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PICTURES: Revived Totnes raft race 'a huge success'

By Herald Express  |  Posted: October 26, 2012

  • FANCY DRESS RACERS: The raft race the River Dart at Staverton Torquil MacLeod TQTM20121021B-005_C

  • BLUE CREW: Raft racers at Staverton Torquil MacLeod TQTM20121021B-004_C

  • FOUR-MAN CREW: Racing rafts on the River Dart Torquil MacLeod TQTM20121021B-002_C

  • RIVER 'POLICE': Blue lights on the River Dart Torquil MacLeod TQTM20121021B-003_C

  • RAFT RACERS: Competitors race alsong the River Dart Torquil MacLeod TQTM20121021B-001_C

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A RAFT race revived after a 10-year gap is set to become an annual feature again after being lauded as a huge success.

The Totnes Raft Race saw 19 crafts meander down the river Dart from Buckfastleigh to Totnes in aid of charity.

The organisers of the one-day event which saw 106 people of all ages take part, said the race had so far raised £4,000, which is more than £2,000 in profit. All profits will be donated to local charities.

Peter Thornhill, who organised the race with David Stevens and Colin Hair, said: "It was spectacular. We couldn't have asked for better weather.

"In previous years we had 200 floats but there has been a gap of 10 years. For the first time since we revitalised the race, it was brilliant. Everything ran like clockwork. There was no incident."

The event used to be organised by the Round Table but was abandoned a decade ago.

Mr Thornhill said all the boating and canoeing clubs along the stretch of the River Dart had taken part and helped marshal the paddlers to avoid trouble.

He said the idea was to have the cleanest race possible and ensure farmers, landowners, railway operators and residents were all happy.

He said: "It went very well. We will definitely have another one next year. I think it could be here to stay."

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