Firestarters set Alnmouth beach’s Volcano Night alight

Alnmouth Volcano Night 2018. Picture by Terry Collinson
Alnmouth Volcano Night 2018. Picture by Terry Collinson
  • All hands to the pump as around 400 people attempt to defy the sea with blazing sandcastles

Alnmouth beach erupted into scenes of frantic digging and blazing pyres on Saturday as the annual Volcano Night was again hailed a great success.

Forty-four teams of up to 10 adults and children, armed with shovels, wood and matches descended on Alnmouth beach for the charity competition.

They were allocated a spot and when the whistle blew, they had 15 minutes to build a sandcastle, followed by 15 minutes to construct and light a bonfire on top.

Everyone then retired, many with a picnic, while Alnmouth Community Rowing performed a row-past in their skiff.

The last fire to be put out by the incoming tide – built by a team called Firestarters – was declared the winner of a trophy and a hamper voucher from Scotts of Alnmouth.

Event organisers River Aln Boat Club (RABC) raised more than £800 for local lifeboats and sea rescue charities.

New this year was web registration to speed up check-in.

A clean-up bonfire to get rid of half-burned timber became something of a social occasion as the evening drew on.

RABC volunteers also turned up for a further beach clean the next day.

John Taylor, RABC events coordinator, said: “It is thanks to the hard work of our volunteers that we are able both to give everyone a great evening of fun and to support local charities at the same time.

“I am also very grateful to the local Coastguard who supported the event.”