A wheely fun way to start the New Year

The start of the main open race on January 1, 2017.
The start of the main open race on January 1, 2017.

A wheely good show will once again take place on New Year’s Day.

And the organisers of the Ponteland Wheelbarrow Race are anticipating a high level of support from residents and businesses.

The annual event takes place over a mile-long course that starts and ends at the Blackbird Inn. Registration is at 11am on the morning of the races, which include a children’s race.

It costs £10 for adults and £5 for children for a team of two. As per tradition, the honorary Lord Mayor of Ponteland will start the main race at noon.

Before the races begin, there will be a fancy dress parade.

The wheelbarrows will be supplied by event organisers Ponteland 41 Club and Ponteland Rugby Club. Funds collected on the day will go to St Oswald’s Hospice and Tynedale Hospice at Home – the area it covers includes Ponteland.

The Blackbird Inn is once again supporting the initiative. Its bar will be open throughout the event and mulled wine and BBQ food will be served before, during and after the races.

One of the organisers, Andy Anderson, said: “We’re hopeful that there will be an even bigger entry than last year and we’re grateful to the businesses that have already agreed to sponsor a wheelbarrow for this year’s event.”

On January 1, 2017, the winners of the main open race were James and Richard Leiper, six minutes and 56 seconds. The ladies’ only contest was won by Jo Shallcross and Michi Herlbauer, eight minutes and five seconds.