Postcard from... Germany
Record alcohol consumption, mounting violence and eye-watering beer prices have failed to mar this year's traditional Munich Oktoberfest, which reached half-time yesterday with its backers claiming that the marathon drinking event was set to become the most successful yet.
The Bavarian Red Cross said yesterday that the number of so-called "beer corpses" – meaning drinkers who had become totally incapacitated from over consumption – had gone up by 20 per cent compared with the same period last year. They said rescue workers had been called out 445 times to deal with legless drunks.
Police said there had also been a marked increase in drink-related violence with several festival goers resorting to assaults with the 1l glass beer mugs that are a traditional feature at the event.
"Hitting somebody or throwing beer steins is an extremely dangerous crime and we were glad to have been able to arrest 25 offenders on the spot," police vice-president Robert Kopp said.
The two-week-long festival got off to an inauspicious start with the Association Against Fraudulent Pouring complaining that the price of beer had increased by nearly 50 per cent over the past decade. The average price for a litre of Bavaria's best is currently €9.35 (£7.50), compared with €6.55 in 2002.
Jan-Ulrich Bittlinger, the association's president, said he was drawing up a petition in an attempt to persuade the Munich city government to cap the price of beer. But organisers said this year's festival had already attracted a record half-time figure of 3.6 million.
- 2 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 3 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 4 Cee Lo Green: It is only rape if the victim is conscious
Perez Hilton apologises for publishing Jennifer Lawrence naked 4Chan photos
Emma Watson on Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak: 'Even worse than seeing women's privacy violated is reading the comments'
Ariana Grande nude photos leak: Pictures are completely fake, say representatives
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
Katie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge: ‘I hate fat people for making me do this’
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain
£30000 - £45000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: Front-Of...
£700 per day: Harrington Starr: Quantitative Developer C++, Python, STL, R, PD...
£700 per day: Harrington Starr: Java/Calypso Developer Java, Calypso, J2EE, J...
£500 per day: Harrington Starr: SQL Developer SQL, C#, Stored Procedures, MDX...