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Beautiful Charitable and Community Feel at Guildford Lions’ Raft Race

Published on: 8 Jul, 2024
Updated on: 11 Jul, 2024

By Joseph Bickle

Guildford Lions Club’s annual charity raft and duck race was once again a splashing success.

It was held on Saturday, July 6, on the River Wey, with competitors gathering at Millmead.

One of the duck races gets under way. Picture: Harry Wickens.

First up were the duck races, courtesy of Surrey Care Trust, in which plastic ducks could be bought or won through the Guildford town treasure hunt.

Ducks away! Picture: Harry Wickens.

The colourfully painted ducks gently floated down the river in a tense battle where a prize was awarded for first place.

The raft race saw 15 entries, each with their own intuitive and unique rafts which aimed to produce as little waste as possible.

There were three categories of competing rafts: general, youth and super rafts.

The Griswolds’ raft included 286 four-pint plastic milk bottles. Picture: Joseph Bickle.

The aptly named Griswolds’ raft included an impressive 286 four-pint plastic milk bottles, and an assortment of reused pallets, chairs and paddles.

The Griswolds’ credentials sheet noting all the materials used in its raft. Picture Joseph Bickle.

The raft’s credentials sheet noted all the materials used in it would be recycled following the race.

They’re off! Picture: Harry Wickens.

A key concern ahead of the race was the river’s pollution levels. The race’s organiser Geoff Sheldon of the Guildford Lions said its tests of the river’s pollution level was “slightly above safe levels”.

However the Griswolds’ raft team said: “We’re not too worried about that as we don’t intend to go in the water.”

Having a splashing time! Picture: Harry Wickens.

This event was supported by Zero Carbon Guildford, the Surrey Care Trust and a number of volunteers who took time out of their day to support and run the event.

All dressed up for the race. Picture: Harry Wickens.

There was a brilliant and welcoming spirit between the contestants and spectators alike, with a beautiful charitable and community feel, with a slight air of competitiveness!

Making haste. Picture: Harry Wickens.

The Guildford Lions Club says: “Following some exciting duck races, the race race began at 3pm finishing at the Guildford Waterside Centre [at Bellfields], where there were refreshments and a barbecue.

Paddling furiously. Picture: Harry Wickens.

“Trophies and prizes were awarded by the Mayor of Guildford, Sallie Barker, assisted by our club president, Paul Spooner.

Proudly flying their flag. Picture: Harry Wickens.

“Thanks go to our friends Zero Carbon Guildford for their help with running the event.”

A colourful spectacle. Picture: Harry Wickens.

Yellow is the colour: Picture: Harry Wickens.

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Responses to Beautiful Charitable and Community Feel at Guildford Lions’ Raft Race

  1. Barbara Ford Reply

    July 9, 2024 at 9:38 pm

    It looks like glorious fun! Congratulations to everyone involved, but what a shame that the participants had to risk their health because the pollution level was so high.

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