Work begins on £2.8million boathouse at Ely for the University of Cambridge - expected completion is next October

Cambridge Boathouse turf cutting ceremony

Cambridge Boathouse turf cutting ceremony - Credit: Archant

Work has started on a £2.8 million boathouse for the University of Cambridge in Ely.

New boathouse at Ely as it will look when complete

New boathouse at Ely as it will look when complete - Credit: Archant

Over 100 alumni, alumnae and rowers from the university marked the start of work on the scheme with a traditional turf cutting ceremony held jointly by Morgan Sindall and the three university rowing clubs.

The fundraising to enable construction on the scheme to begin has been underway for the last eight years and is a combined venture between Cambridge University Boat Club (CUBC), Cambridge University Women’s Boat Club (CUWBC) and Cambridge University Lightweight Rowing Club (CULRC).

The development has received fundraising support from hundreds of Cambridge alumni/alumnae and from the University.

Ewan Pearson, a Cambridge Blue and chairman of the project for the three boat clubs, said: “We have now reached the final stage in the development of new and world-class facilities for the scholar-athletes from the three clubs that row for the university against Oxford in the annual Boat Races; these facilities will greatly help us to boost our competitiveness”

Work is already underway on the 48-week development which will provide the university with a four-bay, two-storey boathouse to house up to 50 rowing boats. The building will be completed in October 2016 and will include a kitchen area, crew and coaches rooms, and two large changing rooms with shower facilities.

The boathouse will feature brickwork cladding and a distinctive zinc covered roof.