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Oral history interview with Tim Hinchlilff


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Oral history interview with Tim Hinchcliff

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Hinchcliff, Tim (Subject of)


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Interview summary:

[00:01:04] Introduces himself and how he first came to the club aged 18 (since 66): 00.01.36 “I’ve been coming down here since 1966 Always lived in Loughton. Came with friends in Eton Mission Rugby Club. He did rowing because he needs calipers on his legs after childhood polio. “It’s a sport that I can do, and it’s probably the nearest rowing club to Loughton anyway00.02.25...” that’s basically how I got here 00.02.37

[00:02:50] Good description of the club and Hackney Wick when he first came: Mainly locals from Hackney and Bow, never more than 20-25 members. Streets of terraced houses were still standing – knocked down soon after he joined (replaced by factories and warehouses). In summer Eton Manor Rugby came for rowing. ….”never ahuge amount of people here”00.04.06

[00:04:16] Good description of (still) working canal when he first came: 00.04.20 “the barges were still used when I started…...Other rowers. Had to avoid barges. Few narrow boats then.00.5.21

[00:05:34] Good description of Wallis Road when he first came: “Spiegelstein's on that side of the road and book warehouse building. Terrace houses – 00.0610“I remember going down roads full of them when we went to the pub. I suppose they all got knocked down in the 70s”.00.06.24

[00:06:31] Good description of what was on the other side of the canal from boathouse when he first came (now the 2012 Olympic media centre etc): Hackney speedway stadium. Bus garage. Cricket pitch. “The canal gets more weeded up than it used to because the barges kept it clear”00.07.15

[in00:07:40][out00.08.18] Good explanation of only major impact of the 2012 Olympic development on the Rowing Club: 0.08.30 “originallly when we were compulsory purchased..09.40 plans to build a bridge across canal beside boathouse. Boathouse frontage too small to share as public open space and rowing club. Deadlocked negotiations with Olympic people and Hackney Council 00.10.59 serious problem sharing grass in front end..”that’ the major concern at the moment 00.12.00

object 00.13.40ish 14.59 the Olympic people are ok hackney borough want tow path on both sides

[00:16:38] Good description of the canal route he’s come to know as secretary and rower at Eton Mission: Total 6, 000 metres from Old Ford to Tottenham Lock. Canoeists go round locks not boats

[00:18:36] Good explanation of the history of Eton Mission Rowing Club: “they started off rowing on the docks 1885 started by rowers in docks. Old Etonians’ first boathouse on other side of canal. 1934 present boathouse built. Club racing. And annual races against Eton college taking turns to host – Until 70s when old housing was demolished and core members moved away. CUT OUT WHERE HE SAYS 1936 BY MISTAKE

[00:21:50] Good up-to date description of Eton Mission Rowing Club: 10 years ago veterans’ crew won gold at world championships and UK championships. Volunteers come down evening and weekends. Girl member (14) a star prospect.

[00:28:53] Good explanation of the commitment it takes for volunteers to keep Eton Mission Rowing Club going: Familiar members are key holders. For ordinary public a volunteer has to be here to take them out and look after the boathouse.

[00:32:40] Good explanation of how Eton Mission Rowing Club sense of Independence:00.33.00 “When you accept money from people, then they make the rules not you” Eton college hold lease, and club has use of the premises. Apart from this link club has always paid its way through membership fees etc. Affiliated to British Rowing Ltd – so conform to their safety and management guidelines. Club open to Hackney borough in exchange for rate relief.

[00:37:16] Good explanation of what Eton Mission Rowing Club means to Tim personally: Sport. Co-members. Social occasions and events. 00.“I just want to be in a position to pass it on I suppose – to the right people…not American bankers laughs[out00.38.05]

[in00.38.45] It may be that once that’s out of the way (2012 Olympics sic), say in another 5 years it might take off, might’n it” [out00.39.07]

[00:41:08] Good description of changes for local firms because of 2012 development: Those going, and those staying. Spiegelstein’s staying.

[00:42:48] Good explanation of conflict in 2012 development plans for canal: 00.43.00 Rowing and motor vessels don’t mix if too many want to be on the water at the same time. “I mean gin palaces and rowing four’s don’t go together”.OUT 00.43.52 Possible answer – rowers stick to canal, motor vessels stick to river.00.44.14

[00:44:36] Good explanation of how current members and users share the sense of carrying on a legacy. The 4 that go out on a Thursday they’re artists…00.44.55 “There’s at least 10 that think the same way – there’s some we never see anymore, but they still pay their subs. OUT 00.45.24

[00:46:00] Numbers when Tim joined and in 1970s & 80s: 25-30 members. Plus Eton Manor boys.

[00:46:30] Current popularity of Eton Mission Rowing Club: 00.46.40 “I suppose we’re in a quiet spell at the moment… But I tend not to look at it that way. You should look at the asset, rather than look at how many members...”00.47.22

[00:49:28] Good description of how local pub scene has changed: 00.49.47 “if you go back to the 70’s1970s pubs like Tiger packed. Now all quieter.[00.50.35 “I mean when `I first came here there wasn’t any breathelizers.

[00:51:34] Good description of changes in community, workers and housing, has affected Eton Mission Rowing Club: ”there is one bit i’ve missed, the pub…” Forman Electricals held do’s at boathouse until 80s. Beer from local pub. “Don’t want to go rowing I suppose” out 00.53.43 “It’ll perk up once that’s finished (2012 Olympics).

[00:54:22] How Hackney planning office’ might spell the end of Eton Mission Rowing Club by creating a tow path: How and why the rowing club can survive.[in00.58.03]we’ll object we won’t go that easily, [in00.58.10] yeah I think the Olympic people are doing everything they can to keep this place working……………………………….00.58.33
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