Thousands Of People Set To Descend On Ely Waterways This Weekend For Aquafest

PUBLISHED: 13:36 30 June 2009 | UPDATED: 10:56 04 May 2010



THOUSANDS of people are set to descend on Ely s waterways this weekend as part of the city s annual Aquafest. After more than 30 years, the event is bigger and better than ever. For the first time, Aquafest s two traditional land locations – Lavender Gree

THOUSANDS of people are set to descend on Ely's waterways this weekend as part of the city's annual Aquafest.

After more than 30 years, the event is bigger and better than ever.

For the first time, Aquafest's two traditional land locations - Lavender Green and Jubilee Gardens - will be linked by street performers, who will entertain the crowds along the Riverside.

With the summer temperatures soaring, the lure of the cool river will be strong and the well-established Main Raft Race looks set to be as popular as ever.

The event, a major feat of planning by the Rotary Clubs of Ely, will be officially opened at midday by Ely mayor Richard Hobbs. The Lavender Green venue will be compered by Sue Marchant, from BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, while Mark Peters from Star Radio will do the honours at Jubilee Gardens.

John Marshall, a member of the Ely Rotary, said: "We are really looking forward to this event. A heck of a lot of hard work has gone into it - it will be the culmination of a year's planning. As soon as this event is over, we will start planning for next year."

He added: "We are hoping that this fine weather will continue too!"

A sponsored Duck Race will raise vital funds for charity, and all profits from the event will be ploughed back into the community, helping projects, groups and charities alike.

This is certainly a year for firsts, with the Civil War Re-Enactment Society performing on Lavender Green for the first-time and the British Fuma Ryu Ninjitsu Society making the debut at Jubilee Gardens.

More than 50 organisations will have stalls at the event, which is being supported by a long list of sponsors, including the Ely Standard and Star Radio.

The Rotary Clubs of Ely will again have a hospitality marquee, as well as their popular book stall and tombola.

Because of the high number of visitors anticipated, the organisers are urging everybody to use the city centre public car parks and walk down to the river.

Visitors are also being encouraged not to throw anything into the river while events are taking place.

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