The Oxenhope Straw Race is over for another year. This year we dedicated the race to the memory of our Chairman of 18 years, Ian Barrett, who sadly died earlier this year. Oxenhope Straw Race 2019 did him proud and proved to be another amazing day. We had 200 teams, the crowds were out in force and the sun shone down. The atmosphere was fabulous. I was at the start again this year and all the racers were in high spirits and looking fabulous. Andrew Wood, a fundraiser with Manorlands Hospice, did a sterling job this year as compare and race starter and the Wagon and Horses crew kept the all-important pints coming.
Fancy dress, as ever was of a high standard. To mention just a few we had boxers, complete with individual boxing rings, Alice in Wonderland, a family of stick men, Bill and Ben the flowerpot men, mermaids and my particular favourite the Father Ted team. Father Jack was particularly impressive as were Mrs Doyle’s teabag earrings. Thank you to every one of you for your efforts in making the day a colourful one.
This year saw Helen Smith (nee Glover) and Nicola Squires become only the second ever female team to win the overall title, finishing the course in 21 minutes and 33 seconds, a great achievement ladies. The slowest recorded time was 2 hours 33 minutes and 58 seconds, achieved by Craig Bartlett and Stephen McManus so huge congratulations to them. You will find all the result on our results page.
The Straw Race is a real join effort between many sections of the community and a tribute to how great the area really is. This year thanks go to:
- The Wagon and Horses
- The Bay Horse
- The Lamb Inn
- The Dog and Gun
- Wyedean Weaving
- McDowell Transport
- Dyson Doors and Fabrication
- PAR Masonry
- Keighley Scout Service Team
- Cullingworth Scouts
- West Yorkshire Police Cadets
- Felltrack timing
- A host of committee members friends and family who pulled pints, staffed checkpoints, baled straw, strung up bunting.
- Matthew Binns (BarMatt) for providing the bar and free beer at The Social Club
A special thank you goes to the residents of Oxenhope who graciously allow us to take over the village for the afternoon but also turn out in their hundreds to support the Strawracers.
Now comes the important part. Collecting in all your sponsorship. We would like to achieve a total of £10,000 again this year and in order to make life a little simpler for you all we have this year created a crowdfunding page so that you can submit monies online.
We will of course still accept cash or cheque.
Jane Barrett, Secretary
2019 RACE RESULTS
- Female athlete’s and Overall Winners – Helen Smith (nee Glover) and Nicola Squires in 21:33
- Male athletes – James Habergham and Matthew Merrick in 22:19
- Mixed athletes – Hannah Stroud and Chris Barnes in 22:00
- Male fun – Gas Cockcroft and Tony Neary in 25:47
- Female fun – Clare McAleavy and Sarah Stott in 28:32
- Mixed fun – Holly Burke and Edward Burke in 28:14
- Male veterans – Stuart McAleavy and Daniel Coe in 22:38
- Female veterans – Sara Abbott and Lynn Murphy at 25:01
- Mixed veterans – Trish Gavins and Quentin Emery at 27:27
- Local Hero’s – Stuart McAleavy and Daniel Coe at 22:38
- Fancy Dress
- Male – Seven Dwarves (Timothy Graham and Matthew Rhodes)
- Female – The Mermaids (Sally Littler and Alex Stott)
- Mixed – Father Ted (David Burlison, Kerry Simpson, Chris Walsh and Kathryn Simpson)
- Combined – Alice in Wonderland (Freya Bunton, Ella Bunton, Lucy Ferguson, Joe Penny, Chris Penny, Joe Holmes, Emma Kettlewell and Rosie Binns)
- Overall – The Cocky Balboas (Richard Smith, Chris Elrick’ Phillip Elrick’ Ashley Waligura and Richard Summers)
The Oxenhope Straw Race takes place every summer in the Pennine village of Oxenhope, near Keighley. It was started by two men who made a bet about racing from one pub to the next carrying a bale of straw.
The event has gone from strength to strength, raising around £450,000 to date. The money is raised by teams collecting sponsorship for completing the course, often in fancy dress but also the more serious athletes competing for a good time, whilst carrying a bale of straw and visiting each of the local pubs in the village. It is great day out with a real carnival atmosphere!
The sponsorship money is collected in by the Straw Race committee, and in November it is distributed to local charities. Various other fundraising events take place throughout the year to add to the total money raised. In 2018 we were able to make donations in excess of £11,000 to several local charities.