VIDEO: Herbie goes to Congham Fete and slides to snail glory

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Taking things slow helped to raise thousands of pounds for a West Norfolk parish church during a popular village fete at the weekend.

The annual World Snail Racing Championship is one of the main attractions of the Congham Fete, which took place at the nearby Grimston playing field on Saturday afternoon.

World Snail Racing Championship at Grimston Playing Field ANL-160718-084123009

World Snail Racing Championship at Grimston Playing Field ANL-160718-084123009

Around 200 snails took part in the competition, which was spread over 13 heats and a final.

And the title crossed the border to Cambridgeshire when Herbie II, complete with red, white and blue paint remiscent of the legendary Volkswagen Beetle of the films, proved too slippery for its rivals.

The winner was brought to the table by Colin Voss and his family, who travelled from Histon, near Cambridge, to enjoy the day.

He said: “We found five snails. This was the biggest one and we painted them all this morning.”

World Snail Racing Championship at Grimston Playing Field ANL-160718-084206009

World Snail Racing Championship at Grimston Playing Field ANL-160718-084206009

However, one notable absentee was the reigning champion, George, who died suddenly the day before he was due to defend the crown.

The fete raises funds for Congham’s St Andrew’s Church and church warden Helen Lilley said they expected the final total to be slightly up on last year.

Around £3,000 is already known to have been collected, which will go towards the ongoing maintenance of the building.

She said: “It was a super day for humans and for snails.”

Congham fete at Grimston Playing Field 
Georgie Kingshot 8 ANL-160718-084347009

Congham fete at Grimston Playing Field Georgie Kingshot 8 ANL-160718-084347009

Other highlights of the afternoon included live music from Dreirad and a prize raffle drawn by the village’s MP, Sir Henry Bellingham.

Several community groups, including the Little Discoverers, also had stands at the event.