- 1. World Conker Championships
Horse chestnuts, or conkers, are used in a sporting event where two players try to break their opponents conker with theirs. The sport began in 1965 and is hosted by the Ashton Conker Club, which takes place over a series of rounds. The competition takes place on an uneven playing field using horse chestnut trees as supplies. Players take turns hitting each other’s conker and when one cracks, the other wins.
How to take Part: https://www.worldconkerchampionships.com/
2. World Gravy Wrestling Championships
It’s hard to resist adding gravy to your Sunday lunch. But some people flock to the village of Stacksteads in Lancashire every year just to wrestle in cold gravy, while wearing costumes and looking hilarious. The judges score the bouts based on fun wrestling moves and exceptional costumes.
How to take Part: https://worldgravywrestling.com/
3. World Snail Racing Championships
This year, 200 snails competed in a world competition to see who could be the fastest. It was part of an event called Congham Fete and has been happening for 25 years. The winning snail will have to be quick across the 13 inch course!
How to take Part :http://www.snailracing.net/
4. World Bog Snorkelling Championships
So, you don’t want to choose to go out and get messed up in your local ice cream store’s meat freezer? Well, Llanwrtyd Wells, in Wales, has the event for you. There is a world bog snorkelling championships that takes place at Waen Rhydd bog. Competitors are covering around 110 meters of bog as quickly as possible while swimming doggy paddle and keeping their face down in the bog.
Where: Llanwrtyd Wells
How to take Part: https://www.green-events.co.uk/
5. World Gurning Championship
The Gurning Championships are a centuries-old competition that takes place in Cumbria, the world’s oldest fair. Participants aim to put their heads through a hose collar and pull out their most hideous face.
Where: Egremont Crab Fair
How to take Part: https://www.egremontcrabfair.com/
6. Gloucestershire Cheese Rolling
The Cheese Rolling Festival is a mad and daring competition that goes back to the 1800s. Participants stand at the top of Cooper’s Hill in Gloucester, and 8lb double Gloucester cheese wheel is rolled quickly down the hill. Then, contestants try to catch it on their hands or by using a long wooden staff. People have been seriously injured by trying to compete.
Where: Coopers Hill, Brockworth
How to take Part: https://www.gloucestercheeserolling.co.uk/
7. Chap Olympiad
This event celebrates people’s sporting ineptitude and takes place in London. There are games like the three-trousered limbo, which is where you bend down to go under a three-legged bar without touching the ground or your knees. There will be plenty of G&Ts (cocktails), cravats (ties), and overtly British themes.
How to take Part: https://www.chapolympiad.com/
8. Up Helly AA
Once a year, Europe’s largest fire festival lights up in Lerwick, Shetland. It is a tradition that originated in the 1880s and includes torches, processions around the town, wacky costumes, and the burning of a huge Viking ship. The event happens all over Shetland and you can find it in 10 Towns!
Where: Lerwick, Shetland
How to take Part: https://www.uphellyaa.or
9. The Flaming Tar Barrels
Residents in the Devon town of Ottery St Mary are not content with the usual sparklers and fireworks on Bonfire Night. They opt to hoist barrels filled with burning tar onto their shoulders and run as fast as they can throughout the streets. The event is thought to be an age-old tradition, from the 17th century. The event may also have its roots in ancient Pagan fire rituals. Interestingly, if you’re not from the town, you can’t take part, but it would be a good night out regardless!
Where: Ottery, St Marys, Devon
How to take Part: https://www.tarbarrels.co.uk/
Hocktide is an old English festival where a group of men tie up and kiss women in exchange for their liberation. The next day, the women get their own back by kissing the men again, but only after demanding money from them. The one exception to this is a change instated by Queen Elizabeth I in 1575 where energy is traded instead of cash.
11. The International Bogman Birdman Competition
A flying machine competition can be found in West Sussex, England. It is divided into categories so that participants can fly seriously or get silly. The competition originated in 1971 and is based on a flight 50m long.
Where: Bognor Regis
How to take Part: http://www.bognorbirdman.com/
12. The Padstow Obby Oss
In Padstow, Cornwall, people participate in May Day each year with a traditional “Obby ‘Oss day”, dating back to the Celtic Beltane celebration. Community celebrations of May Day have been recorded from the 16th century and earlier. Padlow is decorated with greenery, flowers and flags, and features a maypole. At the end of the festivities, two groups of dancers parade through town. One group is dressed as a horse and tries to catch other group members who are disguised as maidens.
How to take Part: https://padstowobbyoss.wordpress.com/about/
13. Olney Pancake race
Pancakes originated on Shrove Tuesday because of the eggs, which were forbidden during Lent. However, female residents of Olney in Buckinghamshire found another way to entertain themselves with pancakes, holding what is believed to be the world’s oldest pancake race. Only open to the women of town, they must make their own pancake and toss it well before sprinting through town. Why? It’s a good time!
How to take Part:http://olneypancakerace.org/
14. World Pooh Stick Championships
Pooh Sticks is a game that involves dropping sticks off of a bridge, and measuring the distance from the end of the river. The event in Oxfordshire is held at Day’s Lock on the last Sunday in March to see who has the best distance.
Where: Whitney, Oxfordshire
How to take Part:https://www.facebook.com/TheWorldPoohSticksChampionships/