YOUNGSTERS from Hexham’s Queen Elizabeth High School Rowing Club have excelled on the regional stage.

They won two gold medals and four silver medals at the Northern Region Indoor Rowing Championships.

Eight of the club’s members recorded personal best times (PBs) at the event, at Durham University’s Sport and Wellbeing Park.

No fewer than 16 rowers from QEHS competed on the day, where they represented Northumberland.

Although, each event was competitive to the finish line, the Year 10 boy’s race saw three QEHS athletes determined to finish on the podium.

Robert Collen and Christian Ryan provided an exciting finish with the lead changing eight times in the last 15 seconds, with Robert taking gold just four metres ahead of Christian. Both achieved scores greater than the national gold medal standard. Will Dyer found it hard to compete with his clubmates but recorded a huge PB.

The other gold medal came from Daniel Jones in the sixth form race over 2km. Daniel, who is a GB triallist, knew that fellow triallist Adam Morris (Durham Johnston) would provide stiff competition.

Daniel took an early lead, and with Adam closing fast in the last 200 metres, Daniel just held off Adam’s final sprint to win by just 0.6 secs.

Adam’s final sprint saw him hold off Jonah Ord from Newcastle College who finished just one second behind in third place. The close race saw all three achieve times better than the national gold medal standard.

In the girls’ Year 11 race, QEHS was represented by Hayley Hannant and Nicole Manning. The QEHS girls saw Louise Southward from Park View take an early lead, but Hayley closed in fast to finish in the silver medal position, just eight metres short of overtaking Louise. Nicole had her own personal battle with Isabel Roberts from Haydon Bridge, with the latter taking the honours by six metres.

Aidan Wright and Archie Stewart from QEHS were involved in the Year 11 boys’ race, where just 14 metres separated positions second to fifth. Aidan took silver while Archie had to settle for fourth and an impressive PB.

In the sixth form 2km girls’ race, Holly Nixon rowed a PB and took silver which is a mark of her recent progress.

In the Year 10 girls’ race, Hannah Bowman, Daisy Christopher, and Zara Holtham, all achieved PBs with Hannah just missing out on a podium position, finishing fourth just six metres behind Prudhoe High School’s Freya Maughan.

In the Year 9 events, Lewis Davison, Max Weston-Hannah, Evie Chicken, Josie Ferguson, and Halle Seymour all competed well and gained valuable experience of competing on such a big stage.

l Two stalwarts of Queen Elizabeth High School Rowing Club have been recognised for years of dedication to the sport in Hexham.

Rowing co-ordinator Pauline Higgins has been involved with the club for 28 years, and her husband Geoff is not far behind in terms of service.

The pair have won British Rowing’s Northern Volunteer of the Year Awards, and their names will be put forward for the overall national award. A forthcoming ceremony will take place in London.

Pauline said: “We had no idea we had been nominated and it was a lovely surprise.”