#45 Swansea University


19th October

16th November

The University 

The 2019 Welsh University of the Year, Swansea University is a research-led institution which is celebrating its centenary year in 2020. Its aim is to provide an inclusive and supportive working and learning environment, which enables staff and students to fulfil their personal potential. Both of the University Campuses are located on Swansea Bay’s picturesque beaches, with numerous colleges found on both offering a wide range of academic courses.

The University has been on the rise through the league tables in recent years and has won a number of high profile awards recently such as University of the Year (What Uni Student Choice Awards 2019), TEF Gold Rating 2019 and is a UK top 30 University (The Times, The Sunday Times, Good University Guide 2019). It’s also in the UK’s top 10 for student satisfaction (NSS 2019) and top 5 for career prospects (Guardian League Table 2020).  

In addition to the outstanding academic facilities and departments within the university, there is also a huge emphasis on student sports, as a university it has won the ‘2019 Overall BUCS most improved institution’ award on the league tables. The university boasts 49 sports clubs, with top international standard facilities at their disposal. 

Take a look at Swansea University's virtual Open Day here

The Boat Club

It is unknown when Swansea University Rowing Club was first founded but it was re-founded in 2004 by Tim Stickley. Since then the club has grown in both the number of members and with help from sponsors, numerous money making initiatives and some great treasuries work, the club has been able to build a fine fleet containing all boat classes. The club is situated on the West bank of the River Tawe and is easily accessible being only a 10 minute cycle from both campuses. It is an entirely student run club, from its committee to its coaches, emphasising the passion and dedication of its members, as well as the teamwork and camaraderie that flows into every aspect of the club.

Although the club is considerably younger than the majority of other the University rowing programs across the UK. Both the novice and senior squads continuously out perform the clubs potential and produce incredible results every year. In recent years Swansea University Rowing Club has been the best performing Welsh University at BUCS Regatta and has won the Welsh Boat Race trophy in 2 of the last 3 years. The club prides itself on its ability to annually produce high quality novice athletes that are capable of feeding into the senior squads and compete at the highest level of university rowing. The club has also produced athletes who have been invited to the GB BUCS Development Camp in September 2019, as well as providing two international rowers for Wales and Great Britain in 2018. 

You can contact the club at rowing@swansea-sports.co.uk.


As the club is entirely student run the squads coaching comes from members who are also qualified rowing coaches as well as qualified strength and conditioning coaches who help produce a well-rounded program. The programs are put together to include ergos, strength and conditioning, and water sessions to ensure the continuous development of all members. A variety of coaching styles are used in the club, including but not limited to direct, real time feedback during water and land sessions, multi angle video athlete analysis, and video tutorials. 

The strength in the clubs programme can be seen by the results and achievements that the club continually turns out on a local, national and more recently international, stage.

  • Welsh Boat Race Winners 2017 and retained the title in 2018, as well won the Varsity Race at the Welsh Rowing Indoor Championship 2019.
  • The Senior Men are on a 6 year winning streak in the Welsh Boat Race.
  • The Senior Women’s 4+ finished as the fastest non-qualifier and only 0.5s off qualifying for the 2019 Henley Women’s Regatta.
  • The Novice Men made the Beginner 8+ B final at BUCS in 2017 and 2018 and made the C final in 2019. The Novice Women made the B final in the Beginner 4x in 2018 and 2019.
  • The club won Varsity Team of the Year at the Sport Swansea Awards in 2017.
  • The club has a 20ft shipping container that it calls home.
  • The squads have access to a club erg room at the Swansea University Sports Centre.
  • Access to Swansea University’s High Performance Strength and Conditioning Centre with which the club takes full advantage of with some of the students Level 2 strength and conditioning qualifications.
  • 3k rowable stretch on the River Tawe which the club has almost exclusive access to.
  • The clubs fleet has grown considerably in the last few years with 2 new Janousek 8s arriving in November making the fleet now an 8+ for each squad, three coxed 4s, a quad/coxless 4, a couple of pairs and single. All of which will fit on the new trailer purchased with the help of their wonderful alumni club Tawe Phoenix BC.


 “I can definitely say we’re a club to watch closely. We are in a very exciting phase and I look forward to seeing Swansea competing among the big universities programs on the national stage in the future.”

Charlie Punter, President

“Swansea was where I caught the rowing bug. I learnt to row, made amazing friends and became a captain in my final year. Now 6 years and 3 clubs later I am still rowing to a high standard, but more importantly I am still in touch with so many people who I share memories with, of rowing at Swansea.”

Beth Murphy, President of Tawe Phoenix BC 

“I have been part of the club for 8 years now, and each year it gives even more in terms of experiences, results and life long, meaningful friendships. I have watched the club flourish over the years, I couldn’t be prouder to be part of SURC."

Lucy Swithenbank, Senior Women’s Captain

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