Hunstanton gears up for the return of soapbox derby

A soapbox derby race in Hunstanton in the 1960s. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN

A soapbox derby race in Hunstanton in the 1960s. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN AND WEST NORFOLK - Credit: Borough Council of King�s Lynn & West Norfolk

The soapbox derby will be returning to Hunstanton this weekend after a 30-year hiatus.

The Hunstanton soapbox derby will take place on Sunday, September 17. Pictured West Norfolk maypr Ca

The Hunstanton soapbox derby will take place on Sunday, September 17. Pictured West Norfolk maypr Carol Bower and deputy leader Elizabeth Nockolds. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN AND WEST NORFOLK - Credit: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN AND WEST NORFOLK

On Sunday, September 17, forty teams will compete to be the fastest down a racetrack along the seafront.

The event begins at 10am with entertainment based around the stage on The Green as the karts undergo safety checks.

There will be performances by Battle of the Bands 2017 winner Flint Moore and runner-up Sam Coe and the Long Shadows.

Races begin at 12pm with each team making two timed runs down the course.

A soapbox derby race starts in Hunstanton in the 1960s. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING

A soapbox derby race starts in Hunstanton in the 1960s. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN AND WEST NORFOLK - Credit: Borough Council of King�s Lynn & West Norfolk


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The route begins at the top of Boston Square then takes a 90-degree left turn onto Cliff Parade, takes in a ramp and ends at the mini-roundabout.

After the races, spectators are invited to take a closer look at the karts lined up in the holding area by the stage, as the judges deliberate.

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Children's entertainment will include inflatables, and a performance from immersive theatre company Kidz Party Times.

At 5pm, trophies will be awarded to the fastest junior team, the fastest adult team and the best-decorated kart. This will be followed by a performance from talented local band Bear Club.

A soapbox derby race in Hunstanton in the 1960s. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN

A soapbox derby race in Hunstanton in the 1960s. Picture: COURTESY OF BOROUGH COUNCIL OF KING'S LYNN AND WEST NORFOLK - Credit: Borough Council of King�s Lynn & West Norfolk

West Norfolk councillor Elizabeth Nockolds, cabinet member for culture, heritage and health, said: 'We've had a fantastic programme of events this summer as part of the regeneration of the Hunstanton Heritage Gardens, and the soap box derby is set to be a real highlight.

'We hoped people would be interested in our revival of this seaside tradition, but forty teams signing up was beyond our expectations, we're delighted.

'Soapbox derbies were incredibly popular in Hunstanton in the 1960s, and we're hoping that our first modern event can draw a similar crowd.

'We'd like to invite everyone to come along and line the route, cheer on the brave racers, and enjoy the free entertainment.'

The soapbox derbies used to draw huge crowds to Hunstanton during the 1960s, 70s and 80s.

The regeneration of the Hunstanton Heritage Gardens is a £1.3m project funded by West Norfolk council and the National Lottery through a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and Big Lottery Fund.

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