Best in show! Devon County Show breaks record for the longest line of knitted bunting in the world with 80,000 flags stretching NINE MILES
- Seven-month effort saw knitters around the world knit a stretch of bunting and send it over to Devon
- The contributions were laid out at Westpoint in Exeter and the 79,001 flags stretched almost nine miles
- It will almost double the existing Guinness World Record for longest knitted bunting when officially verified
- Organisers said lockdown boosted the cause with knitters across the globe spending more time indoors
An army of knitters has smashed the Guinness World Record for the longest-ever line of bunting with almost 80,000 flags stretching nearly nine miles.
The mammoth seven-month collective effort, so big it had to be laid out in a Devon exhibition hall and photographed by drone, is almost twice as long as the previous world record.
People from all over the world sent in their lines of bunting after Deborah Custance Baker, chief steward for crafts and gardens at the Devon County Show, asked for contributions for a record attempt in November.
Rows of knitted bunting stretching nearly nine miles laid out at Westpoint in Exeter as a new Guinness World Record is set
Knitters across the world contributed to the effort after organisers of the Devon County Show sent out an appeal
The multi-coloured bunting was strung together by Devon County Show organisers and officially measured for the record
The bunting was strung together by staff at the Devon County Show in Exeter, which had to be cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic, and laid out over two days.
With each pennant no more than two inches apart to comply with Guinness World Record rules, the 4,590 square metre floor space of Westpoint Arena was covered by 79,001 flags.
When officially measured, it beat the existing world record of 31,119 flags and 4.6-mile length held by Upton House in Banbury, Oxfordshire, though the new record has yet to be officially verified.
The measuring was performed by chartered surveyor and official measurer Will Morrison from Strutt and Parker in Exeter, and was verified by Will Morrison and witnessed by three adjudicators – Lord Devon, Councillor Phil Twiss and TV presenter and crafter Kirstie Allsopp.
Kirstie said: ‘This staggering of bunting is just incredible and has really given me an incentive to give it one more try.’
Many knitters incorporated thank you messages for the NHS into their bunting designs as they stayed home during lockdown
Subject to official verification, the remarkable effort will set a new Guinness World Record for longest knitted bunting
Organiser Ms Baker said: ‘The crafts and gardens marquee is one of the most popular sections at Devon County Show and all of our stewards and visitors are really hands-on.
‘Every challenge we’ve set them so far they’ve not only succeeded in achieving, but have blown our expectations out of the water. The bunting is no exception.
‘We cannot believe people’s dedication and commitment to the task. We thought we might just beat the existing record but doubling it is a truly astonishing feat.’
She added that the coronavirus lockdown had helped efforts, with people spending more time at home.
‘Many of our contributors have commented on how knitting has really helped them through this difficult period of self-isolation by giving them a sense of purpose.
The nine miles of bunting consisted of 79,001 flags and filled the entire floor of Westpoint Arena in Exeter, Devon
The record-breaking bunting will remain at Westpoint until September though the Devon County Show has been cancelled
‘Several who had committed to making just a few, suddenly found they had both the time and inclination to double, even triple their original pledge.
‘We originally wanted to do the stringing and measuring at Exeter Cathedral with as many contributors who wanted to help as possible.
‘As it was, we weren’t able to do this. I’ve had to have all the bunting delivered to me at home and I’ve literally been drowning in it, and done all the stringing myself.
‘Westpoint seemed like a great alternative to measure the record. It’s an enormous, covered event venue which due to the pandemic is currently not in use and has enabled us to lay out the bunting, which has taken a full two days, whilst remaining compliant with social distancing regulations.’
Having been measured, the documentation will be submitted to Guinness World Records and verified before the record is made official.
The bunting will remain in Westpoint until September.
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