PHOTO GALLERY: Hundreds of people have raised thousands of pounds for charity by taking part in Ryde Slide 2017, which sensationally returned to the town for the third year running today (Sunday).

The sell-out event saw men, women and children of all ages zooming down the 200m slide on inflatables before splashing into the foamy pool at the bottom, much to the enjoyment of the crowds watching on.

For 2017 the slide was moved further down Union Street to increase the speed, making a noticeable difference for both riders and spectators alike. Once again the weather stayed warm and dry, albeit cloudy until mid-afternoon when the blue skies blossomed.

Bob Seely MP got proceedings underway at 11:00 as he went head-first towards the Esplanade, closely followed by the leader of the Isle of Wight Council, Cllr Dave Stewart, and the Mayor of Ryde, Cllr Henry Adams.

Firefighters from Ryde Fire Station joined crew members from Ryde Inshore Rescue in assisting the hundreds of sliders at both the top and bottom of Union Street throughout the day.

This year’s event – with new title sponsors Wightlink – has been declared a success meaning a total of 5 Ryde-based charities will now benefit from the money raised. A cheque will be handed over on Tuesday – more to follow.

Ryde Slide was established in 2015 by Cllr Wayne Whittle who first discussed the idea of a giant water slide coming to Ryde on Twitter with the hashtag #RydeSlide. Island Echo is proud to have continued supporting this event since its inception.

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