George Clooney bows out of egg throwing contest

Wednesday - DESPITE huge press interest, Hollywood actor George Clooney has declined an invitation to attend the third world egg throwing championships to be held at Swaton later this month.

Organisers of the event, which is now a major feature of the Swaton Vintage Day, had written to Mr Clooney after they heard he had an egg flinging machine to deter paparazzi from bothering him at home.

President of the self-styled World Egg Throwing Federation, Andy Dunlop, of Swaton, said: "Whilst no official response has been received we are led to believe, following a national journalist's enquiries to the star's publicist, that Mr Clooney will not be attending." They have now tried inviting Simon Cowell.

While disappointed by Mr Clooney's apparent non-attendance, the event organisers were heartened to find that well over 1,000 newspapers, radio stations and TV outlets covered the invitation in such diverse countries as Panama, Brazil, Peru and Latvia. This drew interest in taking part from the United States, France, Canada, Sweden, China, Germany, Ireland, Australia, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Korea, Spain, Japan, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Belgium and Norway.

New for this year, there is an extra competition for egg throwing fans –to build a trebuchet machine capable of flinging eggs great distances for a team member to catch.

Mr Dunlop said: "At least 12 trebuchets have been constructed or are being built. A Latvian led team is currently putting its final touches to a machine constructed out of aluminium in Peterborough."

Teams are coming from around the world including one from Houston USA and a team from Wales consisting of the current world record holder for dry foam flinging and runner up in the World Pea Shooting Championship.

The games will also feature team challenges of throw and catch, static relay, target throwing and Russian egg roulette.

Swaton Vintage Day on Sunday June 29 will have over 400 vintage vehicles on display, terrier racing, dog agility demonstrations, archery, a chicken show, local musicians, food and a real ale bar, stocked by Swaton's own micro brewery.

See www.eggthrowing.com for details of how to enter each game or call 07900 267870

The events will raise funds for local and national charitable good causes including the Red Cross, Leukaemia Research and Air Ambulance.

All eggs have been selected from those classified as not fit for consumption. Eggs may be at least six months old.