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A Skiff-tastic Raid

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By Ben Murray
Annan and Eskdale
A Skiff-tastic Raid

SKIFFS from across the region gathered for Annan’s annual Bell Raid last weekend.

Boats from Edinburgh, Largs, Wigtown Bay, Stranraer and Bowness on Solway were joined by Annan’s own boats the Pride of Annan rowing skiff and The Pride of Solway.

The conditions on Sunday were fantastic, if not a little hot.

HIGH SPEED . . . three members of the back-up team at the Bell Raid event

Because of the weather, the crossing was extremely fast and smooth with only three seconds separating the first three skiffs across.

The tide turned during the latter half of the day, so the race was even closer than it was in the morning.

Breaghe from Wigtown Bay eventually came out on top, pipping Saltire by only three seconds.

During the prize-giving ceremony, the Wigtownshire crew were presented with the ‘Bell’ while Saltire and the Annan Ladies received prizes for not refreshing their crew at the halfway point.

Courtesy of Dumfries and Galloway Seafoods, all participants received a scallop shell medal.

Back in Annan, the La Malouine was docked and received a steady stream of visitors during the weekend.

The tall ship docked at the harbour at 1 am on Saturday. The La Malouine had planned to dock on Friday lunchtime but due to the tide it was delayed until the following tide the next morning.

Over 50 young children participated in flag-making workshops, while older visitors were given a tour of the ship.

ON THEIR WAY . . . Pride of Annan

Highland dancers, musicians and the Samba Sisters entertained the public while a procession of flag bearers from Kirkcudbright, Dumfries and Annan paraded flags they had designed during EcoArt workshops.

During the evening, these flags were then hauled up the masts of La Malouine to end the event with a wonderful spectacle.

Kylie Eden, Annan Harbour Action Group’s youth worker since July, said: “We were delighted to welcome so many people to the harbour and we have had amazing feedback.

“I am very much looking forward to organising more family events down here.”

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