Chelsea Fringe in Henley Floral Flotilla

Trad Boat Festival Team to Organise Coronation Flotilla

The organisers of the TRAD Boat Festival in association with Henley Town Council are organising a Coronation Flotilla on the river in Henley between Hambleden and Marsh Locks on the afternoon of Monday, 8 May.

As this is the designated Big Help Out day for helping others, it is proposed that local charities can set up stalls along the river banks to sell drinks, cakes, sandwiches, and souvenirs so that families watching the boats can picnic and raise funds for the charities at the same time.  Litter picking will of course be obligatory!

Co-Chair of the TRAD Lady Judy McAlpine said, “We are contacting all boat owners in and around Henley. Obviously the TRAD has a list of beautiful old boats who attend each year but many come long distances.  Many other beautiful boats don’t pass the stringent entry criteria for the TRAD but would give the public a lot of pleasure were they to join this flotilla.  Will we have the Elvis boat? And the Tim’s Big Yellow Duck?”

“All are welcome. We hope that boat owners and passengers will dress themselves and their boats for the Coronation.  We plan to have bands playing but buskers would be welcome too.   While plans are still forming, and obviously there will be a lot of holiday traffic on the river that weekend, we think a 2.00 p.m. start – with participating boats gathering the Henley side of Hambleden Lock would allow the entire flotilla to travel to Marsh Lock and back, slowly, before people felt the need to start heading home.”

There are already a number of eager participants, including the Queen’s Swan Marker, David Barber, who has offered to bring a couple of Swan Upping boats and Gillian Nahum who always produces beautiful boats for the TRAD.  Lady Judy added, “So – if you have a boat and want to participate, we would love to know.  This is a very informal event and we have no intention of going to the expense of a PA system but we could produce a souvenir leaflet with the names and owners of all the boats, charities etc. taking part.”

To take part, please e-mail or leave a message on 01491 571373.


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