Soap box derby celebrates 20th anniversary

A soap box derby is celebrating its 20th anniversary next month.

Organisers of the event for Richards Castle in Shropshire said funds were raised for local charities and it thought more than £150,000 had been donated over the two decades.

About 25 people take part each year, speeding down a hill in small, homemade "chariots", and can reach up to 40mph (64.4km/h).

The event will take place on Sunday 30 June.

The vehicles were originally made out of soap boxes, but now they are often constructed from materials like aluminium or fibreglass and are not powered.

The Richards Castle Soap Box Derby committee said some took the event seriously, while others just enjoyed zooming down the course.

Committee chairman Humphrey Salwey uses his own farmland for the 550m-long (600yds) racetrack.

He said people had come to watch from all over the country, as well as nearer to home.

"There's quite a community of soap box racers now and they do come from quite a long way," he said.

"We hope that we look after them reasonably well and they come back again."

This year the event is supporting the local village hall, the Kyrebrook centre in Tenbury Wells and first responders in Ludlow.

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