Start of the return to Paddling for Exercise – Phase 1

Following the First Minister’s announcement earlier today (May 28th), the SCA have confirmed that we are now able to begin the resumption of paddling for exercise, in line with Phase 1 of “Scotland’s route map through and out of the crisis” relating to COVID-19. Please take time to read the latest details from the SCA here.

What this means for you, our LKR members is:

  • From May 29th, paddling is now permitted as part of your daily exercise
  • Only paddle with people from your own household and/or one other household
  • Maintain 2m physical distancing at all times – there can be no wash hanging
  • There can be no crew boat paddling
  • Stay local to your home – travel is limited to “broadly 5 miles”
  • Follow public health guidelines for hygiene. Algae on te Union Canal is profuse at present, so wash everything carefully
  • Paddle within your personal capabilities – you must be capable of rescuing yourself without assistance, and with the present green algae, if you do fall in, keep your mouth closed
  • There will be no organised club activities or canoe lessons
  • If you don’t have your own equipment, and you want to borrow club equipment for the duration of Phase 1 (see details below), you can only do so if you have renewed your 2020 membership.

What LKR will do:

  • Encourage members to use their own equipment to paddle individually
  • The club boat locker will remain locked
  • From Friday 29th May, club members who do not have their own equipment may request to collect club kit from the locker on a one-off basis to allow them to restart paddling (including boat, paddle, buoyancy aid). Boats may only be borrowed if you have means to transport them safely (i.e. v bars on a car, within broadly 5 miles of Linlithgow, or walk a short distance to the water carrying your boat)
  • Where club kit is borrowed, you will be required to store it safely at your own premises for the duration of Phase 1

Following advice from the SCA, we have some good ideas for how we’ll manage our club paddling in the next phases (2-4), but we need more information from SCA/Government before the detail can be finalised. We’ll let you know here, as soon as more information is available to share. 

Although the club is still closed in Phase 1, your paddling will be highly visible within our communities. We thank you for continuing to represent LKR responsibly and we wish you a successful, careful and enjoyable return to the water.

We want to hear what YOU think!

The people who work to manage ‘Linlithgow Kayak Racing’ (LKR) would really like to get some feedback from you, our current and future members.  With this in mind, we have designed a short online questionnaire which should take around 15-20 minutes to complete. We would really appreciate your help to make sure LKR captures what you think. It’s live now, and the survey closes on Sunday 14th June 2020

We want to receive the views and opinions from non-members in addition to current LKR members.  Anyone interested in our club can complete the questionnaire.  For example, parents of a young member can fill in the questionnaire as well as the young member themselves, in addition to anyone else who is interested in learning to canoe in the future.  

The current plan is to analyse the results in the second fortnight in June and we hope to present the results by mid July 2020.  The results will then be used to guide the way forward for Linlithgow Kayak Racing. 

Many thanks for your interest and for taking time to complete this.

Update from the LKR about paddling in Scotland – 11th May 2020

25th March –  restrictions began.

12th April – Scottish Paddlers were strongly recommended to cease all paddlesport activity on Scottish waters.

10th May  – we learned that it appears that from 13th May, people who live in England may be able to resume paddlesport activity in England.

11th May – SCA published guidance confirms that the situation remains unchanged for paddlesport in Scotland.  We are to continue to “refrain from going paddling at this present time.”

Why? We are asked to support the efforts of the many who are dealing with the COVID-19 situation.  Our instruction remains  “Stay at Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives”.  We know of Scottish paddlers who have been stopped by the Police and given warning of a fine if they are seen again while the restrictions are in place. 

Even when the instruction does eventually change, travel restrictions appear likely to remain in place for longer, which means that not everyone will be able to travel to reach suitable water.  So, realistically, most of us will still be unable to paddle for quite a while yet.

Meantime stay safe by maintaining social distancing and good hygiene.  Keep on top of your general fitness. While we wait, our Committee thanks you all for your patience and for respecting the guidance. 

What’s happening in LKR? Catch up on the latest news here….

How would a club chairperson summarise this last month? With a positive message, of course! That’s more difficult when the social distancing rules and stay at home messages which aim to stop the spread of Coronavirus have changed the way so many people are living their lives.

Over the winter we had forced ourselves into weather we really didn’t want to be in. This was going to be the year!  We paddled on occasions we really didn’t want to because we could support other paddlers.  We broke through the winter to ……….. uncertainty all around; to an eerie silence, and no competitions.   We’re getting used to what for now, is the new ‘normal’.  Yet, that disappointment is nothing to the difficulties of those who are grieving.  We try to stay fit yet at the same time friends and relatives risk contracting the virus working in essential occupations. 

Without doubt we now have a different perspective on life. Read more here…..

Cancelled – 3 race events in May

LKR have carefully considered all the available advice, and have made the decision that all of our May 2020 racing events must be cancelled. We feel it’s important to keep everyone regularly updated throughout this COVID-19 situation, and we sincerely hope that as circumstances improve, that perhaps we can consider some rescheduling later in the year. Thank you all for your understanding. Our thoughts are with all our members, friends and their families!


LKR has suspended all club based paddling until further notice due to the #COVID-19 virus

Acting upon the March 23rd statement from the UK Government, followed immediately by the statement from Scotland’s First Minister, for a period of three weeks LKR/Club boats and equipment from ‘The Locker’ at the Basin will be no longer be available to LKR members.

Please do not attempt to access the locker during this time.

This restriction could be further extended on subsequent advice from Government sources in this situation of National Emergency. 

On March 26th, British Canoeing issued this further important guidance confirming that “all paddlesport activity should immediately cease on rivers, waterways and coastal areas until further notice.”

LKR as a responsible organisation must seek to follow regulation in a National Emergency and cannot be seen to facilitate anyone who may decide that they are somehow exempt from the regulations, not that we think any of our members would do so.

We will of course keep an eye on the application of the regulations and changes which will inevitably be published by relevant authorities, and act to keep LKR members appraised of any changes. 

Whilst we all seek to be proactive in protecting health, safety and well-being of our community, our LKR members and our volunteers, we assure you that the Committee are proactively working on ways to support all of our members during this very challenging time. For example, we plan to update you regularly with fitness plans and ideas which we can all participate in whilst social isolation continues, so that we may emerge from this, stronger and fitter and ready for the future.

Information on the latest advice can be found here: