Olympic gymnast Louis Smith MBE beat the drum to launch the 20th Peterborough Dragon Boat Festival and swapped his pommel horse for a paddle.
Our local sports star is used to tough competition and challenged local teams to sign up for this year’s event which returns to Peterborough Rowing Lake on Saturday June 9.
The ESP Motley Crew are all signed up and we’re proud to be the print media partner for the second year alongside radio partners Connect FM who’ll be compering on the day.
It was great fun last year (we even managed not to capsize and did pretty well!) so we’re now limbering up to take on event sponsors Motorpoint and the event’s charity Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice when they hit the water.
Organisers Gable Events, are expecting a bumper turnout to celebrate the 20th anniversary year with over 30 teams expected to descend on Thorpe Meadows in June.
Entries are now open so get your workmates together, your local club, sports team or even just your friends to form a crew and get ready for some great fun on the water. It’s really easy and you don’t need any previous experience at all. You’ll get to race three times throughout the day plus you can have a BBQ bankside and chill with your family and friends in between races.
Festival charity Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice has to fundraise £2.3 million in 2018 to continue providing their incredible end of life care to people across the region, which makes events like the Dragon Boat Festival even more important. To tie in with the 20th anniversary, the charity has set the target of raising £20,000 at the event so that their staff and volunteers can continue to be there to give more families the time, memories and care they need at the most difficult time.
There is a great incentive for teams to raise as much sponsorship as possible as the top fundraisers will win the fabulous prize of a private raceview suite, finger buffet and sponsored race package worth £600 once again kindly donated by Peterborough Greyhound Stadium.
For more information and an entry form call Festival organisers Gable Events on 01780 470718 or visit www.dragonboatfestivals.co.uk/peterborough
Raise £150 as a team and you could ensure a Hospice at Home nurse has a mobile working bag with all the kit they need to care for someone out in the community
£500 could pay for a bed for a day of inpatient care for a hospice patient
£1,150 could cover the cost of running one of their Hospice at Home services for a day
£2,500 could buy a pressure-relieving mattress to ensure patients are as comfortable as possible when movement is limited
£3,000 could pay for a hospice nurse for a month
Photos: Emma Bothamley for ESP Magazine