New Faces and Old Friends – by Matthew Slowe

The weather was against us; our venerable forecasters at the Met Office had warned us to expect constant rain from 9am. Thankfully we got away with persistent but slight drizzle. Despite that, 104 damp people finished our course taking in some muddy sports fields, Coogan's Hills and a rather slippery slope (isn't it a bit late for those, I hear you cry?).

Among them were some faces old and new. It's always great to see new people but it's equally lovely to see old friends returning.

  • Polly Adams, new to Canterbury, was running her 509th parkrun (wow!) and our first female finisher at 22:59.
  • Chris Keene, an old friend of this Run Director (he gave me my first job in this lovely town), was visiting from Brighton and clocked an impressive 23:27.
  • Matthew Trump returned to us on a visit and took 34 seconds off his Personal Best on his 99th parkrun ... nearly at that 100 milestone, well done Matthew :)
  • Sophie Man-Cheung swapped her trainers for a hi-viz and joined the ranks of the wonderful people who make Canterbury parkrun happen every week.

Canterbury parkrun – Event number 202 – 20th January 2018

This week 104 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 13 were first timers and 12 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 9 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 18 volunteers:

Wim VAN VUUREN • John WILKINS • Kevin SHANNON • Jane ELDER • Alex DAVIS • Glenn WILSON • Caroline WETHERILL • Abbi HAMILTON-HOPKINS • Sarah SLOWE • Matthew SLOWE • Marta TARANDA • Alan PROSSER • Caroline FULLMAN • Stephen HOLLANDS • Sophie MAN-CHEUNG • Mark GALE • Hannah WIFFEN • Iain SPINK

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Canterbury parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Phil HURST who recorded a time of 15:12 on 15th March 2014 (event number 1).
The female record is held by Alexandra MILLARD who recorded a time of 19:03 on 6th August 2016 (event number 125).
The Age Grade course record is held by Helen EBERLIN who recorded 85.86% (25:06) on 1st November 2014 (event number 33).

Canterbury parkrun started on 15th March 2014. Since then 3,274 participants have completed 18,412 parkruns covering a total distance of 92,060 km, including 3,136 new Personal Bests.

 

JANtastic by Caroline Wetherill

January can often seem a depressing month with the Christmas festivities done and dusted, nothing but a mouldy mince pie in the cupboard and don't even mention the cold, dark, damp mornings, so what a lovely surprise be greeted by so many smiling friendly faces ready to run, walk and volunteer their way round the Canterbury course this weekend. Amongst the cheery crew were 24 parkrunner newbies who braved the cold to achieve the ultimate goal of a parkrun 5k. Well done everybody, lovely to meet you and hope to see you again soon.

Our milestones this week saw two very dedicated parkrunners reaching fantastic goals and showing that parkrun has something to offer everyone. Harrison Foster J10 has been attending the Canterbury parkrun since 2015 with his family and has not only run the course on numerous occasions, he can often be found volunteering, This week he reached his 25th Volunteer role by popping on the orange tabard and being one of essential Barcode Scanners. Not only is Harrison a whiz at scanning, he has supported our Finish token role and marshalled on the course, oh and often runs at the Whitstable junior parkrun too. Pretty amazing for someone who's only just turned 10! Congratulations Harrison on a brilliant achievement!

Our second milestone this week, was Wim Van Vuuran one of our regular faces on the course who reached his 100th parkrun on Saturday. Wim has been running at Canterbury since 2014 and always has a friendly smile and words of encouragement for those around him. A natural on the course; well he has run Canterbury 83 times, Wim can often be found amongst our speedier runners making the course look easy for those looking on. What an amazing achievement Wim! Looking forward to seeing the new t-shirt!

Although not one for statistics, I was informed this week of a high level of female finishers completing the course and coming in one after the other around the 27 / 28 min mark. Having a little count up (I'm sure there's some app that could do this for me) almost 70 runners this week were female. Now I 'm not suggesting all our runners are usually men but we often find our female finishers a bit more spaced out so well done ladies, let's keep the running up!

As always, a huge thank you to my superb volunteers, I was inundated with support from all angles, the notice board in the pavilion, the parkrun office email and, as if that wasn't generous enough, I had at least 3 more people offer their volunteering skills on the day, fantastic! We are extremely grateful to anyone who can offer their time in any way, shape or form so please get in touch. We can't guarantee there'll be cake (although quite often there is) but you can be sure of a fun morning amongst some of the loveliest people you could meet.

Finally a special thank you to the lovely, and very generous Paul Thompson who has kindly donated a loud hailer to the Canterbury parkrun. Looking forward to trying this out at my next Run Director stint. Thank you Paul, you are a star!

[Ed's note: Paul is a regular at Canterbury parkrun and we are all humbled by such an amazing and generous offer. On behalf of everyone at Canterbury parkrun, THANK YOU PAUL! :)]

Until next week, some stats for you...

This week 147 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 24 were first timers and 17 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 7 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 18 volunteers:

Keith GILBERT • Andrea PEETT • Mike SOLE • John WILKINS • Emma MCCABE • Julie COX • Kevin SHANNON • Glenn WILSON • Caroline WETHERILL • Jon VANN • James FOSTER • Harrison FOSTER • Gill LAMPARD • Marta TARANDA • Ken DAVIS • Roibeárd Ó HARRACHTÁIN • Mark GALE • Claire ALFREY

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Canterbury parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Phil HURST who recorded a time of 15:12 on 15th March 2014 (event number 1).
The female record is held by Alexandra MILLARD who recorded a time of 19:03 on 6th August 2016 (event number 125).
The Age Grade course record is held by Helen EBERLIN who recorded 85.86% (25:06) on 1st November 2014 (event number 33).

Canterbury parkrun started on 15th March 2014. Since then 3,261 participants have completed 18,308 parkruns covering a total distance of 91,540 km, including 3,124 new Personal Bests.

 

200 parkruns at Canterbury – by Louisa Cox

Canterbury's 200th Parkrun!

 

After the huge record-breaking turnout for the New Year's Day run I was nervously awaiting Saturday and my first parkrun as run director. Finally it came round and I got up the earliest I had in a while to get to the pavilion for 8. Today was a special day for Canterbury parkrun – it was our 200th event! We had a great turnout this Saturday – 149 runners so not bad for another soggy parkrun!

Although another challenge for me – shouting loud enough for everyone to hear me with the speech at the beginning. Thanks to all the volunteers who helped support, a big thank you to James who guided me through the whole thing! I was very nervous and I hope it didn't show too much.

Runners braved continuing squelchy conditions on our hilly course with numbers up by 31 on the same time last year. 149 runners in all, ranging from an amazing debut by Libby Slowe aged only 4 years and 1 day, to Ronald Smith in the VM75-79 age category. A big welcome to the 13 newcomers to parkrun and 6 running at Canterbury for the first time.

A special congratulations also to Steve Ansell who has completed his 100th parkrun today, all 100 of them at Canterbury!

A quick note from me, it was great to work with Louisa this Saturday and I'm sure 
you'd all agree she did a fantastic job taking on our 200th run and doing it 
justice. Well done on your first run director stint Louisa, and thanks from all
the core team at Canterbury.
James


 

If you have any stories you would like to share about your experience at Canterbury parkrun, please let us know by emailing us at canterburyoffice@parkrun.com. For the latest information on Canterbury parkrun, follow us on Twitter @cantersparkrun or find us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/canterburyparkrun)


 

This week 149 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 19 were first timers and 13 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 10 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 22 volunteers:

Keith GILBERT • Simon COX • John WILKINS • Wendy SMITH • Emma MCCABE • Julie COX • Glenn WILSON • Caroline WETHERILL • Stuart GIBSON • Neil KAD • James MCCREA • Rachel MCCREA • Louisa COX • James FOSTER • Harrison FOSTER • Sarah DENSON • Steve ANSELL • Kathleen HOLLANDS • Alan PROSSER • Jethro KIMBER • Mark GALE • Vicky TURNER

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Canterbury parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Phil HURST who recorded a time of 15:12 on 15th March 2014 (event number 1).
The female record is held by Alexandra MILLARD who recorded a time of 19:03 on 6th August 2016 (event number 125).
The Age Grade course record is held by Helen EBERLIN who recorded 85.86% (25:06) on 1st November 2014 (event number 33).

Canterbury parkrun started on 15th March 2014. Since then 3,237 participants have completed 18,161 parkruns covering a total distance of 90,805 km, including 3,107 new Personal Bests.

 

Uplifting experience – by Ricki Slowe

Running 5km in the rain at 10.30am on New Years Day; dodging puddles and squelching mud as best as one can when 250 runners all squish over the same parts of grass multiple times; finding your shoes and socks soak up the muddy water, becoming a seriously soggy sponge so stupidly soon after starting... none of that sounds even remotely appealing to so many, myself very much included. But I did it, and I loved it, because it wasn’t about the run; it was about the people.

It was running alongside and encouraging a super little lad, who had already run 5km at 9am, in Whitstable. It was supporting and cheering on other runners, regardless of the speed at which their legs chose to carry them. It was seeing people I haven’t seen for a while, feeling a buzz from cheering them on and the smile it produced every time; it was hearing people do the same for me, too. There were the high-fives, the “well done”s, and the nods of appreciation from those focussed and in the zone, concentrating on the same target for every runner - get to the end.

It was the support and encouragement of others, to all runners, and that fabulous feeling of crossing the finish line to cheering and applause from a crowd of supporters, stood at the end despite the pouring rain. It was the feeling of accomplishment and achievement, shared with so many other people who had all come together. It was seeing so many things and so many people that made me smile; sharing happiness and care pre and post running; appreciating the marshals and other volunteers who gave their time, stood outside in the rain, cheering on all 250 runners passing them on multiple occasions.

There were those who did the pre race set up, the finishing tokens, the barcode scanning, the timing of each runner crossing the line. There were those supporting others who were struggling or hurting; the run director; the passers by who just wanted to say “hi” or “well done”. Those who ran with others to help them get through; those who ran their first parkrun after such a long and frustrating injury lay-off; those who are 23 weeks pregnant, running a first parkrun, with her husband as the super supportive running partner, despite his ability to run the distance in a time getting on for 15 mins faster. And of course, there’re those who made the teas, coffees and produced biscuits and chocolates(!) for post race socialisation and enjoyment.

It was the familiar faces, the fun, the smiles, the laughs, the enjoyment from spending time with so many people who all come together to share their time with me and you; the catch ups and the ‘being able to recognise just how much of an incredible year 2017 was for me’.

It was parkrun. It was family. And it was great!

Thank you all for being a massive part of such an uplifting start to 2018.

 

The parkrun Spirit – by Glenn Wilson

Wow!!! What a start to 2018!! Who would have thought in the pouring rain, 250 of you would turn out on New Year's Day to run Coogan's Hills and another 20 or so of you would stand in such wet conditions to make this event the success it was?

Our previous best course attendance record was 175, set a year ago. I don't think anyone expected such a huge number to turn up today. And what's more, I think everyone wore a smile despite the inclement weather.

When I stood on the bank and asked for a show of hands of those who had run Whistable parkrun earlier in the morning, I think 80% of you put your hands up. On asking how many of you ran BETWEEN Whitstable and Canterbury, I saw around 20 hands go up. There could have been more, but the loud haler succumbed to the wet conditions just as I bellowed out my introductions, so not sure everyone heard my brief. But well done to everyone doing a double and also, well done to one person who set off at 2am on his bike to make sure he could do the double at Whistable / Canterbury. That was Andy Howard, who had cycled for 6 hours from Forest Green to Whitstable and then to Canterbury to complete runs 302 and 303. Bravo to everyone on your efforts and determination to be at Canterbury today.

Parking was always going to be tricky so I was very grateful to Roy Gooderson (from the Canterbury Harriers), who navigated parkrunners swiftly and safely to an alternative car park. Roy also acted as my eyes and ears on the course, with so many runners, he was able to cycle to incidents quickly and keep me informed. Thank you Roy for offering to help today and for taking some of the pressure off me.

Likewise, the grass bank proved a little tricky, so I was also grateful to Emma Vaughan and Matthew Slowe for helping runners safely navigate their way up and down the bank and avoid landing on their bums in a muddy pile. Thank you both of you.

Some special shout outs also to John Wilkins and Emily Griffiths who played their part in assisting a distressed runner; Georgina Hamilton-Hopkins for ensuring we all had a coffee or tea (or squash); Hannah Wiffen, Caz Wetherill and Sarah Slowe for sorting all our finish tokens and to all the other amazing volunteers who stood in the torrential rain, always smiling and always cheering. You made 2018 the best start to the year for so many people.

108 of you had never run Canterbury parkrun before. I saw a number of apricot shirts proclaiming visits from Basildon, Basingstoke, Great Lines and many others. I hope you enjoyed our course, and plan to visit us again. I also saw that 13 of you had never done a parkrun before today! So welcome to the parkrun family and we look forward to seeing you through 2018.

We had another visitor today... Wonky!!! I feel privileged to have had the parkrun mascot present on New Year's Day at Canterbury parkrun. It felt like a true honour. Thank you Wonky for coming to see us today!

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Next Saturday (6 January) is our 200th parkrun!!! In all the excitement of Christmas and the New Year, we have almost forgotten that this landmark has crept up on us. Why not come along and help us celebrate!

HAPPY NEW YEAR  to everyone associated with Canterbury parkrun!!

See you again soon!

GW

Here are the stats for today...

This week 250 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 108 were first timers and 14 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 39 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 21 volunteers:

John WILKINS • Roy GOODERSON • Julie COX • Jane ELDER • Elaine VAUGHAN • David IRELAND • Paul THOMPSON • Emma VAUGHAN • Glenn WILSON • Caroline WETHERILL • James MCCREA • Louisa COX • James FOSTER • Georgina HAMILTON-HOPKINS • Gill LAMPARD • Sarah SLOWE • Matthew SLOWE • Alan PROSSER • Paula SHILLING • Mark GALE • Hannah WIFFEN

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Canterbury parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Phil HURST who recorded a time of 15:12 on 15th March 2014 (event number 1).
The female record is held by Alexandra MILLARD who recorded a time of 19:03 on 6th August 2016 (event number 125).
The Age Grade course record is held by Helen EBERLIN who recorded 85.86% (25:06) on 1st November 2014 (event number 33).

Canterbury parkrun started on 15th March 2014. Since then 3,218 participants have completed 18,012 parkruns covering a total distance of 90,060 km, including 3,094 new Personal Bests.

 

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