When: 28th June 2014 at 2pm
Where: Willaston County Primary School, Willaston, Nantwich, Cheshire CW5 6QQ
£: Admission costs £1, Concessions 50p. To take part in the worm charming costs £5 for a traditional two-person plot and £10 for a team plot.
What is it?
The annual World Worm Charming Championships take place on Saturday 28th June in Willaston, Cheshire. Ever since 1980 the village of Willaston has been the centre of the worm world as people gather to compete to charm the most worms out of the ground.
This quirky contest is governed by the International Federation of Charming Worms and Allied Pastimes (IFCWAP). Each competitor has a 3 x 3 metre plot and 30 minutes in which to charm as many worms from the ground as possible. No digging is allowed but other methods such as playing music or creating vibrations with a garden fork are often used. Apparently the best method for charming is that of hand vibrating a four tyne garden fork, partly inserted into the turf. This method has become known as ‘twanging’.
Mr Tom Shufflebotham first set the bar in 1980 when he raised 511 worms, but the record is currently held by Miss S and Mr M Smith who charmed a whopping 567 worms in 2009. There is also a prize for the heaviest worm. The current record is for a worm weighing 12.08g. Winners receive a trophy in the shape of a golden rampant worm for charming the most worms and a silver worm trophy for charming the heaviest worm.
Gates will open at 1pm on the day and the official worm charming commences at 2pm. This is then followed by the counting of the worms and the trophy presentation at around 4pm. There will be entertainment taking place in the main arena before the charming gets under way, and there will be various stalls for visitors to browse during the day.
For those worried about what becomes of the many charmed worms, fear not, they are released (after the birds have gone to roost) in the evening.
More info: www.wormcharming.com