Slightly late this week

Oh dear, what can I say: last weekend was a bit of a sociable one and so I didn’t get round to writing this. As they say ‘better late than never’ so this week’s is late and anyway, it’s a bit of a buy one get one free as I’m not around tomorrow. In fact, if anyone fancies having the parkrun pen and pad please do either respond to this message on Facebook or email the office and I am more than happy to pass the pen on.

Last Saturday marked the end of a season. It was the Bromley Schools Cross Country competition and so we had the last week of the very enthusiastic parents.  I nearly offered one of them some Strepsils! I don’t think they read ‘View from the back’ as I did mention the congestion caused by their numbers on the starting avenue as last week was no different from the previous few.

I'm not sure if this is of any significance but we had a lower turn out than usual with only 292 people lined up at some random point at the park. I say random point at the park. As you’ll know we have found a lovely one lap route but Bromley Schools put paid to that last week so Chris Balmer very kindly found a 1K lap and made us do it three times......which I hated. But I didn’t bother trying to find a new route to I need to get over myself.  Now, I may whinge a bit about the very enthusiastic parents but you can’t deny they have produced some beautiful runners. As Dave Cook, Ann McMahon (who actually had her barcode) and I were pottering around we were lapped by teenagers who really looked like they weren’t making an effort but still did the run in under 19 mins!

There were 37 first timers at Crystal Palace last week of which 10 were brand new fresh out of the wrapper shiny runners. I was chatting to two at the end: Adam Casey and Louise Ingrams. Adam is a regular Marathon runner and Louise is his partner. I asked them what brought them along to parkrun and Adam said that Louise had suggested they didn’t really do enough together and so Adam suggested they sign up for parkrun. Really Adam, there are so many many things you can have suggested so well done you for suggesting the best! Louise -you will LOVE this way to start your weekend, I look forward to seeing you next week.

An astonishing 28 ran/walked/jogged/crawled or hopped around the three laps but we will never know who they were: if they were tourists, first timers or got PBs as they didn’t have their barcodes. How can you live with yourself,  unless you’re Ann, of course who makes a habit of leaving her barcode at home....weirdo.

As ever, stats are available from this.

Crystal Palace parkrun
Event number 379
10th March 2018

This week 292 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 37 were first timers and 5 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 28 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 15 volunteers:

Brian CLEMENTS • Susannah SIMPSON • Michael WOODWARD • Tom WILSON • Barry GRAHAM • Michele GOLDEN • Alex SINGHGOLDEN • Sidney Ansell MCINTOSH • Chris BALMER • Barbara KOPCZYNSKA • Sharon MARTIN • Neil JEFFRIES • Piers BROMLEY • Julie LETTS • Clare DAVIS

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

The female record is held by Justina HESLOP who recorded a time of 17:23 on 14th January 2012 (event number 77).
The male record is held by Nicholas TORRY who recorded a time of 15:26 on 1st July 2017 (event number 344).
The Age Grade course record is held by Ros TABOR who recorded 90.93% (23:20) on 22nd April 2017 (event number 334).

Crystal Palace parkrun started on 29th May 2010. Since then 8,177 participants have completed 55,645 parkruns covering a total distance of 278,225 km, including 9,598 new Personal Bests.






A parallel parkrun universe

Now, if I'm going to be honest I should admit I was feeling slightly fragile when  I arrived at our beautiful mountainous park and thought that either I was still asleep or  I had arrived in a parallel parkrun universe.  The avenue of trees where we have our start and finish line appeared to have become a warm up area for an Olympic event: hundreds (possible poetic licence but as my sister Josie Bate (Kingston parkrun) who is a journalist always says 'don't let the facts get in the way of a good story'!) of those super fit Bromley teenagers stretching, warming up and just being generally everywhere. I did feel a bit sorry for park users who (whisper this) weren't there for parkrun.  I know, I know, it's really hard to get your head around but I have heard there are people who don't do parkrun on a Saturday morning. And whilst I pity them their lack of a decent way to start a Saturday I, grudgingly, admit they should be allowed to use the park anyway. Fat chance this morning if they wanted to go from Thicket Road to the playground!

Fear not as they will only be with us for a few more weeks as they will have done their trials for the mini marathon and then won't bother with us anymore. Which also means their very 'enthusiastic' parents won't be there either.  To be honest I didn't actually hear the aforementioned parents, I'm far to slow for them to still be on the route when I'm going by.  But loads of people told me that if I 'encouraged' Alex, like they 'encouraged' at their children, he would be sub-19 by now, although as Laura Tough (very very proud Mum of Daniel who got a fabulous PB of 25:39) pointed out, I would need a megaphone as Alex is nowhere near me when we're running. And anyway, I can't actually breathe, run and talk, as the lovely Dave Cook who ran with me today will testify. Thanks Dave, you got me to run faster than last week.

Of course parkrun is not about running fast and today we had 396 people line up at the start. It was a beautiful, sunny (and dare I say slightly warm) day and those who planned to run, hop, crawl, walk or be pulled by dogs were all excitedly waiting to hear Tom's opening intro but he couldn't find the megaphone so we all just stood there waiting until the people at the front set off. He was talking, I could see him standing on a bench and his mouth and jaw were moving but I have no idea if he was saying anything of value.

Obviously, with 396 people there were going to be a few people who weren't familiar with our super duper one lap route, in fact there were only 43 of them/you. Welcome: if Carling did parkrun it would be at Crystal Palace! Sixteen people were fresh out of the wrapper, wrinkle free parkrunners.  Welcome to the best way to start a Saturday!! Come back next week.  So that means 27 people were tourists: welcome to you too but I do wonder why some of you have waited so long to join us. I mean, David Ransom, you've done 117 parkruns, been to Tooting and Brockwell Park numerous times but today was your first time at ours; I just know you'll be back! Andrew Tutt - you're a wise man; you usually run at Orpington but you chose today to join the 50th club at our parkrun, well done! I really wish I had met David Limbrick who ran his 317th parkrun today but joined us for the first time. What kept you David? Liverpool isn't that far away!!

We may have had other tourists but I will never know as we had 32 people who ran without a barcode. Only 31 of them were real 'unknowns' as Ann McMahon was one of them. I'm beginning to think Ann deliberately doesn't bring her barcode and I have decided to name and shame her (or maybe just get one for her) until she remembers. In fact, she gave me a terrible moral dilemma this morning.  I finished and was given token 348 and as I went off to get scanned Ann gave me her token (306) saying she didn't have her barcode and asking me to 'chuck it in the bucket'. So, what was I going to do?? I mentioned my dilemma to Clare Davis who said 'we trust you to make the right decision, Michele'. Look at the stats to see what I did. Anyway, Ann turns up most weeks and hardly ever brings her barcode. She registered for parkrun in 1903 but has apparently only run 31 times. #DFYB

Onto the PBs. I've already mentioned Daniel Tough. A few months ago he kindly offered to run with me but actually couldn't run at my pace, it was impossible for him to run that slowly, he's 7 and a half. Seventy-one other people got a PB today, maybe those Bromley teenagers dragged them along! Samuel Harper was one of them and how lovely to get a PB on your 100th parkrun! Well done Samuel. Harrison Shaw who runs in the JM10 category went sub 23 for the first time today. Well done Harrison, you are definitely one to watch! And in something rather creepy Ed Greig got a PB today of 19:06. Ed has run 8 parkruns at Crystal Palace and both his best gender position and best finishing position are 8th! Stop now, Ed, I think you're ahead of the game!!

Now, regular readers of 'view from the injury bench' will know that I ran for a long time with Penny D'Arcy-Graham when she was pregnant. She's Bob and Chrissie Bell's daughter and Bea Cottrill's sister. Anyway, four weeks ago Penny gave birth to a gorgeous baby boy who we started calling Baby Bell, which is well known, to anyone with children, as a cheese. I'm delighted to say that today Lysander D'Arcy-Graham made his first appearance at Crystal Palace parkrun. To be fair he slept through it but there is hope for him yet!

So, another Saturday draws to a close.  If you've read this far I'm grateful! if you were hoping to see the stats you'll be disappointed but there is a link on this page so do click on that. I'm not around next week so any volunteers for the parkrun pen please get in touch: usual ways to do that, email the parkrun office or Facebook page.

See you soon and until then, happy parkrunning, Michele

Crystal Palace parkrun
Event number 377
17th February 2018

This week 396 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 43 were first timers and 72 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 29 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 25 volunteers:

Susannah SIMPSON • Michael WOODWARD • Carol HAYES • Tom WILSON • George WILLIAMS • Barry GRAHAM • Michele GOLDEN • Sidney Ansell MCINTOSH • Chris BALMER • Daniel CATT • Sebastian WITHERS • Julia ANDERSON • Simon ALLOCCA • Neil JEFFRIES • Piers BROMLEY • Julie LETTS • Melissa DRINKWATER • Clare DAVIS • Philippa RYAN • Steven GAUGE • Michael MCINTYRE • Lyndsey MORLEY • Fred HAYES • Pat GRIFFIN • Jonathan GOODWIN

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

The female record is held by Justina HESLOP who recorded a time of 17:23 on 14th January 2012 (event number 77).
The male record is held by Nicholas TORRY who recorded a time of 15:26 on 1st July 2017 (event number 344).
The Age Grade course record is held by Ros TABOR who recorded 90.93% (23:20) on 22nd April 2017 (event number 334).

Crystal Palace parkrun started on 29th May 2010. Since then 8,108 participants have completed 55,041 parkruns covering a total distance of 275,205 km, including 9,541 new Personal Bests.





Crystal Palace super lap

Firstly, apologies. I had meant to get this run report written yesterday but the day flew by and before I knew it I was arriving at fellow parkrunner (and sister) Josie Bate's (Kingston parkrun) house for dinner and glugging prosecco while we waited for fellow parkrunner (and sister) Catherine Moss - Black Park parkrun, to join us. It will be no consolation I'm sure for you to know Kingston parkrun's report will also be a late submission as Josie hadn't written hers either!

Now, before we turn our attentions to yesterday's parkrun I must put in a note about Wimbledon parkrun. Last week I put on my trail shoes for a return to parkrun and meandered around Wimbledon parkrun. I was meeting four of my five sisters for coffee and so Wimbledon was a more convenient location. If you like slithering around in mud then Wimbledon is the perfect place. Whilst I was desperately trying to stay upright I was passed by Elsie Hartropp running with her dad, Jon.  I spoke to them later and they told me it was their first parkrun and I promised Elsie a mention in this week's parkrun as she was so smiley and happy.  Welcome to the parkrun family Elsie and Jon.

So, back to home. I was so excited about running at Crystal Palace yesterday as it's been months since I've been able to.  Of course being February we were joined by droves of runners from Bromley and Blackheath AC as their young athletes got in some training for the Bromley Schools Cross Country.  We had 348 line up at the start and Tom set us off in the freezing morning air.  In fact, it was so cold we had a section, just below the terraces, where we had to do a bit of cross country as the path was a glassy sheet of ice. Julie Letts kindly agreed to give up her parkrun to marshal at that point, although to be fair I think she'd run something like 15 miles before coming to parkrun.

We did have to put a call out for volunteers yesterday morning as we need to have marshals out on the course so a particularly big thanks to those who turned up planning on running and then stood around in the cold while the rest of us did.

For 51 people it was their first experience of our fabulous route. I mean we have mountains and dinosaurs - what more could you ask for in a parkrun. Of those 17 have never ever run/walked/hopped or crawled a parkrun before. WELCOME to the family.  There are too many of you to mention by name but believe me, this is the best way to start your Saturday morning. That feeling of smugness really does stay all day, every week.

So, that means 34 people were tourists: some from not that far away - what kept you Colin Frith and Guy Reder?? We may have had more tourists but we had 37 people who (you may need to sit down for this part) didn't have a barcode and so were listed as 'unknown'. I often say I would feel so miserable if you forgot your barcode.

I started running yesterday with Ann McMahon (although she soon left me for dust running in a quite frankly rude 31.32 minutes with Dave Cook).  Ann has officially run 31 times (26 of those at Crystal Palace) but she has done so many more as she nearly always forgets her barcode. Yesterday she joked that she's probably done about 100! #DFYB

We also had some milestone runners yesterday with Harvey Blandon (usually runs at Bromley) doing his 10th. Jamie Morris, Tina Lorkins, Gerard Doherty and Tim Lund all joined the 50 club so will be able to order that coveted red T shirt. And although not an official milestone I have to mention John Moss (not the football referee, well I hope he's not or we may have to have words!) did his 200th parkrun yesterday. Sixty-two people ran their fastest ever time at Crystal Palace parkrun yesterday. Some of those were those young Bromley athletes, others were obviously trying to keep up with them! I was just happy to be pottering round with Louise Wood! As ever the results can be accessed through the link in this report so do knock yourself out and look at them at your leisure!

Until next week then, happy running. Michele

Crystal Palace parkrun
Event number 376
10th February 2018

This week 348 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 51 were first timers and 62 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 24 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 16 volunteers:

Susannah SIMPSON • Bob BELL • Carol HAYES • Tom WILSON • Yvette DORE • Barry GRAHAM • Michele GOLDEN • Sidney Ansell MCINTOSH • Chris BALMER • Sebastian WITHERS • Piers BROMLEY • Julie LETTS • Clare DAVIS • Philippa RYAN • Fred HAYES • Leslie MALCOLM

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

The female record is held by Justina HESLOP who recorded a time of 17:23 on 14th January 2012 (event number 77).
The male record is held by Nicholas TORRY who recorded a time of 15:26 on 1st July 2017 (event number 344).
The Age Grade course record is held by Ros TABOR who recorded 90.93% (23:20) on 22nd April 2017 (event number 334).

Crystal Palace parkrun started on 29th May 2010. Since then 8,065 participants have completed 54,645 parkruns covering a total distance of 273,225 km, including 9,467 new Personal Bests.


We may have found our winter course!

For some strange reason Run Director Simon Lang said we were running a slightly different course this week.  For the 31 (out of a second highest attendance of 343) first timers the reason Simon's comment raised a laugh was because most weeks we're not entirely sure what parts of our magnificent park we'll be seeing on our 5k walk/hop/skip/jump or indeed run. However, I'm pretty confident that the route we (well you) ran today will be our winter route as it is one lap, on the path and so not muddy.

As I have already said we had our second highest attendance today and yet only 31 first timers which makes me think people are just coming back in droves and I can't say I blame them. I believe we are the only parkrun in the world that incorporates dinosaurs and no, I don't mean the older runners!

Of our 31 first timers 12 were brand new, never done a parkrun before so too many to mention all of them by name. But a huge welcome and we do hope you'll all come back next week.  Given the time some of you finished in I suspect this running malarkey isn't completely new to you! In past 'view from the injury bench' I have said I think the first parkrun is possibly easier than coming back a second time.  Yet 15 of you did exactly that today and some of you ran faster than last week, or as we, elite athletes, like to say: 'got a PB'!!

Today I met Kelly Mills and Charlotte Lowles (four and seven runs respectively). Both got PBs with Kelly taking almost three minutes off her previous time and Charlotte a more modest 22 seconds.  Well done ladies, it was a pleasure talking with you and I look forward to seeing you both again. I also met Alice Baverstock who I have wanted to meet for ages as my cousin ( Jacqui) is married to Ross Baverstock (they live in Australia and do parkrun there) but of course Alice isn't a relation of Ross. Wouldn't that have been fun! And Jacqui is doing her 50th parkrun next week, at Kibbra Lake,  so congratulations in advance! X

Now, I like to think that after reading the run report (or indeed before) you'll pore over the results page so I don't mention who the first finishers were but I can't not mention some today: Ben Harding was our first finisher in an eye watering 16:14.  And that's not even a PB.  As is so often the case Ben then went off to do a few more laps, people like him need to run around a few more times as that way they do get to see what they missed during the official run.  Those of us who run at a more leisurely pace only have to do it once as we get to see everything when we're going round. Debbie Moore was our first female finisher as well as doing her first Crystal Palace parkrun (Debbie usually runs in Scotland). Again, a blistering time of 19:27.  Well done to you both. Our first junior finisher was Jamie Sears who runs in the JM11-14 category and who finished today in 19:50. He is a member of Blackheath and Bromley Harriers AC and I suspect Jamie (along with Lily Tappenden, Danielle Harper and Lewis Warren) is getting in early training for the Bromley Schools Cross Country which will be taking place in March in the park.

We didn't have that many milestone runners today. OK, we had one.  My son Alex Singhgolden ran his 50th.  Well done Alex, particularly since you were only a few seconds off your PB. In a nice turn of events it was his 40th at Crystal Palace. Haddy Quist told me today was her 10th parkrun so I promised her a mention but Haddy, it was your 11th!! You see, you're enjoying it so much you've lost count! And of course, that's the beauty of parkrun.  Last week I said that Penny D'Arcy-Graham has her baby. Her Dad, Bob Bell announced at the beginning that he was doing his first parkrun since becoming a grand dad. And that, of course, is part of what makes parkrun so great, we all cheered that announcement because it was indeed something to cheer about.

I was doing timekeeper today with Sebastian Withers. I HATE timekeeping, such a responsibility having to make sure I remember to press the button every time someone crosses the finish line, it's very stressful. But it looks like we didn't get it wrong so Tom managed to get the results done while we were still in The Pride of Venice doing the token sorting.

This week we had more marshals than normal out on the course itself. I think it makes it a better experience as you've got people to cheer you on so don't forget if you don't feel the running love (I know, I know, that's NEVER the case) then come along and join us in volunteering. You still get your parkrun fix and you are an extra step towards the coveted purple volunteer T-shirt. So a big thanks to the volunteers especially to Daniel and Cameron Tough who were helping point runners/walkers etc in the right direction! And to Amelie and Lucy who were on giving out chocolate duty!

I'm not around next week so if anyone fancies giving the report writing a go just post on our Facebook page or email the office and I shall sharpen the parkrun pencil for you.

Crystal Palace parkrun
Event number 374
27th January 2018

This week 343 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 31 were first timers and 52 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 21 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 26 volunteers:

Susannah SIMPSON • Michael WOODWARD • Bob BELL • Tom WILSON • Andy TOUGH • George WILLIAMS • Barry GRAHAM • Michele GOLDEN • Michael SINGH • Sidney Ansell MCINTOSH • Chris BALMER • Simon LANG • Sebastian WITHERS • Andy COTTRILL • Alice BAVERSTOCK • Piers BROMLEY • Julie LETTS • Amelie MAY • Andrea AXON • Michael MCINTYRE • Lucy ARABELLA • Lyndsey MORLEY • Fred HAYES • Leslie MALCOLM • Christina MARRONI • Jonathan GOODWIN

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

The female record is held by Justina HESLOP who recorded a time of 17:23 on 14th January 2012 (event number 77).
The male record is held by Nicholas TORRY who recorded a time of 15:26 on 1st July 2017 (event number 344).
The Age Grade course record is held by Ros TABOR who recorded 90.93% (23:20) on 22nd April 2017 (event number 334).

Crystal Palace parkrun started on 29th May 2010. Since then 7,982 participants have completed 53,976 parkruns covering a total distance of 269,880 km, including 9,337 new Personal Bests.


Mea Culpa

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. * I must take responsibility for the utterly vile weather we had today. As you will know, if you read last weeks run report I mentioned how we were struggling to get volunteers and how we really needed them to make sure we can put the run on.  So, yesterday evening I stupidly posted on our Facebook page that there was going to be a heatwave today and it would be too hot to run and people would be better coming along and volunteering instead. And we were inundated with volunteers who stood in the freezing, miserable, rainy weather and watched other people run/walk etc. But it did mean we had people out on the course and I think that makes it a much better experience for all involved. The moral of this is I won't challenge the parkrun weather fairy (check Twitter) ever again.  Please do come along and volunteer sometimes though.

Due to the incredibly inclement weather we had to change the route again (and apparently we gave you another 100m for NO EXTRA CHARGE and  a sneaky extra hill around the dinosaur lake).  We got a mixed response but I think far fewer injuries than if we had run along the grassy part by the sports centre.  Personally, I like the idea of a sneaky hill but I'm still not running so ask me again when I am.  Order was restored with the return of Simon Lang as Run Director for which I was particularly grateful.

We had a mere 307 people line up at the start line today, 43 of whom had never run at Crystal Palace before. Regular readers of 'View from the injury bench' will know that when we have a lot of brand new out-of-the-wrapper parkrunners I don't mention them all by name. This week I'm making an exception:14 people chose today as the day they would put on their trainers and go around our still (despite the rain and cold and wind) beautiful park. So, a HUGE welcome to Gareth Alexander, David Howard-Jones, Michelle Rea, Louise Machin, Ben Harding, Hannah Howard-Jones, John Everiss, Peter Fellows, Steve Jones, Zachary Pescod-Fellows, James Cosstick, Denise Dalamain, Kathryn Townsend and Jacks Woolf. We look forward to seeing you all again next week (when I hope we revert to our usual sunny weather). Denise was remarkably smiley when I saw her near the end, I am very impressed!

The mathematical geniuses (?genii???) will have worked out that if we had 43 first timers and 14 of them were 'real' first timers we had 30, 28  29 tourists. I do like delving into the profiles of people who have run loads of parkruns and then turn up at the best so I did a bit of delving today. Suzie Jenkins did her second parkrun today (first with us), she did her first at Florence parkrun....yes, you read that correctly, Florence in Italy. She is part of the core team there so doesn't get to run that often (explains the two I suppose). Well, I looked at their results today: it was the 17th parkrun in Florence this morning and they had 34 participants. I think they may be struggling a bit with the timing as Lisa Wood (who usually runs in Wimbledon) managed it in six seconds! And she wasn't even first finisher! It was great talking with Suzie and I certainly intend a trip to Florence when I can incorporate a Saturday morning meander around their route. So glad you could join us Suzie.

At the other end of the spectrum Joan Lennon ran with us for the first time today. She had previously run 182 parkruns and she only lives in Brighton. What kept you Joan??? I mean, its not as if you've never been to London, you've done Dulwich twice.  I've never done Dulwich parkrun, at my pace three laps of that park would put me to sleep.

I know parkrun celebrates certain milestones, I like to celebrate ANY milestone so congratulations Jeremy Spooncer (300th parkrun today), Geoff Marshall (200th today and exactly a year since he last joined us, I'm a bit of a Geoff groupie (again check Twitter)) and Lisa Rabanal who did her 200th last week (and I didn't mention it sorry).

There may be more people whose milestones I could mention but  30 people turned up today, of all days, without a barcode. I know, we all know no barcode no time but really on a day like today why would you even walk around the course? And one of them did it in under 21 minutes! #DFYB

Thirty people achieved a PB today. Of course you did, if I was running I would do it quicker than normal! Roger Beardsworth achieved a PB of 19:01 (which I suspect was a bit bittersweet). And I must say thanks to his partner Ali who kindly helped me marshal that bit of the route before the sneaky hill! Agnes Callaghan must have been delighted with her new PB, she ran nearly a minute quicker this week than she did last week on her first parkrun, well done Agnes!

I know lots of parkrun reports will tell you who came in the first three male and female finish places. I think you can look at the results page to see that so do feel free to do that. However, I have some lovely news that you won't see on the results page. Many of the Crystal palace parkrunner regulars will know Bob Bell, Chrissie Bell (of Chrissie's Corner fame) Belinda Cottrill (and Milo) and Penny D'Arcy-Graham. I have often referred to Penny as The Goddess as she ran parkrun throughout her pregnancy. Bob's her dad, Chrissie is her mum and Belinda is her sister. Today they have had the most fantastic, fabulous life changing event. Penny's son was born at just before 2pm this afternoon. We can't wait to see him at parkrun. HUGE congratulations to Penny and husband James.  Hopefully, being a grand father will make Bob run a bit slower!

Right, that's the lot for this week.  Thanks, as ever, to the volunteers who made the event possible. Do feel free to join our ranks.

*for those who didn't benefit from being taken to Roman Catholic mass in Latin in the 1970s my introduction roughly translates to: I am sorry, I am sorry, I am very sorry.


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