World record set in Tyne Valley

Team Canada oyster shuckers open 8,840 oysters to beat record previously held by team in France

Eric McCarthy newsroom@journalpioneer.com
Published on August 1, 2014

TYNE VALLEY -- The French just got shucked.

A 10-member Team Canada has set a new Guinness Book of World Records standard for the most oysters opened in one hour.

The group successfully opened 8,840 oysters in one hour during the Tyne Valley Oyster Festival at the Tyne Valley Sports Centre Thursday night to shatter a record a team from France had held since 2002. The old mark was 8,472 oysters.

Jeff Noye, president of the Tyne Valley Oyster Festival and organizer of the world record attempt, was ecstatic with the result.

Participants hugged and sprinkled beer over each other as Guinness Book of World Records adjudicator Philip Robertson announced the outcome. He kept the crowd in suspense, announcing the total number of oysters opened by nine participants, before reporting Patrick McMurray’s total.

McMurray, who was already a world record holder for the most oysters opened in a minute (38), led the way Thursday night with 1,114 opened oysters. Eamon Clark and Philip Ho also surpassed the 1,000 mark.

It was the first time the oyster festival attempted such a feat but Noye knew he had the hands to get the job done. He was the only participant on the record-setting team who is not a competitor in the festival’s Canadian Oyster Shucking Championship. That prestigious event takes place Friday night at the Tyne Valley Sports Centre, the festival’s main venue.