Four GB Rowing Team dads to row the Thames, raising money for Love Rowing and the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity

The fathers of four GB Rowing Team World Champions are set to row the length of the Thames to raise money for two charities; The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and Love Rowing, the British Rowing Charitable Foundation


Nick Digby, Hugh Elwes, Rory Carnegie and Al Davidson, dads to World Champion GB rowers, Tom Digby, Charlie Elwes, Sholto Carnegie and Freddie Davidson are taking up oars to raise money for two fantastic charities.

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Inspired by their sons, from 2-6 May 2024, the four dads will row from Lechlade in the Cotswolds (the highest navigable part of the Thames) right through to the famous Oxford Cambridge Boat Race Championship Course in Putney – a distance of over 130 miles containing 40 locks.

The NHS estimates that one in two people will develop some form of cancer in their lifetime. Sadly Tom Digby, reigning World Champion in the Men’s eight, lost his mother Julie Digby to cancer last year. Now his father and three other team members’ dads are trying to raise as much money as possible to support the charity which funds the hospital where she was treated. They are also raising money for Love Rowing, a charity dedicated to giving those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds and those living with a disability the chance to experience the physical and mental health benefits that the sport of rowing can bring.

The dads won’t be rowing alone. Paralympic, World and European Champion cox Erin Kennedy will be joining the boat in Lechlade to kick off the five day journey, and the 4Dads team will row past the GB Rowing Team’s National Training Centre in Caversham on Saturday, 4 May. They are also planning to meet up with their sons after training, to row down the iconic Henley Royal Regatta stretch on the same day.

Hugh Elwes said: “We have all been watching the success of the GB rowing team from the towpath for many years, but none of us had ever actually rowed. So we decided to get out there and learn, taking on a big challenge to raise money for two fantastic causes.”

Mark Davies, Chair of British Rowing and Trustee of Love Rowing said: “I hope everyone gets behind these guys because what they are doing is so inspiring, such fun and for two fantastic causes. Their story has a bit of everything, bringing together personal lows from last year and what we hope to be personal highs in a fantastic summer. We are backing them all the way!”

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