The Robert Dover’s Cotswold Olimpick Games returned in 2019 with a new and updated event, with something for everyone. The new Robert Dover’s Games Society, chaired by Tom Threadgill, had been hard at work to make sure the best event was put on this year.
The town of Chipping Campden, and surrounding area, supported this event by raising the money through sponsored music events at the Volunteer Inn, a chilli contest and other events.
New for 2019 was games merchandise (to help with funds), including tee shirts and hoodies, which were being snapped up. Also clearer signage this year with help from local firm Campden BRI.
My full photo gallery from the event can be viewed in my Flickr Gallery
The event this year had an expanded top arena with archery, vintage cars, Vander Wheel (new for 2019),
swingboats, splat the rat, beat the buzzer, coconut shy, Shakespeare Morris, Backswordsmen, Coventry Corps of Drums, Rozie T’s Dance Academy.
This year there was a house band down in the arena (still looking for a name, suggestions to #doversgames2019), as well as brass outfit Hot Sauce playing on the top level.
The main arena at the bottom of the hill was were the Championship of the Hill, Champion of the Hill, tug of war and the Shinkicking World championships would take place.
This year the running races were re-introduced with a hilly course set out for the entrants.
The event was started with the arrival of Robert Dover and Endymion Porter and the outgoing Scuttlebrook Queen and then words from new chair Tom Threadgill.
Then the games were officially opened by Robert Dover.
In the lower arena Rozie T’s dance academy gave there first performance, with the house band keeping the excitement levels up.
Then the main events started with The Championship of the Hill competed for by four teams – Jailbreakers, Red Devils, Chill Out (Chipping Campden Baptist Church) and Chipping Campden Hockey Club.
The four events in the championship were the sack race, ski race, a new for 2019 obstacle race and finally the traditional water race. The Red Devils won the first 3 races and came second in the final event and so were declared the winner. Then the teams had a traditional ending by soaking the other teams from the water in the dustbins, before sliding up the very watery course, with added washing up liquid!
The winning Red Devils team were presented their medals on top of the castle.
Then the main event took place which was the Shin kicking World Championship. With Adam Miller (winner 2015, 2016 & 2018 having retired), the field was open and after some earlier hotly contested rounds the final was between brothers Jay and Zak Warren.
Two sticklers (umpires) were in attendance to judge if the felling of an opponent was done in an approved banner (i.e below the knee in the shin area).
After a couple of falls not accepted by the sticklers the two opponents both had an accepted fall of their opponent.
Again this year a ladies demonstration bout took place with Daisy Fisher winning 2 – 1 after a major battle.
Finally, Zak was awarded the win and hobbled up to collect his trophy on top of the castle.
The final event in the main lower arena was Champion of the Hill an individual event between 5 contestants. This included putting the shot, standing jump and spurning the barre along with throwing the hammer.
The finale of the event was the lighting of the beacon by the Scuttlebrook Queen, assisted by the Fire Eaters and then the torchlit parade down the hill led by the Coventry Corps of Drums, followed by a long line of people with torches bought at the top of the hill.
Then the event was finished off with music from disco band Uncle Funk and the Boogie Wonderland in their
70s style disco influenced outfits and large hair with a hog roast supplied by Robert Walker and the bar by The Volunteer Inn, along with the Noel Arms Hotel bar. New for 2019 was the Cotswold Olimpicks beer which went down a treat.
After a short recuperation the games committee will start planning for the 2020 event in late May/early June.