The Copas family purchased Remenham Farm in 1977, primarily to grow potatoes and to increase our acreage of wheat and barley. At the time Henley Royal Regatta itself was just beginning to recover from one of its historical downturns, and the only part of the farm not used solely for agriculture were the farm buildings, where ‘The Barn Bar’ had been established before World War II.
The late 1970s, with Margaret Thatcher coming to power in 1979, saw the arrival of corporate hospitality, and the popularity of Henley Royal Regatta increased exponentially to previously unknown heights. We, in turn, gradually converted increasingly larger areas of the farm to facilities associated with the regatta, in response to the burgeoning demand.
In 1988 our riparian neighbour at Old Blades, Pat Sly, introduced us to Christine Aistrop, and we learnt of exciting plans to launch a Henley Women’s Regatta on the regatta reach.
Being conscious of the considerable benefit we have had from our Henley Royal Regatta activities, whilst being in no way associated with the organisation, we were extremely pleased to respond enthusiastically and positively to Christine in offering Remenham Farm (Temple Island Meadows) as their venue, and our assistance in establishing Henley Women’s Regatta.
My family are very proud of their involvement in supporting women’s rowing, and in helping to establish Henley Women’s Regatta in particular. We continue our support to this day, as our way of putting something back into the world of rowing that has given us so much pleasure over the years.
Tom A Copas FRAgS