Organisers ‘gutted’ after cancellation of Sheffield raft race

Kelham Island Annual Raft Regatta 2015
Kelham Island Annual Raft Regatta 2015
Have your say

A fundraising river race due to take place in Sheffield this weekend has been cancelled due to lack of interest.

The 2016 Kelham Island Annual Raft Regatta had been organised for this Saturday, with participants paddling along the River Don from Neepsend to Nursery Street.

Sheffield City Kayak Club, which organises the event, warned last week the event would have to be cancelled if numbers did not increase by the time registration closes.

And despite an appeal in The Star, not enough people came forward and the race will no longer take place.

Kayak club member Tony Canning said: “I have had to shut down the raft regatta due to teams pulling out at the last minute.

“I am totally gutted as it is such a great event and takes a lot of work to set up.

“For the three teams who were still up for it, I can only apologise. We ran it last year with only five teams and were willing to do it with five again. But three is not enough.”

Mr Canning said entry money would be sent back as soon as possible.

The race is held to raise money for the club. Entrants are encouraged to collect their own sponsorship for a cause of their choice as well.

In a twist on traditional rules, the winner is the raft that crosses the finish line third, rather than first.

The race is a recreation of an old student-run event, which first returned in 2012. It was a great success, and even more teams took part the following year, but a chemical spill meant it was cancelled in 2014.