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Record breaker web site launched

PUBLISHED: 17:10 05 December 2001 | UPDATED: 10:58 03 March 2010

COULD you be the fastest window cleaner of all time?

Or the best pancake tosser, beer-mat flipper, or the greatest animal impersonator?

A new Suffolk-based web site is challenging people all over the globe to try their hand at unusual and strange feats as an alternative and a rival to the world-famous Guinness Book of Records.

COULD you be the fastest window-cleaner of all time?

Or the best pancake-tosser, beer-mat flipper, or the greatest animal impersonator?

A new Suffolk-based website is challenging people all over the globe to try their hand at unusual and strange feats as an alternative and a rival to the world-famous Guinness Book of Records.

The brains behind the web site is Felixstowe record-breaker and master of the unusual and absurd, "Dexterous Dean" Gould, who has always wanted to publish his own record book.

The father-of-three has been breaking records for 20 years and has had a number featured in the Guinness book, but has become disenchanted with the prestigious publication.

His growing disappointment reached a peak three years ago when the book's experts accepted ten of his records and then failed to include any of them.

"I have found it increasingly difficult to get in to the Guinness book in the past few years and I know a number of people share my disappointment at having records rejected," said Dean, 36, of Church Road.

"Communication is also very difficult with Guinness – you wait months for an answer to a letter or discover at the last minute that your record has been beaten.

"It has also not been easy to get them to accept new ideas, new records. Very often, they just say no."

Dean's new web site, which he has produced in partnership with Unicorn web designers, is called Record Holders Republic and sets out to be separate from Guinness.

"It's open to everyone all over the world, and we are particularly looking for records which are new, unusual or have been rejected by the Guinness book – as long as it is not dangerous or offensive, we will accept it," said Dean.

"It's always been my ambition to runs a records book and have control over it. I just want people to have fun with this, and have a crack – most of them will be things people can try. You could be the world record holder at something. It is not a money-making operation."

The first records on the recently-launched site are certainly unusual.

Among those featured are Terry Burrows, from South Ockington, Essex, who is the world's fastest window cleaner and can clean two 45 inch square panes in less than 5.5 seconds, and Russell Davies, of Wales, who can impersonate more than 100 different animals.

Then there's Ipswich man David Downes who can balance almost anything on his chin, and Dean himself who is recognised for 16 feats, including pea eating, match balancing, stamp licking, beer mat flipping and coin snatching among others.

The site also lists those who are second and third in the record stakes so people can see what they need to beat, has under 14s records to give children a chance, and details on how to submit records for inclusion.

In February, Dean and friend Matthew Claydon will be spending the day with pupils at Framlingham College for the students to set a host of new records.

A Guinness Book spokesman said the aim was to keep the book "fresh and new" and there was no guarantee that a record would be included in any year. The book's website included many records which were not printed and was regularly updated.


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