Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Safety First

After an illustrious 183-year run, the annual Whitsun cheese-rolling event on Cooper’s Hill in Gloucester has been canceled, partly for safety reasons. Add “chasing cheese wheels down a steep hill” to the list of things that England has deemed unsafe.

There are dozens of injuries every year among the men and women who hurl themselves down the hill in a bid to catch the cheese, but these are mainly minor.

However, the sheer number of people flooding in to watch the event has led to increasing concern from the police and councils.

This year's cheese-rolling was due to take place on May 31. But Richard Jefferies, of the event's organising committee, said: 'We have had to cancel on the advice of the police and local authorities.

'Last year 15,000 spectators tried to come to the event, by far the most we have ever seen, and we just could not cope.

'As well as concerns about the safety of the crowd and the competitors, landowners were worried by the amount of damage done by people climbing over fences and that sort of thing.'

Yes, running down a hill chasing a 7 lb. wheel of cheese might be dangerous, but it was the size of the audience that prompted the most concern. The event became too popular for it's own health.
Kind of sad, really. If you can't watch a bunch of fools chase cheese down a hill, what can you watch?
(yeah, I've been avoiding serious politics in the past few days)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This stupidity ranks with the great Turkey drop in my home town.

Airplane flies over and tosses out turkeys, this was in the late 50s.

Turkeys can't fly, but a turkey coming through the roof can disrupt the local phone system totally as the operators ran screaming out of the building.

Tried to get a newspaper clipping with the date because someone called me a liar and said it was a famous episode on TV about a radio show.