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History of Balmain Working Men's Rowing Club

Grand Opening

The grand opening of Balmain Working Men’s Rowing Club took place on the afternoon of 27th February 1886. The new building was profusely decorated with flags and foliage. The Balmain Alliance band and Naval Brigade band played at intervals with the Vernon band. White Horse Point was filled with increasing streams of visitors, and the reserve immediately behind the boat shed and further back on the higher ground was crowded with spectators, waiting expectantly for the arrival of his Excellency the Governor, Lord Carrington, who had consented to open the Balmain Working Men’s Rowing club.  

sketch of the opening of the Balmain Working Men’s Rowing Club

His Excellency arrived in the steam launch Ena, accompanied by Lady Carrington and her sister Miss Harboard. On the approach to White Horse Point his Excellency’s launch was met by a number of boats representing the other rowing clubs, and these escorted the launch to the shed. The party was received with loud cheers.

Dr Evans, president of the club, led the way to the entrance of the shed, where the formal ceremony of the opening of the building was performed. Lady Carrington was handed the halyard on which the colours of the club had been hoisted, and as she shook out the flag, his Excellency declared the boat shed open, amid the enthusiastic cheering of the spectators. Lord Carrington was then asked to launch a skiff from the platform, and as he started the boat down the stage he named it “Marjorie,” after one of his daughters. 

Lord Carrington proposed a toast “Prosperity to the Balmain Working Men’s Rowing Club.” He felt honoured in being permitted to propose the toast, and continued it was “no empty prophecy when he said that this club, so auspiciously begun, would bear its fruits, and that a club which did so much to elevate the moral as well as the physical condition of the populations would prosper for many year”

first committee

Balmain Working Men’s Rowing Club’s First Committee Men in 1886

Illuminated Address

Illuminated Address presented to Lord Carrington from the Committee & Members of the Balmain Working Men’s Rowing club - 1886

Signatures of the Committee Men

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Change of Name

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