Record-breakers get a taste for fun

Record breakers from around the country smashed a range of wacky records including eating 20 live cockroaches.

The Record Holders Republic Olympics were organised by Peter Dowdeswell from Earls Barton, who decided to hold an event to break a number of strange records.

It took place at the weekend at Billing Aquadrome in Northampton.

A variety of record holders came along to try to smash as many records as they could in aid of charity.

There was also a chance for members of the public to try their hand at new records.

Twelve record breakers from across the country showed their skills at lifting weights, balancing tonnes on their heads and flipping bricks in front of an official from the Record Breakers' Republic.

The world's fastest talker, Sean Shannon, also spoke the Lord's Prayer in super-fast time.

Mr Dowdeswell, vice-chairman of the republic, has set or broken an astonishing 339 eating and drinking world records since 1974.

These include a world record for eating the most sausages under a minute and downing a three-course meal in under 45 seconds.

He said: "It was a fantastic event.

"My record-breaking friends from all over the country came to support me and we managed to get seven new records in the book.

"I ate a few sausages for show, but I don't break records myself any more."

Among the zany people who attended the event were a man who specialises in balancing things on his head, and a female driver who attempted a record by driving through walls of fire.

Ken Edwards, also known as Rat Man, who has the world record for putting rats down his trousers and who holds the world record for eating cockroaches, was also on hand to show off his numerous skills.

Members of the public were asked to pay 1 to break a series of specially selected records of their own, and Dean Gould, the president of the Record Breakers' Republic, was on hand to verify new records.

A motorcycle display team and live music also entertained the crowds who turned out in their hundreds.

All the money raised over the two days went towards buying electric wheelchairs for children in Northamptonshire.

Mr Dowdeswell now hopes the success of the event will go on to help it

become an annual occurrence.

For further information on the event and The Record Holders Republic visit the website at www.recordholdersrepublic.co.uk.