Four brides will be making their getaway as they take part in today's Great River Race.

The four Richmond mums will be donning their best Runaway Bride outfits to row the 21 mile course along the River Thames.

More than 20,000 onlookers will be hoping for sunshine as they line the banks of the river for the annual event, which kicks of at midday.

The brides are hoping to raise £7,500 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, after two team members' children were diagnosed with the condition.

One mum, Alexandria Mosely, of Kings Road, said: “We get some funny looks while training in our bridal gear out on the river but it’s worth it.”

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Second time lucky

Two Twickenham schools will be crossing their fingers and hoping for better luck than last year as the starting cannons fire.

Trafalgar Infant and Junior schools’ dragonboat filled with water and failed to make it past HMS Belfast last year, but this year the team are back to try it all again with a crew of parents, staff, governors and friends to raise £2,000 for the British Heart Foundation.


River race is the business

Hotels, restaurants, businesses and entertainment venues will be cheering on competitors from the banks of Richmond riverside as more than 300 boats pass by.

More than 20 borough-based firms and organisations will be promoting their services in the VisitRichmond zone on the riverside during the day.

Councillor Pamela Fleming, Richmond Council’s cabinet member for communities, said: “The VisitRichmond business zone on Richmond Riverside is a partnership of businesses and community showcasing all the delights that historic Richmond has to offer.

"I’m pleased to see so many have taken up the chance to be there and we hope locals and visitors support them in the coming weeks and months.”

As well as businesses, the Richmond Business and Retail Association has organised a "Richmond-on-Sea" children’s’ area and barbecue.

It will include a Punch and Judy show, donkey rides, a sandpit and performances by the Vineyard School choir.

The boat race starts at 12.15pm from London Docklands, with competitors expected to begin arriving in Ham from about 3pm.

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Racing to put Whitton on the map

Whitton councillor Gareth Elliott will be trading council papers for rowing oars on Saturday when he gears up to take part in the Great River Race.

Counc Elliot said he hoped by taking on the 21 mile challenge he would put Whitton back on the map.

He said: "Whitton is not simply a periphery town located on the border, but is in fact an important centre within Richmond.

"It’s a fantastic town that I call home and I will be working hard to return it to the top table."

The councillor, who will be rowing with five others, will be raising money for the charity MIND which promotes and protects good mental health.