​Oars aloft on the Gloriana at Hampton Court Palace with HRH Duchess of Cornwall


Kingston Grammar School's U15 and U17 rowing teams had the enormous honour of rowing Her Majesty The Queen’s rowbarge, Gloriana, on Friday morning as part of the BBC Radio 2 celebrations to mark the final of its annual ‘500 Words’ creative writing competition.

The 18 lucky students also met with a number of public figures including Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall who was the competition’s honorary judge for the fourth year running. Others in attendance included David Walliams, Dara O'Briain, Shobna Gulati, Jason Isaacs and Jim Broadbent.

KGS Head of Rowing, Ed Green, said: “We are delighted to have been selected as the Gloriana’s rowing crew on this very special occasion. The students did an incredible job and were highly commended by the Gloriana crew. Who knows - it may become a regular event for us!”

Inspired by ceremonial rowbarges from the 18th century, the Gloriana is a lasting legacy of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012. Made from British oak, iroko, sweet chestnut and specialist marine-grade plywood, the rowbarge is adorned with Regency-style gold leaf decoration.