The University of Edinburgh to become Scottish Rowing’s High Performance Partner

The University of Edinburgh and Scottish Rowing have agreed to extend their successful partnership by a further six years.

Success at the highest level

Rowing has been one of Scotland’s leading Olympic sports over several cycles, consistently punching above its weight both domestically and internationally with Scottish rowers making up one fifth of Team GB at Tokyo 2020 including three who came through the University of Edinburgh programme. Over the last ten years students and alumni of the University have achieved over fifty Great Britain international vests across the European, World and Olympic stage.

A performance partnership

The partnership is based on a mutual commitment to create a thriving rowing programme at all levels that supports and encourages long term athlete development underpinned by a positive, collaborative and supportive team culture which prioritises and supports good health and wellbeing for both coaches and athletes. It will see Scottish Rowing, backed by sportscotland, make both a significant annual financial investment into the programme as well as commitment to support the rowing programme at the University of Edinburgh through other in-kind benefits.

athletes and staff on ergs

Supporting extraordinary student athletes

The University of Edinburgh has hosted and delivered a successful, professionally-led rowing programme, supported by Scottish Rowing, since November 2010.  During this period, Edinburgh University Boat Club has grown to become Scotland’s leading performance rowing programme and one of the most successful university rowing programmes in the United Kingdom. It was the first and, so far, only programme in Scotland to achieve GB Rowing Team High Performance Programme (HPP) status in 2015.

 As I approach a decade in my role as Head of Rowing, I can reflect on the fantastic progress of the sport at the University of Edinburgh. We have grown to become one of the leading clubs in the UK, consistently achieving domestic success, as well as providing a regular flow of athletes to Great Britain teams at both Under 23 and Senior level. The support Scottish Rowing has provided on this journey has been invaluable, and I am excited to be signing a new agreement which will see us solidify and enhance our status as a destination to excel in both rowing and academia.

Colin WilliamsonHead of Performance Rowing, The University of Edinburgh

The programme has consistently produced athletes to Scotland and Great Britain representative standard including multiple Olympians - these include University of Edinburgh Sports Hall of Fame athletes Dame Katherine Grainger and Dr Polly Swann.

We are beyond delighted to extend our partnership with Scottish Rowing. We look forward to the next 6 years, growing the partnership both further, and ensuring we raise the already high standards set within the programme at Edinburgh. I know, through working together, we will continue to create a rowing environment that carries on creating long term athlete development, in an environment others want to be part of.

Ross SimpsonAssistant Director and Head of Sport, The University of Edinburgh


Lee Boucher, Scottish Rowing and Ross Simpson, University of Edinburgh shaking hands

Scottish Rowing is proud of our partnership with the University of Edinburgh which has helped to support the development of countless student rowers since it began in 2010 and has set a standard for other programmes to follow.  Looking ahead there are many opportunities – in Olympic, Paralympic and emerging Commonwealth disciplines – and we look forward to playing our part to ensure that Edinburgh remains one of the leading rowing programmes in the country.

Lee BoucherHead of Performance Pathway, Scottish Rowing

Both The University of Edinburgh and Scottish Rowing are confident that this partnership will help continue to support a thriving rowing programme at all levels and to identify, recruit and develop rowers within EUBC who can successfully compete at an Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth level.

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