Run Report for Fountains Abbey parkrun number ONE HUNNNNDRED AND EIIIIIIGGHHHHTYYYYY!  (With thanks to Phil Chatterton for prompting me that it was a significant number.)

It was a genuinely beautiful morning at the site where one night in 1473 a couple of bored Cistercian monks broke into the abbot's wine cellar one evening for a laugh, used the bottom of a cask as a target for their miniature arrows, and thereby invented the game of darts. Perhaps. Or perhaps not. Anyway, the sun was shining and the early morning reflections in the glassy surface of the Skell and the water gardens were breathtaking. 352 athletes came to enjoy it (including 17 folk for their first ever parkrun), wonderfully supported as ever by a stalwart and cheery team of volunteers. Grateful thanks to each and every one of them and a particular mention to run director Graham Boyd who was volunteering for the 50th time, and to funnel manager Jon Hancock who managed a bit of magic with some tricky results-processing.

It was great to welcome loads of visitors, including Neil McDonough from Croydon, who was running his 100th different parkrun at Fountains Abbey. Apparently this feat is known as a "Cowell", after the first runner to achieve it. Well done Neil. Well done too to Sean Dodds who was running 100th parkrun at Fountains Abbey (and his 101st overall – almost a Fountains Abbey loyalist – but not quite!).

There was some highly accurate darts being played all round the field. Personal bests were achieved by a mighty 56 players. And a nine-dart finish was recorded for the men by Tom Calvert in 17:38 and for the women by Emily Birchall in 20:02. Many congratulations both.

See you again next Saturday in the best of order, with sharpened arrows, straightened flights, ready promptly at 8.55am to step up to the oche for a rematch.
(I never could find that lager I was looking for in the café). 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.
1 vacant volunteer slot on 9 September 2017
4 vacant volunteer slots on 16 September 2017
11 vacant volunteer slots on 23 September 2017

As always please drop us a line at if you can assist with volunteering in the future.

Donating to Fountains Abbey parkrun

Its now over three years since we set up Fountains Abbey parkrun and its time we replaced some of our signage and kit and bought a fee new bits and pieces. Some of the kit gets provided by parkrun HQ. Some of it doesn’t and on those occasions we do reach out 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:
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:

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 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.

Local races

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.


Vale of York Half Marathon 9:30 10th September 2017:
The Great North Run 10th September 2017:
Dales Trail Series 40k Semer Water 23rd September 2017:
Redcar Half Marathon: 10am 1st October 2017:
‘Round Ripon’ Ultra 35 mile: 7th October 2017:
The Plusnet Yorkshire 10 mile: 8th October 2017:
The Panoramic Peaks 13k Multi-terrain Race [Grewelthorpe] 1 October 2017
The Plusnet Yorkshire Marathon: 8th October 2017:
Shaun Lee Johnstone 10 at Boroughbridge: 15 October 2017
Guy Fawkes 10 mile 10:30am 5th November 2017:
Leeds Abbey Dash 10k 5th November 2017
Run Bolton Abbey (10k / 10 Mile / Half Marathon) 12 November 2017 hppp://
The Chevin Chase: 26th December 2017
Jolly Holly Jog: 11am 31 December 2017:
Of course if you know of another race that we should be shouting about then please just let us know.

And now the official bit...

Fountains Abbey parkrun / Event number 180 / 2 September 2017

This week 352 people ran the course, of whom 63 were first timers and 53 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 33 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 19 volunteers:

Leon FOSTER • Jacquie MERCER • Lucy PREECE • Lesley WILLOUGHBY • Richard HALL • David MAWER • Donna MITCHELL • Nigel MORGAN • Jon HANCOCK • Christine COOPER • Morag MCDOWALL • James SIMMERSON • Sally HOUGHTON • Emily HOUGHTON • Linda BAMFORTH • Clare CHILDS • Graham BOYD • Paul LISTER • Oliver ROLPH

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

Male placings:
Tom CALVERT (SM30-34) of Knaresborough Striders, was first over the line in 17:38 - 4th time in 18 appearances.
Andrew ROBERTSHAW (VM45-49) of Otley AC, was second over the line in 18:39.
Stephen ELLISON (SM25-29) (Unattached) was third over the line in 18:53 - was first to finish once before.

Female placings:
Emily BIRCHALL (SW30-34) of Leeds City AC, was first (11th overall) over the line in 20:02 - first appearance.
Abi SMITH (JW15-17) of City of York AC, was second (21st overall) over the line in 21:05.
Rosie GASSON (JW10) of Brighton & Hove City AC, was third (25th overall) over the line in 21:11.

The three highest age grades were recorded by:

Rosie GASSON (JW10) – 80.57% for the time 21:11 (25th overall).
Paul GASSON (VM60-64) – 79.10% for the time 20:49 (18th overall).
Caleb AYLESBURY (JM10) – 78.11% for the time 20:56 (19th overall).

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 George MILLS who recorded a time of 15:44 on 22nd October 2016 (event number 136).

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 8,318 participants have completed 46,869 parkruns covering a total distance of 234,345 km, including 8,756 new Personal Bests.