ID: REG_1839_001

TitleWest Mersea Regatta 29 August 1839
AbstractThe second annual regatta at the above watering place took places last Thursday [29th August] under the most favourable auspices. It was only last year that a few gentlemen, who have greatly interested themselves to promote the island in public opinion as a summer retreat, set on foot the regatta, which was then only accomplished at a considerable outlay to the projectors' but the results on Thursday seem fully to warrant us in stating that the many gratifications afforded upon these occasions were duly appreciated by a most numerous and respectable company of visitors. The margin of the water was crowded by a gay assemblage from every part of the vicinity, and especially from the town of Colchester. By the excellent arrangements of the committee of management, and especially by the active exertions of Mr S. Tillett, one of the committee, in carrying them into effect, the whole of the aquatic sports passed off most satisfactorily. Too much praise cannot be bestowed upon the efficient assistance rendered by Captain Morgan of Harwich, in his capacity of umpire of the sports, as also by Lieutenant Barrett, of the Guard Boat on this station; and their urbanity and readiness to enhance the pleasures of the day, by placing their galleys for the accommodation of the numerous ladies and gentlemen in a water excursion, will long be remembered by those who enjoyed them. A Government tender, the "Flying Fish," was moored a short distance from the shore, and was gaily decorated with ensigns, from which the sailing vessels started. Several parties paid a visit to the gallant captain, and were most courteously received and entertained by him.

About one o'clock, the signal gun was fired from the tender, when the following first-class vessels started:-
"The Comet," of Brightlingsea, (Pink) John Salmon. - First. £5 5s. Td.
"The Louisa,", ditto, (Green) Robert Earners. - Second, £2 12s 6d.
"The Industry," Tollesbury, (White) Edward Dines - Third, £1 11s 6d.
"The Hawk," Brightlingsea, (Yellow) A. Jefferies. - Fourth, £1 1s.
"The Agnes," Wivenhoe, (Blue) John Bartlett.

The contest laid principally between the COMET and the LOUISA and some beating was made in favour of the former, which headed the latter in rounding the station vessel about two minutes.

The following second-class vessels followed shortly after:-
"The Pink," Wivenhoe, (Pink) John Barr - First, £3 5s.
"The Magnet,", Mersea, (White) E.W. Cook - Second, £1 11s 6d.
"The Bee,", Donyland, (Green) Joseph Cole. - Third, 10s 6d
"True Blue," Mersea (Blue) Thomas Long ,br>"Isaac and Rebecca," Donyland (Pink and White).
The Dart," St Osyth, (Yellow) Thomas Pilbrow.

The boat race, which took place within a short distance of the shore, was a most interesting part of the day's proceedings. That well-known boat "The Viper" applied to be entered for competition but it was determined by the committee, as well as by the opinion of five naval officers, that as the prize was offered for galleys, "The Viper" was not qualified to contest as she did not come under that denomination, but was what in London would be termed a "Thames Cutter." But her men persisted in rowing, although she was declared to be disqualified to compete for the prize. The following boats were entered:-

"The Richmond" - First - £1 11 6.
"The Stone Point" - Second - £1 1 0.
The Bradwell"

The contest was sharply maintained between the RICHMOND and the STONE POINT, the former winning by only half a length. The BRADWELL came in almost immediately after.

The next match was between 2-oared boats, but only two were entered.

"The Hope" - £1 1 0.
"Ino Maldon" - 0 10 6.

The aquatic sports terminated with a Duck Hunt, to the great amusement of the spectators; and as is usual, the duck, by a variety of skilful manoeuvres, and after one or two very narrow escapes, succeeded in evading his four-oared pursuer, and carried off the prize of one guinea.

The Colchester licensed victuallers' both was engaged for the occasion, and erected near the scene of amusement, were upwards of 300 ladies and gentlemen dined at four o'clock Sir G.H. Smyth, Bart., M.P. in the Chair. The collation was supplied by Mr Croyden, of the White Hart Inn, but much inconvenience was experienced from a want of room at dinner. The evening was spent with great conviviality, and the following toasts were drunk with due honours, "The Queen," "The Queen Dowager and Royal Family," "Prosperity to Mersea Regatta," and after the prizes were awarded to the successful boats, "The Mayor of Colchester," "The Chairman" "The Vice Presidents, the Rev. N. Forster and E. Daniell, Esq.," "The Committee of Management," "The Stewards of the Day," The Lord of the Manor, Mr T. May, with thanks for his accommodation." Mr Tillett, on the part of the Committee, proposed the health of Captain Morgan, with their thanks for his efficient services in the decisions he had, as umpire, been called upon to give. The parting toast of the "Ladies," was received with enthusiasm, and the company separated.

An excellent band of music was in attendance, which played during the day and at dinner.

From Essex Standard 6 September 1839, with thanks to British Newspaper Archive / British Library

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Published29 August 1839
SourceMersea Museum