A spectacular river race will take to the Thames today featuring more than 300 crews from around the world.

The Great River Race, also known as London's River Marathon, will see competitor of all abilities taking part, whether they are serious sportspeople or groups of friends or fundraisers who enjoy fun, fancy dress and raising money for deserving causes.

The race, which starts at Cannon in London Docklands at 12.10pm, follows a 21-mile course that passes Battersea, Wandsworth and Putney bridges.

The weather forecast for the weekend is not great, so organisers will be hoping for a break in the predicted showers on saturday afternoon.

The borough is home to a number of perfect vantage points where spectators can cheer on those taking part - from Battersea Park to the Putney embankment.

Organisers expect the first boats to pass Battersea Bridge at 1.15pm, Wandsworth Bridge at 1.25pm and go under Putney Bridge at 1.30pm.

The race will eventually finish at Ham House in the borough of Richmond, with the first boats expected there at approximately 3.10pm.

Here, winners will be presented with The Challenge Trophy of The Company of Watermen & Lightermen, and become the UK Traditional Boat Champions in the process.

Wandsworth Council is a long-term supporter of the race and this year the borough's deputy mayor, Councillor Kim Caddy, will be a passenger in 'The Paul Satow' - a 34-foot long Thames Waterman Cutter, rowed and coxed by current and former council officers.

This six-oar crew will start at around 1.10pm from Docklands and expect to reach Ham by 4pm.