Medical school rowing again

ROWINGPeter Selley, a man with a scanner, has kindly sent me this picture. It shows the King’s College Hospital Medical School eight on the Thames in the Tideway Head. I blogged about this here.

From left to right we are:

  •      Stephen Martin (cox, latterly a psychiatrist in Durham)
  •      Sandy Anderson (stroke, don’t know where he is)
  •      Clive Coddington (GP in Hampshire I think)
  •      Chris Morris (don’t know)
  •      Bob Morris (don’t know)
  •      me
  •      Terry Riordan (pathologist in Devon)
  •      Peter Selley (GP in Devon)
  •      James Anderson (bow, don’t know)

The boat wasn’t ours. We rented it from Thames Rowing Club, whose boathouse in Putney we used. The team was ‘sponsored’ by Mr A M MacArthur (1921-2012), then Consultant Cardiothoracic surgeon at King’s, who had been a noted athlete and rower in his youth. You can read his obituary here.

I don’t remember that we trained much. There were occasional sessions on the rowing tub doodah in the boathouse in an attempt to tidy up technical skills such as feathering, but the training I recall was simply rowing on the river. In all weathers too.

Some of us were serious rowers, in particular the captain, Clive Coddington, whose contacts got us to the Kingston Regatta, Terry Riordan whose voice stunned us all, and (I think) Bob Morris. I hope that Peter and Steve won’t mind if I class them with me as rowing for fun. Not that Steve, mind you, rowed. All he did was sit on his orse (as Ross O’Carroll Kelly would say), steer and shout at us—which he did very well, I might add. Peter had (has still I rather think) a searing wit and is great good fun. Susan and I know him best of all, and were able to visit his  mansion in Devon in later years. Stephen had an explosive laugh, and unlimited enthusiasm for things Scottish and military, and Waugh’s Sword of Honour. I remember Clive for his vigour and intelligence, but I suspect he found it frustrating that some of us lacked his commitment. Of Terry the voice I have already written.

I’m pretty sure Susan and I were wed by the time this photo was taken. I was enjoying myself as a medical student, but Susan was teaching at an inner city school just off the Old Kent Road in north Peckham. This was by no means easy, and I hope she might commit memories of it to print before too long.

Most of us in this photo qualified as doctors in 1975. I organized a reunion for our cohort in 1985 at the Savoy in London. That’s the last time any number of us met, though individuals have kept in sporadic contact.

Gentlemen, thank you!

3 thoughts on “Medical school rowing again


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