Whether you wish to eat cake, sip tea and spectate or join in the spectacle and sport, the annual World Bellyboard Championships at Chapel Porth beach, St Agnes in North Cornwall, promises plenty of fun this Sunday (September 2).
A swimsuit and piece of wood is all you need to take part and while online registration has closed a few places remain open to would-be participants who register on the day.
This special event, organised and hosted by the National Trust, has become a sparkling event on the Cornish calendar, with many competitors arriving in colourful vintage bathing costumes.
You’re never too old to take part as the Senior category is open to Over 60’s, and there’s a Junior section(under 60’s) with all competing in several heats and judges scoring waves on, for example, length of ride; directional changes, style, finesse and enjoyment!
Riders simply lay down on their bellies with no requirement for wetsuits or swim fins and off they go!
This is the event’s 10th anniversary and competitors arrive from around the globe, clutching their simple and often ornamented wooden boards. There’s an associated cake bake off too, simply bring your culinary wonder along and the judges decide. You could win a large betty teapot!
The WBBC was begun as a memorial to a regular London visitor, the late Arthur Traveller, a familiar sight on Chapel Porth beach with his wooden board. It now attracts over 300 belly surfers. Bellyboard surfing has a long history and was very popular with Brits in the 1950s and 1960s, could it be making a big comeback?
Registration on the day opens at 9am and you’ll need to be early to catch a place, never mind a wave. There is no parking or drop off space at Chapel Porth beach car park, but a free shuttle bus operates from St Agnes village library car park with a shuttle between Wheal Coates car park and St Agnes head. A charge applies to the private car park at Chapel Port hill.
Could this be your chance to join the world of amateur sporting starts with a win under your belt? Or maybe you’d rather stick to the cucumber sandwiches!
Image by Matt Cardy / Getty Images Europe via Zimbio