The River Yealm Regatta
For messing about on the river, you’ve definitely come to the right place. The River Yealm Regatta has been an annual event for more than 100 years, and it’s certainly not to be missed by villagers or visitors alike.
Starting life more than 100 years ago as a hard-fought racing contest between teams of arch rival Newton Ferrers and Noss Mayo fishermen, the annual regatta on the Yealm has evolved, grown and, thankfully, become a slightly less serious event over the years. But it’s lost none of its competitive, and sometimes controversial, edge.
Held in August every year, the regatta is an important part of village life. It’s a firm fixture in everyone’s calendar, and sees Newton Creek, Noss Creek and the River Yealm come alive with team rowing and sailing races and events. This vibrant festival has plenty of land-based festivities in both villages too.
But there’s also an unofficial side to the regatta with the “Yealm Regatta Beer Race”. Consisting of both male and female teams rowing from pub to pub, this fast-paced pub crawl on water is one of the highlights of every regatta. With the reputation of many at stake, the race affords considerable bragging rights to the team that wins the infamous event.
If getting wet isn’t really your thing, you can always enter the annual Spirit of Regatta photography competition. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a complete amateur with a camera phone, all entries are welcome. The winners will be based on images that are deemed to be the most visually appealing, emotionally impactful and self-explanatory, with prizes being awarded at a special event.
The regatta finals are usually held over the second or third weekend in August, and as usual, the event will come to a close with a rousing firework display over the river that never disappoints.
As competitive and ambitious as the regatta is every year, it gives the opportunity for everyone from both villages and beyond to come together and celebrate everything that’s great about the river, and Newton and Noss.
Long may it continue.
Please note, the 2020 regatta has been cancelled.
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