ALRESFORD Watercress Festival has been postponed to September – but that won't stop the reigning World Watercress Eating Champion from defending his title.

Glenn Walsh, who at 85g of the vegetable in 37.6 seconds in 2017, will be running the annual competition online.

The fencer from Alresford has held the quickest time for the last nine years and is determined not to let his crown slip.

He said: "I'm from a litter of five and if you left your hand on the table for too long at mealtimes, it was gone. Eating fast was a necessity!

"It's great to have the chance to widen the field and get some more competition involved with the World Watercress Eating Championships."

Glenn has filmed and uploaded his attempt from home this year, encouraged by The Watercress Company's managing director Tom Amery, who organises the festival every year.

Now people across the country are being asked to do the same.

Those interested should get an 85g bag of watercress and video themselves eating it, upload it to the Love Watercress Instagram or Facebook event, and nominate five friends to take part.

Uploads should included the hashtag #kingofthegreens.

Hampshire Chronicle:

Tom Amery said: "The World Watercress Eating Championships are usually the grand finale for the Alresford Watercress Festival with people lining up to take part.

"It's something that all the festival goers look forward to and so after the Festival was postponed, we came up with this way to at least salvage this popular element. It's tough – I know, I've tried it.

"I've been up against Glenn and lost, but we thought it could be a bit of fun for everyone, even if they just competed against those they're in lockdown with."

The overall winner will receive the King of the Greens 2020 t-shirt plus a hamper worth £150 donated by Brace of Butchers in Dorset.

The funniest video will win a hamper of £50. Judges will also award 25 runners up with a prize each.