Clergymen’s awesome effort has helped boost the coffers at centre

Evesham Editorial 22nd Oct, 2018   0

A PAIR of Evesham clergymen took to the water to row up the River Severn and raise money for a retreat centre in Cropthorne.

Bishop Robert Paterson and the Rev Ian Spencer launched their bid to raise an oar-some amount of money for Holland House, a Christian retreat centre close to Evesham.

The anniversary appeal was launched last year on the house’s 70th anniversary. Fund-raising has already meant the chapel has been completely refurbished, but the appeal remains open to help with the ongoing maintenance needed in a listed building and improve the offering for guests.

Ian and Robert raised £800 when they completed a similar sponsored row in 2017 and are hoping to match that again this year. The pair took to the water in the boat ‘Maria’ which was repaired by Bishop Robert to row a 20-mile stretch of the river from Bewdley Rowing Club to the Kings School Boathouse in Worcester.

They were sponsored to row for the appeal which aims to protect the retreat house so it can be enjoyed by future generations.

“Our little boat Maria was only designed for tourists to row a few hundred yards around Stratford Upon Avon, so to go 20 miles was quite a task for all three of us,” Rev Spencer said.

“The windy weather hindered our progress in places, but I’m delighted to say we finished the course on time – although Robert and I had a few aches and pains the day after. Our thanks to Bewdley Rowing Club, the lock-keepers, Helen Williams, Barry Kent and everyone else who supported us.”

Bishop Paterson said: “When I took this on, I didn’t reckon on a low river level, resulting in a minimal flow, nor the very strong head-wind, but it was good fun and good exercise, and all for a very good cause worth supporting.”

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