Snooker player breaks unofficial record potting 5,000 balls in 12 hours

Jim Hall pictured during his pool ball potting marathon at Houghton Snooker Club where he's been raising money for charity.
Jim Hall pictured during his pool ball potting marathon at Houghton Snooker Club where he's been raising money for charity.
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A POOL player came up with a potty way to net funds for a good cause.

Jim Hall, 33, of Hetton, broke an unofficial world record when he potted 5,000 balls in less than 12 hours, raising about £750 for charity.

The regional operations manager for transport company Fowler Welch, said he decided to tackle the record because it was a personal challenge, and a great cause.

Jim, who has been playing pool for 27 years, completed the challenge at Houghton Snooker Club on Saturday in 11 hours and 29 minutes, with a little help from his club mates.

“I used two tables,” he said.

“So when I was potting balls on one, the lads would set up the balls on the other table.

“It was a really big challenge because potting that many balls in that number of hours equates to one ball every eight seconds.

“My back was breaking after the first couple of hours, it was really hard.”

Friends and family visited Jim throughout the long day to offer support and top up his fund-raising total to £800.

“They came in dribs and drabs,” he said.

“I had Macmillan banners and things to show why I was raising the money.

“This started because the lads at work were trying to raise £3,000 for Macmillan – the chosen charity – by doing a sky dive.

“I’m petrified of heights so I couldn’t do it, so I decided to do this.

“Loads of my friends said I was mad, but I’ve beat my fund-raising target of £500, and I’m proud that I’ve done it.”

The potty fund-raiser is now resting up, after the charity marathon left him with friction burns on his hands, blisters on his feet and backache.

“I’m absolutely shattered, but I’ve done it,” he said.

Jim also thanked everyone who supported him on the day and all those who made donations.

While records are held for potting the most balls in a 24-hour period, none exist for a 12-hour stretch, and as it is an onerous process to log a record, Jim has decided the satisfaction of achieving his goal and raising the funds are good enough for him.

Zany ways to raise money for charity

JIM’S potting challenge comes in the wake of a host of other madcap ideas to raise money - and laughs.

Whitburn man Gary Craig earned the nickname Geordie Pantsman as he attempted to break the Guinness World Record by pulling on 302 pairs of underpants on the finish line of last year’s Great North Run.

Gary, who won the title in 2010 by pulling on 211 pairs, was told by officials the pants should have come up to his waist to qualify him as world champion.

In 2010, members of the Firepower Kettlebell Gym in West Rainton hoped to set a top time for the longest continual use of the fitness equipment.

Seven of the gym’s athletes signed up for the event, which raised money for the Rainbow Trust.

Wearsiders wiggled in an effort to break the world record attempt as they hoola hooped for two minutes continuously as part of the Olympic relay celebrations held at Herrington Country Park in June last year.

Earlier this month, mums joined in a world-wide attempt to break the record for the most women breast feeding at the same time.

The Big Latch on is held each August to encourage mothers to breast feed and break the taboos surrounding it.

Mum’s gathered at Penshaw Monument as part of Sunderland’s contribution to the attempt, which was broken with 14,536 women taking part across the world.