Last weekend saw the annual Waterway Festival held in Skipton. It runs over three days on the May Day bank holiday weekend, so we decided to have a drive over there on Sunday.
This year, for the first time, there was a park and ride which meant we didn't have to hunt for a car parking space in the centre of town. The car could be parked at the Auction Mart where there were a fleet of vintage buses to take us right to the centre of the action. The park and ride which was funded by Yorkshire Water was free, but we made a donation towards the upkeep of the lovely buses.
There were lots and lots of boats which had sailed in to Skipton to attend the festival all lined up along the edges of the canal. Many sported bunting, and many were decorated to reflect this year's festival theme of cartoons.
I loved this Winne the Pooh boat, it had so much going on.
There was even a hunny inspired picnic at the front of the boat.
You couldn't fail to miss this Yellow Submarine boat, it was so bright and cheery.
We walked along the canal looking at all the effort which the owners had put in to decorating their boats, there were some fabulous creations.
I couldn't help but sneak a peek inside this boat as all the crochet goodness caught my eye.
I don't think this boat is sea worthy, it's a flower planter at the side of the canal.
As we sauntered along the canal, we came to the water wheel at High Corn Mill. This is a renovated mill which now houses shops and businesses. The mill now provides power, via the National Grid to twenty local buildings.
We often see ice cream vans, not so often ice cream boats. It looked to be doing a roaring trade.
Eleanor decided against an ice cream, opting instead for a snow cone from one of the festival stalls.
There were lots of events throughout the course of the day including a raft race. We watched from the canal basin and cheered on the contestants.
The Furness Morris Dancers kept the crowds entertained.
I loved their waistcoats, each one is different and hand sewn. They depict a scene relating to the area where the wearer comes from.
It was a great fun packed day with a carnival atmosphere. Different bands played to the crowds, who joined in singing and dancing in the sunshine. It was lovely to just sit and watch.
There was something for everyone there, including craft and retail stalls, catering units, children's activities including a bouncy castle, climbing wall and trampolines, and the RNLI Lifeboat.
The candy floss was very tempting, but I resisted.
Birds of prey are a regular attraction at these kind of events and I always make a beeline for them. This is a Buzzard. That beak could do serious damage.
This Little Owl is our smallest species, though it's not native to the UK.
All in all we had a wonderful day out. The sun was shining, there was plenty of entertainment and as we took a picnic, we didn't have to spend a penny, except for petrol to get there. I shall definitely mark it on my calendar for next year, it was a thoroughly good day out.