Thousands gather for Cheese Rolling in Gloucestershire

Around 4,000 people were in Gloucestershire today to watch others throw themselves down Cooper's Hill for the annual cheese rolling competition.

Last year, participants had to chase a foam wheel due to health and safety concerns. But this year's event has seen the return of real cheese. European Cheese enthusiasts such as Jeroen Dewit from Holland seen below, were eager to help out.

This year also saw competitors from New Zealand, Spain, Japan and Canada make the trip to Cooper's Hill.

One of this year's winners, Ryan Fairley, also caught the cheese in last years event.

Police stopped people from parking within two miles of the site to try to make it a much more local event. However, it didn't stop thousands making the journey through the woods to Cooper's Hill.

Thousands gathered at Cooper's Hill to watch the races Credit: ITV News West Country

A police helicopter was seen overhead during the event. There were reports of some injuries but none are thought to be serious.

A police helicopter observes the event Credit: ITV News West Country

Cheese rolling facts

  • Cooper's Hill has an incline gradient of 1-in-2 in some places and 1-in-1 in others
  • Food rationing was introduced in 1941 so a wooden ‘cheese’ was used until 1954.
  • The cheeses used today are Double Gloucesters weighing 7 – 8lb.
  • The highest injury toll in recent years was 1997. 33 were injured, resulting in the cancellation of the 1998 event.

You can see Dave Mason's full report below.