Back to the beach for all events this year

TRADITIONAL entertainment and activities – some dating back 100 years – were once again available along a sunny west coast at Saturday’s Rocquaine Regatta.

Organisers estimated that some 3,500 people attended and enjoyed staple events including the raft race, greasy pole and sandcastle competitions.

Management committee member Antonio Strappini has been volunteering at the regatta for 17 years and has been on the committee for the past two.

Entering into the spirit of the regatta were the visiting White family. Left to right, Esther, 1, Ruth, 7, Rachel and Peter. (29822221)

‘You don’t get these sort of events in the UK anymore. It feels like a small rural fete except its on the beach and it’s such a friendly environment. You’ve got everything from sandcastles to wife-carrying, there is something for everyone,’ he said.

‘Everyone has a good laugh and it’s on the Rocquaine coast, which is the best beach on the island.’

Serious sand castle making with, from left to right, Jenny Oliver, Oscar Oliver, Linda Denton, regatta lifetime patron Rick Denton, Scout the dog and Steven Oliver. (29822219)

In recent years stage events have occurred along the road, but a decision was made by organisers not to include them as interest in them has dwindled over the years. Committee members instead decided to emphasise participation across all beach events.

The rollerball event attracted many, where participants had to construct a track out of sand for a tennis ball to roll through at as slow a pace as possible.

Lifetime patron Rick Denton took part in the event with an Olympic enthusiasm.

‘We did it last year and we came second,’ he said. ‘We’re not leaving this beach today without a medal.’

Holly Moore, left, 11, and Cora Blampied, 8, battle on the greasy pole.(29822210)

Mr Denton also enjoys the tug-of war. ‘It’s the blue riband event,’ he said.

Local doctor Gary Yarwood was introducing a new colleague, who recently moved to the island, to the regatta.

‘It’s a Guernsey institution,’ said Dr Yarwood. It’s a jewel that offers a flavour of the island.’

Not quite an Olympic sport yet, but father and son, Warren Saban and Louis, 10, show good technique in the crab pot pulling event. (29822214)

Many people decided to watch the events unfold instead of taking part.

Maisie Johns spent most of the day with her parents as a spectator from the sea wall.

‘I love watching the races and everything else going on. It’s so funny,’ she said.

Her father, Richard, said: ‘We come every year. It’s just a part of the summer calendar now. It’s all about watching the younger generation do what we did at their age.’

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