THE Hoop Trundle commemorates the re-founding of The King’s School Ely by King Henry V111 in 1541. Having dissolved Ely monastery, which had educated children for centuries, he gave the school its first royal charter and established the 12 King’s Scholars (boys). One of the privileges he allowed them was to play games, including the bowling of hoops, in the Cathedral precincts.

In 1970, the school admitted girls for the first time in its 1,000-year history, and three years later the King’s Scholars were joined by Queen’s Scholars (girls) at the request of Queen Elizabeth 11 during her visit to the school in 1973.

Pupils are nominated as scholars in the Sixth Form for their academic achievement. They become members of the Cathedral Foundation and also qualify for other privileges.

In the Hoop Trundle, separate races are held for the King’s and Queen’s Scholars. Two or three heats precede each final and the two winners hold commemorative wooden tankards for a year.

This year’s event will be held on Saturday 24 March at 12 noon on the east lawn of Ely Cathedral.

Scholars in action at the 2011 Hoop Trundle.

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