Wat-er day to bring thousands of visitors to Downham Market festival

Racing Action from the Downham Market Water Festival and Dragon Boat Races on the Great Ouse Relief Channel
Racing Action from the Downham Market Water Festival and Dragon Boat Races on the Great Ouse Relief Channel

Thousands of people are expected to descend on Downham’s Hythe Bridge on Sunday for the town’s annual water festival.

The event, which is now in its 11th year, will see teams take to the water for the traditional Dragon Boat Challenge on the Great Ouse Relief Channel.

The water festival will take place from 10am to 4pm on the Hythe Bridge riverbank and spectators can enjoy a range of fun-day activities on-land, including refreshments, stalls and a funfair.

The annual festival, which is based on an ancient Chinese tradition, is run by Downham Market Town Council and Gable Events.

Teams of up to 12 people – with 10 rowing – will take part in the Dragon Boat racing, which will end with victory and a trophy for the winning team.

A spokesman for Downham Market Town Council said 10 teams are currently signed up for the racing, which is due to start at 11am.

From midday, there will be a variety of arena events from community groups including Zumba, dancers and majorettes.

A range of charity, trade and food stalls will also be onsite.

The spokesman said: “It’s looking set to be a good event, with stalls full to capacity this year.”

There is no entry fee to the event, which sees approximately 4,000 people attend throughout the day every year.