Hundreds of people flocked to Oxford today (May 28) to celebrate the World Poohsticks Championships.

The event took place at Sandford Lock on the River Thames between Littlemore and Kennington.  

The game Poohsticks was made famous by fictional bear Winnie the Pooh and involves competitors throwing wooden sticks off a bridge into the river.

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The winner is the first stick to make it under the bridge to the other side.

This year, the competition was won by nine-year-old Bertie, with 11-year-old Tristan as runner up, and Chris, 48, coming in third place. 

Oxford Mail:

The event, which is organised by the Rotary Club of Abingdon, this year celebrated its 40th anniversary.

Debs Axtell, who is one of the organisers, said: “The World Poohsticks Championships is a big charity event, but it is also a community event.

“Over the years we have raised money for many different charities within the Rotary Club.

“It is a lovely heritage event, and we hope that people will just have so much fun and enjoy.

Oxford Mail: This year's winner Bertie, aged 9This year's winner Bertie, aged 9 (Image: Oxford Mail)

“The big part of this event is that the more volunteers that we have coming to help us, the better the event will be.

“This year we are so pleased with the amount of people that have come from all different backgrounds to help and just join in with the fun.”

Innes, aged 12, is the longest reining champion of the Poohsticks competition and has held the title since the event was last hosted in 2018.  

Oxford Mail:

He said that he loves coming down to the event because it is ‘calming’ and ‘relaxing’ and that his title in 2018 was ‘something cool to tell people about’.

All proceeds from the World Poohsticks Championships are donated to charity.

This year money was being raised for Yellow Submarine, an organisation that supports people with autism and learning disabilities to live life to the full.

Kate Sankey, co-director of the charity said: “We are all about providing opportunities, whether that be social or training opportunities.

“We support our members to be more independent and confident and to decrease their social isolation.

Oxford Mail:

“We are here at the World Poohsticks Championships as we are lucky enough to have been chosen as their charity of the year.”

The World Poohsticks Championships was first founded by a lock keeper at Days Lock in Little Wittenham in 1984.

In 2015, the location of the event switched to the River Windrush at Langel Common in Witney, next to Cogges Manor Farm before moving to its current location in Oxford.

The World Poohsticks Championships were recognised in 2016 as one of the quirkiest events in the county.

The competition was also named by in its '12 brilliant (but bonkers) competitions in Britain'.