Inaugural Regatta London race cancelled due to ‘stormy weather’ forecast
Strong winds and “stormy weather” has led to the cancellation of the inaugural Regatta London race along the River Thames.
The event, which was due to take place on Sunday September 29, would have seen more than 1,000 rowers, kayakers and paddle boarders race along the river through central London.
But in a statement on Friday, organisers said they were unable to safely run the event due to “stormy weather” affecting the river’s water quality.
It comes as Met Office meteorologist Luke Miall said it will be a “weekend of two halves” in regard to the weather in London.
He said while Saturday will be mostly sunny with some rain in the capital, “heavy showers”, thunder and gusts of up to 30mph are forecast for London on Sunday.
Temperatures are forecast to reach highs of 19C on both days.
Mr Miall said the forecast was similar for the rest of the country, with “most places” seeing a mixture of sunshine and “breezy” showers on Saturday.
However, a yellow weather warning is in place for Leeds, Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool, Bangor, Swansea and Cardiff overnight on Saturday due to heavy rain.
The Met Office has warned of flooding in those areas.
Mr Miall said wind and rain is forecast for England, Wales, Northern Ireland and southern Scotland throughout most of Sunday.
The yellow weather warning remains in place for much of north-west England, Wales and South West England.
Regatta London said the decision to cancel its event this weekend was not “taken lightly”.
“More storms are forecast which will further impact the water quality, cause high winds during the event and potentially require an operational closure of the Thames Barrier which would prevent the planned test closure from happening on the morning of the event,” organisers said.
The event invited participants to take part in a 12-mile looped course from Putney to Big Ben and back, or a 14-mile route from Hammersmith to the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich.
“We share the disappointment of all those involved, but the health and safety of our event participants and our team must be our main priority,” the organisers said.
Regatta London organisers said all participants will be contacted by October 4 in regard to deferment of places to next year’s event or for refunds.