A flotilla of colourful crafts made their way down the River Wye on Sunday 6th September as entries for the 50th annual Monmouth Raft Race aimed to beat last year’s record amount of £40,000.

With rafts from a far afield as Yorkshire, Norfolk and Hampshire, the day was set to be the golden year for Monmouth Rotary Club whose members organise the event and looked to raise £50k for the main beneficiary, St David’s Hospice Care, and other charitable causes.

The sun guaranteed that the event organised by Monmouth Rotary would be a success with £4,000 already collected on the day.

Norman Williams, Rotary’s raft race co-ordinator said that it was a very successful day with lots of people in attendance: “The weather was perfect and the sun was truly golden for our golden year. The 50th anniversary is a very special milestone for the club. Last year, the event attracted over 100 rafts and raised almost £40,000 for charity. For the 50th year of the event the club worked hard to find additional entrants and sponsorship, and to raise our target to £50,000.”

The main beneficiary of the raft race is St David’s Hospice Care, receiving 75% of the money raised, with the remaining 25% going to other charitable causes supported by Monmouth Rotary Club.

The event started noon at Monmouth and finished over six miles downstream at Tump Farm, Whitebrook, courtesy of the Cullimore Family, where a family festival, with a hog roast, traditional side stalls, children’s fairground rides, live music, and local ale, created a great atmosphere.

Mens 1st place - Light it Up 1hr; Womens 1st place - Castle Plumbing 2hrs 5m;

Mixed crew 1st place - Lucky Severn ; Best placed pub / club entry - New Inn JAFC;

Best placed business entry - Light it Up ; Best placed building trades entry - Six salty sea dogs ; Best placed financial business entry - 4 Young Divers; Best placed Rotary Club entry - Anthill Mob;

Best placed private entry - Betty Swollocks; The DHL entry handing in most sponsorship on the day - ABC 1 an 2 with a total of £2,241; Most creatively themed raft - Henson’s Heroes.

For a full picture spread, see Page 2 of this week’s Beacon (9th September). To purchase pictures, select the ’buy photos’ option on our website.