East Devon Scouts build rafts and go racing

PUBLISHED: 10:04 17 September 2019 | UPDATED: 17:33 18 September 2019

Scouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona Gage

Scouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona Gage

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Competition was keen when East Devon Scouts held a raft race at Lyme Regis on Sunday (September 15).

Scouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona GageScouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona Gage

The challenge for the crews was to build the best raft, in the fastest time, and then race it around the Lyme harbour course.

Scouts from Axminster, Beer, Colyton, Lym Valley, Sid Vale, Tipton St John and Whimple took part.

Youngsters from across the Dorset border in Charmouth were also invited to join in the action.

Conditions for the race were perfect, with calm seas and a spring tide.

Scouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona GageScouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona Gage

Race organiser Nik McCafferty, from Tipton St John Scouts, said: "When we were planning the event, this was the ideal day we envisaged."

Following a safety brief from Chris Seers, of Whimple Scouts, drawing on practice sessions, the teams set about building their craft, with different designs soon evident.

The Colyton team completed theirs in the quickest time of five minutes and 15 seconds.

The award for the best built raft, in terms of its design and sturdiness, went to Whimple Scouts.

Scouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona GageScouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona Gage

After a safety inspection, and with the harbour walls lined with cheering parents, families and onlookers, the race got under way.

In an incredibly close finish, Tipton St John narrowly pipped Sid Vale to finish in first place.

When all Scouts were safely back on dry land, Alex Spry, from Whimple Scouts, and his team of helpers , served up burgers and hot dogs to the tired crews.

Hugh Salmon, assistant district commissioner for East Devon Scouts, told The Midweek Herald: "It was a great day for everyone, with the young people from across the district having fun, adventure and developing team working skills.

Scouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona GageScouts from across East Devon and Charmouth built rafts and raced them at Lyme. Pictures: Fiona Gage

"The efforts of all who planned the day are worthwhile when you get Scouts straightaway asking when the next race is going to be.

"I am sure this will become an annual event".

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