Three boys from Tonbridge aim to set a new Guinness World Record and raise cash for War Child

Three boys are looking for help from 500 children so that they can set a new Guinness World Record.

To date, the longest rope ever used in a game of tug-of-war is 518m, but three 10-year-olds from Tonbridge aim to beat that.

Otis, Owen and Freddie need other children to join them in their Guinness Tug Of War World Record Attempt
Otis, Owen and Freddie need other children to join them in their Guinness Tug Of War World Record Attempt

Owen Calvert, Freddie Smith and Otis Sampson will be using a specially manufactured rope of 540m in length for their world record attempt at the Tonbridge Racecourse Ground on Sunday, June 30, at 3pm.

But as one of the rules is that no part of the rope can touch the ground, they need plenty of help to hold it up.

They have decided to recruit 500 children - all aged 13 or under - to take part in the attempt, which will also raise money for the charity War Child.

Owen’s dad Glen Calvert explained how the idea came about.

He said: “The boys all play football for Tonbridge Juniors.

“On the way back from practice, we stopped for a hot chocolate and the boys said they deserved some sweets as well, since they had played so well.”

War Child is currently supporting children in Gaza and other conflict zones
War Child is currently supporting children in Gaza and other conflict zones

“I suggested that if they wanted sweets they needed to do something really worthwhile.

“They began mulling over ideas - starting with litter-picking, but things escalated and they decided to do something really big to help other children not so fortunate as themselves.”

War Child is a charity that provides support on the ground for children who are caught up in conflict zones in the Ukraine, Yemen, Iraq, Gaza and elsewhere.

Every child taking part in the tug-of-war is being asked to donate £5 to the charity.

The boys have been fiercely recruiting friends from their schools - Hilden Grange for Freddie, and St Margaret Clitherow for the other two - and also from their football club.

So far 200 entrants have registered, that leaves 300 spaces to fill.

Although only one successful tug-of-war is needed for the world record, the boys are planning a series of five bouts, with the winning team being the best of five.

For details on how to register, visit here.

Mr Calvert said: “The boys have been working really hard on this, putting up posters to recruit more volunteers. It should be a lot of fun!”

Under the rules imposed by Guinness, the rope has to be 10cm in circumference. Two lines must be marked on the ground 4m each side of the rope’s centre.

The game is won when the centre mark passes over a 4m line.

The rope must not slack or touch any surface other than being held by the competing teams during the attempt.

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