Arrow Valley parkrun #327 – 06-10-2018 – Kevin Tomkinson

International parkrun day was celebrated at the lake as 322 people ran and walked 2 laps of the lake cheered along by 42 volunteers in yellow. It was my 20th visit to the Arrow Valley parkrun and I was celebrating a completely parkrun milestone of reaching 1000 parkrun miles. 3.11 (miles) x 322 (parkruns) = just over 1000 miles so I reckon somewhere between the playground and the right turn after the bollard in the path 1000 miles came up. Thank you for the shout out at the start Rachel, I did hear it but I had lost all the people I came to the park with in the morning as I was trying to find somewhere to put my jumper!!

In the end I put it in the bottom of the buggy and my niece pinned the sign she had made onto my back and we headed to the start. I ran lap 1 with my niece who then decided she wanted to take her coat off. Wondering what she was going to do with it I took it off her and planned to wrap it round my waist. Thankfully I saw Tanya from Brueton who was supporting and she took it off me. We came up to some other runners and I got past but she decided she didn't want to keep up with me anymore and I ploughed on to the hill on my own. I managed to hold it together on the hill, keeping my pace steady, I think I managed to say "thank you" to the mini marshals at the top – if not, my apologies, your support was excellent!
IMG_7762  Coming back to the café I knew a course PB was possible and I thought about sprinting from the turn which I started to do however I hadn't realised the finish had changed and it was now further away from the corner! My sprint slowed and I seemed to shuffle to the line. When the times came through I had my quickest Arrow Valley parkrun beating my 1st attempt in 2013! Hooray! IMG_7759  As many of you know parkrun was started 14 years ago by Paul Sinton-Hewitt with the 1st run taking place in Bushy Park. 13 took part that day. What has taken place since has been amazing with new events starting all the time which is reaching new communities and starting new communities in towns and cities and country parks around the country. How many of the participants on Saturday have booked a holiday in the UK (or further afield) and looked at the parkrun website to see where the nearest run is? I know I do, much to the bemusement of my parents and in the old days my wife who used to roll her eyes about my requests for a weekend away just to run for 30 minutes around a park she had never heard of! Highlight for me of these requests has to be insisting she got up on her birthday in 2013 to run at Gorleston near Great Yarmouth – if you haven't run it and are away in this direction I recommend it, stunning on a sunny day! However the accommodation we were staying in, I was so happy to get out for a few hours (it wasn't the best) So thank you to the Core Team for delivering Arrow Valley parkrun which continues to be free and available to all. Thanks also to Paul Sinton-Hewitt who came up with this simple idea which gets us out of bed every Saturday morning to see our friends running around the lake

Volunteers This week there were 42 heroes in yellow, thank you to - Kevin TOMKINSON • Jenni TOMKINSON • Dylan GOULD • Gary KING • Gavin MOORHEAD • Mike GRIFFITHS • Richard GALLOIS • Rachel DAVIES • David OLDAKER • Liz ADEY • Rachel GOULD • Ricky YOUNG • Joanne MEYRICK • Alison BOLTON • Donna KING • Ria CANTELO-BPND • Elizabeth GRIFFITHS • Ian WIDDOWS • Paula WIDDOWS • Maureen MOORHEAD • Dean CLAPHAM • Sally EVANS • Lynda GREEN • Malcolm GREEN • Jo ABBOTTS • Trudie TAYLOR • Rashida BASHIR • Helen SMITH • Mark BRINDLEY • Paula BRINDLEY • Stephen REA • Dawn ELWELL-SUTTON • Mike ELWELL-SUTTON • Scott BEVERLEY • Karin AITKEN • Simon TAYLOR • Kate CHAMBERLAIN • Dylan SMITH • Janet GOODYEAR • Willow GREEN • Amelia SMITH • Olivia SMITH IMG_7760

Celebrations this week Congratulations to the following Arrow Valley parkrunners who entered one of the parkrun clubs at the event 25 volunteer club - Richard GALLOIS - 50 club – Angela LUCAS, Carl ORDIDGE, Hugo BEATTIE, Rebecca LUCAS Angela 50th pr5 random stats from Arrow Valley parkrun this week This was event 327. In 327th position was no one! Today was the 14th parkrun anniversary. In 14th position was Wayne KETCHER who completed his 99th parkrun in 20:54 42 new PB's this week. In 42nd position was Leigh MILTON who completed his 1st parkrun in 23:37 The average run time for the event (overall) is 28:54. This was matched by 1 person this week – Sam LEWIS Position number of the week = 101 – James WHITEHOUSE who completed his 5th parkrun in 26:35 PB's This week there was 42 personal bests recorded. Here is a list of the parkrunners with over 50 runs who achieved a PB this week – Kevin TOMKINSON - 25:34 - 322 parkruns Ian P COOPER - 22:50 - 283 parkruns Jenni TOMKINSON - 28:15 - 206 parkruns Jane NOCK - 26:38 - 97 parkruns Lauren HEVEY - 26:11 - 67 parkruns Well done to all achieving a PB this week First timers 35 first timers took part this week, for 17 of them this was their 1st parkrun. Well done to all the 1st timers, hope you enjoyed your parkrun Official Report This week 322 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 35 were first timers and 42 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 29 different clubs took part. IMG_7761

The female record is held by Becky STRAW who recorded a time of 17:49 on 23rd August 2014 (event number 110), and by Kristen FINDLEY who also recorded a time of 17:49 on 25th July 2015 (event number 159).
The male record is held by Unknown ATHLETE who recorded a time of 15:08 on 10th September 2016 (event number 219).
The Age Grade course record is held by Bronwen G CARDY who recorded 94.03% (21:14) on 12th September 2015 (event number 166).

Arrow Valley parkrun started on 14th July 2012. Since then 9,376 participants have completed 86,663 parkruns covering a total distance of 433,315 km, including 15,154 new Personal Bests.

Did you know?

Arrow Valley parkrun now has 7652 registered parkrunners

Kevin (A190125)


Run Report 29/09/2018 – Event # 326 by Terri Powell

My home event Sandwell Valley parkrun was cancelled today and having briefly met some of the runners and volunteers when they kicked off their charity 8.5 parkruns in one day with us a couple of weeks back, I thought I would repay the favour by joining Arrow Valley for a spot of parkrun tourism. I was joined by another of our regular volunteers Neil Langley and we were both wearing our bright lime green t-shirts displaying “Sandwell Valley parkrun volunteers on tour” on the back of them.
We both volunteer quite regularly, so don’t often get the chance to run and this was an ideal opportunity for us and one that we both thoroughly enjoyed.
As we walked towards the start, both Neil and I felt positively chilly in the tree cover of the car park and pathways but soon warmed up when we arrived at the bright sunlit field in readiness for the start where it was obvious that there was going to be a big turnout.
IMG_7510A quick hello to a couple of people I recognised, briefings completed and we were off on a really pleasant two lap course of the lake. A few of you certainly noticed us as you kindly said hello and had a quick chat with us on the way around which is always very welcoming and very nice of you to take the time so we thank you for that. The last Saturday in the month here also means that it is pacer’s week. A total of fourteen pacers in sky blue vests helped out and a staggering 100 PB’s were achieved. IMG_7509
Well done to the pacers and to all those with a new PB this week.
A few quick statistics for you:
38 first timers to Arrow Valley, 19 of which were first timers to parkrun
15 parkrunners completed their 2nd ever parkrun, 10 of which achieved new PB’s
15 parkrunners completed their 3rd ever parkrun, 9 of which achieved new PB’s
31 junior parkrunners, 6 of which were first timers and 3 of which have completed 100+ parkruns
50th parkrun milestones – Pauline Timmings and Rob Cooper
100th parkrun milestones - Angela Bligh and Lorraine Hyde
150th parkrun event – Joshua Wiseman
307th parkrun event – Clive Rose which was also his 170th Arrow Valley event
34 of the parkrunners today have already achieved their 25th volunteering milestone

After the event, Neil and I stopped at the café and we gave a little bit back by token sorting. We were joined by Rosanna Palmer who has become a bit of regular at Arrow Valley having started C25K earlier in the year with Lickey End Striders and Karen Hurrell from Haigh Woodland parkrun who was attending a course nearby. In all we sorted a total of 437 finishing tokens in readiness for you all to do it again next week.
The final mention is to the Hi-Viz heroes who enable this to happen so a big THANK YOU to
Heather Baldwin, Richard Banks, Scott Beverley, Christopher Bird, Alison Bolton, Bill Bradley, Joshua Bradley, Diane Mary Brian, Mark Brindley, Sula Broad, Eleanor Broad, Sharon Colfer, Rachel Davies, Paul Egan, Malcolm Green, Clare Grennan, Rory Hancock, Tim Harrison, Anita Hartley, Nick Harwood, Hollie Heffernan, Ian Hurst, Jo Knight, Neil Langley, Robert Morris, Jessica Nielsen, Rosanne Palmer, Elizabeth Paterson, Terri Rose Powell, Stephen Rea, Nick Secker, Emma Shannon, Olivia Smith, Helen Smith, Amelia Smith, Simon Taylor, Dawn Teague, Katie Thorley, Emma Tisdell, Lizzie Tovey, Mark Tovey, Christopher Weaver, Ian Widdows, Paula Widdows, Shantell Willmott, Ricky Young And Karen Hurrel.

Thank you to Mark Brindley for the photos within this Run report.



Run Report 22-9-18 Event #325 – Rebecca Spencer

My Saturday run at Arrow Valley parkrun was a defining parkrun moment for me; it was the parkrun which confirmed that, as suspected, my parkrun obsession has turned me into a ‘parkrun tourist’.

I live in London and have been parkrunning for about 2 years. In this time I have reached my 50th milestone, become a Run Director, and helped set up a local parkrun. Recently I have been trying to explore more parkruns in London (currently there are 53 parkruns in Greater London). However, this weekend I was due to come to Redditch on Saturday for a family event; troubled at the idea of missing parkrun, I decided to get the train up on Friday instead of Saturday, to stay at my cousin’s flat & use Saturday morning to visit Redditch’s local parkrun; Arrow Valley!

The friendly atmosphere of Arrow Valley was evident as soon as I entered the park. Runners and volunteers chatted to one another, before an excellent briefing by the Run Director, Clare. The course was fantastically well marshalled with enthusiastic and encouraging volunteers who made the route even more enjoyable. It was lovely to run alongside such a stunning lake; the first lap passed quickly and as soon as I was on the second lap I was on the home stretch (the beauty of a 2-lap course!).

I stopped at the cafe after for a coffee & it was great to see so many Arrow Valley parkrunners there. It was such a friendly atmosphere and a great start to my weekend.

I also felt privileged to be part of a parkrun which marked five (wow!) incredible milestones:

Dave BUTLER – 100th parkrun
Andrew COWLEY – 100th parkrun
David KINGS – 100th parkrun
Sula BROAD – 50th parkrun
John TOMLINSON – 50th parkrun
Dave Butler's 100th parkrun

Congratulations to these guys. What brilliant achievements!

I would also say a special Congratulations to the following people:


These amazing people ran their first ever parkrun on Saturday. This is arguably one of the most significant parkrun milestones. Hopefully this is the start of a happy & healthy parkrun addiction for you all...

Thank you Arrow Valley runners and volunteers for such a great parkrun, and for my baptism as a fully-fledged parkrun tourist!

Rebecca Spencer
(Run Director - Clapham Common parkrun)


VI Guide Runners at Arrow Valley

At Arrow Valley we pride ourselves upon being proactive in the visually impaired running community.
We have a number of enthusiastic VI guides that are waiting to assist anyone that requires it.
If you would like a guide to assist you at Arrow Valley parkrun please contact us in advance of the event by email:

We will find a guide to assist you in your running, jogging or walking endeavours.
Lizzie parkrun


Run Report – Event #319 – 11-8-18 by Emma Hawkey

We arrived at quarter past 8 for what would be my 32nd different parkrun, and 72nd parkrun overall – dare I say after the weeks of a heatwave, it was slightly chilly. Having never been to Arrow Valley before, I could immediately see its appeal – the lake looked stunning under the blue sky and with the trees mirrored in the still water.


I am a very keen runner, and very competitive with my own times, always striving to run as quickly as I possibly can at any parkrun I attend. However, there was to be a difference today. Unfortunately I have been injured for 4 weeks, so to still take part in parkrun I have no choice but to walk, something I am certainly not too keen on, but that's the beauty of parkrun – RUN, JOG OR WALK!, it really doesn't matter what your pace is, it's something for all, and 5km is still 5km, no matter how fast or slow you go.

There was an advantage of not needing to go for a warm up and not running flat out so that I am unable to speak – I was able to take the time to chat to some of the other parkrunners at Arrow Valley, and what a delight that was. I met Clive Rose who would be running his 300th parkrun, the most experienced parkrunner in the field today – his journey started in December 2011 at Cannon Hill parkrun, and he has run 167 at Arrow Valley which he now calls home. Well done Clive, in another 200 runs you will reach the next parkrun official milestone of 500.

IMG_6273At the other end of the parkrun numbers spectrum, I chatted to Yvette Donnelly whilst out on the course. I could hear the encouragement and excitement of her two friends, Emma and Barbara – shortly after we started they were saying with some glee "this is it, Yvette, you are doing it now, this is your first parkrun". Yvette had completed couch to 5km with Kingfisher Harriers recently – I hope this is the first of a lifetime love affair with parkrun that we all seem to have. My top tip was to hold back this week, and return next week to get a lovely PB – don't we all get an extra buzz from those two little letters on the results? IMG_6274
From first timers to the experienced, the other group we have are of course the tourists – at Perry Hall in Birmingham which is my home parkun, we always ask during the briefing where the tourists are from, a little game to see who has travelled the furthest – I don't think many UK parkruns could have beaten the distance that Sallie Wake had travelled – she was from Australia!! I thought I had done well getting to Devon or the north of Scotland on my travels!!
IMG_6275How could my eyes not notice the man in orange with huge orange glasses – this was Ken Byng, or more affectionately known as 'The Flash'. He happily told me how he is now 79 years young and took up running at the young age of 71 – Wow, I was amazed, my immediate response being "I hope I am like you at the age of 71 or 79, that is a true inspiration" IMG_6276

Finally, I will mention the course – 2 laps around the lake on nice wide paths. There are a couple of cheeky little slopes (they are not really hills), but I think it has the potential to be a fast course. I will be back when I am running again – the advantage of having to walk today would mean that I can pick up a nice PB. There is nothing to worry about if you don't like slopes, there were 2 of the most enthusiastic marshals at the top of the one at mile 1 / 2.5. Thank you for the encouragement – all marshals were lovely, and as I was lapped by the quicker runners, there were plenty of lovely words exchanged there too. IMG_6278So, I have walked 2 parkruns now, it still feels strange when the Run Director sets everyone off and I see all the runners go ahead – I feel like shouting "wait for me". But to anyone who wants to walk a parkrun, for whatever reason, I would recommend you do come along – you will still very much be part of the event, and still have covered the 5km to set you up nicely for the weekend. IMG_6279

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