Harbourfest FAQ


What are the event prizes from Fatyak?

This year, Fatyak Kayaks are offering £250 for the fastest paddler, A hono board for the fastest female, as well as for the fastest family or adult/child entry. In addition, Channel Adventure Ltd is offering their Grom Squad sessions for the fastest youth paddler.


Can I enter the Raft Race on the day?

The Raft Race cannot be entered on the day


Can I enter the Fatyak Races on the day?

Fatyak races can be entered on the day by going to the Registration stall – though some personal details will be needed and so registering online in due course could save time!


What are the prizes for the Raft Race?

As well as a prize of up to 6 hono boards from Fatyak for the most money raised through sponsorship, various sponsored cups and prizes are given each year. Details will be announced at a later date.


How much is entry to the harbourfest?

Entry to Harbourfest and all that it has to offer is free for spectators and those not participating in any event!


Who was the quickest paddler last year?

Last year David Farr was the quickest paddler with a time of 9 minutes and 23 seconds. So this is your time to beat!


Whats the minimum age for the Fatyak Races?

14 years of age in order to participate unaccompanied (with a counter-signed form for those under 16), or 6 years of age with adult supervision for doubles or family entries.


Whats the minimum age for Raft Race crew members?

Crew members participating in the Raft Race must be at least 15 years of age on the day of the event.


What are the rules for the Raft Race?

A full list of rules can be found here http://www.mineheadraftrace.co.uk/?page_id=23


Will there be parking?

There will be a road closure in place along Quay Street from 8am on the Sunday. The nearest pay and display car parks are located at;

  • Minehead Steam Railway Station, Postcode TA24 5AP
  • Blenheim Road Car Park, Postcode TA24 5QW


What facilities are available?

Public toilets are available opposite the RNLI Boat House. There are no changing rooms available, and no baggage storage options available – participants are responsible for their belongings.

Where is the Harbourfest?

The Festival is located at Minehead Harbour, TA24 5UL with a road closure in place along Quay Road in order to accommodate all the activities that will be taking place.


Where do I sign up for the Fatyak Races?

You can sign up for the Fatyak Races here. Registration on the day will also be available


What happens to the proceeds?

100% of proceeds from the event go to the RNLI, who’s Minehead Station is located right at the heart of the festival, in order to support the great work they do out on the sea.





Paddle round the Pier Summary


Fantastic weather accompanied a fantastic event in Brighton last weekend. A great selection of trade stands, entertainment and exhibitors on land overlooked a medley of successful events in the water, including races, the paddle, and demo events.


The atmosphere was electric – the sun was out for the whole weekend and with a footfall of around 50,000 people there was plenty going on. People were giving things a go, engaging with exhibitors and organisations and having a great time with the entertainment on both land and water. Watersports lectures, events, entertainment and exhibitions were all a fantastic success overall, with a huge turnout for events on the Sunday in particular on account of the improved conditions.


At least £6000 was raised on the Saturday alone, with the final figures yet to come. All money raised will be given to the RNLI, Surfers against Sewage, and Amaze – fantastic charities that carry out some crucial work not only for those of us involved in watersports but for the wider community also.

We experienced some pretty severe wind on the Saturday, making the water so choppy that it would have been rather difficult to paddle very far! Luckily, the weather was brilliant all day Sunday which meant the races and other events could be re-scheduled, and continued to go off without a hitch.


The Fatyak Races were a great success with competitors taking to the water in pursuit of a Fatyak Kaafu as first prize, and a Hono as second! Big congratulations to Michael Van Doorn who came first in the race, with a time of 2:26, and has bagged himself one of our lovely UK-made Kaafu kayaks!



As well as the races – we also a lucky young man who won himself a Hono in the raffle! Along with a variety of great prizes from generous exhibitors at the event, including kayaks, surfboards, lessons, accessories and more.


Overall, we had a fantastic time at Paddle round the Pier and would like to extend our thanks to the organisers, the other exhibitors and the community who came and engaged with it all. We loved chatting to you all about our products, and hearing your thoughts on issues within kayaking and the paddlesports world and can’t wait to do it all again next year!

Paddle round the Pier is this weekend!


With Paddle round the Pier only a few days away, it’s probably time to get your gear together and begin planning your weekend!


How to get there?

Paddle round the Pier is located across a 60,000sq meter area across Hove Lawns, just to the west of the pier remains. Free parking might be hard to find on site, though if you are prepared for what would be a stunning walk then it can be found around up to a mile away. There are plenty of pay and display sites just to the north-west of the Lawns.

The postcode for sat nav users is BN3 2FR, but just make sure you switch from car to Fatyak before you enter the sea! If you’re coming by train, simply head downhill for the sea and turn right.


What to bring?

There will be a huge variety of events going on throughout the course of the weekend – so consider what you might be interested in and pack accordingly. For our own Fatyak Races, the boats and PFDs (Personal Floatation Devices) will be supplied, but if you have a wetsuit or anything else you’d like to bring then we would recommend it! If you plan to enter on the day, Adult entry is £10, and Youth (Under-16) entry is £6.

You won’t be able to bring any alcohol on site at Paddle round the Pier – there will be a range of bars serving beer, lager, cider, cocktails and PIMMs! You can bring dogs, but consider whether your hound is a fan of people and loud noises as it’s a busy place to be. The BONE-yard dog show will be happening at 1pm each day.
What’s happening at the Fatyak stand?

As well as supplying boats for the Fatyak Races, there will be show deals on some of our range, giveaways, and information on our new Samos SUP board! Our staff will be on hand to talk about our products and offer guidance on our range, as well as boats being available throughout the day for you to have a go on. Simply come and find us at Blue Zone J!

Paddle round the Pier

Paddle round the Pier is a fantastic event run by volunteers, which has raised over £300,000 for charity! Not only does the event give to charities, but it’s also a great community get-together over the course of the weekend, with plenty of local involvement and a friendly atmosphere to boot.


We at Fatyak Kayaks are delighted to be a part of it this year’s celebrations on the lawns, as part of over 200 stalls and in the midst of a 50,000 strong crowd. Additionally, the festival’s 20th year in operation will see the launch of our new Fatyak Races, alongside other great events that will be happening simultaneously – including various shows, competitions, and performances.


The festival will be on the Hove Lawns in Brighton, on an expansive 60,000 square metre venue that will host the main event village for the weekend. A variety of bars, stalls, activities, events, competitions and prizes will be available for all to enjoy, as well as many industry and trade stands. A lecture theatre will be in places offering a variety of insights from within the watersports and beach leisure industries.
We will be running a competition to find the fastest fatyaker at the event on the Saturday, with a load of great prizes up for grabs including Kaafu kayaks, and Hono boards, as well as a variety of great accessories up for grabs. The heats will include Mens, Ladies, and Youth categories – full details can be viewed here, including how to enter.


Additionally, we will have a trade stand for the duration of the weekend with a variety of our range on show, including our latest and greatest addition to the range; the Samos! If you have any questions or thoughts whatsoever, come and find us for a chat!


RNLI Minehead Harbour Fest

Last weekend we got involved with hosting the Minehead Harbour Fest (link) – bringing #fatyaking™ to Minehead Harbour with taster sessions and Fatyak™ races – with £500 for the winner.
Minehead Harbour Fest is a new concept for 2015 born from the RNLI Raft Race – an event that has been running for 35 years along the coast from Blue Anchor to Minehead. This year the Raft Race was developed from a one-day to a two-day event on the Harbour full of live music, fun on the water, and street entertainment for the masses to enjoy. The festival was run in association with our own selves, and The Old Ship Aground pub, located right in the thick of the action. As well as providing a weekend of fun, the aim was to support money for the RNLI who obviously play an invaluable role in all that the weekend stands for.

This new concept was a spectacular success this year, with the finest local paddlers being pitched against each other in pursuit of a £500 prize – all in our very own fleet of fatyak™ kayaks down in the harbour.

Fatyaks in the Harbour

Fatyaks™ in the Harbour

The amount of registrants increased exponentially on the day as the hype began to build, with Steven Dodd, Special Olympics Kayaking Twice Silver Medallist amongst the mix, and the atmosphere was fantastic – with some extremely exciting paddling and weather that could not have been better! The course consisted of a sprint out to a buoy just past the harbour area and back, made up of 3 heats, with safety monitoring kindly provided by the RNLI team.

Fatyak Racers taking off

Fatyak™ Racers taking off

Midpoint of the Sprint

Midpoint of the Sprint

Special Olympics Silver Medallist Steven Dodd and Josh Searle of Fatyak

Special Olympics Silver Medallist Steven Dodd and Josh Searle of Fatyak

The main event of the Sunday was, of course, Minehead’s beloved raft race! The course was shortened this year due to safety concerns, running from Butlins as opposed to Blue Anchor but the event was just as legendary as ever with teams from as far as Hertfordshire entering the pro race.
As well as the professionals, we had teams consisting of the Minehead Barbarians rugby squad, Staff from our local Tesco supermarket, the “blind mice” from Minehead Specsavers and many more all bashing hulls in the fun race! Not to mention Fatyak™ Kayak’s very own raft which also competed in the pro race.

The Fatyak Team Raft tearing it up!

The Fatyak™ Team Raft tearing it up!

Teams competed for an array of prize categories including most original raft, the pub challenge, best fancy dress and the first local crew – full details of which will be included in the end of this post.

Williton YFC Raft

Williton YFC Raft

Watchet Sea Scouts - Winners of the Best Fancy Dress House Doctor's Cup

Watchet Sea Scouts – Winners of the Best Fancy Dress House Doctor’s Cup

While the Raft Race was underway, back at the harbour we were running Fatyak™ taster sessions – we were fully booked with keen fatyakers™ for the majority which was absolutely great to see, especially since so many had never been on the water before! We were helped hugely by Channel Adventure in keeping everybody safe and allowing a fun and informative session to take place.

Fatyak Taster Sessions with Channel Adventure

Fatyak™ Taster Sessions with Channel Adventure

Tying together the burbling atmosphere of the weekend once the sun began to set was, of course, the fantastic live music acts organised by The Old Ship Aground including The Thatchers, Soulville Express, Pearl & The Diamond Geezers, Acoustic Roots, Little Betty, and The Salt Flat Rats – all with added music and entertainment by Tone FM DJ Drew Haddon. Commentary was provided to contextualise the action throughout the daytimes by Drew Haddon and Josh Searle of Tone FM, with a link from Phil Sanderson of the RNLI from the Safety Boat – keeping the masses updated regarding life on the water.
The staging and lighting provided by NBP Sound and Lighting Hire lit up the harbour once darkness fell, providing a brilliant backdrop for the selection of bands on offer throughout the weekend.

The Salt Flat Rats performing at the Old Ship Aground for RNLI Minehead Harbour Fest

The Salt Flat Rats performing at the Old Ship Aground for RNLI Minehead Harbour Fest

And speaking of lighting up the harbour, with help from an array of firms, a spectacular firework show was funded and put on display for the town to enjoy.

Many thanks to;

Fuel Tank Shop
Richard Beaver Ford
Julians Laundry
Tanks Direct
Derek Merson Garage
CJ Lynch and Sons
Singer Instruments
Channel Training
Channel Adventure
Minehead Hire
Stones Bar and Restaurant
Maitland Walker Solicitors

Harbour Fest Fireworks




Last but not least…

Overall the weekend was a huge success and we would like to offer our most sincere thank you to everyone who attended, and everybody involved in hosting the event. A congratulations is in order for Fastest Paddler, David Farr, who won the Fatyak™ Races with a blistering time of 9 minutes and 23 seconds as well as winners from the other prize categories:
Fastest Female Paddler – Jane Dunn
Fastest Youth Paddler – Ben Pye
Fastest Youth/Adult Paddlers – Henry & Phil Young

Fatyak Race Winners David Farr, Jane Dunn, Ben Pye, Henry & Phil Young with Fatyak Manager Jayne Blundell and Special Olympics Silver Medallist Steven Dodd

Fatyak™ Race Winners David Farr, Jane Dunn, Ben Pye, Henry & Phil Young with Fatyak™ Manager Jayne Blundell and Special Olympics Silver Medallist Steven Dodd

The full results for the Raft Race are included below;

Pro Raft Race
1. 14 – Wonder Y, from Tring, male (Derek Williams Cup)
2. 5 – Madsat Black 6, from Herefordshire, male
3. 13 – Wonder Y ladies, from Tring, female
4. 17 – Vikings Raft Team, from Alcester, male (2)
5. 18 – Vikings Raft Team, from Alcester, male (4)
6. 2 – Valient Soldier, from Roadwater, young male (First local Raft, Old Ship Aground – Ale)
7. 1- Valient Soldier, from Roadwater, old male
8. 16 – The Victory Pub, from Hereford, mixed
9. 15 – The Victory Pirates, from Herefoprd, mixed
10. 19 – Rest and Be, from Wheddon Cross, mixed
11. 4 – The Black Pig, from Wheddon Cross, male
12. 12 – Fatyaks™ Kayaks, from Williton, male
13. 7 – Dunster Beach 1, from Dunster, male
14. 10- 5th time lucky, from Minehead, male
15. 11 – Mandy’s many men, from Minehead, mixed
16. 9 – The Gym, from Bishopstoke, male
Sank – Valient Soldier, from Roadwater, female

Fun Race
1. L – Minehead Barbarians, from Minehead, male (First Fancy Dress – Channel Training Prize)
2. J – Seahorse Centre, from Minehead, mixed
3. H – Blind Mice / SpecSavers, from Minehead, mixed
4. E – Exmoor Hill Farming Network, from Minehead, mixed (Most Original Raft – Mike Arnold)
5. K – Chillys Car Car, from Minehead, mixed
6. C – The Village People, from Wooten Courtney, male
7. A – Have a Go Halcon, from Taunton, mixed
8. D – Three men in a Sub, from Lincoln, male
9. Q – Deso Engineering, from Williton, male
10. N – GB Scaffolding, from Minehead, male
11. F – 1st Watchet Sea Scouts, from Watchet, mixed (Best Fancy Dress – House Doctors Cup)
12. B – Brookfood Processing, from Williton, mixed
13. G – British Heart Foundation
14. M – Tesco, from Minehead, mixed
15. Q – The Happy Campers (caravan), from Minehead, male

A huge thanks again to the RNLI, whose work encapsulates the spirit of everything the weekend was about, as well as The Old Ship Aground for their never-ending support of the event, and being the lifeblood of culture on Minehead Harbour. See you all again next year!


The first ever Weymouth Ecover Blue Mile proved a massive hit over the weekend of 27-28 July, with thousands of visitors attending the event on Weymouth Beach and hundreds of people taking part.

An amazing 440 people – many of them young children – took part in kayak and stand up paddle boarding (SUP) taster sessions during the two days. The sessions were free, but participants were asked to make a donation to the Ecover Blue Mile’s charity partner, the Marine Conservation Society and in total raised £467.11 to help protect our seas shores and wildlife.

The Ecover Blue Mile kicked off the 10-day Dorset Festival of Sport, an Olympic Legacy event organised to mark the first anniversary of the 2012 Olympics, which saw Weymouth host some of the big water sports competitions.

As well as the taster sessions, there was also some serious racing on show, in the UK’s inaugural Naish One SUP Race Series, in which riders of all abilities could enter alongside international pros, including Naish wave rider Jan Sleigh.

Conrad Humphreys of Sport Environment, which organises the Ecover Blue Mile, said: “This is what we are all about – getting people out onto the water and enjoying what the sea has to offer.

“And we’ve been blown away by the venue; Weymouth Beach is just perfect for learning water sports.”

Steve Davies, Promotions and Events Manager at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council said: “Over 2,500 people came onto the site on Saturday and Sunday and all of the sporting activities – on land and on water – were very busy for the two days. It’s been a great success.”

Event sponsors, Ecover, handed out free samples of Ecover goodies to participants and members of the public. The water sports activities were supported by equipment partners Fatyak™ Kayaks and Naish UK, with qualified instructors from Canoe England and Weymouth College. Volunteers from Active Dorset were also on hand, evoking the spirit of London 2012 all over again!

The Marine Conservation Society had a beachside display and volunteers from the charity showed members of the public how marine debris affects the seas and wildlife.

Conrad Humphreys declared the first ever Weymouth Ecover Blue Mile a stunning success: “We’ve been absolutely delighted with the welcome that the Ecover Blue Mile has received from everyone in Weymouth.

“It’s been great to be part of the Dorset Festival of Sport and seeing all these children so keen to jump in a kayak or on a SUP board shows that given the opportunity, they love getting out onto the water.”

Next up … The Ecover Blue Mile in Plymouth, 14-15 September 2013!