Lincoln 2020

COLIN host and foxiest sexpot, Ben Wilson.

Date: Saturday 25th – Sunday 26th January 2020
Venue: The Ark, North Hykeham (Saturday event), and The Memorial Hall, North Hykeham (Sunday event)
Admission: £12 for the Saturday, £8 for the Sunday, or £16 for both combined.
Start time: Saturday: 11:30am, Sunday: 11am
Finish time: Saturday: 6pm, Sunday: 2pm
Hosted by: Ben Wilson
Games to be played: 6 plus Grand Final (Saturday), 4 plus Grand Final (Sunday)
Wheelchair accessible?: Yes

Focal’s longest running event returns in January for its sweet sixteen. Hosted by Ben Wilson, COLIN XVI will kick off the FOCAL calendar for 2020.

For the seventh year running, COLIN will be a double event, with the main event taking place on the Saturday, and a smaller ‘hangover’ event following on the Sunday. It is not obligatory to play in both events, although there is a slight discount to the entry fee if you do.

I’ve been expecting you, Mr. Chipper… Fred lets Gavin pick his poison at Lincoln 2019


The hotel of choice for COLIN is, as always, the Lincoln Thorpe-on-the-Hill Travelodge. Prices are usually very low, so book soon to reserve your place!

Getting to the venue

The venue is within a reasonable walking distance of both the Thorpe-on-the-Hill Travelodge, and Hykeham railway station. From Lincoln station it would be advisable to get either a taxi or a train to Hykeham.

If driving, then both venues and the Thorpe-on-the-Hill Travelodge have free guest parking.

How the tournament works

Lincoln, unsurprisingly, is a Lincoln-style event. Three rounds of games across the day, with three players to a table in each round. One person hosts/adjudicates while the other two play and pick their letters and numbers in turn.

So you play twice and host once in each round, which means you’ll play six games and host three altogether. (For more details, see ‘How do you play?’ here.)

A Grand Final between the top two players in the table will play out in front of its audience sometime after 5pm, followed by prize giving and closedown by 6pm.

2019’s COLIN finalists: Jack Worsley and Bradley Horrocks

Refreshments and lunch

Drinks, snacks, sweets, etc, are provided at the venues for refreshments. For lunch, the Saturday venue is very close to a Fish and Chip shop and a Co-op, and the Sunday venue is within walking distance of a Spar and a Subway.


£12 for the Saturday, £8 for the Sunday, or £16 for both combined. Pay through PayPal to (please select the “family/friends” option). To arrange an alternate payment method if you cannot use PayPal, please contact us at

Lincoln 2017: Callum and Dylan are riveted by Andy and a rubber band. He’s so charismatic.

Pre- and post-event socialising

The traditional pub of choice for COLIN-goers is The Fox and Hounds. It has become tradition for Countdowners to play a darts tournament there, as well as have a go on the pool table. The pub serves food which has been given the Mike Brown Seal of Approval.

Why come?

As the longest-running event, COLIN has become something of an annual pilgrimage for many in our community. Among the most stalwart members in attendance every year, there’s an ever-growing fresh crop of new players, with something here for diehard Countdowners and casual social players alike. Come along, make a weekend of it: you won’t regret it.

Lincoln 2017: Tim and Lauren reeeally love COLIN.