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Plastic ducks invade Norwich

PUBLISHED: 16:00 15 June 2010 | UPDATED: 17:19 01 July 2010

Alex White with plastic ducks that are being sold to raise money for new facilities for First Norwich Sea Scouts.

Alex White with plastic ducks that are being sold to raise money for new facilities for First Norwich Sea Scouts.

Mary Hamilton

Ducks are a common sight on the river Wensum in groups of two or three - but next month 4,000 will be floating through Norwich in a bid to raise money for a city scout group.

Ducks are a common sight on the river Wensum in groups of two or three - but next month 4,000 will be floating through Norwich in a bid to raise money for a city scout group.

The bright yellow plastic ducks are being sold for £2 each by the First Norwich Sea Scouts as part of a fundraising programme which they hope will raise them a total of £350,000 for a new base.

The ducks will race down the river as part of the Lord Mayor's Celebration, and there will be cash prizes of £200, £150, £100 and £50 for the first four ducks to cross the finish line.

Scout leaders hope the race will raise £8,000 towards their fundraising total, which they hope will pay for a new headquarters and quay heading at Old Lakenham Hall Drive in Norwich.

About 100 Scouts, Cubs and Beavers aged between six and 18 years old use the current building, a reinforced concrete building which is showing signs of age that the troop says is irreversible.

Race organiser Jane Stafford said the Broads Authority and city council had been been very helpful. Mrs Stafford, who has been a volunteer scout leader for 33 years and seen her children and grandchildren go through the sea scouts, said: “As the new building will be made from sustainable timber planks, we have a 'sponsor a plank' scheme, and we are applying for grants as well.

“The new building and quay heading will be properly accessible for disabled people too, so for the first time we will be able to offer water activities for people with disabilities.”

The fund-raising duck race will begin at Lady Julian Bridge and end at the Novi Sad Friendship Bridge, also known as the Millennium Bridge, in the Riverside area of Norwich.

The ducks will be on sale in the run-up to the race on Sunday July 11 at the Tourist Information Centre at the Forum in Norwich.

They can be bought from Castle Mall Shopping Centre on June 26 and 27, and on July 10, the day of the Lord Mayor's Procession.

They can also be bought at Waitrose in Eaton on July 3 and 4, at Tesco Express opposite the Guildhall in Norwich on July 3 and at Sainsburys on Queens Road on July 4.

For more information or to request a duck, contact Mrs Stafford on 07889 382662.

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