Hard nuts get ready for annual conker championships

Cyndi Hatfield from Wellingborough taking part in a previous contest
Cyndi Hatfield from Wellingborough taking part in a previous contest
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The World Conker Championships are all set to go ahead this year after finding a new home.

The annual competition, hosted by Ashton Conker Club, has had a troubled couple of years as it looked for a new home, having outgrown its previous venue.

This year it will be held in the grounds of the Shuckburgh Arms in Southwick, near Oundle, on Sunday, October 13, and the organisers hope the new venue will replicate the championship’s early days of being held in a village near a good pub.

The competition, which has a field of 192 players and attracts contestants from around the world, will run from 10.30am to 3pm, with live music in the pub from 4pm. Admission is £2 for adults and £1 for children and concessions. Car parking is free.

Windy conditions forced the cancellation of the event in 2011 and last year the organisers failed to find a suitable venue, although several pubs nearby held their own competitions. The new base, three miles outside Oundle, is similar to the championship’s original base, the village of Ashton, which is also close to Oundle.

The event, which started in 1965, raises money for the visually impaired and so far has raised more than £400,000.For details go to www.worldconkerchampionships.com