Chris Takes On Longest Canoe Race with New Last Minute Partner Alan

chris-bishop-town-collection_1Chris Bishop from Henley who is competing in the Devizes to Westminster International Canoe Race (the world’s longest non-stop canoe race) this weekend had his attempt nearly curtailed after   his original team mate Chris Preston damaged his right rotator cuff muscle during a warm-up race, the Waterside C, and withdrew on Monday 29 Feb.

Chris also partially tore his left Achilles during the same race and has been receiving treatment from a local Osteopath, Bradley Whale.  Chris said, “Bradley has done a great job in such a short space of time. Which means I can quick march around the locks as opposed to hobbling round them.   Following my post on the Devizes to Westminster Facebook page I had 10 offers from complete strangers to take my partner’s front seat and by Wednesday 2 March I decided on Alan Bannatyne. Alan is from Bourne End and he too lost his partner to injury in the Waterside C race with a rib injury. Alan had been training with this team mate for more than 12 months twice a week.”

Chris was out on Saturday in Market Place with his canoe, talking to the public about his forthcoming challenge and collecting donations for his Alzheimer’s Research UK which he is raising henley-canoe-club_1money for in memory of his Dad, Derek who was diagnosed with the early onset of the disease in 2007 and died in 2014.  Henley Canoe Club joined Chris too on Saturday to promote the local club.

“This is a example of overcoming adversity and getting the job done. Or to use the military parlance – ‘Crack On and finish what you have started’. We all face challenges in life, and it would of been dead easy to give up and say I will try again next year because I am injured and don’t have a team mate,” added Chris.

Zoe Baggott, Regional Fundraising Officer for Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “This is an amazing effort and we can’t thank Chris enough for his determination to help us beat dementia. We wish him the best of luck for the race. The money raised will make a real difference, bringing us ever nearer to finding new preventions and treatments through the world-class research we fund. More than 850,000 in the UK and 8,000 people in Oxfordshire live with the daily reality of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia and funding for research is desperately needed. Alzheimer’s Research UK relies entirely on its wonderful supporters like Chris and we wish him every success.”

For more information go to and to donate go to

We will be following Chris’ race over the weekend via Twitter and the tracking website Race #321.  Chris thinks he will be coming through Henley between 7.45pm and 8.45pm on Saturday.  Come and cheer him on with his supporters who will be on the outside terrace at The Angel on the Bridge.

Good luck Chris from everyone in Henley.