Thursday 21 September 2017

Running in pancake race is banned

A council banned running at the annual pancake race
A council banned running at the annual pancake race

Contestants who turned out for a pancake race faced one setback when they reached the starting line - they had been banned from running by the council.

St Albans City & District Council said the rules were changed in the city's annual pancake-flipping contest as it was raining and the ground was wet and slippery.

The new rule was reportedly greeted with boos by the 300-strong crowd at the Shrove Tuesday event.

A council spokeswoman said: "There was some playful and friendly banter from the crowd when the rule change was announced in a jovial tone by our tourism and regeneration manager."

The council said it imposed the running ban as it did not want teams to pull out.

Richard Shwe, head of culture and community development, said: "We wanted to make the event as inclusive as possible. It is not the Olympics, simply a community event and a bit of fun...

"As in previous years, the first team home won, but instead of running the teams were asked to walk."

Deborah Catchpole, 25, a property manager who entered the race with her colleagues at Strutt & Parker estate agent, said: "We had to have one foot on the ground at all times or we would get disqualified."

The rule change was made despite the fact there have been no major accidents in previous years at the race, which has been held annually for a decade.

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