good old pram races that heralded such a fun day in Edenbridge are
to be revived after many years of this tremendous event being...lost
Edenbridge Chamber of Commerce have kindly stepped in and are
determined to bring back this great day for all those residents
in the town, the proposed event will take place on Bank
Holiday Monday, 30th May, as part of the Eden Valley
who can remember it, it was a great day in cheering
on your favourite "Pusher and Baby" who
took part in the event. Especially seeing workmates and friends, at
an age when they should know better - dress like a baby,
with the "Baby" generally wearing only a big nappy or
towel, bib, a hat and a dummy.
dressed in strange and wonderful costumes relevant to the day,
or from the future or the past, in funny, humourous and stupid
costumes that would make everyone roar with laughter.
many differing forms of transport were used, of course the
good old pram which was the main important item to be begged,
borrowed or otherwise? But others used just wheels - any wheels,
whether fat or thin, large or small. Skateboards were used
and secured somehow to planks of wood or a cut down pallet, others used a
wooden or metal box on wheels, or an invalid chair, in fact
anything was invented to hold the "baby" as long as
it had wheels on it and could be pushed along the road!
pram race began at The Swan Pub
in Marlpit Hill, where Wally and Doreen Foster welcomed all the
fancy dressed participants into their pub to enjoy the first drink
of the day!
dozens jammed into the pub to get their first beer or two, getting
them in the mood for the race coming up. All enjoyed
chatting and taking the "Mickey" out of each other's
costumes as they prepared for the big run to the next pub,
not so far along the road.
Many Grateful Thanks to - Neil Foster and Dot Quy who supplied images of the Pram Race.
the early days a celebrity was invited to start the race, one year,
Sally James was there from the children's favourite TV programme,
Tiswas, to start the race and set the teams off on their
long run. When the whistle blew, all the "babies
and pushers" were off, the pushers got a speedy
move-on, swerving to avoid one another in a frantic rush
to get in front, the crowds cheered their hearts out as they all
headed for The Albion,
only a matter of 50 yards away, where Harry and Joan in fits
of laughter pulled pints in a panic to get them to gulp
the next beer down and get them on their way down Marlpit
Hill in a mad frenzy of laughter and crashes.
much beer was drunk by those taking part was anyones guess - the
run down the hill would certainly tell.
the route, down the old Roman road and under the two railway
bridges, the crowds cheered them on as they made every effort
to reach the next pub which no doubt seemed so far away in
the distance as they pushed like mad idiots to get there for the
of the towns residents stood by the roadside all along the route
cheering, whistling and clapping as the many prams and weird
and wonderful contraptions dashed past them in a frenzy, pushing
their hearts out and legs wobbling like jelly to get in front.
never made it as wheels came off, some crashed as they lost control,
babies fell out to the roar of the crowds laughing, but fortunately
no one was injured that badly, ending up with only cuts and
bruises, those who were determined to carry on, jumped back in
their pram and done their best to get moving again to the next
took the brunt of the influx of competitors as the "beer
gusslers" poured into the Legion for another gulp of English
ale or lager, then on to the next stop, past the police station,
where the officers were looking on in amazement and probably thinking
- "who can we nick who's had too much drink, and in control
of a moving vehicle?"...with a smirk on their faces!
they arrived at the next pub...The
White Horse, the "babies" leapt out their prams
along with their pushers and rushed in the pub and guzzled a pint
(or two) ready for the next eagerly waited - watering
hole less than a minute away...The
Men's Club, there to run into the club and readily grab
the next drink, slug it down, jump in their contraption and head
across the road to Ye Old Crown,
from there with their pints still rushing around in their heads,
some still trying to swallow their beer to reach the next pub,
for it was only another few seconds push - depending
on how much each pusher had drunk before they reached the The
King & Queen in the Square, there to swallow another
beer or more, in an untidy swallow with beer running all down
their costumes, only to jump back in their prams for the final few
hundred yards to reach the next pub, over the town bridge
to the The Old House at Home - now
- The Old Eden.
exhustion was showing on the pushers faces as they were
panting, completely out of breath and utterly tired out, many
well intoxicated. But with the crowds cheering them on that
the end was in sight, all those that could muster up the energy
rushed on to reach the final pub of the race, only seconds
away The Star Inn.
of the pushers had basically "had it" they were jubilant
that they had nearly reached the end and the crowds there gave
them a stupendous welcome and applause.
those who could down another beer certainly did so, for many others,
the pushers, lay on the pavement to get their breathe back until
they were able to stagger in The Star and quench their thirst
with one or more beers, no doubt forced down to get the feeling
of the day's enjoyment...then the last final push back over the
bridge into the market yard where Budgens used to be... to the
finishing line. The end of the pram race was over, the winners
were announced to the jubilation of the crowds gathered there
who were hooting, shouting, clapping, whistling and cheering
their mates...who had at long last made it to the finish!!!
This Image; is by courtesy and thanks to Sue Wallace and the
Commitee of the Oxted, Surrey, Pram Race
to be presented with a prize for the winner - bottles of scotch,
and a prize for the best dressed pram or whatever contraption
they had devised for the race.
was certainly heralded as a great fun day for all those who took
part and for the hundreds of locals who shouted their support.
was Edenbridge in it's fun day, a day that brought everyone out
to great enjoyment and pleasure for the town!
will surely be another "Great Day" for Edenbridge and
for all those who take part, and for those all along the route
who support them this year in 2011... We
wish you all "Good Pushing and Good Luck to You All...!!!
of this event from the years past are wanted to display
on "Live" our town website www.edenbridgetown.com
if you have any we can put online please
or phone 01732 864070...Thankyou!
you feel that you want to enter your team for this exceptional
race with "your baby", then please contact the
Festival Organiser - Jill Lynch on 01732 865770 or by e-mail
or Laura Mendes on 01732 864878.
Grateful Thanks to - Neil Foster and Dot Quy who supplied
images of the Pram Race, and to Wally & Doreen Foster in supporting
the race, as well as all those publican's along the route who
gave so generously to make this event possible "The Great
Edenbridge Pram Race"...We Thankyou All...!
The Eden Valley Festival desperately needs your support for this event, so for all those in the town and surrounding areas please give your support and expertise in making this...a fantastic day for everyone, so contact these ladies and get your team signed up for one of the best fun days of your life...!!!