Bradford Dragon Boat Festival 2019

Updated: Dec 28, 2019


Bradford Dragon Boat Festival 2019

This is the biggest dragonboat festival in the UK and one of the largest in Europe! The event takes place in Roberts Park Saltaire and is always a fun-filled family festival with dragon boat racing on the river and land-side attractions.for all to enjoy including children’s entertainment, charity stalls, catering stands, games, bar, live acts and much, much more.


The event was held over 3 days between Friday 21st June and Sunday 23rd, where an estimated 20,000 people came to watch teams battle it out on the river Aire.


Dragon Boat racing involves teams of up to twenty paddlers in a 40-foot boat with a drummer at the helm, paddling frantically to beat the other teams down the course. The drums, shouting and colourful boats all make it an impressive and exciting sport both to watch and to compete in.

Day 1 was the youth championship.


The Youth Championships featured teams of children of all ages and abilities representing schools from across the district, as well as some from further afield in the UK.


This event had three original categories and 25 registered teams:

Primary Year 6 (7 teams)

Junior Years 7-9 (5 teams)

Senior years 10-13 (13 teams)


Participating schools were: Hanson School, Shipley College, St Bede’s and St Joseph’s, Crossley Hall Primary, Titus Salt, Bradford Academy, Baildon CE Primary, Southfield Grange, Appleton Academy, Thackley Primary, Glenaire Primary, Oastler’s, and Bradford Through Care, with Yeadon Westfield and Rastrick High travelling from outside Bradford to take part.


Saturday 22nd June: Was the Lord Mayor's Festival.


The festival supports the Lord Mayor's Appeal - which this year has raised money for the two charities chosen by the Lord Mayor which were

Sue Ryder Manorlands Hospice

Nightstop Bradford

The money raised will be split 50/50 between the two charities.


Day 3 Sunday 23rd June


In the spirit of Bradford’s generous and loving nature, the Bradford Dragonboat Festival also opened up its doors on the Sunday to supporting other charities through its multi charity event. The only requirement is that any chosen charity, (other than the Lord Mayor’s Appeal), nominated by a business/organisation as the beneficiary of their team’s sponsorship in the Sunday event must be registered with the Charities Commission.



Racing is over a course of 200 meters with the start just beyond the cricket pavilion and the finish in front on the crowds in Roberts Park. Each team had a minimum three timed races where their single fastest time only counted towards Grand Final qualification.



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