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Henley Finals Witnessed by Enormous Crowds

A grand turn out for the last Henley Royal Regatta before World War I.

Non-Fiction 1914 1 mins Silent


The 1914 Henley Royal Regatta was as popular as ever despite the war clouds gathering. Staged annually since 1839, Henley is a solid British tradition awash with prestige and ceremony: perfect fare for the newsreels. Boaters and bow-ties abound in these charming scenes of well-to-do spectators surveying the action from the vantage of their punts. And you can just see some rowing in the background!

High-profile international sporting contests roused Britain's patriotism then as now. In 1914, the home teams clearly didn't fare so well, with Harvard Athletic Association winning the Grand Challenge Cup and Italians winning the Diamond. Perhaps that's why the camera focuses on the crowds, all-but ignoring the action. This would be the last Henley Regatta until the end of the First World War in 1919.