The Great Christmas Pudding Race Returns To Covent Garden This Christmas

The Great Christmas Pudding Race Returns To Covent Garden This Christmas

UPDATE: THE 2021 EVENT HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED. KEEP AN EYE ON THE WEBSITE FOR DETAILS OF THE 2022 EVENT.

People in elf costumes balance Christmas puddings on silver trays while running across Covent Garden Piazza in the Great Christmas Pudding Race
Photo: The Great Christmas Pudding Race

Head to Covent Garden on 11 December, and you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd hit the mulled wine a bit too hard.

The Christmas Pudding Race sees members of the public racing around the Piazza balancing a Christmas pudding on a tray, while dodging obstacles and taking part in challenges — all while sporting a festive costume.

People dress as Santa run across an inflatable obstacle course while balance a Christmas pudding on a tray for the Great Christmas Pudding Race in Covent Garden
Registration to take part is now open. © The Great Christmas Pudding Race

Elves, Santas, reindeer — even turkeys — have taken part in previous years, tackling foam slaloms, decorating Christmas trees, solving jigsaw puzzles and generally making festive fools of themselves.

It's all excellent fun, but it happens for a very serious reason — to raise money for Cancer Research UK. The event's been happening over 40 years now (though of course it was cancelled in 2020, with a virtual fundraiser taking place instead).

People in Christmas jumpers and Santa hats race up an inflatable obstacle course staircase, in the Great Christmas Pudding Race in Covent Garden
Mark 11 December in your diary © The Great Christmas Pudding Race

It's making a grand return for 2021 though, and registration to take part is now open. This is a heats-based competition, knocking teams out throughout the day until the overall winner is declared. Think you've got what it takes? Grab your five wackiest mates and sign up.

A woman dressed as Santa balances a Christmas pudding on a tray while running across Covent Garden in the Great Christmas Pudding Race
Elves, Santas, reindeer — even turkeys — have taken part in previous years © The Great Christmas Pudding Race

More of an observer than a participant? That's OK — mark 11 December in your diary, and head down to Covent Garden to watch the fun, chucking a few quid in a charity bucket.

The Christmas Pudding Race takes place on 11 December 2021. There's a registration fee of £60 per team of six, plus a fundraising target of £600 per team. Sign up here. The Christmas Pudding Race 2021 has now been cancelled — we're hoping it will go ahead in 2022.

Last Updated 27 October 2021

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