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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 February 2008, 09:44 GMT
Regulations flatten pancake race

A traditional pancake race has fallen flat after it was cancelled due to health and safety regulations.

Every year, children and choristers take part in the Shrove Tuesday race in Ripon, North Yorkshire.

The event was revived 10 years ago and is usually started by the ringing of Ripon Cathedral's ancient Pancake Bell.

But this year's event has been shelved, with organisers blaming the mountain of risk assessments that must be carried out before children can take part.

Bernard Bateman, one of the organisers, said they were told they would have to pay 250 to Harrogate Borough Council to close Kirkgate Road, where the race takes place.

They would also have to hold insurance risk assessments and pay to have medical staff on hand in case of any injuries or accidents.

Mr Bateman, who is also a councillor for Ripon North, said it was difficult to find volunteers to carry out the procedures.

He said: "The main problem is the health and safety aspects and issues such as that.

"There is bureaucracy that goes into holding any event these days, the policing, the risk assessments, and it has a cost factor and takes a lot of time.

"I'm always disappointed when we've held something for some years now and it can't take place."

Holding a safe pancake race

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