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London has been awarded a Guinness World Record for the first recorded Mr Punch puppet show, more commonly known today as Punch and Judy.

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The award was presented to commemorate 350 years since Mr Punch first appeared in a theatre booth in London’s Covent Garden in May 1662.

The organisers of The Big Grin festival, which takes place this weekend, were the proud recipients of the title.

Robert Styles, associate festival director for The Big Grin, said: “We are delighted that Mr Punch remains a record breaker in the 21st century and is able to celebrate in style thanks to a community education project made possible by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

“The award is accepted on behalf of Punch performers past and present who have all played their part in keeping the tradition alive.”

To highlight London’s success this year London & Partners are setting a challenge for the city to break 20 Guinness World Records and become a multi-record breaking city.

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