Annual Recycled Raft Race 2017

Posted on May 5th, 2017

We have a tradition at Coombe Mill of ending the Easter holidays with a recycled raft race. Every year this popular event grows with regular visitors to us looking forward to the day, newcomers joining in the fun and a few new additions from us to keep the event fresh and exciting.   


2017 Farm Recycled Raft Race


The fun begins with a pile of washed and recycled floatable items from our recycled bins, a ball of string and plenty of masking tape. Every one works as groups or individuals on their raft following my “one I made earlier” as a rough idea guide.  

Example raft for the 2017 recycled raft race

Making recycled rafts in teams 

I allow a good half an hour for everyone to work on their rafts. I have found the more time I allow the more creative and imaginative the rafts become. There were milk bottle bases, stick bases, masts and decorative additions being added to some wonderful bespoke designs. We were blessed with a beautiful sunny day and the time just ran away from us.


Making rafts from recycling for the Easter recycled raft race 2017


New for this year we had made a range of certificates. There was everything from biggest raft to smallest raft, most creative to fastest, best in class by age and more. I figured everyone would win something and the challenge added a new burst of energy to the finishing touches.  

Finally everyone was ready and we carried the rafts down to the river. Despite the building excitement I managed to gather everyone for a team photo and gain enough of their attention to remind them of the rules.

Ready for a Recycled Raft Race

Team photo before the annual 2017 Easter raft race at Coombe Mill


The chatter was building as they climbed the bridge and held the rafts over the starting line. We managed a perfect first time start and the rafts were away to the sound of much cheering and shouting.

dropping rafts into the river


The dash to beat them along the river bank was on.  Guy and Jed were on hand in the river to rescue any rafts caught in the reeds and set them free, along with a few others keen to wade downstream, while the rest dashed towards the finish line.

racing along the river watching the rafts


For most of the journey it looked like my raft was going to win, this was not the outcome I wanted! I was quite relived to be moved into second place by a smaller team raft on the final straight. Those who weren’t on the bridge by now were in the water, me included. There were plenty of helpers to stop any runaway recycled rafts from racing down to Padstow.


Finishing line at the 2017 raft race


We handed out the certificates writing in the winner names as we went and every team won something.  


handing out certificates from the Easter Farm Raft Race 2017

River fun

As is often the case the real fun began just at the end. All the older children piled into the river for a big water fight, the screams and squeals as they were showered in cold water was enough to make all the adults smile. I feel sure this will be another fun afternoon on the farm that will remain with the children for a long time to come.


Splashing in the river Camel at coombe Mill Holidays

If you fancy joining us for Easter Next year, the Easter Egg Hunt and recycled raft race will take place on Easter week: 31st March 2018.

Check out our availability here.

Country Kids