Dorset woman completes what could be world's longest corn dolly

Woman completes what could be world's longest corn dolly

Woman completes what could be world's longest corn dolly

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Good golly… a woman from Dorset has just completed what could be the world’s longest corn dolly measuring more than 65 feet.

The intricately woven dolly is made up of over 3,000 wheat stalks finely interlaced by Audrey Rolfe over the last four weeks. The corn dolly is made in a traditional ‘Long Welsh Fan’ design by Dorset resident and Guild of Straw Craftsmen Audrey.

Working in her Bridport home the dolly slowly increased in length and had to be wound around a home-made cable drum until it was completed.

Audrey said: “I could have made it quicker but I am very particular about how the finished article looks and the overall strength of the completed dolly as it is such a long length. It is in fact, longer than our house.”

The handcrafted construction that derives from pagan harvest time customs had to be taken to a local sports hall in order to be officially measured.

It needed at least seven people to unwind and carry it without snapping and then lay it out flat at Bridport Leisure Centre so it could be gauged with a surveyors’ measuring wheel.

The dolly is 20 metres long, or 65 feet and 7.4 inches. Audrey has been a corn dolly maker for 37 years, and is well known as one of the finest exponents of the craft in the south west of England.

The dolly is made from Maris Widgeon wheat straw, selected by Audrey for its durability and pliability – vital criteria for the intricate and painstaking plaiting.

The public will have a chance to see the giant corn construction for the very first time at Dorset County Show Sept 6th and 7th. The show falls on the first weekend of September, around the time of the Harvest Moon.

The show organisers have submitted the dolly project to the Guinness World Records and are waiting to hear if it will be confirmed as a world record attempt.

Dorset County show secretary Sam Mackenzie-Green said: “We have extensively harvested the history books and stalked the net but we cannot find any reference to such a huge corn dolly, so we feel very confident that we have a record breaker to show off.”

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