On the 30th April, UCLan will hold its very first Quidditch Tournament named the Chips & Gravy Cup. This tournament will feature teams coming from Manchester, Chester, Leeds, York, Bangor, Keele and Southampton universities alongside various other players from around the country. It will span across three pitches and will involve many volunteers.
How does Quidditch work? It is a complicated sport that can be described as a mixture between rugby, handball and dodgeball, overall governed by Quidditch UK. There are 4 different positions in a game of Quidditch, these are the Chaser, Beater, Keeper and Seeker. There are 3 Chasers and they use the Quaffle to get the ball through the opposite team’s hoops, the beater will try and block the chasers using the bludgers, if a chaser gets hit with a bludger, they must dismount their broom and touch back into the game at their hoops. The keeper works much like a football keeper, they aim to block the other team from scoring and the keeper can also act as the fourth Chaser. Finally, there is the seeker which aims to catch the snitch and ultimately end the game.
A few questions that get asked frequently, are there brooms involved? Can you fly? Well the answer is no, players can’t fly, the laws of gravity dictate that one. But yes there are brooms involved, this adds an extra challenging component to the game as you have to stay mounted on your broom the entire time while tackling, passing balls, scoring goals and running.
The tournament director for the tournament is Becky Miller, captain of the Preston Poltergeists, with additional responsibilities going to Megan Thomas (Secretary), James Hofstetter (Treasurer) and incoming committee members Tiri and Nav. The tournament will be held between 9am and 6pm with a one hour lunch break.
In the upcoming weeks, publications and events will be released across social media to promote the tournament, anyone is welcome to come along and cheer on UCLan at the tournament and the other teams too. The tournament also allows students to go and watch and see for themselves how Quidditch is played, which can help anyone who may have the opinion that Quidditch is not a sport.
The Chips & Gravy Cup will take place on 30th April at the UCLan Sports Arena.
Pluto spoke to Activities and Participation Officer Tom Daly about his thoughts on UCLan’s first ever Quidditch tournament.
“It is great that Quidditch are getting some recognition, it’s a very niche activity which is gaining more and more interest, as well as keeping our students fit and healthy in a completely different way of exercising. I’m delighted that such a growing activity is getting bigger and bigger here at UCLan. A lot of this is down to the amazing handwork and enthusiasm of the Preston Poltergeists and I’m happy to see them hosting their first tournament.”