Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sunshine, teamwork on the river and our new recruit

Preparations have been moving forward for our return to the river in May and the sunshine has been wonderful!

Education Training days are underway this week and next and Crew Training for cruises will take place in May and June.  The diary is starting to get busy with bookings and we are looking forward to welcoming our groups back to the river.

We are delighted to announce that Hannah Bottomley will be joining the RTBP team as our new Education Coordinator on the 4th May.

Hannah has a degree in Zoology and a Post Grad qualification in the Conservation of Endangered Species.  She is a life-long advocate of the environment and its conservation. She has great experience for our role including having worked onboard a converted barge in Thailand, teaching primary school age children about water quality and sustainability!  She has also dedicated considerable time to bat conservation, has worked for the RSPB and Natural England and has volunteered for Cheshire Wildlife Trust.

RTBP skipper Gunnar and RTBP volunteers partnered with the Teddington RNLI team for some hands on training with Thames Discoverer on a perfect sunny April day. Great teamwork and learnings!

We’re looking forward to more sunshine and special time on the river!

RNLI practising towing Thames Discoverer
RNLI crew alongside Thames Discoverer

Happy Easter and Thanks!

Thank you to RTBP trustee Bob Darke and running partner Phil Tauwhare who completed their riverside half marathon in under 2 hours last Sunday. They ran past the boats, alongside the river, across 2 bridges and in and out of 2 of our Royal Parks. Thank you to everyone for supporting them with sponsorship – a fantastic £700 was raised and will go towards making more special days on the river possible.

Thank you to RTBP volunteers for joining Gunnar at the dock this week for a sunshine filled day of cleaning the boats and refuelling. Thames Discoverer and Thames Venturer are shipshape and ready for the restart of our cruises and education days after Easter.

We know that time on the river on our boats will be very much enjoyed and appreciated and we are looking forward to welcoming our groups back onboard soon. In the meantime, we wish everyone a restful and restorative Easter break!

From all of the team at River Thames Boat Project.

River Thames Boat Project Spring updates and please support our two runners!

We’ve been enjoying some brighter, sunnier days and things are feeling more positive for the restart of our activities after Easter!

Schools are into their third week of being back, Care Home visits for one named person are now possible and as each week goes by, many more people are being vaccinated. There is still a way to go but we remain optimistic. We plan to be back on the river for our Education days after Easter from May onwards and for cruises, we plan to restart from June/July onwards.

Special time on the river will be possible once more and we know that it will be a welcome tonic after such difficult times!

In the meantime, the RTBP team has been busy getting everything shipshape: maintenance on the boats, updates to our admin systems, catching up with client groups, and some fundraising to contribute towards making more special time on the river possible.

This month we enjoyed our first RTBP online Quiz on Zoom. It was a great chance to see volunteers, friends, family and supporters, to test our brains – a little – and to have a laugh together! There were a few tricky river questions – of course – and some prizes and we were delighted to raise just over £1,000!

This was one of the river questions – can you name this bridge?

Next Sunday 28th March, when the clocks go forward, we have 2 runners taking on a half marathon to raise funds for RTBP. Bob Darke, one of our Trustees and running partner Phil Tauwhare have planned a route that starts and finishes in Bushy Park, takes them along the river, past our boats, across 2 bridges, and up the hill in Richmond Park! Please support them with your sponsorship:
Please go to the Virgin Money Giving page:

or make a donation by BACS payment:
Acct Name: River Thames Boat Project
Acct No: 00007014
Sort Code 40-52-40
Ref: NameRun eg PippaRun

or send a cheque made payable to “River Thames Boat Project”, to Trowlock Way, Teddington, TW11 9QY. 
Thank you!

Here’s Bob in training in Bushy Park!

Winter Art Competition

The winners of our Winter Art Competition were Sherwood Grange Care Home, who entered a communal collage and a poem, ensuring that all floors of the home could take part. They win a 3-hour cruise on Thames Discoverer, later in the year.

The runners up were Keith Knox and Terry Kemp who each receive 2 free places on a volunteer cruise later in the year.

Please click here for further details and to see all the entries.

Job vacancy – education coordinator

Education Coordinator, River Thames Boat Project
Are you passionate about outdoor learning, with a personal commitment to environmental sustainability? Do you have the ability to inspire and engage others to understand and respect their environment?
River Thames Boat Project is looking for a highly motivated Education Coordinator to lead their very successful environmental education programmes, based mainly on their converted Dutch barge Thames Venturer.
The charity has a 30 year history and is passionate about making the Thames accessible and delivering fun and dynamic education and learning activities.  
The position is 30 hours per week, term time only, working flexible hours, at riverside locations in Teddington, Kingston and occasionally Tower Bridge as well as from the office in Teddington. For full details of the job and person specification and the online application form, click here

Closing date for applications: Monday 15th March 2021

RTBP welcomes two new Trustees to the Board

We are very happy to welcome two new Trustees to the River Thames Boat Project Board.  Chris Deavin and Steven Wibberley are both river enthusiasts, live locally and between them bring excellent commercial, business planning, charity sector and health sector experience to RTBP.  Trustee meetings are still via Zoom at the moment but when it is possible, Chris and Steven are both keen to get out on the boats and meet volunteers, Friends and supporters. 

Chris has a background in the City and significant experience of leading the commercial growth of financial research and ratings businesses. He led sales teams at S&P Investment Services, Morningstar and TS Lombard and is currently a Director at Defaqto. For many years he was the Chair of the European Independent Research Providers Association (Euro IRP) and has an MBA from Imperial College.

Chris lives in East Twickenham and has lived close to the River Thames for most of his life. He has spent many hours on the river, boating and supporting his children’s sailing and rowing. He is passionate about the river, its history and in helping to make it more accessible to those who can learn and benefit from it most, but who do not have the opportunity. He has a Level 2 Boat License and is looking forward to getting his hands on some ropes and helping with some of the trips, meeting both volunteers and passengers. He is also looking forward to using his sales and commercial experience to help the charity raise funds for its wonderful work.

Steven spent the first twenty years of his working career as a general manger in the NHS.  Twelve years ago, he moved to the charity sector, initially working at Macmillan Cancer Support and then at the British Lung Foundation.  For the past three years he has been Chief Executive at Cruse Bereavement Support, the UK’s largest bereavement charity.  Steven moved to Ham in the late 1990s and tries to make the most of living by the river, walking his dog along the tow path, pottering around in his aging and unreliable cabin cruiser or occasionally paddling a kayak.  He is delighted to be appointed as Trustee and hopes to bring his experience from working in other charities to the River Thames Boat Project.

Welcome Chris and Steven!

Goodbye to sophie and final rtbp updates for 2020

Since the last RTBP news update on the 1st December, we are out of lockdown but mainly now, under Tier 3 restrictions.  There have been positive steps forward in the roll out of vaccines which is very good news.  This hopefully moves us to a more positive outlook for 2021 and the opportunity to get back on the river! Thank you for all the support and encouragement you have continued to bring to the Boat Project during this challenging year!

We say goodbye to Sophie this week and we wish her well for her next adventures.  She plans to head off to the Caribbean in January but has promised to come back and see us and help out on the boats when she can.  We will be starting the recruitment process to find a new Education Coordinator in the early New Year.

The Christmas Social on Zoom was lots of fun! It wasn’t the same as being together but it was wonderful to share the RTBP warmth and camaraderie.  Glasses were raised to the River Thames Boat Project, mulled wine was supped, carols were sung, we had a little quiz, we played “pin the nose and eyes on the snowman” and there was a good collection of Christmas jumpers, tinsel and Santa hats. 

Take part in the River Thames Boat Project Winter Art Competition! All the details are on the poster: It’s always good to keep thinking about the river and creative projects have helped many people during this difficult time.  The deadline for submissions is 1st February 2021 so there is time to put pen or paint to paper.  We’ll be posting pictures of the finished artwork on the RTBP website.

We’re looking forward to 2021 and restarting our cruises and education days. We have fundraising plans: a quiz via Zoom, some short cruises dependent on group size restrictions and a river based sponsored activity. We also have a couple of RTBP runners getting ready for the Hampton Court Half Marathon in February.  More updates to follow in January. 

The RTBP office will be closed from Friday 18th December for 2 weeks for the staff team Christmas break.  Kate, Pippa and Gunnar will be back at work from Monday 4th January 2021. 

Happy Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!