Chester

Raft Race

Entries for the 2024 are now open!

Enter the 1/4 mile race on your homemade raft from the Chester Meadows to the Groves. Launch from the meadows ensuring your raft floats and then make your way under the suspension bridge and past the roaring crowd on the bandstand stopping at the recorder steps above the weir.

Thank you to our Event Sponsors

 

 

About

The 47th Annual Chester Raft Race

The Chester Raft Race is an annual charity event taking place every July in the Groves on the River Dee. The rafts race against the clock over an approximate 400 metre course starting just upriver of the Royal Chester Rowing Club, passing under the pedestrian Suspension Bridge to a finish on the north bank of the river by Recorder’s Steps to the Walls and just above the weir. Although the race is over at this point, the rafts then have to retrace their route back to the launch area on the Meadows.

June 30th 2024

10am start

Chester Meadows

About Us

Something For Everyone!

Calling all rafters, the details for the 2024 event is here! The theme for this year will be TOYBOX and we can’t wait to show you what we have in store for this summer. 

The Chester Raft Race is the perfect opportunity for team building and bonding. Work together to navigate the river’s twists and turns, overcome obstacles, and outwit your opponents. You’ll need to communicate effectively and rely on each other’s strengths to come out on top. And let’s not forget the ultimate reward – bragging rights as the champions of the Chester Raft Race! Previous winners have included the likes of Crocky Trail, Chester Auto Services, and Sandbach Cave & Mountain Rescue.

Will your team be next in line for glory? So grab your superhero squad and get ready to save the day – and your team’s bond – at the Chester Raft Race. It’s sure to be a super-powered experience you won’t forget!

The 2024 will be coming soon!

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Highlights from Past Races and Events

2023
Thousands gathered on the scenic banks of the River Dee last weekend to witness the thrilling spectacle of the 46th annual Chester Raft Race. With dozens of crafts vying for victory, the event drew a crowd eager to support the charitable cause and enjoy a day of riverside entertainment.

As a longstanding tradition and annual charity fundraiser, the Chester Raft Race commenced at 10 am on Sunday, July 2, with proceeds benefiting SHARE – Supporting Homeless Assisting Refugees Everywhere. Raft construction kicked off at 9 am on the morning of the event, as teams diligently assembled their crafts in anticipation of the race.

This year’s theme of superheroes inspired a colourful array of spandex costumes, capes, and even a few Batmobile replicas, adding an extra element of excitement to the proceedings. Over 20 rafts, representing various groups from across Chester, participated in the event, including Stagecoach’s Chester Depot, Deepbridge Capital, previous champions Crocky Trail, FCA Wales, BOST, and the Old Harkers Arms.

The ultimate champions of this year’s race were The Pigeons of Madagascar, whose Thunderbirds-themed raft, modeled after Thunderbird 2, captured the essence of the iconic TV show with precision. Adorned in full Thunderbirds uniforms, complete with Lady Penelope, their impressive presentation earned them the coveted title. The overall winner was determined based on both time and theme, with 70 percent weighting on speed and 30 percent on adherence to the superhero theme.

Accompanied by a plethora of family-friendly activities, live music, and food and drink stalls, the Raft Race offered something for everyone to enjoy, ensuring a memorable day out for all attendees. With a rich history of charitable giving, the event has raised over £500,000 for good causes throughout its lifetime, attracting an average of 4,000 visitors each year.

Sponsored by Salt Town Contractors, the Chester Raft Race continues to unite the community in support of worthwhile causes while celebrating creativity, camaraderie, and the enduring spirit of adventure along the River Dee.

2022
After a two-year hiatus due to the Covid pandemic, the 45th annual Chester Raft Race made a triumphant return, sponsored by Salt Town Contractors and managed by the Chester Grosvenor Round Table. Dedicated to the memory of Jay St John, the event featured 23 creatively themed rafts honoring “100 Years of British Television.” The Harker’s Arms Magic Roundabout-themed raft claimed the Best Themed Raft/Fastest Hostelry award, while the overall fastest raft was from the Crocky Trail team. The BOST musical raft Princess Fiona took the prize for fastest ladies’ raft. With a vibrant atmosphere and impressive participation, the event signaled a welcome return to the city, promising even more excitement for next year’s race.

Resources

Resources for Entrants

Enter a Raft

Do you think you and your team has what it takes to build the fastest raft in Chester? Put together your crew and a build a Super raft.

 

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Donate

The Chester Raft Race is a charity event that has raised £500,000 for local charities in our lifetime. This years event Charity will be announced shortly.

 

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Sponsor

The raft race is visited by an average of 4,000 foot traffic and has a reach of 100K+ across social media. Get involved. Our sponsors not only help us run the event, they help fund our event charity!

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News & Updates

2023 Event Announcement

2023 Event Announcement

We're excited to announce that the 2023 Chester Raft Race is coming up on July 2nd, sponsored by Salt Town Contractors Ltd! This fun-filled event is a must-attend for anyone who loves adventure and friendly competition. Not only will you get to test your skills on the...

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2022 – 45th Chester Raft Race Revisited

2022 – 45th Chester Raft Race Revisited

The 45th annual Chester Raft Race, sponsored by Salt Town Contractors, was held on the River Dee on July 3, 2022. The event, organised by Chester Round Table, saw teams of all ages and abilities race homemade rafts along a 2.5 mile course, all in support of the event...

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Blue Skies Donation

Blue Skies Donation

The last Chester Raft Race was a huge success, not only for the competitors and spectators, but also for a local charity, the Blue Skies Appeal. The Chester Round Table organized the event, which saw dozens of teams compete in various categories along the River Dee....

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Sponsors

Thank You To Our Partners

The winners of the Chester Raft Race 2022 were the team from the Crocky Trail, with their raft named the Crocky Woky. They were awarded the title of the fastest raft overall, leaving behind tough competition from other participants. The team’s efforts paid off as they emerged victorious, and their achievement was celebrated by the event organizers and spectators. Well done to the Crocky Trail team for their impressive win!

Crocky Trail, Chester Raft Race – 1st Place

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