The annual Cowes Pram Race is fancy dress, charity event that sees runners complete a circuit through Cowes High Street stopping at local pubs for a drink along the way.
The race is a fun event, aimed at raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support whilst raising awareness too.
When is it?
Traditionally this is always held on the August bank holiday weekend so this year it will be on Sunday 28th August. This will give you all time to recover with your extra day off on the Monday.
The pram race is held in memory of Dorrie Simmons a local lady who died of cancer. In 1979 the regulars of the now defunct Britannia public house wanted to raise money for the Macmillan nurses on the Island who gave the family great support during trying times.
Originally it was a race from “The Brit,” out of town via the Royal Standard, on to Northwood calling at The Travellers Joy and finishing in Porchfield at the Sportsman’s Rest.
Now, more of a pram push, It has taken on a more carnival type of atmosphere with the “course” being shortened over the years. This will be the 32nd year it has been run and has now become part of the Island calendar with a great deal of support from entrants, spectators, clubs, pubs, hospitals, local people and holiday makers.
Up to the present time it has raised over £210,000 via collection tins and sponsorship from friends and families for the Dorrie Simmons Memorial Foundation. The greatest amount raised was in 1984 when £14,000 was raised by sponsorship and £2,500 collected on the day.
The difficulty in finding prams has not daunted previous entries: deckchairs on wheels, dustbins, oil drums and a mini chassis – so long as it can be pushed.
You can see the prams are many and varied thus making it difficult for the judges to award the prizes.
We should not forget, of course, of one of the events’ most prolific fund raisers, she probably raised more money than other single person in the history of the event; Mez Blackwell who died of cancer 3 years ago and received great support from the Macmillan nurses. What better reason can we have for taking part ?
Big or small, your contribution will help Macmillan Cancer Support help people living with cancer. Without your support they couldn’t provide any of their services for people living with cancer.
Your fundraising can change lives…
Could fund a Macmillan nurse for 3 years, providing emotional and practical help to people affected by cancer and their families.
Could fund one of Macmillan’s new community based rehabilitation support teams.
Will pay for a Macmillan benefits adviser to work in a Citizen’s Advice Bureau for a year providing welfare benefits advice.
Could keep a Macmillan cancer information and support centre stocked with all the information resources it needs to support people affected by cancer for a year.
Could pay for a convalescent break for someone with cancer and their carer.
Could buy a liquidiser for someone who can’t eat solid food as a result of their cancer treatment.
Could pay for one more member of a cancer support group to go on a social event with other support group members.
And of course every member of every team is raising vital awareness to this amazing charity.
The event starts at The Town Square beside The Painters Arms Pub and finishes back at the Town Square. This is where the prizes will be awarded.
There is no minimum age limit but organisers feel that the event is unsuitable for children under 10 years old. Teams sizes are not limited but ‘prams’ should be based on a pram-sized chassis or similar pedestrian propelled vehicle. They must be safe to race and capable of completing the course in one piece. The event is open to anyone and not just to those living in Cowes.
Each entry will be judged at the Start and prizes will be awarded in various different categories such as:
· Best Dressed – 1st, 2nd and 3rd places for teams best dressed’.
· Funniest Pram – Award for the pram considered to be the funniest team.
and many more…
The Start & Along the Way
At the start, Team Captains will register their teams and register collecting buckets. Teams are encouraged to collect as much money as they can in their buckets from spectators along the route.
This is not a timed race although teams should ensure that they progress quickly enough to reach the finish before the 16:00. Participants drinking alcohol are reminded to do so responsibly.
The finish will be back at The Town Square where there will be Live Entertainment and return your collection buckets.