Conker championship returns to Norfolk pub

Yanny Mac is getting ready for the 2016 Waveney Conker competition at the Locks Inn, Geldeston.PHOTO

Yanny Mac is getting ready for the 2016 Waveney Conker competition at the Locks Inn, Geldeston.PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

The unofficial biggest conker championship in the world returns to a popular Norfolk pub next weekend.

And organiser Yanny Mac is already getting into the sporting spirit promising an afternoon full of rule breaking, gamesmanship and general merriment.

The Waveney Valley Conker Tournament takes place next Sunday, October 2, at The Locks Inn pub in Geldeston and will be refereed by comedian Patrick Lappin inside a boxing ring.

Mr Mac said with his tongue firmly in his cheek: “The competition is an irreverent, no holds-barred take on the noble art of conkers and the rules are, well there aren’t any. We invite everyone from the Valley and beyond to come and join us. But health and safety must come first - it is a brutal game and people take it very seriously, people are warned to enter the ring at their own risk.

“People should be hardening the skin on their knuckles and if they are baking the conkers or soaking them in vinegar it needs to be done now. We also have a prize for the best dressed conker and, believe me, we have had some weird and wonderful interpretations over the years.”

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The game is played by two players, each with a conker threaded onto a piece of string, who take it in turns to strike their opponent’s conker until one breaks.

There will be a senior and junior competition and during the afternoon Owls and Wolves will entertain the crowds, a barbecue will be served and prizes given to the two winning players.

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The competition is the brainchild of Locks Inn landlord Colin Smith and funds this year will go to towards supporting popular local man Paul ‘Franny’ Francis pay for an operation for his dog.

Mr Francis lives on the River Waveney and has been the eyes and ears for fishermen and boat and animal owners for many years.

It begins at noon - you would be conkers to turn up late.

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