Skip to main content

Boat naming ceremony in honour of late director of the 'Great River Race'

Press release   •   Jun 24, 2013 12:59 BST

A boat-naming ceremony in honour of Lieutenant-Commander Paul Satow, MBE, war veteran and Director and former Chairman of London’s Great River Race, was held on Saturday afternoon at Richmond Bridge Boathouses.

A traditional, Mark Edwards’ designed Skerry rowing boat was built as a tribute to the late Paul Satow and was named ‘Merlin’. Other Mark Edwards boats include the royal rowbarge Gloriana, which was the lead vessel in the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant.

The boat was named in honour of the international medical charity Merlin, of which Satow was a long-standing supporter and has also been selected as the Great River Race’s official charity partner for 2013.

The ceremony was led by his widow Patricia and attended by family, friends, colleagues and donors to the Paul Satow Skerry Boat Appeal.

The boat will be one of over 300 taking part in the Great River Race on 7 September 2013.

The boat, Merlin, is launched at Richmond on the River Thames at a boat naming ceremony in honour of Lieutenant-Commander Paul Satow.

Stuart Wolff, race organiser who was also a personal friend, said: “It was a testament to the love and esteem in which Paul was held that we raised enough money to build the boat in a matter of weeks.”

“Patricia is particularly moved, and very much wanted to call it ‘Merlin’ because she knew how much he respected the work which Merlin does.”

About the Great River Race

The Great River Race, London’s ‘River Marathon’, follows a 21 mile course along the Thames from London Docklands to Ham in Surrey. This year’s race will take place on Saturday 7 and over 300 crews from all over the world are expected to take part.

From its debut in 1988, the Great River Race has now has firmly established itself in the sporting calendar. With its intriguing mix of colour, spectacle, intense competition and casual fun, it appeals to every level of competitor, from those who enjoy fun, fancy dress and charity stunts, to serious sportsmen and women who like to win.

As the race’s official charity partner, Merlin has a number of boats which members of the public can join, either as an individual or a team. For more information and to sign up to row exclusively for Merlin visit:

About Merlin

Merlin is the UK’s leading international health charity, sending medical experts to the frontline of global emergencies.

When disaster strikes, Merlin’s doctors and nurses work around the clock to save lives fast. Working together with tireless health workers on the ground, we take countries shattered by war, earthquake or floods from emergency to recovery – staying for as long as it takes.

Find out more about Merlin at or keep up to date with news from the charity on twitter @merlinuk or facebook



Merlin is an international health charity, saving lives in the world’s toughest places. Merlin responds with healthcare when people are overwhelmed by natural disaster, conflict or disease and are in need of immediate help.

Merlin will stay on after a crisis to assist recovery. Using medical expertise, Merlin supports health workers to strengthen existing health services and build the resilience of communities by helping those at risk of future disasters to be better prepared. For further information please go to:

For all media enquiries contact Anna MacSwan on 02070141735

Comments (0)

Add comment


By submitting the comment you agree that your personal data will be processed according to Mynewsdesk's Privacy Policy.