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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Twentieth anniversary of iconic Viking Boat Race in aid of NSPCC Northern Ireland

On Saturday 30 April, the River Lagan will come alive with the vision of colourful longboats, hearty crews and the sound of splashing oars! The Cutters Wharf Viking Boat Race is back, it’s bigger and better than ever and it’s all in aid of NSPCC Northern Ireland.

The race is, as always, hosted by Cutters Wharf, sponsored this year by Barefoot Wines, and with amazing prizes including the coveted Viking Horn trophy. Ardglass Vikings provide the wonderful boats and for those who prefer to watch the spectacle from dry land, there’s lots to do including music from DJ Billy Reynolds, a raffle and fun for all.

Catherine Millar General Manger of Cutters Wharf commented:

“The staff and management of Cutters Wharf are delighted to see the return of the Viking Boat Race for it’s 20th anniversary.

“The Viking Boat Race is an event which, to us, truly signifies the start of Summer. We are so pleased to be partnering with the NSPCC and Barefoot Wine again this year, and we are certain that this year’s event will be even bigger and better than usual, as we celebrate such an important milestone!”

The race comprises teams of ten people, who will race against each other on their Viking boat on theriver Lagan. But these spaces get filled very quickly so the charity asks anyone interested to sign up quickly to avoid disappointment.

Each crew is tasked with raising a minimum of £500 which will be donated to NSPCC’s Childline service and a deposit of £30 per boat is required to secure the place, you can sign up by visiting Cutters Wharf website:

Susan Smith, Community Fundraising Manager at NSPCC Northern Ireland said:

“This is always such a brilliant event and a perfect way to combine fun, team building and fundraising. We’re celebrating the twentieth anniversary of the race this year and as well as being a unique afternoon, the funds raised for NSPCC will help us make a real difference to the lives of children in Northern Ireland.

“Since the race started in 2001, over £140,000 has been raised to support services for local children; this equates to our dedicated Childline volunteers answering 35,000 calls for help from children contacting our Childline service during this time.

“We are beyond grateful for this fantastic fundraising, to make sure we can continue to be there for children and young people who need us. We rely on the generosity of our amazing supporters for 90% of our income at NSPCC, that’s why events like The Viking Boat Race can help us make a big difference in changing childhoods for local children. We urge everyone to sign up to the event and support us at Cutters Wharf on Saturday 30 April – it’ll be a fantastic day!”

Sean Keogh of Ardglass Vikings added:

“It's great to finally be able to celebrate this milestone with NSPCC, Wine Inns, Barefoot Wines and of course Cutters Wharf - an excellent venue for all spectators and participants alike. This has proven to be a wonderful team building event which requires timing rather than sheer brute strength. Come and have a row if you think it's been long enough! ”


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