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Running annually from 2005, The Chap Olympiad has become Britain’s most eccentric sporting event, attracting Londoners to this now famous ‘celebration of athletic ineptitude and immaculate trouser creases’. Welcoming only the elegant and unathletic, The Chap Olympiad is a delightful day of themed sporting events, live music, side shows and refreshments.
2011’s event, taking place on Saturday 16th July, is hosted by The Chap Magazine – a monthly journal celebrating tweeds, hat doffing, Martinis and all things gentlemanly – and Bourne and Hollingsworth – the group behind Prohibition and The Blitz Party.
All Olympiad guests and participants are encouraged to come in period dress, which in the past has ranged from Victorian explorers to flappers and Second World War RAF pilots. The event takes place in Bedford Square, a beautiful Georgian Square in Central London, lending a leafy backdrop to this eye-catchingAspectacle.
True to the Chap style, the Olympiad is designed to reward panache rather than sporting prowess, and requires the minimum of physical exertion. Events are designed to separate the chaps from the cads, and gentlemen (and ladies!) compete to win the coveted bronze, silver and gold cravats or take a self-congratulatory puff of the Olympiad pipe.
Ten contestants must continue an anecdote begun by the first contestant. Points are awarded
for straying off the subject and being witty.
A circle of chaps is attended to by a butler. They try to bait him by making him carry out
unreasonable tasks, such as fastening the lower button on their waistcoats and mixing a dry
martini with Vodka.
Chapettes mounted on chaps wearing horse masks have to manoeuvre their steeds around a
series of unsightly obstacles.
Using oversized hairbrushes and combs, contestants have to groom a splendid wig past the
finishing barber’s pole.
Contestants must complete ten yards in a stylish stroll; ten yards on a bicycle; and ten yards
without their feet touching the ground (assistants may be used for the last lap). All three laps
must be completed while maintaining a fully lit pipe.
Two contestants armed only with brollies and reinforced copies of the Daily Telegraph, must go
at one another on bicycles and attempt to knock each other off.
Moving Hat Stand
Contestants must throw their hats onto a hat stand, which the opposing team is allowed to
Shouting at Foreigners
Contestants must pit their gentlemanly skills against a curmudgeonly, uncooperative foreign
Ironing Board Surfing
Contestants mount their ironing boards and are carried over the finishing line by their butlers
During and after the sporting events, guests are invited to enjoy drinking, dancing and general merriment. Throughout the day, there will be live music from big bands, quartets, piano players and cabaret singers.
This year, all Olympiad guests and participants are encouraged to come in period dress and fully immerse themselves in the event’s old-fashioned activities and charming entertainment. Expect radio plays, country fair side-shows and old fashioned lawn games, such as a coconut shy, boules, and hoopla.
Bourne and Hollingsworth will be providing its trademark classic cocktails, alongside beer, wine and soft drinks for thirsty guests. Food will be served all day, from luncheon to supper. Munch heartily on sandwiches and hog roast, take afternoon tea with home-made cakes and delicacies, or snack on ice cream and other typically chap-like fodder.
THE CHAP OLYMPIAD
SATURDAY 16TH JULY
BEDFORD SQUARE GARDENS
GAMES BEGIN AT 1PM
Tickets are £15 and sold in advance via Ticketweb or by calling 020 7636 8228.
For further information about The Chap Olympiad or Bourne and Hollingsworth,
Please contact Nadia Walford at Essence Communications