But to meet the needs of a twenty-first century rowing club, it needed major refurbishments.
In 2012, the College launched a major fundraising campaign to make much-needed upgrades and expansions to the Boathouse. These included providing adequate separate women's changing facilities, communal areas for crews to meet and socialise, and increased space for essential land training equipment.
Alumni and supporters successfully raised over £1.2M towards the Boathouse redevelopment. Thanks to their remarkable generosity, the newly refurbished and renamed Blyth-McGregor Boathouse opened in May 2018.
This new state-of-the-art rowing facility was renamed after two Boat Club alumni, William Blyth (Christ's, 1829) and Grace McGregor (Christ's, 2012). William was the first Boat Club Captain and the stroke seat when Christ's College became Head of the River for the first time in 1833. Grace was Captain in 2015 and in the four seat of the first women's crew to become Head of the River.
Speaking at the opening of the Boathouse, Grace said:
"I'm honoured to represent the women's Boat Club with the Clan McGregor name. Tradition is alive, and support from all members of College, past, present, Boat Club or football team, is testament to the enduring community spirit at Christ's. This community is behind every student, and with these phenomenal new facilities the Boat Club can continue to flourish."
Since opening, the new boathouse has ensured that the Boat Club continues to flourish and Christ's students have the opportunity and facilities to participate in rowing at all levers - from learning to row to undertaking elite-level training. Speaking about the importance of her rowing exeperience at Christ's, 2021/22 Captain, Katy Hempson said:
“Rowing for me has been a way to balance the academic commitments of my degree, meet friends from across the University and throughout Christ’s, and has provided me with brilliant memories and friends that will be the highlight of my time at university. It is a sport where I have been able to progress from getting in a boat the first time as a fresher, to being Captain, and now trialling for CUBC to represent Cambridge.”