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If you’re doing your shopping this Saturday February 17 at Serpentine Green shopping centre in Peterborough, why not test out a 30-foot dragon boat as part of the launch of this year’s Peterborough Dragon Boat Festival.

The brightly coloured boat, complete with carved dragon’s head and traditional drum, will be on show at Serpentine Green between 9.30am and 5pm and is an opportunity for budding participants to ‘test the waters’ and find out more about the event. 

You can sit in the boat, pose for photos with paddles and have a go at beating out time on the drum.

Nilesh Patel, Senior Community Fundraiser at Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice, said - “We can’t wait to welcome potential captains, drummers and crew to Serpentine Green this weekend to find out more about what this year has got in store. In 2023 a sell-out 48 teams participated in the Peterborough Dragon Boat Festival raising £42,000 for Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice.  With your support again this year, we can continue to be there when it matters.”

Representatives from the festival’s organisers, New Wave Events, sponsor Hotpoint, media partner ESP Magazine and chosen charity Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice will be on hand to tell you more about this year’s fundraiser. It’s open to any teams to sign up and you don’t need experience to give it a go – plus it’s great fun!

The city’s 24th dragon boat festival takes place on Saturday June 22 at Peterborough Rowing Club, Thorpe Meadows, and it’s expected that 48 teams will battle it out along the 200-metre course.

As well as the races, which are expected to be watched by several thousand spectators, there will be plenty of fun, music, and entertainment for all the family to enjoy. 

The festival will once again raise vital funds for Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice to support their palliative care and bereavement support services. 

Alicja Mierzejewska, Executive Director at NewWave Events, will be part of the team talking to budding dragon boat racers at the weekend - "We can't wait to welcome back the incredible companies that join us year after year and eagerly anticipate new participants. Our dragons are primed and ready, so join us at Serpentine Green and start sharing your photos ahead of the summer!"

Ian Moverley, Communications Director for event sponsor Hotpoint said - “It's our third year sponsoring this fantastic local event to help raise money for Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice, so we encourage all local businesses to join us at the 2024 Dragon Boat festival. Come along to Serpentine Green this weekend and maybe even take your picture with one of the boats!"

For more information and an entry form, call festival organisers NewWave Events on 01536 674748 or visit to enter online.

The ESP Motley Crew will be taking part in the race once again and we will be there in June giving out copies of our summer special issue and of course capturing all the action.


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