Cranleigh parkrun – #188 – 14th April 2018

Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of mist
Strode the eighty-four
“Forward, the parkrunners!
Charge for the end!” the RD said:
Onto the hill of Death
Strode the eighty-four.

Mud to right of them,
Mud to left of them,
Mud in front of them
Squelched and sucked;
Cheered on with hoots and hollas,
Boldly they strode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of hell
Strode the eighty-four.

(with (many) apologies to Lord Tennyson)

Well, it wasn’t quite the charge of the Light Brigade into the Valley of Death, but it was another battle of wills over an energy sapping course this weekend at Cranleigh’s parkrun.

Hopes of a dry hard run plummeted faster than Arsenal’s chances of winning the league as the assembled crowd of fearless runners and joggers realised that a week of grey skies hadn’t changed the course much. There was a lively discussion with the run director as to whether we actually needed a lifeguard more than the defibrillator.

However, as they say (who ‘they’??) the sun does shine on the righteous. As the valiant parkrunners neared the end of their outing the sun (ask granny, she can probably remember what that was) – gently pulled aside the last of the autumn mist (in April???) and revealed our course in all its rural glory.

It was nice to see so many people gathered around the finish after the run, revelling in the lovely weather and the great company. Of course, that gathering was helped by Harry Charlton providing a cake to celebrate his hundredth run. Impressively, it turned out that Harry had made the cake (not, as Caroline stated – his wife!). Delicious it was too, and it was only a shame that transporting it in on a motorbike had turned the 100 decoration into something like 1@g++. Harry, during his 60 runs here at Cranleigh, has managed to clip 5 minutes off his initial time, and I reckon he has shed 5 lbs for every 20 runs (and I hope that doesn’t get me into trouble for slimshaming).…

Congratulations also to Steven Insua-Cao who reached his 50 today. Steven has managed an impressive top ten finish in all bar eight of his Cranleigh runs and has done well in promoting the excellent Guildford Escape rooms with his fetching T-shirts.

Out on the course Steven managed to keep the front runners in sight to come in third. Well out in front was a comfortable looking Jon Heasman managing his second first place in 25 runs at Cranleigh. Robert Bryan popped over from Eastleigh for his first appearance at Cranleigh, and a well-judged second place to celebrate his amazing 291st parkrun.

The women/girls were well represented in the top of the field. Young Juliette Small made one of her occasional appearances and cantered home in first place. The ever-young Abi Truelove ignored advice to take it easy on the first lap and – partly dragged round by Jamie Rushworth – clocked up a good second place, with Lucy Tucker forsaking Horsham to come in a strong third and tenth overall.

Despite the mud it was pleasing to see there were three PBs. Sarah Burge continued her remarkable sequence with yet another post-buggy best – not exactly marathon tapering! Well done to recent recruits Abigail Bateman and Victoria Arnold who also recorded PBs.

We were delighted to welcome tourist from Guildford, Woking (a pair of Pyrford Puffers!) and York. And hello and well done to Karl Rivers on his first ever parkrun – it gets easier Karl…

Nice to see Penny Green putting in an appearance after the third longest spell of flu in the western hemisphere. Alison Mckenzie continues to mix her sun runs (when away with BA) with a more challenging Cranleigh run – this time bringing daughter Hannah along who fought off stitch as well as mud to put in a solid run.

Also good to see young Daniel Elms making a return to the course after a bit of a gap – and completing a second lap when he only anticipated doing a half. Other young runners put in some sterling performances – showing that lack of power in the mud can be overcome by determination – and being light enough to float across the swamp! Take a bow Isaac, Jessica and Oliver Jones, Aimee Voogd (an impressive fourth in the females), Abigail Vincent, Elsa Wooltorton and Poppy Fisher.

We saw lots of other sterling performances – with every one of the eighty-four finishers putting in an amazing effort to plough their way round - personal best or not. On the formal effort grades we saw Lynne Harris top the board, with the slightly younger Juliette Small and the visiting Robert Bryan chasing her in.

We are now getting into the race season – it would be tricky to salute all of our parkrunners who are doing longer runs – but just a mention for Emma de Vos and fellow sunflowers and fitstuff off to Brighton.

And of course best of luck to our London contingent, Graham Finlay, Sara Burge, Julia Finill, Helen Bryce and of course the legendary ever-present Chris Finill. Also have fun Jane Hopwood and Abi Truelove volunteering at the London finish.

Talking of salutes – well done to Jake Wightman for his bronze in the 1500m at the commonwealths. That burst on the last lap obviously reflected the benefit of his visits to Cranleigh and his efforts to keep ahead of the thundering horde of Cranleigh parkrunners (and out of the mud).

The final salute goes to our volunteers of course, The run happens every week, apparently just like that, but actually because of the efforts of those volunteers – which this week included Julia Finill, David Andrews (speedy results – must have gone round the golf course in a quick 71), Caroline Todman, Carlyn Angus, Deborah Riseley, Martyn (set-up) Greaves, Louise and Tom Bryant, Geraldine Williams, Andy Harris, John Green, Peter Crummett, Jane Hopwood, Annabelle Hepworth and Adam Newman.

A special mention to volunteers Emma De Vos and young Rupert De Vos – Rupert was awarded the gold medal for the best marshal on the course – beating off others who tried hard with music and flashing fog lights but apparently did not match his enthusiasm.

On a final note – if you were wondering what was happening to the T shirts – have you seen the news release at

And on a final final note – a week of glorious sun is promised – so next week possibly a run report, not a met office analysis of the depth of the m*d!

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

The male record is held by Bradley GOATER who recorded a time of 15:08 on 6th May 2017 (event number 137).
The female record is held by Kate DREW who recorded a time of 19:21 on 1st July 2017 (event number 145).
The Age Grade course record is held by Susan WIGHTMAN who recorded 91.34% (19:49) on 15th July 2017 (event number 147).

Cranleigh parkrun started on 4th October 2014. Since then 2,545 participants have completed 12,980 parkruns covering a total distance of 64,900 km, including 2,217 new Personal Bests.


Cranleigh ‘bogrun’ #186

By Tim Gray

Well nobody promised us a flat dry parkrun – and after reading last week’s report we knew it would be muddy. Even so I think it’s fair to say what we got was;

“An area of wet muddy ground that is too soft to support a heavy body.” – which is to say a bog, and I have a heavy enough body to know this whilst my son skipped lightly, and less deeply than I!

It was almost the toughest mudder said Graham Finley, but nobody drowned – so in many ways a success then. By the way well done for your successful Cranleigh 21 Graham.

Well yes I’d say so it was friendly, people smiled and had fun, even the man I saw heading back to the start with his shoe sucked apart by the bog! I note at least 2 other runners (including the awesome Rupert aged 6) had their shoes pulled from their feet by the mud.

‘Snorkels required’, middle field, and top of the hill field were the hardest, said Kate Mason, and it was the muddiest I've ever run it, said Alison McKenzie.

Remarkably 3 hardy souls still managed PB’s;

Michael PAYNE

Richard PENSON
Surrey Fire & Rescue Running Section

Annette LEE

Very well done indeed you three!

Unfortunately no one fell on my corner said Andrew who was marshalling – a fellow tourist who was kind enough to guide us in as we were finding the parkrun just before 9. And in fact I have to say I didn’t see anyone who had gone over at all.

Lovely to hear all the volunteer names read out at the briefing – a very nice touch. Thanks also to Kate tail walking who kept my wife and daughter company, which was much appreciated.

Trail shoes were a real advantage – as bog standard road shoes were not (I’m told) great fun to run in.

Nobody said they had a milestone, but actually it was Edward Hoy’s 10th run as a junior – well done Edward.

There were a few of us visitors;

Frimley Lodge parkrun
Teignbridge Trotters

Penrhyn parkrun
Steve WARD

Roundshaw Downs parkrun /Lloyd junior parkrun
Marie GRAY
Chiltern Church Runners

Roundshaw Downs parkrun
Chiltern Church Runners

Roundshaw Downs parkrun /Lloyd junior parkrun
Matthew GRAY
Chiltern Church Runners

Roundshaw Downs parkrun
Chiltern Church Runners

Richmond parkrun

Bushy parkrun
Denise EARL

Bushy parkrun
Deborah WAY

What a fab way to spend the Saturday morning of Easter – I could not resist putting on my t shirt with a picture of a Cross, the words ‘country kit’ on to mark the occasion. Though I think run the ‘race’ with perseverance would have been a good choice as well.

Also one little new touch this week from parkrun central – check the parkrun club column and you will notice that as well as any applicable 10, 50, 100, 250 there is now also room made for the 25 volunteer badge!

Andy Bryant asked me to say bog a lot, I hope I’ve done enough Andy.


Cranleigh parkrun 24th March 2018

Thank you to Matt Whyman, author of our latest run report.

“Don’t go to Cranleigh.” That was the advice I received throughout much of last year when considering some parkrun tourism away from my home venue of Horsham. “It’s like a bog in places and there’s a massive hill that will take away your will to live. And you have to do it twice.”

Coming from a runner in a 100 T-shirt, this sounded like a warning I shouldn’t ignore. So, I avoided it and ticked off the likes of lovely, tarmac-carpeted Tilgate and elevation-averse Worthing instead. I always returned to Horsham, which offers a mixture of path and grass around the local park, until the wet weather early last winter forced it to relocate to a temporary venue in Southwater.

As Cranleigh was a little bit closer, I figured I’d have a crack at it. I mean, how muddy can a parkrun be? Well, as I learned later that morning, muddy enough to be ordered to remove all running gear at the door before stepping back into the house.

As a Cranleigh visitor, you never forget your first time.

As that run got underway, I remember nobody actually moving forwards for a moment
despite furiously turning their legs.

It was muddy. Comically muddy, slippery, sticky and claggy. I lost the will to live on the hill, twice, but I also finished with a sense of accomplishment and elation that I’ve never matched elsewhere.

Above all, Cranleigh parkrun is great fun, with runners and volunteers who share the same hardy spirit and hold it dear to their hearts. Which is why I have continued to come back throughout the winter, and no longer feel like a tourist.

This week saw 87 runners set off across ground like wet cement in places, with eleven first timers no doubt wondering if it could get any worse as they crossed the top of the middle field. Well, you all finished – and here’s hoping you come back for more.

Quickest over the line this week was Ben Osborn (18:46), followed by Matthew Smith (19:31). Karen Bryant was first female home (24:27) and then Emily Smith (25:47).

Congratulations to the six superstars who achieved PBs, and commiserations to the three UNKNOWN runners who took places 4, 5 & 6 and then no doubt frantically patted their pockets in vain for their barcodes. And, of course, huge thanks to the volunteers who made Cranleigh parkrun #185 the perfect way to start the weekend:

David ANDREWS, Tom BRYANT, Louise BRYANT, Helen BRYCE, Paula ELMS, Julia FINILL, Martyn GREAVES, Annabelle HEPWORTH, Stephanie LAWSON, Corey LYNCH, Adam NEWMAN, Megan NICHOLAS, Caroline Wendy TODMAN, Abi TRUELOVE, and Matt WHYMAN.


Who turned the thermostat down?!

As we all made our way to Cranleigh parkrun #184 this morning, the promised Beast from the East v2 was well and truly in force, with biting winds and a flurry of snow making its way around the Bruce McKenizie memorial field.

I have just realized that it’s Paddy’s Day as well, so top o’ the morning to ya! Read on to hear all about the craic at this week’s event!

As we all huddled around at the start area trying to keep our limbs moving, we welcomed a few tourists from Bournemouth (Lisa Thomas) and Gloucestershire. We hope you enjoyed our course!

It really was a ‘grit your teeth’ event for all the runners. Timekeeper Andrew got us away on time and immediately the arctic winds (according to the app it felt like minus 4) were blowing sideways throughout most of the course, and they were particularly strong up the hill. This did make for a nice tail wind on the descent though…you have to take the positives where you can!

But whereas us runners were keeping (relatively) warm whilst on the move, the amazing volunteers were standing in the cold. So a HUGE thank you to them all this week and I hope you thawed out over a nice warm coffee later on.

The 16 helpers who gave up their time to make this event’s run happen were: Adam NEWMAN  •  Amanda READER  •  Andrew FERRIER  •  Carlyn ANGUS  •  Caroline Wendy TODMAN  •  Corey LYNCH  •  David ANDREWS  •  Helen BRYCE  •  John MCKENNA  •  Louise BRYANT  •  Martin BAMFORD  •  Martyn GREAVES  •  Stephanie LAWSON  •  Stephen DEASLEY  •  Tom BRYANT • John GREEN

We are always looking for new volunteers at Cranleigh. It’s a great way to meet new people and give something back to this amazing event! If you would like to help out but don't want to miss a run, don't forget that you can tail walk, set the event up, close it down or even put pen to paper and write the run report. Email to book your slot today, or opt in to receive the volunteer emails!

Well done to Clare Charlton for running your first ever parkrun today! We hope you come back again, and I’m sure the conditions will be better next time.

Amazingly, there were 2 PBs recorded this week. Congratulations to Tom Winfrow and Gary Holder – great work in the mud, both of you!

A huge pat on the back to everyone who finished the run today. Surely spring is on its way soon? Personally I am longing for some dry ground and sunshine so that we can enjoy our beautiful course at its best…In the meantime, happy running and see you next week!


Male placings:

At the front of the pack, our first finisher was Christopher Peck (VM35-39) from Waverley Harriers in 20:33. This was his third appearance at Cranleigh, and his third time coming first place.

Second finisher was Paul Quinnell (VM35-39) IN 22:21. This was Paul’s seventh run at Cranleigh, and his highest gender finishing position to date.
Third finisher saw Steven Insua-Cao cross the line in 23:13. This was Steven’s 43rd run at Cranleigh, and also his highest gender finishing position. Well done!

Female placings:

First female over the line today was Abi Truelove (VW40-44) in 24:54 – her second time being first lady in her last 2 runs at Cranleigh. Well done on your 70th run at Cranleigh today!

Karen Bryant from Cranleigh Runners wasn’t too far behind Abi, crossing the line in second place at 25:11. This was her 34th run at Cranleigh, and her third time in the top 5 female finishes at her last 3 events here.

Our third female finisher in 28:22 today was Fitstuff runner Caroline Sams. Well done on completing your first run at Cranleigh today, and your 194th Parkrun overall. Not long until 200!

The following runners recorded the best Age Grade scores:

Raymond Grue (VM65-69) was graded 66.41% for the time 26:15 (19th overall).
Christopher Peck (VM35-39) was graded 64.56% for the time of 20:33 (1st overall). Karen Bryant (VW45-49) was graded 63.07% for the time of 25:11 (14th overall)

This week there were 60 runners, of whom 4 were first timers and 2 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives from 14 different athletics clubs took part.

Cranleigh parkrun started on 4th October 2014, and since then 1,256 different runners, including participants from 162 athletics clubs, have completed 4,853 runs covering a total distance of 24,265 km, and there have been 1,029 new Personal Bests.

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


Cranleigh parkrun #182 – 3rd March 2018

Well that was a bit different!

With the arrival of The Beast from the East this week, there was plenty of chat between the core volunteer team as the snow started to fall. Could the event go ahead safely on Saturday?

Despite the hill being used extensively for sledging on Friday, when Ian arrived at the crack of dawn on Saturday to mark the course, it was very much runnable; the snow was not particularly deep, although it was very crisp and quite even.

Cranleigh parkrun 3rd March 2018

Milling around by the start as we always do, we checked the local cancellations to see how our neighbours were faring. Horsham, Woking, Reigate, Rushmoor and Tilgate all cancelled. Guildford did a last-minute pitch inspection like ours and decided to go ahead.

Across the country, it was an interesting picture. There were only 97 parkruns taking place and a whopping 409 cancellations, resulting in a total UK parkrun population of 14,624 runners - the lowest number since March 2013!

With 57 finishers at Cranleigh, we ranked 80th of the 97 parkruns that took place; Bushy Park had a smaller than usual turnout, still an impressive 739 runners but 472 fewer than last Saturday! Ranked 97th for attendance was Lower Drummans and their 12 runners.

1,910 volunteers turned out in the snowy conditions too. Here at Cranleigh, we thank Chris FINILL, Julia FINILL, David ANDREWS (RD), Martin BAMFORD, Ian HELM, Paula ELMS, Corey LYNCH, Helen BRYCE, Andrew HARRIS, Tom BRYANT, John GREEN, Peter CRUMMETT, Abi TRUELOVE and Megan NICHOLAS for their sterling work.

Of the 57 people who ran, jogged and walked the course this week, 2 were first timers and 2 recorded new Personal Bests.

A warm (!) welcome to Rondo SELWYN and Ethel WHYMAN on their first times at Cranleigh, and congratulations to Sara BURGE (that marathon training must be paying off) and Joe ELDRIDGE for setting a new PB in the snow!

Well done also to Lucy CUMMING on running her 50th parkrun - a brilliant milestone, especially for a junior.

First over the line this week was Oliver GOSDEN in 20:06, followed by Rondo SELWYN in 20:10 and Jon HEASMAN in 20:36.

First lady home was Abi TRUELOVE in 23:59, followed by Lucy TUCKER in 24:27 and Aimee VOOGD in 25:24.

Cranleigh parkrun 3rd March 2018

Full results as always can be found on the Cranleigh parkrun results page.

Cranleigh parkrun started on 4th October 2014. Since then 2,502 participants have completed 12,564 parkruns covering a total distance of 62,820 km, including 2,198 new Personal Bests.

We'll be back next Saturday morning for another free, timed 5k run, jog or walk in the beautiful Knowle Park - do join us then!

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