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The Great Onion Challenge - Updated 14th September 2019


On Saturday 6th September, the Horton Marquee was the venue for the weigh-in of 2019 Farringdon Giant Onion Challenge .

In the Spring of this year, each entrant was provided with half a dozen sets of the same onion variety. grown from seed by David Horton.

After much tender care, watering and feeding with all sort of dubious concoctions, the growers involved were asked to select their heaviest specimen for the 2019 weigh-in.

Now it has to be said, that last year, at the inaugural event, certain local residents were involved in a number of dubious and underhand tactics to deceive the adjudicators.

As your reporter does not wish to risk involvement in prolonged litigation their names will not be published here although one long time and previously well respected resident of the Street, was heavily involved in one of the more outrageous attempts to ballast their entries.

Liqueur Challenge

There was also a Liqueur competition to find the most popular locally produced beverage.
(A selection of which can be seen on the left)

Down the Hatch



Those present were provided with shot glasses and instructed to work their way down the line and tick the box adjacent to their favourite tipple.

As one would expect, the sampling proceeded rapidly with enthusiastic support from the adjudicating spectators,so much so, that the ticks in the boxes became more flamboyant as the evening wore on.

Eventually the scoresheets were deciphered and David Craig's "Mole End Plumandy" (above right) was generally agreed to have received the highest number of votes during the evening.


Weighing inThe all important onion weigh-in was proceeding with the aid of digital scales provided by the Horton household although it soon became apparent that certain individuals were not taking this competition as seriously as others when the offering shown below was revealed.

Monsieur L'Oignon

Scandal 01Disqualification!!!


It was at this point one of the competitors, Mr Tim Charrington, who has some previous experience in this field, suggested there might a foreign object concealed within the flamboyant packaging.

Further investigation revealed the presence if an inert object, which was revealed to all by the Official Adjudicator.

As can be seen, this blatant chicanery was the cause of considerable consternation among the spectators.

The entrant was suitably admonished and will have to appear before the F.G.O. disciplinary committee at the next hearing.

Despite the controversy the adjudication continued with the F.G.O. template employed to measure and lop off any excessive top length which might add to the total weight. Just to ensure fair play, (bearing in mind that the Chief Adjudicator was also a competitor) independent arbitrators Clem and Rob, who have just moved in to Farringdon, were brought in to scrutinise the results.

The Weigh-in contiinuesChecking the results

Blackcurrant Challenge

Just to add to the demands on the spectators there was also the Blackcurrant Challenge in which the taste buds were once more in action to select their favourite Blackcurrant Liqueur.

David Horton and Mark Westcott had provided the two samples and to ensure anonymity the bottles were "A" and "B".

Eventually the votes for each option were totted up and bottle "A" proved to be the popular choice, which was revealed to be Mark Wescott's offering.

The victor made the most of an opportunity to raise his glass in celebration in the company of Farringdon Horticultural Society Chair, Phyllis Watts and David Horton.

The Victor

After much calculation the results of the Onion Challenge were announced and David Horton's entry, weighing in at 1893 gms, proved to be the heaviest onion this year.

Phyllis Watts was on hand to present the Farringdon Great Onion Challenge Trophy to the winner who was maintaining a firm grip on his winning onion.


The Great Onion Challenge 2019 - Results


Weight Gms


David Horton



Nick Rowe



Carol Steele



Tim Charrington



Catherine Cameron



Iain & Judy Ross



Chris Perry



Karen & Woody



Moya Chase



Keith & Freda Johnson



David Craig



Peter & Louise Bolton



Ian Dussek



Delia Gilchrist



Mark Westcott




Thanks to all competitors who took part and particular thanks to David and Cally Horton for Hosting the event.

Also congratulations to Nick Rowe (left) for his second placed entry in the Onion Competition and the rest of the Rowe Family (below) for their construction skills

Nick Rowe Finale

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