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The long-term future for rowing and canoeing on Trentham’s mile-long lake was secured on Thursday (October 16) when trustees of Trentham Watersports Association signed the lease for a new boathouse with representatives of Trentham Leisure, owners of the 750-acre North Staffordshire estate.

Mike Herbert, North Staffordshire regional director of St. Modwen, – the joint venture partner with Mr Willi Reitz, a German investor, in the development of Trentham Estate – and Ken Walters, chair of the Association, signed the 99-year- ground lease signalling the start of construction of the £350,000 boathouse which will incorporate a boat store, training and meeting rooms and changing facilities, accessible for disabled people.

The Association, which represents a wide range of groups including Trentham Boat Club, Staffordshire University Boat Club, Trentham Canoe Club and Eccleshall Scouts has raised £346,000 through Sport England for the new 4,865 sq ft building principally to store rowing boats, from single skulls to 18-metre long eights, and for a variety of canoes and kayaks.

The clubs will move out of their out-of-date buildings to the new site at the southern end of the lake next Spring.

Claire O’Hara, Sport England’s Community Club Development manager, was also be at the ceremony to hand over a cheque for Sport England’s funding for the building. Funding has also come from Staffordshire Environmental Trust, a legacy from Eccleshall Scouts and the clubs.

Mike Herbert said: “Hundreds of people, including schoolchildren, disabled and disadvantaged groups gain great benefit from the watersports activities, and thousands of visitors to the Trentham Estate enjoy the spectacle of watching rowers and canoeists on the lake as well.

“St Modwen and Trentham Leisure are committed to supporting the community and charitable organisations in the Trentham area, and safeguarding the long-term future of rowing and canoeing facilities here is a major part of our commitment. This is part of our dedication to the future of the Trentham Estate as a leisure destination.”

Mr Walters said: “We are very pleased to be securing our future on the Trentham Estate site and are very much looking forward to work starting on our new boat house. It has taken over three years to get this far so the signing of the lease means a great deal. We are very grateful for all the hard work of St. Modwen and the Trentham Estate, in particular Mike Herbert.”

Steve Town, regional director, Sport England, said: “It is an exciting time for canoeing and rowing in the Stoke area, with work commencing on this excellent project, supported through an Amateur Rowing Association and British Canoe Union Community Club Development Programme award and a Community Investment Fund award from Sport England.

“The new boathouse and landing stage will increase the numbers of people taking part in both sports and also ensure that opportunities for talented canoeists and rowers to develop and reach their full potential, are available.

“It is a hard task to bring such a project together and I congratulate all those involved. Next Spring will see a fantastic new facility opening on the site and I look forward to celebrating this achievement with members of the association.”

Notes to Editors

The Trentham Watersports Association, which was established in 2006, encompasses Trentham Boat Club, Trentham Canoe Club, Staffordshire University Boat Club and Eccleshall Scouts.

More than 1,000 people per year have accessed either canoeing or rowing on the site and this figure is set to increase with the new building. The Association has been very successful in introducing school children to rowing and canoeing and doing a lot of work with disabled and disadvantaged groups. It has also had great success great success in grooming their younger members to compete in championships around the world.

St. Modwen Properties plc

St. Modwen is the UK’s leading regeneration specialist, operating across the full spectrum of the property industry through a network of seven regional offices and a Birmingham based head office. The company is wholly focussed upon regeneration with expertise in town centre regeneration, partnering industry, brownfield land renewal and heritage restoration.

For further information, please contact:

Charlotte McCarthy

PR Manager

St. Modwen Properties plc

Tel: 07970 949 914


Mike Herbert

North Staffordshire Regional Dircetor

St. Modwen Properties plc

Tel: 01782 281844