Excitement is building ahead of Ricky Week which starts this Saturday.

The popular week of events will kick off with the annual parade in the centre of Rickmansworth.

Decorated floats and other entries taking part in the parade will assemble on the southern side of the High Street between the railway bridge and St Joan of Arc School.

At 1.30pm, it will make its way through the High Street, Station Road, Northway and Church Street, before finishing at the Bury Grounds.

There will be a fete there, organised by the Batchworth Sea Scouts.

Barbara Owens, from the Rickmansworth Society, which organises the event, said: “I think Ricky Week is very important because everyone is involved.

“The shops are involved, and the schools are involved.

“I think people would miss Ricky Week if it wasn’t there. It has been going since the Queen’s Coronation.

“The local organisations are the ones who do the floats, along with the schools, and all the shops benefit from it, particularly those who are involved in spot the intruder, which is a competition where 20 shops have something in their shop window which isn't usually there and people need to spot them all.

“And the local churches are able to publicise their work. They can’t afford to advertise what they are doing, but they are included in the programmes for the week.”

Organisers have set up numerous events throughout the week, including a wildlife wander at the Withey Beds, in Rickmansworth and anyone interested should meet at Batchworth Lock Centre at 2pm on Sunday.

The Rickmansworth Horticultural Society will be holding an open evening and talk on Wednesday, May 18, where Bill Hamilton will give a speech titled “Man on the spot – a story of a news reporter”. This event is being held at the RVS centre in Bury Lane.

There will be a presentation evening for the badgers and cadets at the St John Ambulance Madeleine Pearce Centre, Berry Lane, Mill End, and there will be displays of their work on Wednesday evening.

Rickmansworth Royal British Legion Bowls Club will be holding an open day at 4pm on Wednesday, 18 at the club in Northway.

The week will be brought to a close with the Rickmansworth Canal Festival, which organisers believe could attract more than 20,000 people.

The Rickmansworth Festival will be held at a site between Batchworth and Stockers Locks and in part of the park at The Aquadrome, Frogmoor Lane, on Saturday, May 21 and Sunday, May 22.

The event will feature a number of attractions, including live music, children’s attractions and a vast array of canal boats. There will also be a fly-over from a Dakota - used during the Battle of Britain - on both days at the festival.

David Montague, one of the organisers of the festival, said: “Everything is on track. There are so many boaters and traders who want to come along.

“We are just so popular now and our challenge is to make sure we have a secure site and sufficient space for everyone.”

"We have got four live music stages, and we are expecting around 120 narrowboats, including some historic ones which will be lovely to look at.

"We are extremely grateful to all the volunteers who give up their time to make this event a success. Without them, it simply wouldn't happen."

Mr Montague added: “Hopefully there won’t be as many people as there was last year, when there were between 20,000 and 30,000, but I think it will be bigger than last year.

“We are victims of our own success.”