River Lea ready to ‘set alight’ with a great little duck race to Cody Dock

PUBLISHED: 17:00 30 August 2019

Have a flutter on Cody Dock's Big Toy Duck race at the River Lea festival on September 21. Picture: Cody Dock

Have a flutter on Cody Dock's Big Toy Duck race at the River Lea festival on September 21. Picture: Cody Dock

Cody Dock

A great toy duck race idea is being floated to “set the River Lea alight” to draw visitors as part of this year’s Thames festive season.

The once-derelict Cody Dock at the old Canning Town gasworks, now a thriving community hub, is staging the yellow plastic duck race to open the Lighting Up the Lea festival on September 21.

Clubs are competing in a mini regatta with watersports over two days with kayaks, canoes, pilot gigs, paddle boards and plain old rowing boats.

But the "big event" has to be the half-mile little duck sprint starting 12 noon from Twelvetrees Bridge by the Bow Lock at Bromley-by-Bow and finishing downriver at Cody Dock itself.

Each duck is numbered and you can have a £2 flutter on the first to float over the finishing line—just like the real gee-gees.

Backing the winning duck gets you a free venue hire of Cody Dock's community boat. But don't get into a flap if you're duck is outpaced—there are runner-up prizes. Duck tickets are being sold at Cody Dock and nearby stores taking part.

The two-day festival on September 21 and 22, part of Totally Thames season, stretches from Twelvetrees Park and Stratford's Mill Meads at the north end, down to River Park in Poplar, Bow Creek eco-park and Trinity Buoy Wharf at the south end where the Lea joins the Thames.

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