London Youth Rowing has unveiled the implementation of the Active Row project in Leeds, which will see the charity deliver its primary programme to Leeds’ youth, outside of the Capital, for the first time.

The announcement of Active Row Leeds is made in line with the receipt of funding from Henley Royal Regatta Charitable Trust (HRRCT) and The Gemini Boat Race, to support with developing young people from underrepresented backgrounds, across the nation.

In partnership with Henley Royal Regatta Charitable Trust (HRRCT), Active Row Leeds will build on the work of RowLeeds, managing the community engagement portion of their existing programme and working with Leeds RC to provide access to on-water rowing.

Active Row Leeds will provide indoor rowing machines and coaching support in at least 17 secondary schools across the city. The programme aims to target at least 500 young people within the first two years, and within three years, work with up to 30 schools in the area.

As part of Gemini’s sponsorship of The Boat Race, the cryptocurrency experts have donated £25,000 towards LYR’s Northern flagship programme. 

The donation will enable London Youth Rowing the chance to purchase equipment and further coaching resources to deliver indoor rowing sessions across schools beyond Leeds, including Wakefield and Bradford, with the potential for continued development across the county. This will provide a year-round and continued programme allowing students the opportunity to take part in key events such as LYR’s annual National Junior Indoor Rowing Championships.

Matt Rostron, CEO, LYR said: “After the incredible recent announcement that we will be branching outside of London for the first time, to Leeds, and now to be following up with the news of additional support through The Gemini Boat Race Bursary is not only very exciting but a sign of the positive commitment to purpose-led social impact through sport, from organisations such as Gemini and Boat Race.

This very generous funding will enable us to expand on our Active Row Leeds programme which will now not only deliver coaching and investment but can purchase equipment to make rowing accessible for so many young people.

Whilst this specific funding will be used to purchase equipment such as rowing machines and a part-time coach, we will also be in a position to introduce these young people to potential on-water venues and activities and work with them to further their development and access to sport, and the benefits.”