More teams sought for Dragon Boat racing at Downham Market Water Festival

There has been a surge of inquiries from clubs, pubs, businesses and sports teams looking to put forward a team in this year's Downham Market Water Festival.

So far, 11 teams have registered an interest in taking part in the Dragon Boat racing competition, which will take place close to the Hythe Bridge on the Relief Channel on August 5.

But Sarah Mawby, the town council's events co-ordinator, wants to make this year's event the biggest to date by securing 28 teams.

She said: 'There is so much we have got planned for this year's water festival - it's going to be another fantastic day out for all the family.

'But we are looking to get as many people involved as possible and the more teams we can get signed up the better it will be.'

The popular event has gone from strength to strength since it was launched and last year more than 3,000 people enjoyed the sunshine and stalls as 19 teams battled to rule the waves. The event is again being sponsored by the Eastern Daily Press.

Teams can be made up of between six and 15 paddlers and a drummer and team entry costs �150.

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Each team has three races from which to record their two best times and the top eight teams with the quickest times then battle it out over the 100-metre course for a place in the final. The festival is free for spectators, who can enjoy lots of activities on the riverbank, including stalls and a funfair, as well as watching the racing. There will also be more displays at this year's event to encourage healthier lifestyles.

For more information email or call 01366 387770.

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