AN ‘illegal’ charity duck race was broken up by police on Sunday in Bourton-on-the-Water after residents complained.

The 100-duck race on the River Windrush, in which spectators backed the rubber competitors to raise funds for organisers Midland Freewheelers Blood Bikes, was abruptly brought to an end by police because it broke an ancient bylaw.

Apparently, the river and the village green cannot be used on Sundays for fundraising activities.

A spokesman for Gloucestershire Constabulary said: "At about 2.45pm on June 19, police responded to a complaint that a number of motorbikes were parked on the village green, contravening a local bylaw protecting the site.

"An officer asked the riders to move their bikes, which they kindly did.

"Organisers of the duck race were given advice about guidelines and permissions governing the staging of events on the green."

Blood Bikes is made up of volunteer riders operating a free 24-hour blood and medical delivery service to NHS facilities.

If anyone saw what happened please contact

Visit for more information on the charity.