Raft Race Poster

Event Information


OX10 ‘Nothing New’ River Raft Race 2023

The old Wallingford Raft Race was an annual event previously organised by the former Wallingford Lions Club which ran for decades and ceased back in 2007. This annual Wallingford traditional event used to be a fund-raising opportunity to support local charities. It was a fun event for participants and spectators alike and many long time Wallingfordians remember it with nostalgia. Ask your friends, parents, grandparents, work colleagues if they remember it!


This year, OX10 Community Centre are piloting a one-off ‘Nothing New’ River Raft Race. A free to watch, family day out with a focus on enjoying and celebrating our beautiful stretch of the River Thames and to shine a spotlight on the new bathing water status application by environmental campaign group ‘Thames 21’. 

The event is open to anyone who can construct a raft capable of carrying its crew from the start to the finish line (150m downstream and back again). 

OX10 ‘Nothing New’ River Raft Race 2023

All teams should avoid buying anything new, using only recycled and repurposed materials to build rafts.

The heats and races will launch from the beachy area (heats will be themed around groups e.g. community, businesses, youth etc). The first team to travel 150m downstream, turn around and travel back 150m upstream, towards the finish line (nearly back where they started) is the winner. As part of the fun, there will be races for different classes of crafts. Classes will be set accordingly once entry registrations are closed (registration will close at 11.30pm on Sunday 20th August 2023). 

Timetable: Sunday 27th August 2023 

12:00hrs Raft display and OX10 inspection of rafts

14:00hrs Raft Race heats start

16:30hrs Final Race

17:00hrs Event Ends

How Do I Enter the OX10 ‘Nothing New’ Raft Race?

Step 1. Get a team together from your community group, sports club, work colleagues, friends and family etc. Teams should consist of minimum of 4 and maximum of 8 people. Participants must be aged 12+.

Step 2. Register interest via emailing OX10 Community Centre ox10communitycentre@outlook.com

Step 3. Read Conditions of Entry and Briefing Document. Complete Registration Form and Pay £60 per raft entry fee.

Step 4. To receive your registration number, you will need to have paid and returned the ‘Registration Form’ which is linked below. Your registration number must appear on both sides of your raft, above the waterline, in 300mm high numbering.

Step 5. If you chose to, you can get your raft sponsored. OX10 Community Centre are not fundraising at this event. If you want to use event as opportunity to fundraise for your own organisation or a charity of your choice, you are welcome but this is not primarily a fundraising event.

Entry fees will be used by OX10 Community Centre to cover costs for Public Liability Insurance, use of the river (Environment Agency), and private hire First Aid support and toilet hire. Payment must be made in advance, no later than 7 days before event starts. 

The only activities that will be taking place on the Meadow are family groups and friends spectating and eating picnics. There will not be any food or drink stalls so please bring everything you need with you. This is a free community event to watch, run by volunteers for the benefit of the community. This is not a fundraising event and there will not be anything for sale or anyone asking for donations / cash on the day.

Homemade rafts will consist of a range of recycled and reclaimed materials including:-

Acceptable Construction Materials


  1. Steel/ tin cans
  2. Black food trays
  3. Compostable plastic
  4. Corks
  5. Food tins and drinks cans
  6. Fruit punnets
  7. Plastic bottles
  8. Plastic tins/ trays/ tubs
  9. Plastic drink Bottles


  1. Light-weight wood offcuts
  2. Lumber and pallets
  3. Old/ clean bins
  4. PVC tubes/ gutters
  5. Plastic barrels

Recycled Raft Race Rules

  1. 4 – 8 people per raft
  2. Rafts must be a maximum length:breadth ratio of 2:1
  3. Rafts must be people-powered only. No motors of any kind are allowed.
  4. No new material should be obtained to construct the raft (with the exception of marine quality rope)
  5. All materials must be thoroughly cleaned prior to construction.
  6. All paintwork and decorations in contact with the water must be non-toxic and non-polluting on contact with water
  7. No nails
  8. Screws must not protrude from materials
  9. Your team must be able to carry the raft without mechanical assistance
  10. Rafts must display your race number, on both port & starboard side, above the waterline of the craft, in 300mm high numbering.
  11. You must be able to escape the raft quickly in case you sink
  12. The raft may be propelled by a paddle (not double ended), rudder, pole or direct drive paddle wheel


  • Any proprietary canoe or boat hulls or proprietary boat parts.
  • Foamed polystyrene or any other foamed plastic material that is likely to break up and pollute the river, unless encased in plastic or other suitable material to ensure no possible pollution of the river.
  • Any material of a toxic nature liable to pollute the river.
  • Oars, rowlocks and any form of fixed rowing station. (Rafts must be polled or paddled without any attachment to the hull).
  • Any form of mechanical propulsion.
  • Towing from the bank.
  • No sharp edges, burrs, spikes or any protrusion likely to cause injury to any competitor, spectator or property must be used in construction.
  • No nails

There is more information in the event documents which can be found by following the links below:

Briefing Document OX10 Nothing New River Race Race Rules 2023

Raft Race Registration Form

Conditions of Entry OX10 Nothing New River Raft Race 2023

Please let the OX10 team know when you are ready to make payment of £60 and we will send our bank details. As the aim is to be an inclusive event, please let the team know if the fee is a barrier to entry and we will see what we can do to help.