THE LEGACY left behind by a former Stratford Boat Club president lives on after a new launch was named in his honour on Sunday morning.
Felix Badcock’s involvement with Stratford BC started in 1980, eight years after moving to Welford-on-Avon with his wife Jane and three children Dan, Tom and Louisa.
He first started coaching his daughter and her school friends before passing on his knowledge to countless more junior and adult members.
Badcock’s women’s coxed four crew from the 2008/09 season won both at Henley and at the National Championships.
He is fondly remembered by the club and his crew as dedicated, passionate and deeply committed to every aspect of the training.
His love for the sport was infectious and the time spent with this crew led to some great rowing and life-long friendships.
In 2010, Badcock was awarded the British Rowing Volunteer of the Year Award, immediately nominating another Stratford volunteer for the same award the following year, a gesture typical of his selflessness.
And during the London 2012 Olympics, he was a games maker at the rowing centre at Dorney Lake.
Badcock is still remembered by Stratford BC as a gentle ‘father’ of the club.
He was much-loved and respected, and his tact and diplomacy meant he was always able to see both sides of any discussion.
His wisdom, knowledge and experience was also called upon on numerous occasions.
The naming ceremony on Sunday was carried out by his three granddaughters Phoebe Bridges (University of Sussex and Thames Tideway), Helen Craven (Lancaster University) and Frances Badcock (King’s College, University of Cambridge).
The new launch was ‘christened’ with a bottle of Fuller’s London Pride, reputed to be Badcock’s ‘tipple of choice’ during his rowing days.
Club president Paul Stanton said: “It was a huge honour to have so many of the Badcock family with us on what was a very special day.
“It was an unanimous decision to continue Felix’s presence with us both off and especially on the water.”
Graham Collier, J17/18 coach and former club captain, added: “The club is grateful to all who have contributed to the cost of the new launch which is essential for the safety and training of all our athletes and will replace equipment in our aging launch fleet.”
Badcock had a long and successful career with Thames Rowing Club in Putney, London, rowing in the Thames Eight in the ‘Grand’ at the Henley Royal Regatta for seven years and sometimes doubling up in the Stewards’ Cup.
In 1958, his crew won a bronze for England at the Commonwealth Games in Wales.
He remained active in the world of rowing, becoming an International Selector in the 1960s, captain of Thames RC and later vice-president before taking on the role of president of Stratford BC.
He died on 10th January, 2015 aged 79.