On July 19th, the Doggett’s Coat and Badge Wager, the famous annual rowing competition on the Thames, founded in 1715 to celebrate the coronation of King George I, was this year preceded by a Pageant. A Pageant honouring the accession of King Charles III.
As Thames pageants go, this was on the modest size but interesting nonetheless, keeping up the tradition of ceremonial rowing on the river, adding importance and an extra festive feeling to the tough Doggett’s Coat and Badge challenge, which with images from my vantage point on Lambeth Bridge, I will feature in my next article.
Assembling at Waterloo Bridge, the cutters of the Livery Companies taking part rowed the final section of the competition course, each flying a flag with the cypher of one of the twelve monarchs crowned since George I.
Having led the cutters to begin with, the HAVENGORE, flying the cypher of Charles III, moved across to the south side of the river allowing both the Pageant and the Doggett’s Coat and Badge race to pass.
The Livery Company cutters were not required, as they are on some occasions such as the Tudor Pull, to row with their full ceremonial regalia. But their team colours and flags brightened up the river as they headed upstream in an orderly procession.
Timing and co-ordination being all important, there was a short pause near Lambeth Bridge before the flotilla moved on.
Accompanying the cutters were ribs with film crews and safety boats ready to come to the rescue if needed.
My following article will be on this year’s Doggett’s Coat and Badge Wager, which followed the ‘Coronation to Coronation’ Pageant viewed from Lambeth Bridge on July 19. The three competitors Riess Ballard, Matthew Brookes and Emily Hickman took on this 309th challenge rowing the 7.4 kilometre course, established by Irish actor Thomas Doggett in 1715, between London Bridge and the Cadogan Pier in Chelsea.
Notes, Sources and further Information
Excellent article on Rowing on the River Thames.
To find out more about what’s happening on the Thames, see The Port of London Events Calendar
Thanks to Joe Lane for info. Follow him on Twitter @rowjoelane
All images ©Patricia Stoughton If anyone would like a copy. Let me know via Twitter @Tidal_Thames95