Homerton College Boat Club

Homerton College Boat Club

Homerton College Boat Club (or HCBC as it is often abbreviated) is the rowing club for members of Homerton College, University of Cambridge. Their blade colours are white with a single royal blue band.

Homerton College Boat Club first competed in the women's Lent and May Bumps in 1978, four years after the women's bumps divisions commenced in the Mays, and two years after women's racing began in the Lents. The highest position attained to date is second in the Lents first division in 1986. In the May Bumps, the highest position was 5th in the first division in 1985. There were many Homerton women represented in CUWBC in the 1980s and 1990s, under the guidance of veteran GB coaches Roger Silk and Ron Needs. A notable fact is that one HCBC Women's crew won their oars in the 80s whilst being coached by a certain (not yet then Sir) Steve Redgrave, although the exact details are currently unknown. Homerton College, until recent years, had a very high female to male ratio and this in turn was reflected at the boat club. The women's side of the club have three eights, called 'Sarah-Ann', 'Percy' and 'Cyril', the latter being one of the first 'Burgashell' boats ever to be produced. After a number of lean years in the early 2000s, Homerton Women's 1st VIII are back on the rise up the bumps charts, and in 2007, achieved their first overbump in May Bumps since the women's divisions started rowing in VIIIs rather than IVs. They have consistently risen in the May Bumps charts every year since 2004, and have their sights firmly on regaining their place in the first division.

Homerton College Men's 1st VIII are rapidly gaining status on the River Cam, turning in consistently good performances in the twice-yearly bumping races. In 2008, the Men's 1st VIII won their blades in the May Bumps in an epic set of races, bumping early twice on the first two days before first post corner, but then hunting down a Blue-stacked St Edmund's 1st VIII and bumping them 200m from the finish-line. They completed their oar-winning season by bumping Corpus Christi in front of an ecstatic crowd at the Plough in a very tight race during which Corpus had overlap on Jesus II in front of them. In 2007, the Men's 1st VIII won their blades in both Lent Bumps and May Bumps, on each occasion bumping four times to go up four places, whilst rowing five times (once as the sandwich boat), and moving up to division 2. Another recent high point was the winning of 'blades' in Lent Bumps 2004, going up 6 places, after over-bumping Girton II, and bumping 1st & 3rd Trinity III, Selwyn II and Clare II. They also hold the Oxbridge record for the most places advanced during one series of bumps (either Mays, Lents, or Torpids/Eights for Oxford), advancing 13 places in the 2001 Mays, where the crew moved up a division to division 3 and also won blades. Despite the efforts of the oarsmen, the greatest hero, or rather heroine, of the men's side of HCBC remains "The Lady Hilary": the single fibreglass boat available to the Men's 1st VIII for the majority of the club's history. Held together by little more than hope and epoxy resin, Hilary has been the site of many a shivering eighteen year old's transition into manhood.

HCBC colours are navy blue with white trim, although zephyrs are white with blue trim. It is traditional to wear a sock of each of the boat club's colours when racing with a blue sock on the foot opposite the rigger. HCBC train at the First and Third Trinity Boat Club's boathouse, and rent boat racks from them. The club has recently acquired its own ergos (rowing machines) which are located on college grounds.

Recent form

Below are tables showing the performance of the men's and women's 1st VIIIs over the last decade in the Lent and May Bumps.

Lent Bumps



The Energy Chant

HCBC has achieved a certain degree of notoriety as of late, at least amongst the rowers of neighbouring club houses, due to the men's club's "energy chant", now carried out by all boats in the club (both men's and women's) before races. This was introduced to the club by CUBC member Dan (McFlurry) McSherry in 2000 or 2001. The chant is performed in a tight "huddle" of rowers, cox and coaches, usually in the lower area of the boathouse just before the crew pushes off. Ordinarily, the captain of the crew will lead the chant, which is performed as follows:

"E - E - E N E, R - R - R G Y, E,N,E - R,G,Y ENERGY!"

This short chant is repeated with a gradual crescendo and accelerando until the huddle breaks and the crew are screaming at each other.

Club officials

List of known main club offcials:

Men's Captain

*2008-09: Fred Lord
*2007-08: Enno Oldewurtel
*2006-07: Daniel Ham
*2005-06: Jing Dong Chen
*2004-05: Che Meakins
*2003-04: Richard Harrington
*2002-03: Tim Webb
*2001-02: Devin-Paul O'Brien
*2000-01: Bondi McFarlane
*1999-00: Alex Shaw

Women's Captain

*2008-09: Imogen Ireland
*2007-08: Louise Hainsworth
*2006-07: Amy Blessington
*2005-06: Emma Wright
*2004-05: Rhiannon Wynne & Rachel MacDonald
*2003-04: Hannah Derbyshire
*2002-03: Georgina Fowke
*2001-02: Jennifer Hubbard


*2008-09: Laura Bevins
*2007-08: Johnny Birtwell
*2006-07: Theodore Bell
*2005-06: Stephen Mounsey
*2004-05: Sam Farmer
*2003-04: Sam Farmer


*2007-present : Adam Marsh
*2004-07: Ruth Pidgeon (inaugural)

enior Treasurer

*?-present : Phil Stephenson

University colours

List of known members of University Boat Clubs:


*2000-01: Dan McSherry (Goldie)


*2004: Rachael Hanley (Blondie), Catherine Sutherland (Blondie)
*2002: Ulrike Munch-Klever (Spare)


*2005-06: Che Meakins (Granta), Richard Harrington (Spare)
*2002-03: Dave Pearce (Spare)

CUCBC Hon. Sec

*2005-06: Sam Farmer
*2002-03: Devin-Paul O'Brien

External links

* [http://www.hcbc.org.uk/ Homerton College Boat Club]

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