Two Famous Gurners in the World


World Champion Gurner

Have you ever considered entering the gurning championships? Do you have what it takes to be a great gurner? No, this is not the type of gurning you have on an amphetamine high. This is referring to the fun at a certain cheese-fest. This is a welsh gurning championship held at the Aber Valley annual carnival.

A Gurn Or A Chuck?
A gurner is a person who is capable of creating an extremely distorted facial expression. Usually, this is done by projecting the lower jaw as far forward and up as possible and covering the upper lip with the lower lip. Gurners might spend a week loosening up their face to prepare for the world championships.

Champion Anne Woods
Anne Woods holds the world record for the women’s world gurning title. She has held the title a record 28 times. To win, like all gurners entering the competition, she had to create the most grotesque, contorted face possible, while holding her head through a horse halter. She started her gurning career back in 1977. She said, “It was great. It was a real surprise.” Since her first win, she has missed only one competition and that was the year she was pregnant with her daughter, Brenda.

Guinness Book Of Records
In November 2010 her world record as having the most wins was ratified by the Guinness Book of Records. She said, “It feels absolutely wonderful to have been accepted. But this is not before time – I’ve won the competition 27 times…I am considering retiring, but I know what I’m like. Come next year’s competition I’ll be itching to get on stage again…Whatever happens, I doubt my record will be broken.”

World Champion Gurner Tommy Mattinson
People attending the World Championships can always count on Tommy Mattinson to be present to put his head through the famous horse collar. He has also been placed in the Guinness World Records after winning the championship 13 times. He said, “Even after all these years I still get the old butterflies. I don’t think they will ever go, but I think it’s a good thing. A bit of nervous tension keeps me on my toes and makes me perform better.”

He Is The Legend Of Gurning
Mattinson is a legend among gurners. His winning streak helped him to surpass his father’s ten-time record as the world champion. In 2008 he had the opportunity to gurn in front of Queen Elizabeth during a visit to Cumbria – she didn’t seem to be impressed with his “expression.” Mattinson describes his look as “a cross between an alien and a wolfman.” Following his last competition, the champion complained, “I put in a lot of effort, and now have a sore head and all the muscles in my neck ache.”

Oldest Fairs In The World
The gurning championship is just one of the events held each year. The proper name, the Egremont Crab Fair was established in 1267 making is the oldest fair in the world. Other events include Cumberland wrestling, wheelbarrow racing, pipe smoking, and climbing the greasy pole.