Wednesday, 22 June 2011

The Biggest Item of Rowing Memorabilia Ever

Rowing past Chertsey Meads, I spotted this former college barge, used by one of the Oxford university boat clubs as a floating clubhouse in the last century.
When the City of London Livery Companies (the old guilds) started selling their state barges in the late 19th century, several colleges bought them and added saloons with rails round the top to watch races from. As time went by these were gradually replaced with purpose-built barges, some by top architects such as John Oldrid Scott and T.H. Jackson.
This one has been converted into a stylish houseboat with two bedrooms and all mod cons. It was sold recently for a sum not unadjacent to quarter of a million sovs. However, the agents don't know which college used to own it - can anyone enlighten me?

1 comment:

Stuart said...

Not an expert, but I think this is the Balliol barge of 1881; re-hulled in the 1920s and later used by St Catherine's.

See "The Oxford College Barges: Their History and Architecture" by Clare Sherriff for more info....