Summer Update 2016

Dear OCA Member,

In addition to being our 60th Anniversary Celebrations, Canoefest 2016 was the start of a new year for the OCA... and already it's gathering pace, not least with a big OCA turnout at this year's Open Canoe Festival on the Drôme (and on related, typically wonderful Adventures in the Massif Central, taking in the Ardéche and the "Jewel in the Crown" run on the Allier) and with last weekend's Barton Turf gathering - blogged as Five Mills On The Bure & A Wherry...

Canoefest was hugely well attended party on the banks of the river Wye, with special guests, a Ceilidh, assorted workshops, big boat racing, beer-cooler antics, demo boat experimentation (thanks Canoe and Kayak StoreSilverbich Canoes, Hou Canoes, Venture Canoes, Burnett Boats and all else) and so on. The feedback has been excellent. If you've not caught up on reports and photos, please take a moment to read Canoefest 2016 - the OCA's 60th Birthday Bash... which has lots of wonderful photos!

During Canoefest we also held our AGM at which we reported on the past year, updated our Constitution and Mission Statement, presented Lifetime Volunteer Awards (c/o Downcreek Paddles) and elected a new Committee. Details of the AGM are here - and to see who received the custom-built "Big Dippers" see here.

In the weeks and months ahead we've got all sorts coming up... from the annual charity "Doggy Paddle" into Stratford on Avon to a Great Glen trip and from all-new coastal canoeing and open water journeying training at Little Cumbrae (c/o Glenmore Lodge) to fully mentored Leadership Development and Coach Education. You will even find detail of a Canada expedition being joined by a host of OCA members (one space available).

Of course, there's no limit to our programme, so if you've things you'd like to make happen (from a peer group trip you always like to do through to an event looking at something completely new) then please get in touch. We can offer support to find others interested in helping deliver things, and to ensure anything put on is delivered in responsible ways that meet all Duty of Care obligations. If we can't do this directly through our own network of mentors, coaches, leaders and experienced boaters, we can generally do it through established links with key partners. 

Note: if you like all of this and you've been a member and are planning to stay involved, please check your membership situation by logging into this website with your usual username and password. If you're a prospective member... please take a look at membership. If you want to join/renew the link, either way, is - and if you have questions, just contact us via

On which note, no matter how you like to go open boating, we wish you a great summer in, on and around the water.

The OCA Committee.