The annual regatta held by the Rotary Club of Ellesmere had the biggest turn out they have seen last weekend.

Up to 3,000 spectators gathered around the Mere to watch the teams take to the bell boats.

People were welcomed from around the area and beyond to the charity event in aid of Parkinson’s UK.

Geoff Corfield, chairman of the Rotary Regatta Committee said: “It was a fabulous day with many more people than normal, around 2,500 to 3,000. Even people who were just passing by took the time to come and see what was going on.”

There were 26 crews competing in twin-hulled bell boats with teams battling for senior and junior trophies.

This is the highest number of crews this event has seen over the 23 years it has been running.

People gathered round to watch the races, enjoy music from Ukey Monster and family attractions that took place at the Cremorne Gardens.

For the third year running Adult Open winners were Tony T’s Torpedoes, a veteran crew from Ellesmere and Whittington who were up against Athletico Far Away, a crew created from regulars at the Market Hotel in Ellesmere.

In the women’s event, The Cobbled Together Crew from Cockshutt won by eight seconds against Mama Mia from Shropshire Paddlers.

The youth final saw Oswestry Girls’ rugby team swiftly defend their title, winning for the second year running.

The girls won all their races with an exciting final where they crossed the finish line with the boys’ team – The Rugby Muppets from Ruabon – just four seconds behind.

Oswestry Girls’ rugby coach Rob Kershaw said: “We are all very proud of the girls, not just for their competitive spirit and application but also for the fun and enjoyment they bring, proving that being in a rugby team is about far more than just playing rugby.”

The prizes to the winning teams and runners-up were presented by Carol Reilly, governor of Rotary District 1210, and Brian Reilly, district governor nominee.

Geoff added: “It was a lovely day with a great spirit of competition.

“A vast number of people came up to me and said ‘thank you, we’ve greatly enjoyed ourselves’, which is something I will always remember.”