Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Pumpkins smash records at Netley festival

A pumpkin weighing 1,884lb (854kg) has won a contest in Southampton.

Special lifting equipment was needed to manoeuvre the largest the entries into position at the annual Autumn Pumpkin Festival in Netley.

The winning fruit, entered by Ian and Stuart Paton, from Lymington, weighed in heavier than the European record of 1,749lb (793kg).

The event, at Royal Victoria Country Park, is organised by the Jubilee Sailing Trust.

Hundreds of people attend the annual event, which also features pumpkin carving and live music.

This year, the weigh-in began with four men carrying the entries in an old duvet cover.

When they became too heavy a tractor and harness were brought in to help.

Last year's winner, Mark Baggs from Wareham, Dorset, came second with a 1,582lb pumpkin, which beat his 2013 winning entry of 1,520lb (689kg).

According to Guinness World Records, the heaviest pumpkin weighed 2,009lb (911.3kg) when it was entered by Ron Wallace at the New England Giant Pumpkin Weigh-Off in Massachusetts, US, in 2012.

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