Sussex

Tinsley Green pub hosts world marbles championship

Players from team "Where"s Tolley?" take part in the annual British and World Marbles Championships Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Sussex is seen as the spiritual home of marbles, dating back to the 16th Century

Dozens of marbles players from as far afield as the US and Algeria descended on a Sussex pub for the annual British and World Marbles Championships.

Nineteen teams with six players met at the Greyhound Pub in Tinsley Green for the Good Friday event.

It has been held there since 1932 and follows in the tradition of the game dating back to the 16th Century.

The team winners were 1st MC Erzgebirg from Germany - who had taken the world title five times previously.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Crowds watch as a member of the team Where's Tolley? focuses on his next move

The village is reputed to be the scene of an epic marbles battle in Elizabethan times over the hand of a local maiden.

Tournament organiser Julia McCarthy-Fox likened the game to snooker, but without a cue.

"It's quite interesting to watch as there's a lot of skill when you get a decent level of play.

"It's about getting spin on the marble to get one sphere to move another," she said.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption "It's about getting spin on the marble," said organiser Julia McCarthy-Fox
Image copyright PA
Image caption Pete Bradby, of the Horley Hockey Hard Hitters, celebrates after taking a shot
Image copyright Battle Chamber of Commerce
Image caption The tradition of playing marbles in Sussex on Good Friday dates back to the 16th Century

The team game is played within a 6ft concrete ring with 49 marbles at the start and the winning team being the first to knock out 25.

A number of other Sussex towns also upheld the tradition of playing marbles on Good Friday, including Battle, in East Sussex.

Local teams gathered on Abbey Green, in the shadow of Battle Abbey.

It used to be one of the few sports that could be played during Lent.

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