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River Rowing Museum

River and Rowing Museum
Mill Meadows, Henley  on Thames, Oxon RG9 1BF
01491 415610
This award-winning museum has galleries  dedicated to rowing, the River Thames and Henley. Situated within walking  distance from Henley station and the river and town, the museum offers a  changing programme of special exhibitions throughout the year

The  determination by Martyn Arbib to establish a museum for Henley on Thames grew  from the discovery by his wife, Sally, of a 250,000-year-old axehead in 1976 on  their local farm. Coincidentally, inspired by an exhibition at the Olympic Games  in Los Angeles in 1984, David Lunn-Rockliffe, then recently retired as executive  secretary of the Amateur Rowing Association, and historian and author  Christopher Dodd resolved to start a museum for rowing. Henley on Thames was the  logical place to site the museum where they found willing support from a keen  group of local historians and river enthusiasts.

The two ideas  came together, encompassed the River Thames, and the result is the River &  Rowing Museum. Henley Town Council granted a 99-year lease for the plot in Mill  Meadows for a peppercorn rent of one red rose a year. The British architect  David Chipperfield, acclaimed at the time for his work in Japan, emerged from a  talented list of applicants to win the commission to design it.

The Queen  officially opened the Museum on 6 November 1998 and we were awarded Museum of  the Year and Building of the Year Awards a year later.

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