CLACTON’S beach rugby festival – one of the highlights of the local sporting calendar – is taking place on Saturday.

This will be the ninth summer the event has taken place and, as in the previous eight years, it will take place on the sands of Martello Bay.

The festival is organised by Clacton Rugby Club, with assistance from the Essex Rugby Union and the Eastern Counties Rugby Union and also from Tendring District Council.

The event started in 2005 with just 12 teams taking part but entries this year are already in the mid-30s.

It promises to be another entertaining day and, once again, the teams will be of a varied age mixture, with dads and daughters playing against mums and sons.

The day is not simply about winning, but more an opportunity for a day at the seaside, on the beach, with some fun rugby thrown in.

Teams usually start to arrive from 10am, with games starting around noon and then going on throughout the afternoon.

To coincide with the festival, Clacton Rugby Club started their own pre-season on Tuesday.

Following the first team’s promotion last April, they know they have a huge task in front of them when the season starts in September.

The club are always on the look-out for new players. Anyone interested should come along to the clubhouse off Valley Road any Tuesday or Thursday evening, starting from 7pm.