Rowing our boats

What’s a gig?

[CPGA excerpt] : Taken from a traditional design, the gigs that are constructed today follow the original specifications as laid down by the Peters family in the form of the gig ‘Treffry’ (1838), which is still actively rowed by the Newquay Rowing Club. Over 200 years ago William Peters working in his yard at Polvarth, St. Mawes, Cornwall would have probably given little thought to the future of his craft. But for us today they are an historical asset, a testament to the skill of the Peters family. Built from narrow leaf (ideally) Cornish elm and inspected at least three times during their build by the Association Standards Officer, the modern gig is a speedy and seaworthy craft.

Rowing our boatsOur club gigs:

  • Zawn (2014)

Built by David Currah of Looe. Our top racing gig. A beautiful varnished boat which has already raced in the final at the World Pilot Gig Championships 2014. Purchased with money from a grant from the SITA Cornwall Trust.

  • Pinnacle (2003)

Formerly owned by Swanage gig club. F&MPGC was formed and a consortium was established to purchase “Pinnacle”. She is on permanent loan to F&MPGC. Pinnacle was built by Andrew Nancarrow.

  • Penarrow (2006)

“Penarrow”, again built by Andrew Nancarrow, though she sees lots of other service too. Her build costs used grant funding from the Foundation for Sports and the Arts.

  • Serafina


About the rowing :

Ok, ok, enough of the boats and history, tell me what I need to do!

Newcomers : Whether you’re new to rowing or an experienced rower (fixed or sliding seat) looking for a new challenge we’re here for you. Your newcomers contact can be reached at


About the rowing :

It takes time to build up your rowing technique (not that long though – it isn’t that hard!). The fitter and stronger you are the better, gig rowers are all shapes and sizes but spending time at the gym will really provide benefits. Rowing is a strength-endurance sport, and long low-intensity work to build your endurance fitness is key.

Bottom line is fitness and power will take you a long way in gigs, but if you come up against an equally fit and powerful crew then it’s only technique and clever coxing that will make the difference.


Timetable :

The rowing timetable shows all of the current sequences of timeslots throughout the week that we use. Light, events and availability changes this regularly so keep an eye out for updates! There are “fixed” timeslots for race-crew training (no sign ups possible) as well as open-to-all slots where you can leave your name and see who else signs in.

There’s also our online “book-a-row” system so that you can sign in to be part of race events, social rows, regular recreational crews and such like.

Any feedback? Send your requests or comments to:

Photo by Rob McGuinness. The Masters Rowers heading off towards St. Mawes, 26/1/11

Rowing our boats