Ulverston mission to become town with the most World Records

The countdown is on to recruit 1,200 people to put Ulverston on the path to becoming the town with the most number of mass participation World Records.

Inspired by the spirit of Ulverston-born, King of Slapsick Stan Laurel, 1,180 people splatted their way to the World Record for the largest ever shaving cream pie fight in 2016.

Now at this year’s Another Fine Fest honouring Stan’s birthday, organisers are hoping to conquer a bowler-hat-trick of records on June 16 taking on records for:

The largest game of musical statues (1,079 to beat Helsinki)
The largest gathering of people wearing odd socks (576 needed to pass Tullyallen, Ireland)
The largest gathering of people wearing conical party hats (452 to out-hat Bloomington, USA)

“Thanks to Stan, silly is our finest export,” said Jennie Dennett from the organising team. “Outbreaks of silliness bring the happy and who doesn’t need a dose of happy?”

In between the Record attempts happening at Ford Park there’ll also be the flinging of festival colour.

“It’ll be a bit like the foam pie fighting but in technicolour,” said fellow-organiser Ceri Hutton. “This bit’s not a Record but it’s only right that we get in another fine mess.”

She added: “If people want colour to throw they need to sign-up by June 8 so we’ve enough in the kitty to go colour-shopping. We’ve found a great supplier in Washington in the North East called Dalton Manor. It’s run by a Laurel & Hardy fan so they were really keen to support us. One of the team there’s even got Stan’s autograph as his Gran used to run a Newcastle hotel where all the stars stayed! It feels like the Boys are looking out for us.”

The colour is the same as that used at Colour Runs and holi festivals and is made here in the UK by mixing harmless food dye with cornflour and drying it to a fine, fling-able powder with agricultural grain dryers. Organisers stress that people cannot bring their own supplies as all colour thrown at the event has to certified safe.

Also supporting the event are Ulverston DJs the Natural Selectas who will be providing the tunes and the sound system needed for what’s hoped will be a history-making game of musical statues.

Rachael Weaver of Two by Two who’s also organising the event said: “People have to dance then freeze as soon as the music stops. All dance styles and ages are welcome, the only rule from Guinness is that people have to have ‘all limbs in motion’ and 'enter the spirit of the game'. Ulverston is a party town so we know people can bring the moves. Shyer dancers can just do a couple of rounds but those who love to groove can carry-on, with the last dancer standing becoming the World Record Breaking Musical Statue Master.

“The other Records are really easy and fun – everyone just has to wear the party hat we’ll provide at the same time for five minutes. To rule at odd socks we need to wear socks of contrasting colours and patterns showing the leg from beneath the knee for our sock judges, trousers can be rolled back down afterwards. These can be judged quickly, we can then have a big colour fling-fight & proceed to musical statues.”

To satisfy Guinness judges, people must be counted accurately and for this, Newcastle-firm The Protector Group has provided a state-of-the-art People Counting Camera with facial recognition technology.

“It can count more than one person at a time so it will be much quicker than the turnstile we used at the pie fight with less queuing,” said Ms Dennett. “People have been so supportive of the event, the Protector Group are helping out for free and so are Aerial Artwork who’re going to provide the footage we need for Guinness.”   

If enough people take part in the event at Ford Park, 9.30am on June 16, Ulverston will have four World Records to its name and be able to apply for a whole new Record – The town with the most number of silly mass participation records!   

Ms Dennett said: “We need people to sign-up to be Record Breakers and remind the World that when it comes to slapstick, we rule!”

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