INCREDIBLE, inspirational and bizarre achievements from around the world will be celebrated today with the release of the 2022 Guinness World Records book.

From the dog with the longest ears – coonhound Lou’s lugs measure an impressive 13.38 inches – to the model who can skip over a rope made of her hair more times than anyone else in 30 seconds, this year’s book is sure to be another interesting read.

Here are some of our favourite Guinness World Records that were either set by people from Somerset, or achieved within the county's borders...

Fastest speed achieved in a helicopter (FAI-approved)

John Trevor Egginton and his co-pilot Derek J Clews achieved a top speed of 249.09 mph (400.87 km/h) over a 15 km course above Glastonbury on August 11, 1986.

They achieved the remarkable speed in a modified Westland Lynx twin-engined aircraft designed and built by Westland Helicopters in Yeovil.  

Somerset County Gazette:

The record was approved by Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI), the world governing body for air sports.

In June 2013, a Eurocopter X3 piloted by Hervé Jammayrac managed to beat Egginton and Clews’ attempt by reaching a top speed of 293 mph (472 km/h) over southern France – but their effort was not approved by the FAI.  

Fastest half-marathon run on a treadmill

Wellington-based endurance runner Adam 'Tango' Holland completed the 13.1-mile distance in just one hour, 10 minutes and seven seconds to set a new world record.

It is one of several that he holds, including 'fastest time to complete 10 marathons in 10 days (male)'. 

He live-streamed the attempt on his YouTube channel for people to follow in real-time.

The record was set on May 30, 2020.

Longest Curly Wurly stretching

Tracy Jane Sullivan of Frome managed to stretch a Curly Wurly to 426.2 cm (13 ft 11 in) in three minutes on November 22, 2015.

She achieved the record at Frome Chocolate Festival, improving on her previous best Curly Wurly stretching by over a metre.

Fastest marathon pushing a double pram (male)

Not content with just running a marathon, Rob Forbes completed one while pushing his children in a double pram on June 10, 2018, in Yeovil - setting a new Guinness World Record in the process. 

He completed the marathon in two hours, 43 minutes and 11 seconds. 

Largest copper kettle

The world’s largest copper kettle was built for the hardware merchants Fisher & Son in Taunton at the start of the nineteenth century.

The kettle had a height of 0.9m (3ft) and a girth of 1.8m (6ft).

It could hold up to 90 litres of water – making its capacity 43 times larger than a standard kettle.

Largest serving of sauerkraut

To show just how easy it is to make the German fermented cabbage-based dish, Joanna Webster and Katie Venner made 359.6 kg (792.8 lbs) of it on October 26, 2018.

Joanna and Katie made their huge sauerkraut serving in Wells.

Somerset County Gazette:

Farthest distance walked balancing a lawnmower on the chin

James Rawlings managed to walk 279.1m (915 ft 8 in) while balancing a lawnmower on his chin.

He completed the challenge with his (not powered) lawnmower at the theatre and circus area of Glastonbury Festival on June 27, 2019.

That was not enough for James, who broke the world record for longest duration balancing a lawnmower on the chin on the same day. 

He managed to balance the lawnmower on his chin for a staggering 13 minutes and 7.95 seconds.

Largest sock monkey

Bridgwater is home to a 3.19-metre-tall sock monkey created by Jody Lewis.

The 16 kg (35.27 lbs) monkey was completed on February 7, 2015.

Fastest 10-hoop slalom by a dog

Neo the 'parkour collie' completed a 10-hoop slalom in just 5.85 seconds on July 27, 2016, in Minehead

He was helped by his owner, Stephen Bailey, who has trained hundreds of dogs at his behaviour therapy and daycare centre, Canine Crusades.  

Most people whistling

Two years earlier, another world record was broken in Minehead.

853 people was enough to set a new record for the most people whistling simultaneously at Spring Harvest, Butlin’s resort, on April 11, 2014.

Largest meat pie

A pie weighing 10,540 kg (23,237 lbs) was made by 17 catering students from Stratford-upon-Avon College, Warwickshire, at the Hand Stadium in Clevedon.

The pie was made on April 12, 1998, in a container almost 10 metres long, over two metres wide and 61 cm deep.

The steak and kidney pie contained 5,500 kg of British beef, 1,400 kg of diced ox kidney, 750 kg of mushrooms, 220 kg of Worcester sauce, 810 kg of best bitter and was topped with 816.69 kg of pastry.

Farthest distance walking on hands in eight hours

On June 3, 2002, Sarah Chapman managed to walk 5,000 metres (16,404 ft) on her hands in Glastonbury.

Read more: 

Hair-skipping and hand-walking feature in new Guinness World Records

Ten Guinness World Records set in Somerset