Department of Sport

Performance Rowing


Performance Rowing




The university is located within easy reach of the River Trent and the National Watersports Centre, and a close partnership allows our students extensive access to the 2km buoyed course. Student athletes can also take advantage of the state-of-the-art training facilities at the £40 million David Ross Sports Village, including a 200-station fitness suite, High Performance Zone and Sports Injury Clinic.

Our own boathouse situated on the banks of the River Trent provides a centre for training on a wide 9km stretch, and facilities to use ergos as a squad. Student athletes join a long history of success on the water; our alumni include Olympians Chris Bartley, Vicky Meyer-Laker, David Lemon, and Blue Boat rower George McKirdy.

Rowing at The University of Nottingham

Adrian Roberts - University of Nottingham Rowing Coach

Performance coaching

New Head Coach Adrian Roberts brings with him a wealth of coaching experience to our programme having previously worked for British Rowing for 11 years. Adrian started as the High Performance Coach for the GB senior team; coached a gold medal winning crew at the Senior World Rowing Championships 2010; coached the quad at London 2012 Olympics; and most recently moving to Lead Coach of the GB Junior Rowing team. 

Before his time at British Rowing, Adrian’s time was spent on the River Trent spending many years involved in Nottinghamshire rowing, and coaching multiple U23 World Championship medal winning crews that also included Nottingham students. Being a University of Nottingham alumni, we are delighted to welcome Adrian back to the programme.

Contact University of Nottingham Rowing



  • British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) events; Indoors, Small Boats Head, Fours and Eights Head, Regatta

  • European University Sports Association Games

  • HoRR and WeHoRR

  • Henley Women’s Regatta

  • Henley Royal Regatta

Performance facilities


  • Senior British Championships - Winners of the University Shield in M4- and M8+
  • Fours Head of the River 2019 – 2nd W4- Band 1, 3rd W4x Academic Band 1
  • World Rowing University Regatta – Gold in W8+ 2019, Bronze in M8+ 2018
  • Home International Regatta – M4- Silver, W2x Silver, W4x Silver. 2 Athletes in M8+ Gold
  • BUCS Fours and Eights Head 2020 - Silver in Lwt M4-, Silver in Lwt W4x, Gold in Lwt M4x, 5th in W4-, W4+, W8+, M8+, M4+ & M4-
  • BUCS Regatta 2019 – Bronze WCLwt2x, Silver MCLwt4x, Bronze MCLwt2-, Gold WB8+

Performance training 

Athletes train for around 12 sessions per week with a combination of water and land based work, focused on a program that is balanced to the quality of athlete.

  • 2-3 weekly strength & conditioning sessions (60 minutes each)
  • 5-6 coached water sessions
  • 3-4 land based cardio sessions on ergos/wattbikes
  • 1 weekly club indoor circuit session 
  • 3 training camps across season with one preseason abroad, and 2 based at the NWSC


  • Chris Bartley: Olympic medallist (Silver Lwt 4- London 2012), 7 x World Championship medallist (2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014), 2 x European Championship medallist (2014, 2016).
  • Olivia Whitlam: 2 x Olympic finalist (W2- Beijing 2008, W8+ London 2012), 2 x World Championship medallist (2007, 2010)
  • David Lemon: 2 x Henley Royal Winner (Wyfolds 1992, Ladies Plate 1997), 3 x World Championship Medallist (1994, 1995, 1997), Olympic finalist (Lwt 4- Atlanta 1996)
  • Vicky Meyer-Laker: Travelling spare (Rio 2016), 2 x World Championship medallist (2015), 1 x European Championship medallist (2012).
  • George McKirdy: Blue boat rower (Oxford, 2016), World University Rowing Championship medallist (2014), 3 x European University Championship medallist (2013, 2011, 2010)
Athletes train for around 12 sessions per week with a combination of water and land based work, focused on a programme that is balanced to the quality of athlete.

Athlete profiles

 Lewis Howlett

Lewis Howlett

Studying: MSc Computer Science

Rowing Background: Started rowing aged 11 for RGS High Wycombe. At 17, starting rowing for Maidenhead Rowing Club and then subsequently Henley Rowing Club before joining Nottingham.

Top Achievements: BUCs Head 2019 Silver (Lwt4-), BUCs Regatta 2019 Silver (Lwt4x), BUCs Head 2020 Silver (Lwt4-) & Gold (Lwt4x), EUSA Bronze (Lwt 2x). World Rowing University Regatta 4th (M8+), Home Internationals Regatta Gold (J4x)

“The University of Nottingham offers me the best facilities for training alongside my academic studies, therefore UoN is the best place for me to achieve both my academic and sporting goals.”



Imogen North

Studying: MSci Biology

Rowing Background: Rowing since age of 12 at Stratford-upon-Avon, winning Bronze at British Championships when I was 15 and then entering the GB trials system at 16..

Top achievements: BUCs Regatta including 2 Golds in WLwt4-, Gold and Silver in WLwt4x & Gold and Silver in WLwt2x. EUSA Silver Medallist (WLwt4x and WLwt2x), Reached GB final Trials in Caversham.

"Nottingham has allowed me to not only enjoy the sport I love with excellent coaching and facilities but also do this alongside my degree to achieve excellence all round."



University of Nottingham Sport

David Ross Sports Village
University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0)115 74 87000