Blackpool parkrun, Event number 31

16th September 2017

A bit of a drier parkrun at Blackpool this week, a slight drizzle just after you all set off but that soon cleared. I did, get one (light hearted) complaint that we did not have enough puddles this week for on person taking part, however I am sure that everyone else was glad for a drier morning.

This week, it was good to see our numbers being swelled by lots of extra parkrunners that usually run at Lytham or Preston parkruns, who were having a week off. As always, you are welcome at Blackpool parkrun so that you can get your parkrun fix. I managed to have a chat with some of the team from Preston parkrun that joined us, having a well-deserved rest, glad to hear that you enjoyed our course at Blackpool.

As always, it was good to see all our regulars and those that visit us from further afield. This week 288 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 90 were first timers at Blackpool with 31 new to parkrun. Congratulations to the 73 of you who recorded a new personal best time. With some of you representing 38 different clubs from around the country.

A few shout outs this week:

    • A big thank you to Stephen Dunstan for his 25th time volunteering at Blackpool parkrun, as always you did a fantastic job helping out pal.
    • Thank you to everyone for singing and wishing George Kennedy (the marshal as you went out through the park gate), happy birthday. Hope you had a fantastic birthday George.
    • Well done to Dan Rowson, from Beeston in Nottingham, who joined us to complete his 50th parkrun at Blackpool.
    • We also had another happy birthday for Debbie Ashton from the Darwen Dashers RC, I will not mention how young you are Debbie.
    • I would like to say congratulations to all those that did the Great North run last weekend, too many to mention individually. Also congrats to all those that took part in the Northwest Tough Mudder. Plenty of Mudder finisher T-shirts present this week. Well done to everyone else that took part in other events last weekend too.

If you are joining us this coming Saturday there will be a number of runners that will be taking part in parkrun dressed for a wedding. This is to celebrate the forthcoming wedding of Naomi Simmons from Thornton Cleveleys Running Club. We are looking forward to seeing you all dressed up.

Also if you are taking part in or supporting someone at the ‘Pretty Muddy’ run in Blackpool on Saturday (, why not come and join us beforehand to take part or cheer on all the parkrunners, we are only 5 minutes’ walk from the Pretty Muddy run.

This weeks event was made possible by 20 volunteers:

George Kennedy • Chris Pike • Janet Wilkinson • Michael Todd • Catherine Fletcher • Lynn Shaw • David Barker • Michael O'brien • Paul White • Sarah Brown • Alexander Shaw • Mark Gillatt • Stephen Dunstan • Zachary Shaw • Martha Brown • Chris Hammond • Suzanne Pettitt • Tracy Rothwell • Melanie Jones • Lisa Daniels

If you would like to volunteer with parkrun please go to the volunteer page on the website at and email our Volunteer Coordinator.

This week’s full results and a complete event history can be found on the Blackpool parkrun Results Page.

Male placings:
Steve Swarbrick (VM45-49) of Bowland Fell Runners, was first over the line in 16:58 - first time in 2 appearances.
Alex Parsons (JM11-14) of Team Bath AC, was second over the line in 17:20.
Jake Acton (JM15-17) (Unattached) was third over the line in 18:06.

Female placings:
Helen Lawrenson (VW45-49) of Wesham Road Runners AC, was first (22nd overall) over the line in 20:09 - 8th time in 11 appearances.
Gill Draper (SW30-34) of Lytham St. Annes RRC, was second (36th overall) over the line in 21:35.
Belinda Houghton (SW25-29) (Unattached) was third (37th overall) over the line in 21:44.

The three highest age grades were recorded by:
Paul Muller (VM60-64) – 88.34% for the time 18:09 (4th overall).
Steve Swarbrick (VM45-49) – 83.60% for the time 16:58 (first overall).
Robert Ian Calderbank (VM65-69) – 81.97% for the time 21:16 (33rd overall).

The male record is held by Unknown Athlete who recorded a time of 16:08 on 11th February 2017 (event number 2).
The female record is held by Amelia Beaman who recorded a time of 18:39 on 8th April 2017 (event number 9).
The Age Grade course record is held by Maureen Laney who recorded 90.83% (21:59) on 11th March 2017 (event number 5).

Always remember to bring your Barcode to parkrun, as ‘No Barcode, No Time!’

Blackpool parkrun started on 4th February 2017. Since then 2,118 participants have completed 5,985 parkruns covering a total distance of 29,925 km, including 1,555 new Personal Bests.


Technical Issue 16.09.17

Hi all Blackpool parkrunners from today. 
Fantastic turnout this morning and we are just about to send the results out to you. 
Before we do this however, we would like say that we have had a slight technical issue and some of the first 30 runners results. This means that those affected will not receive an email with the result. If you do receive your email you have not been affected by the technical issue. 
We apologise for this and if you do not see your name against your time on the results please contact us through and we will endeavour to rectify the issue as soon as we are able to.
Please note this only affects a small number of runners that were in the first 30 across the line.
Please accept our apologise.
Kind regards
Blackpool parkrun


Blackpool parkrun Event number 30, 9th September 2017

“The heavens opened”, “a river ran through it”, or “parkrunning in the rain”

Participants and volunteers in the 30th Blackpool parkrun.

This week 128 people arrived “two by two” to run, jog and walk the course, and what brave souls they were! The weather forecast did say there may be rain but also that by our start time it should be over - little did we know it would be “overhead” “under foot” and in some places “over the foot!”

Our volunteers; who made the event possible were…

George Kennedy • Rupert Stocks • Chris Pike • Chris Bluck • Peter Cooke • Lynn Shaw • Jane Wade • Michael O'brien • Dawn Baron • Thomas Baron • Shaun Haynes • Sarah Brown • Alexander Shaw • Mark Gillatt • Zachary Shaw • Chris Hammond • Paul Heap • Dave Armstrong • Harris Lancaster

Thank you all!

Well, the course was checked at 6:45 and the sky looked dark and foreboding but the clouds were moving fast and the horizon looked brighter so hopes were high that the weather would be kind…the course was clear and we were good to go.

By eight, the first volunteers were setting up the course and readying themselves for another great event…the clouds still moving fast and the horizon still looking a bit brighter. At 8:30 the volunteers and marshals had arrived, the briefings were progressing and the course almost completely marked. We were sharing the park with another running event and the Masters’ Rugby event and all worked together to avoid any possible confusion.

And then….what a welcome to “Sunny Blackpool!”

The liquid sunshine made its appearance in abundance in the most torrential way!

With 10 minutes to go and more than half the runners there the rain started and got heavier…”don’t worry it’ll soon pass” was the shout…but …it didn’t…it got heavier and heavier and soon we were all sheltering under trees, by the clock tower or splashing in the ever deepening puddles singing like Gene Kelly well I was trying to sing like him!

Despite the rain, more and more of you arrived and the run director took the view that if he called it off now he’d never be forgiven…because you just kept coming…you wanted to run… and a little rain wasn’t going to stop you.

The run briefing took place as the waters rose and the pathways turned to rivers with the run director attempting to shout above the noise of the deluge and not delay matters further. Then to the start line for the off…and still the rain fell!

For the run our, by now very wet, participants were joined by Noah… sorry Mark Gillatt as tail walker and so we had 129 starters (and soon to be finishers) 45 of whom were first timers and 8 even recording new personal bests which was incredible given the conditions.

Ordinarily at this point we would like to name people visiting, or those marking a special moment, or with a parkrun story to tell or to say how far and wide our visitors had come from but on this instance I think that we have to say that each and every one of you is what makes parkrun special.

128 participants and 20 volunteers 148 parkrun heroes defying the weather and doing what we love!


As you are heroes I am going to skip naming anyone in particular I am sure you already have seen where you were but the full results and a complete event history can be found on the Blackpool parkrun Results Page.

Since Blackpool parkrun started on 4th February 2017, 2,028 participants have completed 5,697 parkruns covering a total distance of 28,485 km, and have recorded 1,482 new Personal Bests.

You did it on the wettest day I could imagine and as you finished and walked home laughing and dripping wet…the sun came out and shone so that the steam rose from the bodies of heroes!

See you next time Heroes!



Blackpool parkrun; Event number 29

2nd September 2017

Sadly this week I have to start on a sour note. I’d no sooner donned the Run Director bib when a fellow park user accosted me to complain about a runner relieving  themself in the Italian Garden. Of course there’s no proof that it was a parkrunner but it goes without saying that it goes against the ethics of parkrun and it’s not respecting other park users. Nuff said.

So over 150 walkers, joggers and runners gathered at the clock tower on a glorious September morning to be greeted by the 18 volunteers.  The previous weeks deluge of rain had contributed to some  damage on the path up from the bandstand  and also leading to quite a fall of leaves on the woodland trail. Maybe this contributed to the one or two slips and trips reported. Take care out there folks.

It should be no surprise of course that our parkrun attracts a good amount of parkrun tourists. It was my great pleasure to meet people from Darwen & Perth. I thought we’d attracted an Antipodean contingent but it turns out they were from East Lancs & Tayside respectively. The wonderfully named Darwen Dashers RC even contributed a voluntourist*(another wonderful name) in the shape of Katie. They normally participate at Bolton. I also met parkrunners from Bexley, Guildford & Horton Park. Special thanks to Lesley & the contingent from Blyth RC. As a veteran of several RD stints at her home parkrun of Druridge Park she was able to offer this nervous, novice RD some words of encouragement before and after the run. And even if our tourist net didn’t quite stretch to Australia on this occasion at least one parkrunner, Damien from Castletown parkrun County Kildare did make it from overseas. Thanks for the advice about Dublin parkruns Damien. It’s great to see that our fledgling parkrun has already joined the long list of Blackpool attractions. Apologies to any tourists I missed.

Of the 151 participants 20 clubs were represented, 30 were Blackpool first timers and 49 recorded a new PB.

The full results and a complete event history can be found on the Blackpool parkrun Results Page.

Male placings:
Sam Purvis (SM20-24) (Unattached) was first over the line in 18:01 - first appearance.
Lee Barlow (VM45-49) of Wesham Road Runners AC, was second over the line in 18:22.
An unknown runner was third.

Female placings:
Daisy Seville (SW30-34) of Thornton Cleveleys, was first (21st overall) over the line in 22:19 - first time in 8 appearances.
Cathy Brady (VW45-49) (Unattached) was second (27th overall) over the line in 22:46.
Andrea Smith (VW50-54) of Blackpool, Wyre & Fylde AC, was third (31st overall) over the line in 23:13.

The three highest age grades were recorded by:
Nick Hume (VM55-59) – 78.07% for the time 20:22 (10th overall).
Lee Barlow (VM45-49) – 77.22% for the time 18:22 (second overall).
David Scoins (VM60-64) – 74.68% for the time 22:15 (20th overall).

The male record is held by Unknown ATHLETE who recorded a time of 16:08 on 11th February 2017 (event number 2).
The female record is held by Amelia BEAMAN who recorded a time of 18:39 on 8th April 2017 (event number 9).
The Age Grade course record is held by Maureen LANEY who recorded 90.83% (21:59) on 11th March 2017 (event number 5).

Blackpool parkrun started on 4th February 2017. Since then 1,983 participants have completed 5,568 parkruns covering a total distance of 27,840 km, including 1,474 new Personal Bests.

For the second consecutive week the volunteers weren’t thanked for their essential contribution by a forgetful RD. These unsung hi vis heroes must be recognised here. They were

George Kennedy • Ella Turner • Martin Palastanga • Jane Wade • Chris Wade • Nichola Griffiths • Michael O'Brien • Helen Atkinson • Alexander Shaw • Mark Gillatt • Stephen Dunstan • Martha Brown • Michael Mcshane • Chris Hammond • Katie Cox • Sabine Dunstan • Melanie Jones • Dave Armstrong

Without whom none of this magic happens.

See you next Saturday.


Blackpool parkrun 28

Blackpool parkrun 28

Blackpool parkrun started on 4th February 2017 and, following earlier “film themed” headings I was going to title this report as Event number 28 “28 Weeks later” and have loads of “Zombie” puns included. But then I remembered we have had two weeks in that period without runs and realised the only zombie was me…

Anyway, waking early before the alarm went off on the morning of 26th August 2017 and, leaving the boss to have a lie in, I jumped on my bike to check the course and make sure we were good. All was and no Zombies were seen (why would they be? I was at least a week late with that pun!). I returned home to wake the boss and collect Charlie (the little dog) to return to set up the route. Turns out I made enough noise for a dozen Zombies when I got up and I had woken her (and Charlie) and they were waiting for me…

The course was set up and marked in no time…Thanks to Mark for doing the marking (honest I will stop the puns soon!) and the 168 parkrunners arrived to run, jog or walk the course (no shuffling was noted but a few moans and groans across the finish line were). We had 46 first timers and 39 runners recorded new Personal Bests (the bell was ringing madly).

In my briefing I forgot to ask for a big thank you to the 17 volunteers who made it all possible (more proof I am the only Zombie about) so ”Thank-you all, it couldn’t happen without you”…

George Kennedy • Lynn Shaw • Jane Wade • Michael O’Brien • Jane West • Liam Ashworth • Helen Atkinson • Shaun Haynes • Paul White • Sarah Brown • Alexander Shaw • Mark Gillatt • Zachary Shaw • Martha Brown • Chris Hammond • Susan Ashton.

Check out the video from Chris and photos from Alex on our Social Media pages they are brilliant!!!

First finisher was Neil Smith in 16:45 – on his first appearance and Andrew Lawless of Team Pie, was second over the line in 18:44. First lady finisher was Natalie McCarron of Cumberland AC (9th overall) in 20:14 - another first appearance. Georgia Elizabeth Heath (JW11-14) of Sale Harriers Manchester, was second lady (10th overall) in 20:17 and
Nicola UNSWORTH of Wesham Road Runners AC, third lady (22nd overall) in 22:32. Excellent times and not a (Zombie) shuffle between them.

It’s not all about speed though it’s about finishing what you can in a time you can and seeing everyone finish was, as always, great. We had a couple of people unable to finish both laps but…we all started somewhere and it will be fantastic for us to be there to cheer you on when you get your PBs. Please come back and get them with us.

Hope to see you all again this
week and sorry again for the puns…I am just shuffling off for my tea now…

So…keep running…this is one Zombie who won’t catch you!

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