I wasn’t at Fountains Abbey yesterday to participate in parkrun #238, but fortunately I have two wonderful contributors to help write this week’s report. Of course, you cannot have failed to notice that yesterday’s event was adopted by our incredible local club, Ripon Runners. Once again, a brilliant team of volunteers throughout the course made it all happen, and an amazing group of pacers proudly wearing the club colours helped you on your way around the circuit. Not to mention the provision of yummy cakes (so I am led to understand). For this week’s initial part of the report, I am indebted to the man who does such a fine job in gathering together those Ripon Runners’ volunteers, Neil Dring:
‘Glorious autumn sunshine lit up the grounds of Fountains Abbey with a blaze of red and orange foliage greeting the 395 runners excitedly making their way down the hill to the start line by the Porters Lodge. These truly were perfect running conditions.
The morning was made all the more special by the support of Ripon Runners who provided 35 marshals and volunteers at all points on the course and 15 pacemakers running from 20 minutes right through to 35 minutes, helping a remarkable 70 parkrunners achieve shiny new pbs.
Richard Hall's pre-run brief was, as always, much anticipated and on this occasion, the day before Remembrance Sunday, was especially poignant. Rarely, if ever before, have I known a crowd of keen and eager parkrunners caused to fall completely silent. Just thoughtful for a moment. Thank you Richard.
And then we were off! This week's first finishers were Byron Edwards, a veteran of Bury AC visiting Fountains for the first time running 17:17 for a VM40-44 age grading of 81.39% and first lady Jo Stephenson from Harrogate Tri Club speeding round in 21:56.
Top age grade performances of the day from the usual suspects, Andy Todd (VM55-59) running 18:51 for 81.52% and Morag McDowell (VW55-59) in 22:27 for 80.62%.
18 runners chose an exceptional day to experience parkrun for the first time. We hope to see you all back soon.
At the other end of the scale Robert Fairbanks (Sale Harriers) and Michael Connaughton (Prestwich AC) joined us to celebrate their fabulous 250th milestone runs.
Other milestones for Adrian Canlett and Matt Brookes, both earning their 50 shirts, and Harvey Hooley joining the junior 10 club running an impressive 21:15. Certainly one to watch for the future!’
Our second contribution for the report comes from one of our Run Directors, Richard Hall. We are so lucky to have Richard as one of the RD team for a multitude of reasons, not least his talent for delivering superb pre-run briefings, normally infused with a liberal serving of humour. But the tone for yesterday’s brief was in keeping with the weekend of remembrance, and held the crowd captivated in silence. For those who were unable to join us, Richard has kindly agreed for his message to be included in the report, and it is reproduced below:
‘Over the last couple of years I’ve claimed one or two folk as our predecessor parkrunners at Fountains Abbey – there was the founder 13 benedictine monks from York who established the abbey here in 1132. There’s Robin Hood and Friar Tuck, who had a bit of set to in the River Skell before making up and having a latte together, there’s Abbot Marmaduke Huby who built the modest little tower over there to the glory of God and possibly himself, there was John Aislabie, dodgy Chancellor of the Exchequer in the 18th century who established the Studley Royal water gardens, and not forgetting Octavia Hill, one of the three founders of the National Trust. A diverse bunch: they may not have had barcodes, but I’m pretty sure they knew the route, and I think they could all manage 5 ks.
Today on the eve of the centenary of the Armistice I’m adding one more to their number. Arguably the greatest of the WW1 poets, Wilfred Owen was commissioned in the Manchester Regiment in 1916. Having served on the Western Front he was diagnosed with shell shock and sent to Edinburgh for treatment. In March 1918, he was posted to the Northern Command depot here in Ripon. He wrote of it: ‘’an awful camp, huts, dirty blankets, in fact War once more”. He was in a hut of fourteen men “thirteen too many”, he wrote; and so found a room for rent in a cottage on Borrage Lane. There he wrote some of his best-known poems. On his 25th and last birthday he spent the afternoon in the cathedral. By July he was back in France, and in October he won the Military Cross for conspicuous gallantry. He was killed on the 4th November. His mother received the news of his death on the 11th November as the bells were ringing out to celebrate the armistice.
He had begun to collect some poems into a book with the hope of publication. In the preface he wrote this: ‘’This book is not about heroes, nor is it about deeds or lands, nor anything about glory honour might, majesty dominion or power, except war. Above all I am not concerned with poetry. My subject is war and the pity of war. The poetry is in the pity’’.
My claim that he was a parkrunner comes from the biography by Jon Stallworthy who wrote that having had a fever while in Ripon, Owen recovered sufficiently to “walk across the dales to Fountains Abbey and back”. I’m not convinced that Stallworthy knew the local geography too well but nonetheless – we can be sure that Wilfred Owen was here before us, and perhaps imagine that before his return to the horrors of the front he was able to relish the peace and tranquillity of this place.
Thank you Richard.
Volunteering at Fountains Abbey parkrun
For everyone that has already put themselves forward to help out in the coming weeks we are supremely grateful.
0 vacant volunteer slots on 17 November 2018
3 vacant volunteer slots on 24 November 2018
9 vacant volunteer slots on 1 December 2018
As always please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you can assist with volunteering in the future.
Sun 25 Nov Great Santa Skipton Fun Run http://skiptonsantafunrun.com
Sat 1 Dec York Yuletide Trail https://www.seeyorkrunyork.co.uk/events
Sun 9 Dec South Leeds Bah Humbug 10k https://racebest.com/races/rasxh
Sun 30 Dec Jolly Holly Jog http://www.riponrunners.org.uk/jolly-holly-jog-10k/
Tue 1 Jan 2019 Double parkrun day! Not at Fountains unfortunately!
Sun 10 Feb 2019 Muddy Boots 10k Ripon https://bookitzone.com/muddyboots/mR2FFX
Donating to Fountains Abbey parkrun
It’s now nearly four years since we set up Fountains Abbey parkrun and its time we replaced some of our signage and kit and bought a few new bits and pieces. Some of the kit gets provided by parkrun HQ. Some of it doesn’t and on those occasions we turn to the community and ask for donations to help keep & our wonderful parkrun and improve its facilities and functioning.
If you would like to make a donation to Fountains Abbey parkrun please simply click on the link below: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/fountainsabbey/aboutus/
Thank you very much for your support. 100% of the funds raised are used directly for the benefit of Fountains Abbey parkrun.
If you love Fountains Abbey parkrun, why not join the National Trust (NT)?
If you’d like to join the NT, which for a family is only around £9 per month, the link below provides more information, or you can go to the Visitor Centre at Fountains Abbey: www.nationaltrust.org.uk/join-us
Important notices concerning the Fountains Abbey parkrun.
Please do not be offended if we ask you to help us. Many thanks for your co-operation & support in looking after the beautiful environment in which we run each week.
The beautiful play area by the cafe is open from 10am on Saturdays; we politely welcome visitors down to the Abbey for the parkrun and if you’d like to stay and spend more time in the beautiful grounds please just head back through the Visitor Centre once the grounds open to the public [free to NT members].
A polite reminder to all parkrunners that the trees at the start area are not clothes pegs. Please would runners leave their kit on the ground during the run.
Fountains Abbey parkrun takes place before the NT site opens to the public, therefore parkrunners, volunteers & spectators are kindly requested to be through the Visitor Centre gate and down by the Abbey before 9am or you will be denied access. We politely ask that all visitors to Fountains Abbey parkrun help us and our special relationship with the NT by respecting the basis upon which we operate. The gate at the top by the Visitor Centre is now closed at 9am so anyone hoping to get in after this time will be disappointed. The good news is that we look forward to joining you for a coffee in the Visitor Centre café as soon as we possibly can. Thank you for your support in this important matter.
All parkrun visitors must vacate the Abbey grounds before 10am when the NT site opens.
Visitors arriving at Fountains Abbey by bicycle are asked to leave their bikes in the racks at the Visitor Centre please. Bikes are not allowed in the grounds beyond this point.
There are toilets by the Visitor Centre and these are well signposted. There are additional toilets around 50 metres behind the old start line by Fountains Hall. Please use them - no exceptions; we need your fullest support with this. Thank you.
Please stand in the correct place at the start of the run according to your ability. If you are slower than the runners behind you this will cause a bottleneck at the start of the parkrun. Please mind your feet particularly at the start of the run. No slips and trips please
A reminder about one of the key rules that govern parkrun. For your, our and your children's protection could parents please help us by making sure that any children under 11 are accompanied by a responsible adult at all times.
Why not order yourself a printed plastic barcode?
A range of tough and durable plastic parkrun barcode ID tags are available via http://www.parkrun-barcode.org.uk/ These are the only UK authorised and professionally printed tags and feature the parkrun branding and logo, your athlete details and can also be personalised with your ICE (In Case of Emergency) telephone number and additional information including specific medical details. They come in a range of options and can be attached to a key ring, laces, and running vest zip or worn on a lanyard.
If you would like to hand out any race literature at Fountains Abbey parkrun we would appreciate you seeking permission from the Run Directors as there are some specific rules that govern us here at Fountains Abbey.
And now the official bit...
Fountains Abbey parkrun, Event number 238, 10 November 2018
This week 395 people ran the course, of whom 75 were first timers and 65 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 40 different clubs took part.
The event was made possible by 47 volunteers:
Wendy MARKS • Stephen REILLY • Dewi WINKLE • Mel DUTKA • Alex FAWCETT • Jackie TURNER • Anne CHEESEMAN • Bruce WILLOUGHBY • Lesley WILLOUGHBY • Richard HALL • Fiona ALDER • Alexandra NICOL • Kim HOLDEN • Mark RYDER • Neil DRING • Dawn SIMMONS • Dave BINKS • Jo THWAITES • Linda CADMAN • John BULL • Annabel HALL • Simon MCCUDDEN • James STUART-MILLS • Jim BERRIMAN • Richard BINKS • John SKINNER • Sue SKINNER • Sarah STANLEY • Trish GARBUTT • John GARBUTT • Fiona HERNANDEZ • Nicola SHILLAM • Wendy GREEN • Kamilla GORDON • Kate Taylor REILLY • Graham BOYD • Paul HEYWOOD • Helen COX • Peter BARNFATHER • Ann-Marie BROWN • James PARKES • Karen LENNOX • Alex MACEY • Andrea RICHARDSON • Lenny LENNOX • Tori EASEY • Andrew HARKER
Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Fountains Abbey parkrun Results Page.
The female record is held by Sharon BARLOW who recorded a time of 17:36 on 25th July 2015 (event number 72).
The male record is held by Kris LECHER who recorded a time of 15:19 on 28th April 2018 (event number 210).
The Age Grade course record is held by Val NAYLOR who recorded 94.76% (25:08) on 22nd July 2017 (event number 174).
Fountains Abbey parkrun started on 1st March 2014. Since then 11,911 participants have completed 68,048 parkruns covering a total distance of 340,240 km, including 11,890 new Personal Bests.