Bumper crowds cheer return of raft race

Buckets Of Fun: The HMS Ark Royal float soaks the Matlock RFC float at the annual Boxing Day Raft Race on the River Derwent in Matlock.
Buckets Of Fun: The HMS Ark Royal float soaks the Matlock RFC float at the annual Boxing Day Raft Race on the River Derwent in Matlock.

Record crowds turned out to watch the return of Matlock’s annual raft race on Boxing Day.

This year’s event attracted 15,000 spectators who lined the banks of the River Derwent to cheer on a fleet of weird and wonderful creations.

They included a Hawaaian-themed raft, a Thunderbirds craft, a Hogwarts vessel and a fairy themed float.

Last year’s event was cancelled when a large tree tumbled into the river, which was only the second cancellation in nearly half a century of races.

Photos by Paul Robinson and Trevor Ravey.