Make a dragon splash for cash to aid sick children

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A Boston Spa charity is urgning people to make a splash for cash this spring.

Martin House Hopsice Care for children and Young People is calling for teams to sign up for its hugely popular Dragon Boat Race at Roundhay Park, on Sunday May 17.

Sara Cracknell, events fundraiser at Martin House, said: “Leeds Dragon Boat Race is such an exciting event to take part in. Our teams get to compete in at least three races throughout the day, and they can also register to take part in our tug o’ war contest.

“It’s a fantastic day out for all the family, as well as races to enjoy all day, there’s a funfair and face painting, plus plenty of refreshments.”

The event sees up to 48 teams take to Waterloo Lake to compete in a day of races, as teams of 10 – plus a drummer to keep time – paddle a 30ft Chinese dragon boat on the 200m course, for a chance to be crowned this year’s champions.

Last year the event raised more than £100,000 for Martin House, and organisers are hoping to beat that target this time.

Teams are encouraged to dress up for the contest, with prizes for the best fancy dress and best fundraising team, as well as the tug o’ war and dragon boat race winners.

This year’s race is sponsored by the Leeds Bus Workers branch of Unite the Union, while Napoleon’s Casino in Leeds is sponsoring the tug o’ war competition.

Book a place at: events@martinhouse.org.uk

Sara added: “The support of our sponsors is so important to us, as it means more of the money people raise will go to care for children and young people from this area. It costs more than £9 million to run Martin House, so every penny we raise is crucial.”

Martin House cares for children and young people with life-limiting conditions from across West, North and East Yorkshire, as well as supporting their families. Its care includes respite stays, emergency care and end of life care, as well as bereavement support.

It costs £350 to register a Dragon Boat team, with teams asked to raise a minimum of £1,000 in sponsorship, it costs a further £65 to enter the tug o’ war competition.