Britain could face conker shortage
Published 06/09/2010 | 03:53
Britain could face a conker shortage this year following poor August weather, experts warned.
Many have fallen from trees before they are ripe enough to be used for the popular pastime, The Campaign For Real Conkers said.
The group said this year's conker season was likely to be delayed as a result.
Spokesman Keith Flett said ideally the conkers would ripen in warm, sunny and dry conditions then fall off the trees in wet and windy weather. However, the poor weather has made the conkers fall prematurely meaning they are not ripe yet and still soft.
Mr Flett, 53, said: "Normally conkers games would be in full swing by now but there is a real shortage of serviceable conkers.
"The conkers are no where near ripe enough yet and people won't be able to get their practice in. When you whack a conker before it is ripe it will crumble to bits."
The late crop could pose problems for those wishing to compete in the World Conker Championships held on October 10 in Ashton, Northants, as their weapons could fall apart when they hit each other.
Mr Flett advised people to use their prize conkers from last year or to travel to Wales or the south west of England where the weather has been better.
The game is played by two people, each taking turns to hit their opponents conquer with their own.
The winner's conker, which is threaded on to the end of a piece of string, will smash their competitors conker to pieces. The victorious player is the one whose conker lasts the longest.