Egremont Crab Fair & Gurning Championships

The Egremont Crab Fair And Gurning Championship

The Egremont Crab Fair and Gurning Championship [1] are held on the third Saturday in September, which this year falls on the 20th September. The Egremont Crab Fair and Sports Day is one of the oldest fairs in the country, having been established in 1267 [2]. The fair is a celebration of the Crab Apple and not the marine crustacean [3].


Egremont Crab Fair

The Crab Fair takes place on the sports fields to the west of Egremont - use the postcode CA22 2NG to find it. Throughout the day there are various sports & activities, and a parade that you can enjoy and participate in.

Egremont Crab Fair - Parade
Apples Being Distributed During the Parade At Egremont Fair

Activities start in the morning and continue in to the evening when the Gurning Championship contest is held. The fair includes many traditional sports including equestrian events, Cumberland Wrestling [4] and the Greasy Pole.

The Greasy Pole at Egremont Crab Fair

World Gurning Championship

Gurning is the art of pulling an ugly face by contorting and distorting facial features. The word Gurning is a dialetic word derived from girn or grin [5].The championship is open to all and entries are taken on the night. There are classes for men, women and juniors.

Gurning Winners 2013
Egremont Gurning Champions 2013

Gurning is a traditional sport where the head of the contestant is placed through a horse-collar or braffin. The person pulling the ugliest face is deemed the winner. The current holder of the gurning crown is Tommy Mattinson from Aspatria.

Tommy Mattinson Gurning Champion

Tommy has held the title for an amazing 15 years, beating the previous longest record of 10 years held by his father. Tommy Mattinson holds the Guiness World Record for Gurning and in 2008 gurned for the Queen when she visited Cumbria [6]. Citations and References 1. Official website 2. The Egremont Fair was first held in 1267 when King Henry III granted a Royal Charter to the Lord of the Barony of Egremont, Thomas de Multon. 3. "The Lake District - The Ultimate Guide", Gordon Readyhough, p 122 4. Cumberland & Westmorland Wrestling Association 5. "The Lake District - The Ultimate Guide", Gordon Readyhough, p 173 6. BBC News Report