Llandudno all set for world record attempt
Friday 29 April will be a very special day in the life of a (relatively) young man. When the day is over, that day’s events will be (hopefully) recorded in the history books for posterity. It will be a wonderfully sunny day and there will be hundreds of people in the crowd watching the historic events unfold.
But no, before we get carried away, I am not talking about HRH Prince William. I am talking about Roslyn Walker, and the place isn’t London, but Llandudno.
As the aforementioned Prince gets metaphorically handcuffed to his bride beautiful, escape artist extraordinaire Roslyn will be doing his best to escape from handcuffs. 628 to be exact. In one hour.
“I’ve escaped from police cuffs before but I’ve never had to do it quite this quickly” says Roslyn.
When I interviewed Roslyn at the end of 2010 he said: “I'd love a world record. When I was first starting out it was all I could think of.”
I should have known that when the time came, it wouldn’t be anything simple.
At last year’s Victorian Extravaganza in Llandudno, Roslyn escaped from what organisers believed was an escape-proof pair of cuffs in under two minutes. So this year they went all out, and set him a challenge directly from the Guinness Book of Records. Chris Williams, entertainment co-ordinator for the event explains: “After the success of Roslyn’s appearance last year we decided to invite him back for our 25th Anniversary and challenge him with something that would really test his skills as an escape artist, so we decided to contact Guinness World Records and see if they had anything we could use.”
The answer Guinness gave was a record that was first set by fellow UK escape artist Stuart Burell on 3rd November 2002 who managed to free himself from 301 pairs of handcuffs in 60 minutes. Then on 12th February 2010 Czech escape artist Zdenek Bradac managed a massive 627 escapes from regulation police handcuffs.
So Roslyn’s challenge is to beat that record, however as he explains, the number of escapes required will actually be double: “What you must remember is that handcuffs come in pairs, so even though I have to make 628 escapes to beat the record that’s a total of 1256 locks that must be defeated in order to do that, or an average of 21 locks per minute.”
And of course, this is all without the help of keys. As part of the Guinness guidelines the keys to the cuffs will be placed on public display but at no point will Roslyn be allowed to use them in removing the cuffs from his wrists. If at any point this happens the World record attempt will be void and Roslyn disqualified.
There will be Guinness Observers on hand to ensure that all guidelines are adhered to.
So if you fancy watching a piece of history unfold on Friday 29 April, don’t take yourself to London, get yourself to Llandudno.
For more info on the Extravaganza you can visit www.victorian-extravaganza.co.uk and you can connect with Roslyn Walker through his website www.roslynwalker.com or via www.facebook.com/RoslynWalkerFans
© Patrick Dennehy, April 2011