As Ely Aquafest celebrates its 40th anniversary, one resident recalls in photographs the first in 1978

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo rememb

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo remembers the Aquafest of 1978. - Credit: Archant

An appeal for memories from past Aquafests in Ely prompted a response with photographs from the inaugural event in 1978.

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo rememb

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo remembers the Aquafest of 1978. - Credit: Archant

Sue Reeder came up with these memories following an appeal by the two Rotary clubs of Ely who stage the annual fund raiser by the river.

Rotarian Phil Smith said Aquafest “started as a thank you to residents for their support for fundraising events throughout the year.

“From small beginnings it has grown to encompass Lavender Green and Jubilee Gardens as well as the river itself”.

He said: “Our request for pictures and mementoes from the very first event has met with some success thanks to local resident Sue Reeder.”

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo rememb

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo remembers the Aquafest of 1978. - Credit: Archant


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“If anyone else has something of similar interest please get in touch with Viv Doji at vclariced@hotmail.com

Ely Aquafest is held on the first Sunday in July, the date for 2018 is Sunday July 1.

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There is a fun fair, beer tent, burger bar and stalls - a miscellany of charity stalls, with charity, craft and a variety of business stalls there providing something of interest to all.

A major crowd pleaser is the amazing annual raft race on the River Ouse, with numerous decorated rafts.

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo rememb

Organisers of Ely Aquafest appealed for photos from previous events. Sue Reeder in this photo remembers the Aquafest of 1978. - Credit: Archant

Meanwhile the two arenas provide varied entertainment through the day, often featuring local talent. There is music, dancing, interesting demonstration and audience participation.

It is organised by the Rotary clubs of Ely, with main sponsors Thorlabs, Charles Daniel, Tucker Gardner, Ward Gethin Archer, Whitings and The Ely Standard.

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