Flipping great race milestone

NARG 1702281AM17 Ripon Pancake Race. (1702281AM17)
NARG 1702281AM17 Ripon Pancake Race. (1702281AM17)

It’s going to be a flipping great day when Ripon Pancake Races take place again next month – the 20th year the event has been orgainsed by Ripon Festivals.

Last year, cheers and laughter filled Kirkgate as 26 teams pounded along the city’s cobbled streets from the cathedral, armed with frying pans and beaming smiles.

It is hoped for more of the same again this time round, with children from many local schools and staff from businesses in the city who will, on the toll of the Lent bell on February 13, take part in the races and enjoy a pancake afterwards with donations for them going to the soldiers’ charity, the Army Benevolent Fund.

The races restarted in 1990 after a lapse of many years by the then Chairman of Ripon Festivals, County Cllr Bernard Bateman, in conjunction with the late Dean Methuin and supported by members of Ripon Festivals and the Cathedral community.

Over the years, the events have taken place apart from one year when it was cancelled due to wet roads – something which made national and international headlines as well coverage on radio and TV shows worldwide.

Cllr Bateman said over the 20 years, the event has received great support from several local businesses.

Some of its main sponsors are the Royal Engineers and Regiments which have prepared more than 300 pancakes each year, from ingredents donated by Ripon Select Foods, plus 200 Cadbury’s creme eggs donated by Hemmingways of Ripon in addition to other businesses.

Bernard thanked Stray FM, which is sponsoring this year’s event and to BBC Radio York.

Tim Jones, festival chairman and long-time sponsor, through CNG Gas, said with it being half-term this year when the event was taking place, anticipates an excellent turnout. He looks forward to welcoming local schools and also expressed his thanks to Ripon Club of Rotary Rowels which has played a major part in the organising of the event and the Dean and Chapter of Ripon Cathedral.