The Course

The course is 5000m (5K) long. The course is in the Countess of Chester Country Park, Chester. The course is run on a mixture of tarmac paths and trail paths. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

The Chester parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • When running, take care on uneven surfaces - whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other runners, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us. Health advice about running can be found at the excellent Runners' Medical Resource website (although this external website focuses on preparation for a race and does not describe parkrun events).
  • Remember to warm up before the run.
  • If you see a runner with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of runners on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • Runners wishing to run with a dog are welcome, but please keep the dog on a short lead or harness and under control throughout the event. Please also review the parkrun support page article about running with a dog at parkrun events.
  • Runners pushing buggies are also welcome, but please take extreme care of other runners around you. If possible start from the back of the field and try to keep to one side of the main body of runners.
  • While rare, Lyme Disease is present in areas where deer live, and occasionally passed to human's through infected ticks. See NHS Choices website for more about Lyme Disease, and how to deal with ticks.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Chester parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help athletes compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

The course starts on the path uphill of and beyond the large trees just north of the visitor car park. Heading first down to the "circle" at the south end of the park to turn right, you will then turn hard right at the next junction.

Follow the path bearing left at the next junction and after a short, sharp climb you will reach the path crossing where you will turn left.

Head straight on, all the way along the main tarmac path through two open gates. You will bend around to the left and head downhill to cross the brook, shortly after you turn left off the path onto a trail, through an open gate and across the grazing marsh - a section of undulating trail.

At the end of the trail you turn left onto a tarmac path which curves round to the right then leads you back alongside the brook. Turn left to cross the brook through an open gate and a short, sharp uphill through another open gate, to meet the main path again.

You will then turn left to complete another lap.

On reaching this point the second time you will turn right and follow the path heading straight down to the "circle" and a fast, downhill finish.

Facilities

Parking is available at 3 locations:
  1. The Hospital staff parking area on the right hand side of Countess Court.
  2. The Little Owl Pub on Cousens Way, opposite the entrance to Countess Court.
  3. The official Country Park parking area at the end of Countess Court and start of Valley Drive. This is limited to around 30 spaces.

Please be aware that others park users may wish to use the official Country Park parking. Please consider using the 2 alternatives listed above

Getting There

Location of start

The run starts on the path uphill of and beyond the large trees just north of the visitor car park.

Getting there by public transport

The nearest railway station is Bache. Bache is reached from Chester via Merseyrail services and takes 4 minutes. There are regular services on Saturday mornings. You will then follow the directions on foot to the Country Park.

Regular bus services leave the Bus Exchange in the centre of Chester and will drop you at the Little Owl stop on Countess Way - the Country Park entrance is on the other side of the road to the pub. Services 1, 1A and 2 will take you to the Country Park in around 20 minutes.

Additionally, a number 9 bus service goes from Foregate Street in Chester city centre and takes 9 minutes to get to the Countess of Chester Hospital where a short walk down Countess Way will reach the Country Park.

Getting there on foot

The nearest railway station is Bache, behind the Morrisons store on Mill Lane. Walk down Mill Lane and turn left until you reach the roundabout. Cross over the roundabout and follow Countess Way, (the A5480) and the Country Park is about a quarter of a mile on your right-hand side.

From Chester city centre, follow Northgate Street heading north until you reach the large roundabout, (Fountains Roundabout). Cross the roundabout and keep left, following Parkgate Road all the way down to a large roundabout. Turn right onto Countess Way and the Country Park is immediately on your left.

Getting there by road

From Chester town centre, follow the A5268, (ring road) to the Fountains Roundabout and onto the A5116 which will be signposted for the Hospital. Keep in the right-hand lane and follow Liverpool Road until you reach a major roundabout and Morrisons. Turn left here onto Countess Way, (A5480). The Country Park is a quarter of a mile on your right-hand side.

From the M53 (north) leave at J10 and turn right onto the A5117, or left if coming from the south. Follow the A5117 until you reach the A540. Turn left at this junction and go straight over the next roundabout. Follow the A540 all the way to the roundabout and turn left onto Countess Way, (A5480). The Country Park is immediately on your left.

From the M56 (east), exit the motorway at J10. Turn left onto the A540, Parkgate Road. Follow the A540 all the way to the roundabout and turn left onto Countess Way, (A5480). The Country Park is immediately on your left.

From the A55/A494 (North Wales), follow the A55 until merging onto the A494. Follow the A494 until leaving at the A540, signed for Hoylake and Chester. Turn right at this junction and go straight over the next roundabout. Follow the A540 all the way to the roundabout and turn left onto Countess Way, (A5480). The Country Park is immediately on your left.

For satnav please use postcode CH2 1UL.

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in the Little Owl Pub, which opens at 9:30am - please come and join us!