It might only be a small suburb of West London, but Chiswick W4 is a hotbed of sporting activity and success.
From double Olympic Champion and adventurer, James Cracknel, to the late Formula One World 먹튀검증. Champion Jim Clarke, a host of elite-level athletes and sportsmen have called Chiswick home.
And as the London 2012 Olympics loom, Chiswick’s natural geography could be the secret to gold-medal success in one particular sport.
Nestled on the banks of the River Thames six miles from central London, Chiswick lies at the heart of the British rowing community. Not only does the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race finish at Chiswick Bridge each year, but dozens of international athletes are living and training in the area as the build up to next year’s Olympics intensifies.
Most notably, two of the World’s quickest oarsman can be seen on the famous stretch of river in their bid for solo-glory in the single sculling event. Britain’s best, Alan Campbell and triple World Champion, Mahe Drysdale of New Zealand are both based at Tideway Scullers School in Duke’s Meadows.
Half a mile away elite athletes are hard in training at Thames Tradesmen’s Rowing Club, former club of five-time Olympic champion, Sir Steve Redgrave.
A swelling number of local rugby teams include Chiswick RFC (formerly Old Meadonians RFC). With the side climbing the leagues, they only stand six rungs short of the Guinness Premiership.
Even motor racing has formed an important part of Chiswick’s sporting fabric. One of the country’s last great privateer racing teams, Chequered Flag racing, was based in the area providing drives to Tony Pond and Russell Brookes in the iconic Lancia Stratos. Earlier Jim Clarke began his career in the junior formulas racing for the Chiswick team.
Away from the elite-level, the area boasts a growing number of recreational sports facilities including the Rocks Lane multi-sports centre with tennis, netball and football facilities. Top Tennis stars including Tim Henman can often be seen on the courts and par 3 golf course of Dukes Meadows; while the Esporta Riverside Centre recently underwent a major refurbishment. The New Chiswick Pool and Brentford’s Fountain Leisure Centre are both within easy reach of the centre of Chiswick.
Away from sport, Chiswick has a thriving arts and cultural scene. At its heart lies the Watermans Centre on the banks of The Thames by Kew Bridge. Its exhibitions have drawn an international reputation, particularly for Asian and New Media arts, while local artists often display their work at the centre.
Many West End stars have called Chiswick home, most notably The Redgrave Dynasty. But perhaps the most famous cultural figure to have resided in the area is seminal 18th Century painter and Satirist, William Hogarth. Hogarth’s House in Chiswick park is undergoing restoration but will reopen to the public later this summer featuring an exhibition of some of his work.
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