AN annual spectacle of rowing, music and family entertainment will bring Durham’s riverbanks to life on Saturday and Sunday.

Durham Regatta attracts thousands of rowers and spectators to the city each year.

This year’s event, which will be the 186th, has been dedicated to regatta stalwart Keith Yates, who died in January.

Mr Yates had been involved with the regatta for more than 60 years and had been a commentator at it for the past 40 years.

And joining in the fun this year will be BBC weather presenter Jen Bartram, who is the guest of honour.

Ms Bartram is a rowing enthusiast and will be joining the commentary team, as well as presenting the prizes at a ceremony at The Gala Theatre on Sunday.

Durham Regatta, which owes its origins to the procession of boats on the River Wear celebrating victory at the Battle of Waterloo, is the second oldest regatta in the country and attracts some of the best crews from the region.

As well the racing, which sees boats setting off every two to three minutes between 8am and 7pm, the event also features free family entertainment, which takes place next to the Racecourse.

Entertainment will include funfair rides, inflatables, face-painting and balloon modelling, as well as attractions from the Armed Forces and Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue.

There will also be stilt walkers, a magician, a bubbleologist, and Punch and Judy shows, plus performances from the Durham Peripatetic Music Service and bands including Durham University and Pittington Brass Bands and a range of food and drink.

The annual classic car rally takes place on the Racecourse, featuring vehicles dating from the 1920s through to 1980s.

Prices for admission to the enclosure are £5 for adults and £2 for concessions. There is no entry charge for under fives and disabled people.