World Pie Eating Championship

The annual World Pie Eating Championship is usually held at Harry's Bar on Wallgate, Wigan, Greater Manchester, England. The competition has been held since 1992. In November 2006, a vegetarian version was added[1] after "relentless pressure", from The Vegetarian Society's Keith Lorraine and Phil English.[2]

In December 2006, in the competition, the meat and potato pies were all 12 cm (5 in) in diameter with a depth of 3.5 cm (1.5 in). In the separate vegetarian contest, the pies were 10 cm (4 in) by 3 cm (1.2 in).[3] In December 2007, in the competition, entries included a competitor's dog, Charlie, who had eaten twenty pies and damaged a further ten the night before the competition, nearly jeopardising the event.[2]



Dave Smyth, a painter from Hindley, won the inaugural contest in 1992, when he ate four pies in three minutes.


Dave Williams of Preston, Lancashire.


Scott Ormrod of Aspull, Wigan, Greater Manchester, eleven pies in thirty minutes.


Anthony "The Anaconda" Danson, a weight trainer from Lancashire, managed to eat seven pies in three minutes, setting a new record.[4]


Matt Dunning (Australian Rugby Union).


Adrian Frost (42) from Wigan who downed his pie in a record breaking 35.86 seconds [5]


Fred Wyatt, a sixty one year old warehouse packer won the 2008 Championship, which was broadcast live on the internet by pie per view.[6][7]


Barry Rigby, a warehouseman won, eating a pie in forty five seconds.[8]


Neil Collier, aged 42, won this contest, with a new World Record of 23.91 seconds.[9]


James Robinson, aged just 24, won, with a time of 23.49 seconds. He retired from the competition following this to focus on taking up the trade professionally.


Martin Clare won, with a new record time of 22.53 secs.[10]


Ian Coulton of Wigan took the title, albeit with the slowest winning time ever.


Former champion Barry Rigby once again recorded the best time.[11]


2012 champ Martin Appleton Clare regains his title after missing 2013 and the "wrong size pie" incident of 2014.


The reigning champion, Martin Appleton-Clare registered a record breaking third win to take the 2016 Championship.[12]


It is the third time in a row for Martin Appleton-Clare.


Martin Appleton-Clare won the new category of "Chicken and Carrot" with a time of 19.6 secs after a fierce Pie Off


Imported piesEdit

In December 2005, controversy was caused, when pies were imported from nearby Farnworth, Bolton, and local Wigan pies were sidelined as it was believed they were substandard, resulting in a four-man strong protest, which included Lee Hartney of The Smith Street Band.[13] In December 2009, a similar situation arose, with pies being sourced from Adlington.[8]

Quantity to speedEdit

In November 2006, more controversy was caused, when the competition was changed (to meet government healthy eating guidelines) from the number of pies consumed in a given time, to the fastest time to consume a single pie.[14]

Lack of stockEdit

In December 2007, controversy struck again for the third year running, when the competition actually ran out of pies before the competition had finished.[citation needed]

Wrongly sized piesEdit

In December 2014, pies of the wrong size were delivered to the event, while the intended pies were sent to a nearby divorce party. The contestants competed with halved pies, but the results were nullified.[11] The head of the World Pie Eating Championship went to court on the television show Judge Rinder because of this, against the pie maker of the wrongly sized pies, but was awarded nothing.[15]


Wiganers are proud to be called pie eaters, but the nickname is not thought to be because of their appetite for the delicacy. The name is said to date from the 1926 General Strike, when Wigan miners were starved back to work, before their counterparts in surrounding towns and were forced to eat "humble pie".[3]


  1. ^ "Pie-eating championship goes slimline". London: Guardian News and Media. 23 November 2006.
  2. ^ a b "Dog jeopardises pie championships". BBC News. 13 December 2007.
  3. ^ a b Rooth, Ben (22 November 2006). "Only one pie each at world title scoff". Manchester Evening News. M.E.N. Media.
  4. ^ Neil Tweedie (16 December 2005). "Pie championship is a piece of cake for The Anaconda". The Telegraph. Retrieved 14 April 2010.
  5. ^ "The pie's the limit for Adrian". 14 December 2007. Retrieved 24 February 2009.
  6. ^ "AFP: Local cleans up in World Pie Eating Championships". Archived from the original on 24 January 2013. Retrieved 3 February 2022.
  7. ^ "World Pie Eating contest at Wigan pub". 3 December 2008. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
  8. ^ a b Wainwright, Martin (15 December 2009). "World pie-eating contest leaves competitors choking". London: Guardian News and Media. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
  9. ^ Wainwright, Martin (15 December 2010). "World pie-eating competition sets new record". Guardian News and Media. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  10. ^ "Barry regains pie crown". Wigan Today. 18 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014.
  11. ^ a b "World Pie Eating Championships: Humble pie for Wigan chef after pie mix-up". BBC News. 18 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014.
  12. ^ Emily Heward (20 December 2016). "Watch: World pie-eating champion's 'Usain Bolt' moment at Wigan competition". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 20 December 2016.
  13. ^ Lewis, Paul (16 December 2005). "I ate all the pies". The Guardian. London.
  14. ^ "Health drive hitting pie eaters". BBC News. 23 November 2006.
  15. ^ Armstrong, Jeremy (20 March 2016). "Judge Rinder's latest case sees him rule on a disputed PIE-EATING competition". mirror. Retrieved 11 April 2016.