Were you part of the 1970s Raft Race fun in Hartlepool

Some of the Blue Bells crew.
Some of the Blue Bells crew.

In October 1979, a sporting event with a difference pulled in the crowds as well as the entries in Hartlepool.

That year’s Hartlepool Raft Race was due to be a hotly contested affair with one team of lads particularly hoping for success.

The first schoolboy team to take part in Hartlepool’s annual raft race hoped to pull off a surprise victory

Hartlepool Mail reporter, 1979

A team of sixth formers from Brinkburn Comprehensive School hoped to become the first school outfit to win the race.

They had spent their school summer holidays building their raft and were up against teams from Kismet Dynaflex and Hartlepool Power Station. Anyone remember how they did?

Bill Baxter of Hartlepool RNLI reckoned they had a good chance when he spoke to the Mail just before the big day. He paid tribute to their hard work and preparation.

As well as the overall first place, there were lots of sub plots in the race itself. Two ladies teams were competing and they were the Blue Bells Inn from Newton Bewley and Clevestone Transport.

The race was the centrepoint of the annual Harbour Fete in which all the proceeds were due to go towards the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

Other attractions were due to include displays by lifeboats, Hartlepool’s own new lifeboat The Scout, an RAF helicopter display, and an appearance by the Rothmans Aerobatic team.

Also lined up was an exhibition of parascending as well as sideshows and stalls.

Were you there and did you compete in any of the races.

How did you do. Tell us more.

Email chris.cordner@jpress.co.uk