The Top 10 Weirdest British (Possibly Sporting) Events

If you need something to do and are looking for an activity that’s a little out of the ordinary, you’re in luck. There are a whole host of weird and wonderful events that take place in the on our shores every year. Here’s a rundown of the top 10 weirdest British events as reported by

10) World Pooh Sticks Championships – Oxfordshire – March

Who would have thought that people would take inspiration from one of Winnie The Pooh’s favourite pastimes? Famous for throwing a stick under a bridge and relishing in the sheer joy of waiting for it to appear on the other side, hundreds of Oxfordshire residents now enjoy the annual Pooh Sticks Championships for themselves. In 2012 it was voted Britain’s Favourite Quirky Event by Countryfile readers and this year will see the event celebrate its 30th anniversary.

9) Stilton Cheese Rolling Championship – Stilton – May

Cheese rolling has become an annual event in the town of Stilton and every May Day hundreds of villagers and visitors gather around to watch the event take place. Each year teams of four battle it out for the honour of being crowned the ‘Stilton Cheese Rolling Champions’. Every competitor has to touch the cheese at least once during the competition and the winners receive Stilton and beer or Stilton and wine to help them celebrate.

8) Annual Nettle Eating Contest – Dorset – June

While most of us would avoid coming into contact with stinging nettles at all costs, in Dorset, nettle eating has become a great tradition. Every year contestants are given one hour to eat as many nettles as possible in exchange for a well-deserved trophy and £100 prize money for the winner. As if the pain of eating stinging nettles wasn’t enough, the after-effects aren’t too great either with one former winner claiming that “everything comes out bright green for a few days afterwards”.

7) Snail Racing Championship – Norfolk – July

Despite being far from the most fast-paced event in the world, the annual Snail Racing Championship attracts hundreds of spectators every year. The event has been going since the 1960s and snails have to cover a ratio of 13-14 inches. The fastest time a snail has ever achieved in this competition was 2 minutes in 1995 – a record that no other snail has been able to beat.

6) World Hen Racing Championship – Peak District – August

Despite the fact that it’s virtually impossible to control a chicken and the event normally ends up in complete mayhem, entrants take the World Hen Racing Championship very seriously. The competition’s organiser trains his chosen hen for an hour each day in the months running up to the race in the hope that this will help his hen secure first place. The race is not only all fun and games however, because the day is designed to help raise money for the British Hen Welfare Trust.

5) International Worthing Birdman – Worthing – August

This event is not for the faint-hearted as it’s a human flying machine contest. Competitors are divided into two categories – slightly crazy types in fancy dress and the more serious contenders who spend months designing complex contraptions. There is a £30,000 prize for anyone who flies over 100m but this is yet to be achieved in the competition’s 30-year history.

4) World Gravy Wrestling Championships – Rossendale – August

Every year this Lancashire town witnesses competitors battling out for victory as they slide about in a paddling pool full of lukewarm gravy. Contestants must wrestle in the gravy for 2 minutes whilst being scored for audience applause and various different moves before being crowned the winners. Fortunately, the local fire brigade is on hand to spray down entrants before they make their way home.

3) Black Pudding Throwing Championships – Lancashire – September

This annual tradition plays out the ancient grudge between Yorkshire and Lancashire residents. Competitors have three attempts to knock down as much of their target as they can (last year it was Yorkshire puddings) from a purpose built stand called the oche. Anyone can participate in the event providing they don’t mind dodging the hundreds of puddings that are normally flying around.

2) World Gurning Championships – Cumbria – September

If you are looking for a truly unique event, then the World Gurning Championship is for you. Contestants put their heads through a horse collar and pull the most hideous face they can. The winner is decided by the applause of the huge audience that come to enjoy a day of laughing at others and being surprised at the vast array of shocking faces that are pulled.

1) Biggest Liar in the World Competition – Cumbria – November

In this annual competition, contestants from around the world have five minutes to tell the biggest and most convincing lie they can. The reigning champion and seven-time winner is John Graham who continues to wow the judges year after year. Believe it or not, politicians and lawyers are banned from entering the competitions because they are judged to be too skilled at telling lies and it would be unfair on other entrants.

Do you know of any other crazy events that take place in the UK or around the world? Why not share them with us in the comments section below.


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