DragonFest takes flight to web to overcome Covid-19


The team behind a popular Lord Mayor’s Appeal fundraiser are taking part of their event online after coronavirus scuppered plans.

Without the pandemic, Saturday 5 September would have marked the latest edition of DragonFest, a charity dragon boat paddle across the waves of Fairlop Waters.

But while hopes of an exciting race weekend were sunk, the accompanying fanfare is still afloat – and heading online.

DragonFest Online Shopping Village (dragonfest.org.uk) is to host nearly 200 designer brands, offering a present, gift or treat for every occasion.

A free discounted voucher book will allow users to shop, save and give 10% to the Lord Mayor’s Appeal. Discount vouchers are valid for 12 months and new brands will be featured each month.

Mastermind behind the annual event, Lady Lenzie, said: “Now, more than ever there is a need to promote corporate responsibility to support the work of the Lord Mayor’s Appeal and its charity partners, particularly at a time when so many people have suffered loss, loneliness and depression due to the pandemic.

“The Appeal’s aim is to promote a healthy City, a fair City and a skilled City.

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Martin Suker Photography

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“Next year’s DragonFest is set to be the biggest and best yet, with 60 boats competing, each with 16 paddlers and one drummer, fighting to win the coveted Lord Mayor’s Cup. Team places can be booked now, and the new date for your diary will soon be posted online.”

DragonFest 2021 will take place, as ever, in the picturesque Fairlop Waters Country Park in Barkingside, one of London’s largest country parks.

A full day of activities will be on offer for family and friends, as well as those taking up their paddles to do battle. A feast of entertainment, music, designers, artisans and handmade crafts, and the world food zone delivered by Peckish will all feature alongside the fiercely competitive dragon boat racing.

Dragon boat racing has become the world’s fastest growing water sport, with boats that are visually spectacular, colourful, and exciting for competitors and spectators.

No previous experience is required and safety and technique briefings form an integral part of the event experience.

DragonFest raises funds annually for the Lord Mayor’s Appeal. The Appeal continues the work begun in 2018, alongside its charity partners Place2Be, OnSide, Youth Zones, Duke of Edinburgh Award, and Samaritans.

The Lord Mayor will attend the event, present awards, and enjoy what promises to be an action packed and diverse extravaganza.
Sponsors for 2020 include The Brooke Consultancy, My Rooms, and Luxury Italian Living.

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