Photo gallery: Record turnout for Botesdale soap box grand prix

Thousands of spectators lined the main street of a north Suffolk village today for its equivalent of the Monaco Grand Prix.

A record number of fancy dress racers took to the starting line for the annual Botesdale soap box grand prix, near Diss, which is set to raise hundreds of pounds for local charities and good causes.

Colourful contraptions including a space rocket, converted canoes, a coffin and aeroplane hurtled down the course for the bank holiday races.

And participants dressed up as a host of characters including fighter pilots, T-birds, and Stig impersonators for the races down the village centre's steep hill.

Ten children and almost 30 men and women were entered into the 2011 grand prix and an estimated 2,000 people descended on Botesdale to watch the racing and the occasional collision for the seventh annual GP.

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Morag Burnard, one of the organisers of the event, said it had been another successful year with locals and visitors enjoying the day.

She added that some competitors spent just a day making their racers whilst others spent months working on them for the grand prix.

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'It is a great community event and we have been lucky with the weather again this year. It is a really nice family event and it is nice to see a lot of local people and people from outside of the village enjoying it,' she said.

All drivers took part in two time trials with the fastest four going into the semi-finals and drag race for the winner's trophy.

Proceeds from the event will be split between East Anglia's Children's Hospices, Rickinghall Football Club and the village hall.

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