ZACK ATTACK ! Bath schoolboy, 8, is Britain's youngest Top Trumps Champ

Brainy Bath schoolboy Zack Barnett, 8, has been crowned Britain’s youngest ever official Top Trumps champ. The Top Trumps Schools finals attracted entrants from across the UK. Zack becomes the 8th champ – all other winners were much older than himself.

The youngster lifted the trophy this afternoon (Saturday) after beating very many thousands of children – the vast majority far older than himself – at Top Trumps, the card game that is the craze of Britain’s playgrounds.

The youngster who is from Bath is a Year 3 pupil at Farmborough Primary School in Bath said: “I can’t believe I have won!”. His dad James added: “We are extremely proud of Zack. He is a very quick learner and brilliant at strategy with games. It’s refreshing that so many youngsters have engaged in Top Trumps rather than be slaves to their smart phones. He has made friends playing and interacted face to face rather than behind a screen.”

The Grand Finals of the National Top Trumps Schools Tournament took place at Chester Zoo, Britain’s most visited zoo.

Zack was presented with a gleaming trophy and in recognition of this year’s Top Trumps Schools Tournament theme of ‘Amazing Animals’ Zack has seen his trophy ‘trumped’. That’s because a unique plaque will be unveiled in HIS name at the meerkat enclosure at Chester Zoo for the next twelve months.

Each year the event is themed around one child-appealing subject. This year it was ‘Awesome Animals’. The final was played using a Top Trumps Tournament deck made up of cuddly (and not so cuddly!) creatures from African Elephants to Tiger Sharks.

This year Top Trumps makers teamed up with conservationists from Chester Zoo, which is the UK’s most visited Zoo and home to over 15,000 animals and 500 different species.

Chester Zoo is a leading education and conservation charity. It delivers around 80 projects in 30 countries worldwide to protect highly threatened species from extinction, including many in the UK, and welcomes over 100,000 education visits each year.

Claire Simon from Winning Moves UK – owners and makers of the Top Trumps Brand – said today: “Very many congratulations to Zack – our youngest ever winner. He was the youngest of the 12 contestants in the Grand Finals and one of the very youngest who entered the competition at the start, which involved lots of heats. What a remarkable achievement.”

Ms Simon, who is Winning Moves UK Marketing Manager, added: “We’re delighted to have teamed up with Chester Zoo for this year’s tournament. Just like Top Trumps, Chester Zoo is engaging, fun and educational, making them the perfect partner for our Awesome Animals theme.”

Top Trumps has been hailed as not only fun, but highly educational too. The National Children’s Bureau carried out detailed research on the National Schools Top Trumps Tournament and concluded the game helps children improve both numeracy and literacy skills as well as developing social skills though gameplay.

Ms Simon adds: "These findings have resulted in Heads and teachers seeing the advantage of bringing in Top Trumps as a teaching tool inside the classroom. Children not only improve their basic literacy and numeracy skills playing Top Trumps, but they also deepen their knowledge on the subject matter covered in the pack. The better you know the pack, the better chance you have of winning the game!”

Alison Brooks, General Retail Manager at Chester Zoo, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have hosted this year’s event and very many congratulations to Zack. With over 20,000 ‘awesome’ animals here at Chester Zoo it was a great event to remember for everyone.”

TOP numbers about TOP Trumps:
• 1977: Top Trumps first hits shop shelves.
• 54 million: Number of packs that have been produced worldwide.
• 1,810,532,328: No. of individual cards produced since 1977.
• 16: Range of different languages (including Icelandic, Japanese and Hungarian) game is played in.
• 1: One Top Trumps Schools Tournament champ – and it was Zack!

Top Trumps is owned, devised, designed and produced by Winning Moves UK, a leading London-based games company. Winning Moves UK produces a host of other classic Brands too, including: Official regional and football versions of MONOPOLY; Bananagrams, Waddington’s Number One Playing Cards and many more. Visit: www.toptrumps.com or www.winningmoves.co.uk

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