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Illuminations at Matlock Bath

Viking longboats, fire engines, and Thunderbird rockets sailed along the River Derwent at the opening of a traditional Dales festival.

Fascinated visitors packed the riverbank in Matlock Bath for the 111th Venetian Nights festival, and a fantastic display of colourful illuminated boats were on show.

Grey Beard's Ghostly Galleon, designed by Matlock St John Ambulance, won the first prize of 260 and the Arkwright Cup.

Michael Hall's Heroes of the Sea boat came second, with Fireman Sam and Jupiter 999 by Cromford man Ian Page finishing third and a Grecian Galley by David Gregory, Matlock, fourth.

Three audience members were selected at random to do the judging, after Chairman of the District of Derbyshire Dales Cllr Cate Hunt had officially opened the celebrations.

She was helped by visiting youngsters Kerry Bradley of Liverpool and Jamie and Daniel Boyle from Runcorn in Cheshire.

Fireworks will light up the hillside above Matlock Bath on three Saturday evenings this year – on September 27 and October 11 and 25.

A park and ride service will bring visitors from Matlock and Cromford to the fireworks at 6pm on these evenings.

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