Flipping marvellous: pancake world tossing record is smashed at student village

Sheffield Univesity's Guiness World record attempt on the Big Flip, pancake tossing, held at The Paddock, Encliffe Village, Sheffield.
Sheffield Univesity's Guiness World record attempt on the Big Flip, pancake tossing, held at The Paddock, Encliffe Village, Sheffield.
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WHAT a flipping good way to get in the record books!

More than 1,000 people showed their passion for pancakes during a successful attempt at the world tossing record held at Sheffield University’s Endcliffe student village.

A total of 890 people successfully tossed their pancakes for 30 seconds simultaneously, smashing the previous record of 405 set in the Netherlands in 2008.

Anyone who dropped their pancake was excluded from the final figure, which was scrupulously checked by an official from the Guinness Book of Records.Before the event more than 1,300 students, staff and members of the public had registered to take part, but numbers were limited by the availability of pans.

“It’s been a phenomenal turnout and we’re thrilled to have broken the record so convincingly,” said David McKown, who masterminded the event titled The Big Flip. “We’re delighted so many people took part – it’s been fun day out for all the family.”

People of all age groups, from senior citizens to tiny tots from the university nursery, set their sights on breaking the record.

Retired consultant anaesthetist Adrian Padfield, aged 75, was at the older end of the age spectrum, and said the secret to a successful toss was to have plenty of flour in the pan.

“Flour helps them slide about – these pancakes seem to be very solid and sturdy so they aren’t going to fall apart,” he said.

In fact the pancakes had to be made to a specified Guinness World Records recipe, and a bulk order was shipped down from Enjay’s Pancake House in Leeds. Pans had to be a standard size too.

The event, which also raised funds for three local organisations, was underwritten by a series of sponsors with unwanted pans also going to charity.

But it was all a little perplexing for 29-year-old student Toktam Gholami – she’d never come across anything like it in her homeland of Iran.

“It is all very interesting for me, I’ve never seen anything like it,” she said. “I’ve been practising to make sure I don’t let anyone down.”

Tonia Lucas, from Fulwood, was with a group of mums with nine children between them, aged from four to eight.

“We came across the event on a website so we thought we’d come along and have a nosey. I’ve had no need to practice – I’m not going to go too quickly and I’m going to be really careful,” she said.

Ben Backhouse was the man up from Guinness HQ in London and sadly revealed the new record may not squeeze into the next edition of the annual best seller.

“Mass participation events are always popular and there are a lot of records to break,” he said.

“We have around 60,000 records on our files, but only 4,000 can be fitted into the book.”