News of the World Darts Championship

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News of the World Championship
Tournament information
VenueVarious (see here)
Final Year1997
Final champion(s)
England Phil Taylor
England Linda Jones

The News of the World Championship was one of the first major [1][2] organised darts competitions, which began in 1927. It became England's first national darts competition from 1947, as the years went by it gradually became international until its demise in 1990. There was also a brief revival of the event in 1996/97, but it is now discontinued.

Before the tournament was established, darts competitions were held in various forms around England – often as friendly matches between pubs. After World War I, pub breweries began arranging darts leagues which began to sow the seeds for the establishment of a national darts competition. The tournament was noted for using an 8 ft oche rather than the regulation 7 ft 9 ¼ inches. One of these competitions was held in Hythe Street, Dartford, Kent in 1927. The competition was sponsored by a local Brewery, C.N Kidd & Sons Ltd.


The tournament was first organised in the 1927/28 season thanks to the help of the staff on the News of the World newspaper and other volunteers, who helped set up the competition. William Jewiss won the 1927 darts challenge cup sponsored by News of the World and C.N Kidd & Sons brewery in Dartford.

There were around 1,000 entries in the first event, which was held in the Metropolitan area of London. The tournament then began to expand around the different counties in England. By 1938/39 there were six different regional events – London & South England, Wales, Lancashire & Cheshire, Yorkshire, the North of England and the Midland Counties. [2]

The total entrants in the competition in 1938/39 were in excess of 280,000. Enormous interest was created that year by the London and South of England championship. A record crowd of 14,534 spectators filled the Royal Agricultural Hall, London in May to witness the final between Jim Pike (representing the Windmill Club, Southwark) and Marmaduke Brecon (Jolly Sailor, Hanworth, Middlesex). Brecon ran out the winner by two games to one. The tournament continued to attract 250,000 entries during the post war years [2].

There was, however no national champion of the event until after World War II. It was revived as a national competition in 1947/48, [2] and continued to be described as ‘the championship every dart player wants to win’ until its demise in the 1990s. It can also be classed as the first world darts championships as players from different countries entered and even won the tournament.


The News of the World was the first nationally televised darts event as ITV broadcast the latter stages of the championship from 1972 to 1985, and again in 1987 and 1988. The 1986 event wasn't broadcast due to a technicians' strike.

As quickly as darts tournaments began to appear on television throughout the 1970s and into the early and mid 1980s, the bubble burst and all darts competitions except the World Championship disappeared from TV screens in 1989.

This big sudden slump in televised darts coverage meant that it came as no surprise that the News of the World Championship also ended after the 1990 event, with the last two events having been untelevised. As it happened, 1990 was also the first year that separate competitions were held for men and women.

The lack of televised darts coverage left some players frustrated by the lack of opportunity to make a living from darts, and in January 1992 they formed their own organisation to start up their own tournaments (see main article: Professional Darts Corporation, and Split in darts).

Brief revival[edit]

The News of the World Championship made a one-year reappearance in the 1996/97 season, when Sky Sports and the News of the World resurrected the competition.

In his autobiography, Phil Taylor says that his mentor, Eric Bristow always mocked him for never having won the competition and that it was the tournament that everyone wanted to win.

Taylor put the record straight by beating Ian White 2–0 in the final in June 1997, collecting the News of the World Big D Trophy, a cheque for £42,000 and a set of Unicorn golden darts. Following his victory, which also saw him take out the then England captain Martin Adams 2–1 in the semi finals, Taylor was quoted as saying "I've won five world titles – but this one means everything".

However, the overall response to the competition was disappointing and the News of the World decided against running it again. The tournament remains discontinued.

Tournament winners[edit]


The tournament was arranged on a regional basis from 1927 until 1939. The National Championship began in 1947–48 winners and runners-up included: [3]

Year Champion From Score
Runner-up From
1947-48 England Harry Leadbetter Windle Labour Club, St Helens 2-1 England Tommy Small Sth Durham Steel & Iron SC, West Hartlepool
1948-49 England Jackie Boyce New Southgate SC 2–1 England Stan Outten Dr Johnson, Barkingside
1949-50 England Dixie Newberry Albert, Hitchin 2-0 England Ronnie Ridley King Edward Hotel, Newcastle-u-Tyne
1950-51 England Harry Perryman Home Office SC, Greenford 2-0 England Laurie Runchman Feathers, Felixstowe
1951-52 England Tommy Gibbons Ivanhoe WMC, Conisbrough 2-0 England Jack Wallace Low Seaton BL, Workington
1952-53 England Jimmy Carr Red Lion, Dipton 2-0 England Ernest Greatbatch Horse Vaults Hotel, Pontefract
1953-54 Wales Oliver James Ex-Servicemen’s Club, Onllwyn 2-0 England Johnny Bell The Sun, Waltham Abbey
1954-55 England Tom Reddington New Inn, Stonebroom 2-0 England Johnny Bell Sun, Waltham Abbey
1955-56 England Trevor Peachey Black Fox, Thurston 2-0 England Les Campbell Boot, Dinas
1956-57 England Alwyn Mullins Traveller’s Rest, Tickhill 2-0 Wales Len Baker Corporation Hotel, Cardiff
1957-58 England Tommy Gibbons Ivanhoe WMC, Conisbrough 2-0 England Eric Moss Railway Tavern, Harleston
1958-59 England Albert Welsh Horden Hotel, Seaham 2-1 England Frank Whitehead White Rose Hotel, Rossington
1959-60 England Tom Reddington George Hotel, Alfreton 2-1 Wales Dai Jones Cambrian Hotel, Aberystwyth
1960-61 England Alec Adamson Prince of Wales, Hetton-le-Hole 2-1 England Eddie Brown Magpie, Stonham
1961-62 England Eddie Brown Magpie, Stonham 2-0 England Dennis Follett Cadeleigh Arms, Cadeleigh
1962-63 England Robbie Rumney Waterloo Hotel, Darlington 2-0 England Bill Harding Globe Hotel, Aberdare
1963-64 England Tom Barrett Odco SC, London 2-0 England Ray Hatton Flower of the Valley Hotel, Rochdale
1964-65 England Tom Barrett Odco SC, London 2-1 England Norman Fielding Station Inn, Swannington
1965-66 England Wilf Ellis Brookside WMC, Upton 2-1 England Ron Langley Arlington SC, Harlow
1966-67 England Wally Seaton Swan Inn, Parson Drove 2-0 England Brian Quarterman Ivy Inn, North Littleton
1967-68 England Bill Duddy Rose & Thistle, Frimley Green 2-0 England Gerry Feeney Unicorn Club, Workington
1968-69 England Barry Twomlow Red Lion, Chesterfield 2-0 England Paul Gosling William IV, Truro
1969-70 England Henry Barney The Pointer Inn, Newchurch 2-0 England Alan Cooper Plough, Filton
1970-71 England Dennis Filkins Barrow, Hepburn & Gale SC, Bermondsey 2-0 England Derek White The Ship Inn, Weymouth
1971-72 England Brian Netherton Welcome Home Inn, Par 2-0 Wales Alan Evans Ferndale Hotel, Rhondda
1972-73 England Ivor Hodgkinson Great Northern, Langley Mill 2-1 England Ron Church Royal Alfred, Shoreditch
1973-74 England Peter Chapman Bird in Hand, Henley-on-Thames 2-1 England Paul Gosling Portscatho Club, Truro
1974-75 England Derek White Belvedere Inn, Weymouth 2-1 England Bill Duddy Frimley Green Working Mens Club, Camberley
1975-76 England Bill Lennard Cotton Tree Inn, Manchester 2-0 Wales Leighton Rees Ynysybwl USC, Pontypridd
1976-77 England Mick Norris King of Denmark, Ramsgate 2-0 England Bob Crosland Blackamoor Head, Pontefract
1977-78 Sweden Stefan Lord Stockholm Super Darts Club, Stockholm 2-0 England John Coward White Hart BL, Sedbergh
1978-79 England Bobby George King George V, Ilford 2-0 England Alan Glazier George & Dragon, Wetherby
1979-80 Sweden Stefan Lord Stockholm Super Darts Club, Stockholm 2-0 England Dave Whitcombe Naval Club, Chatham
1980-81 England John Lowe Willow Tree, Pilsley 2-0 England Mick Norris Earl St Vincent, Ramsgate
1981-82 England Roy Morgan Wheel o’ Worfield, Worfield 2-1 Wales Jim Hughes Parcwern Country Club, Ammanford
1982-83 England Eric Bristow Foaming Quart, Norton Green 2-0 England Ralph Flatt Old Red House, Carlton Colville
1983-84 England Eric Bristow Foaming Quart, Norton Green 2-0 England Ian Robertson Bell, Marston Moretaine
1984-85 England Dave Lee Ivor Arms, Pontllanfraith 2-0 England Billy Dunbar Woolwich Infant, London
1985-86 England Bobby George Old Maypole, Hainault 2-0 United States Rick Ney US Darting Association
1986-87 England Mike Gregory Stones Cross Hotel, Midsomer Norton 2-0 England Peter Evison Halcyon/Spikes, Peterborough
1987-88 England Mike Gregory Stones Cross Hotel, Midsomer Norton 2-1 England Kevin Spiolek Cambridge Squash Club
1988-89 England Dave Whitcombe King’s Head, Ipswich 2-1 England Dennis Priestley Horseshoe, Rotherham
1989-90 England Paul Cook Gorse Hill WMC, Swindon 2-0 England Steve Hudson Oakworth SC, Keighley
1996-97 England Phil Taylor Cricketer’s Arms, Newcastle-under-Lyme 2-0 England Ian White Dockside Inn, Runcorn


Year Champion From Score
Runner-up From
1989-90 England Lynne Ormond George, Alford England Jane Stubbs Roebuck Hotel, Northwich
1996-97 England Linda Jones Seven Stars, Chorley 2–0 England Melanie Saunders Railway Inn, Abergavenny

Multiple winners[edit]

No player has ever won the national title three times, seven players managed two wins each.

  • Tommy Gibbons (1951–52, 1957–58)
  • Tom Reddington (1954–55, 1959–60)
  • Tom Barrett (1963–64, 1964–65)
  • Stefan Lord (1977–78, 1979–80)
  • Eric Bristow (1982–83, 1983–84)
  • Bobby George (1978–79, 1985–86)
  • Mike Gregory (1986–87, 1987–88)



  1. ^ Kramer, Anne (2013). "13 History of World Tournaments". The Ultimate Book of Darts: A Complete Guide to Games, Gear, Terms, and Rules. Skyhorse Publishing, Inc. ISBN 9781626365261.
  2. ^ a b c d Nauright, John; Parrish, Charles (2012). Sports Around the World: History, Culture, and Practice. ABC-CLIO. p. 70. ISBN 9781598843002.
  3. ^ Kramer, Anne (2013). "13 History of World Tournaments". The Ultimate Book of Darts: A Complete Guide to Games, Gear, Terms, and Rules. Skyhorse Publishing, Inc. ISBN 9781626365261.
  4. ^ "Planet Darts | Latest News | Newsdesk | Newsdesk | Taylor Goes Back To The Future!". Retrieved 2012-07-26.


External links[edit]