Sheffield water festival and raft race pull crowds

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A FESTIVAL celebrating Sheffield’s links with its rivers proved a ‘splash’ hit at the weekend.

The ‘Down by the Riverside’ festival, which continues this week, aims to promote the city’s waterways and the communities that surround them.

Businesses from across the city constructed rafts and employees raced along the River Don from Kelham Island Museum to Nursery Street in the city centre on Sunday.

Competitors hurled flour bombs at each other and were cheered along the route by friends, family and spectators.

Some of the firms involved entered the race to raise cash for charity, including Arkom, who were fundraising for Riprap, which helps children whose parents have cancer.

Law firm Irwin Mitchell also entered a team, along with the staff from the Riverside and Harlequin pubs.

The race finished at Nursery Street ahead of the official opening of a new pocket park there, which was attended by Sheffield Lord Mayor Coun John Campbell.

The weekend programme of events also included riverside walks and talks, kayaking taster sessions, a family bike ride, Japanese fly fishing lessons, street art and lantern making sessions.

At Kelham Island there was also live music, art and crafts and animal petting with willow weaving and wood turning displays.