Running with pompoms – parkrun #268

You don’t have to be mad to run here... but it certainly helps! Seems to be the right way to describe KWp this morning; at least from where I was stood. 262 mad run/jog/walk/crawl/wheezers, 26 volunteers, and familial cheer-squads turned up on a weird Saturday morning where the weather couldn’t quite decide what it wanted to do, nor indeed what month it is, all with the express purpose of deliberately doing or enabling “exercise” (what is that about?!).

My contribution to the madness... what else but the pompoms?! It seems that I have become the pompoms marshal – which I absolutely love – and even when not at Kingsbury I’m asked where my pompoms are (I’m mostly looking at you Sarah Dennis, but you’re not alone). As I turned *redacted* this week there was really only one way to mark the occasion. I made myself some straps for them in the hope that they wouldn’t fly off in a fit of exuberance, I warned the community, and I turned up with them firmly gripped in each hand. Met with encouraging smiles, a couple of *eye rolls* (you know who you are!), and a whole lot of laughs, I knew I’d made the right decision. Running with pompoms was easier that I’d anticipated, and I think I only *nearly* took today’s running buddy Sarah Maddaford out like, maybe, half a dozen times??! Sorry!!! They live in the boot of my car, so if you fancy giving them a whirl – just ask, they are only reserved when I’m marshalling.

11 months ago when I nervously joined my first parkrun, I never expected that this would become such a big part of my life. It can be incredibly daunting to join a big group of people who call themselves runners, when you’re just dipping yours toes into that water. What you soon come to realise is that runners come in all shapes, sizes, ages and abilities. The truly inclusive spirit of parkrun is amazing, and what brings us back every week. To all 22 first timers, I hope you loved it and I hope you come back. To those travelling from further afield (tourist from South Wales today – I think you win that category this week) - please visit again soon.

What I think has truly helped me feel like a part of the community here at Kingsbury is volunteering. Today’s event was only possible because 26 people decided that they would give you a bit of their time, that you’re worth that to them. Please join me in giving these guys a standing ovation:

Brian JONES, Nivette CHESTER, Darren O’LEARY, Richard BENHAM, Tricia BUNN, Matthew GREEN, Susan THOULD, Simon HILL, Fiona HILL, Richie BUNN, Brian ADAMS, Alex SANDHAM, Katharine GOULD, Jennifer REYNOLDS, Madeleine GOULD, Lil SOUTER, Richard CHESTER, Louise JOHNSON, Gale KING, Clare BROWN, Tim GOULD, Richard KING, Susan HANN, David PRICE, Paul DANIELS, Sarah DENNIS

Now, head on over to the future roster page to see what takes your fancy – if this lot can do it, you sure as eggs can! Drop an email to or sign up at the desk before your next run. Trust me, you won’t regret it.

Well done to the first bloke home today – Anluan HENNIGAN in 18:39 and to the first lass home today Sarah DAVIS in 21:59; great times! Sylvia PHILLIPS was the lass with the highest WAVA score today at 76.21%, and the bloke’s highest scorer was David COLLINS with 74.838% - amazing fitness levels, I’m extremely envious.

22 of you mad people managed PB’s this morning, which is truly amazing given the temperature, the wind, and the drizzly bit (some of you quicker runners might have missed that). Congratulations to each and every one of you: Arlene Croydon, Wendy Teague, James Foster, Scott Wainman, Lisa White, Mike Ball, Chris Marais, Paul Wallace, Lisa Ellis, Isobel Wattis, Monique Magne, Julie O’Brien, Tayla Keating, Jaymie Rogers, Olivia Makepeace, Beccy Huntley, Samuel Vernon, Stephen Johnson, Denise Makepeace, Sarah Davis, Samantha Keating, Elaine Deering, and Paul Tasker.

Completing their 100th runs at Kingsbury this week we have Paul Little and Jonathan Constance – that’s 100 Saturday morning lie-ins foregone in favour of running around a park for a bit... congratulations! Sadly, no-one on their 50th this morning, but we did have Junior parkrunner William Murray completing his 10th! Well done William! When I was a youth there was NOTHING that could have got me moving, so I’m impressed with all of our junior runners who show great heart and parkrun spirit every week.

Well done if you’ve made it to this point, you’ve certainly got stamina! Your prize? You get to come to Kingsbury next week to run or volunteer it all over again! See you there!


Event 267: A ParkRun game of puddle dodging!

I looked out of the window at the rain and realised that my first attempt at walking Parkrun for several months would be completed on the first truly wet Saturday that we’ve had for months! This was reflected in the turnout as only 247 participants felt it was worth getting drenched so early on a weekend morning that could have been better spent at home in the warm.

Rain aside there was the usual buzz as everyone waited for the run brief for event number 267, which this morning was delivered by Run Director Hannah Coogan. Volunteer co-ordinator Rich Benham ensured that the volunteers safely found all of their positions, ready to cheer on the hardy bunch that were running, jogging or walking their way round the soggy course. The ever popular winter Parkrun game of puddle dodging was much in evidence, and by the end of the event many looked like they had taken part in a mud run!

First male home today was Chris Smith from Leeds in a phenomenal time of 17.03 mins, closely followed by well known Kingsbury Parkrunner Chris Horton (17.36mins), with Peter Merritt coming third (17.56mins). Well done gentlemen!

First Lady home today was Stacey Horner in 23.16mins, with second lady home Kathryn Berry (24.12mins), and third place for the ladies achieved by Morgan Barr (25.10 mins). Great effort ladies!

Amongst those finishing today there were 35 people taking part in their first ever Parkrun, and 32 participants achieved a personal best time in challenging conditions. A big shout out should also go to Simon Pearson and Stephen Parker who both became holders of the much coveted red shirt for completing 50 Parkruns – brilliant achievement guys!

Talking of atrocious conditions, a big thank you to the 26 volunteers who ensured that today’s event could go ahead.  These people stood at various points on the course, in the cold and wet, encouraging and cheering on those came for their Saturday fix – we couldn’t do it without you, so thanks again to:

Richie BUNN, Tricia BUNN, Peter COOGAN, Hannah COOGAN, Trevor GASPER, Brian ADAMS, Paul DANIELS, Brian JONES, Jo SMITH, Joanne GILBERT, Matthew GREEN, Jenny REEVE, Sharon WHITEHEAD, Alex SANDHAM, Richard BENHAM, Garth COX, Graham ENGLEY, Susan THOULD, Adrian PARKES, Natasha O’CALLAGHAN, Julian MATTHEWS, Lil SOUTER, Amy WAKELIN, Jonathan ALSOP, Simon CLIFFORD, Susan WAKELIN.

Volunteering at Parkrun is incredibly rewarding, so if you fancy giving it a go check out the future roster section on the web page – 25 volunteer days will earn you the stunning purple shirt, which can be alternated with the red 50 run shirt, or even the black 100 run shirt.  Add your name to the roster either via the web page, or on the roster that’s always available on Saturday mornings at the desk.


Hopefully next week will see a return to our warmer, drier Parkrun event, so we look forward to seeing you all there ready for the 09.00hrs start.


Sun’s Out

I felt a real positive “vibe” when I arrived at today’s event. The sun was out, the temperature was ideal, the lakes calm and still…you couldn’t have asked for a better morning to complete a parkrun…the location and views were simply stunning!
Soul Diva Judy PARKES addressed the masses as run director. A huge well done to her, and all the volunteers and run organisers, for making this morning possible.

Event number 266!
377 runners!
27 volunteers!
30 first timers!
86 new PB times!

Arriving with a man bag containing the “boom box”, I even had time to pose for a few pictures. Wearing a Chicago Bears pom pom hat, It was only fair I had a snap giving the wooden carved bear a big Norman bear hug…it was a bare necessity.
Stationed at marshal point 1, the tuneage was primed and ready to be unleashed!

Well it certainly was a nice day for a white wedding…
Love was certainly in the air for Ruth ANDERSON, and marshal Julian MATTHEWS. The pair plan to say “agadoo” next week (I hope they don’t say that now lol).
Ruth ran wearing her veil, in company with other members from Vegan Runners. I hope you all enjoyed the occasion and best wishes for next week!

Local DJ and run commentator Paul GRUBB, demonstrated some vintage dance moves. Hip thrusting arm pumping Paul, was joined by other family members. Paul (43:30) ran with young Emily GRUBB who did fantastic on her debut, finishing in 43:29.
Sister Carol ROBERTS (41:38) and nephew Billy ROBERTS (33:26), both went home delighted with a new PB!

Today’s top 10 places were dominated by runners from Leamington C and AC, and local running club BADGERS.
With their dogs, speedy Elaine SHERWIN (16:32) was first across the line for the Leamington club. Young team mate Jonathan INGRAM finished in second. (16:56)…well done Jonathan.
First timer Rich BAYLISS ran strong to finish in a quality time of 16:59, and make up the top 3. (Bournville Harriers)

Reporter and Jessica FLETCHER enthusiast Chris HORTON, was first BADGER home. Mr Boombastic manoeuvred around the course like a missile, to finish in 17:13.
Susie TAWNEY (17:37) made it a good day for Leamington C and AC, by finishing 5th.
The ever impressive Sam STARKEY (BADGERS) finished in 8th. (18:25)
BADGERS team mate David MCGOWAN was in the mood for dancing. David powered across the line for a quality new PB finishing 9th. (18:38)…fairytale of Kingsbury!

Young Tamworth AC runner Charlotte EVANS celebrated her 10th parkrun with a PB (35:33) Also running their 10th events were Ashley GOODMAN (22:42 PB), Colin LINDLEY (25:30 PB), Adam HOWARD (25:47 PB), Ann HILL (32:16), Tiffany TURNER (33:30 PB), Tracy SHILTON (33:36), Helen MORGAN (34:38 PB) and Wendy TEAGUE (48:29)
Benjamin DALY (27:16) ran his 25th event, as did Tamworth AC runner Tim CLARK (23:56).
Nick PARKES (24:09) and Niamh LING (27:30) ran their 50th!
BADGER Teresa BUCK helped set the event up, then went on to run her 100th parkrun (43:50). Paul OWEN followed suit, finishing in 41:44.
Alison BANKS competed in her 150th parkrun (30:24)
Local BADGERS running legend Anne Marie MATTHEWS chalked up her 50th outing at Kingsbury. Today was also her quickest parkrun of 2018.(32:47)
Congratulations everyone!

Our younger runners were on top form again this week. The following who haven’t already been mentioned, also left with a new PB!
Tim COTTERILL (19:09), Joseph GORST (23:59 representing Tamworth AC), Jack GRIFFITHS (25:20), Henry CLARK (27:19), Erin GORDON (28:13), Daniel SLAUGHTER (31:12), Amber BRADFORD (31:35 representing BADGERS), Olivia BOURNE (32:00), Isabelle GORDON (35:35) and Reenie WEBBER (40:27).
Great work!

Several local BADGERS runners were again making the headlines!
Super gran Eileen MCELHONE racked up another course PB! (38:24)…Eileen was followed over the line by husband Adam (38:25), who performed the cha cha slide!
Leesa DENNIS was at it again!...She ran superb for another PB time of 26:05. Mervyn JONES made it smiles all round, as he too left with a new PB. (25:50)
Alan ARGYLE showed that BADGER spirit, as he ran with the determined Simon HILL. Simon produced an outstanding performance, to leave with a new PB of 28:00.
It was good to see spirited duo and team mates Stuart BATCHELOR (28:48) and Rebecca KINSON (28:47) return to fitness.
Rich BENHAM had those moves like Jagger!...snake hips Rich wiggled into the top 50 with a time of 23:00.
Flo Rida greeted most on the final stretch. Rob PERKS certainly had a good feeling, as he powered home for a PB! (25:56)
Tayla KEATING found love and couldn’t hide it, as she bagged herself a PB (30:49)
Justin Timberlake fan Paul DANIELS was thrilled when he heard Love, Sex and Magic. (38:59)
How fitting was it to have Michael BALL, Brian ADAMS and a chap called WELLER on the volunteer roster!...proper rocked it!

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Well done everyone, and I will return soon with the tunes hopefully at the same marshal point…because I wanna I wanna I wanna I wanna I really really really wanna zig a zig a!


Stat Simplicity

In its simplicity…

Event number 265

25 Volunteers

39 First timers

69 personal bests

Badgers star Sam STARKEY added today’s event to his ever increasing back catalogue!...Finishing in a fantastic time of 18:19, the North Warwickshire based club runner/machine was again first over the finish line. Rumour has it he has to go in for a service every 12 months...proper impressive!

Titan Triathlon Club runner Lawrence WILLIAMSON finished second, in a rapid 18:48.

3rd place went to Thomas HODGSON, who sailed around just shy of sub 19 minutes! (19:01)

Olivia HARRIS was once again first lady back with a cracking time of 20:05.

Jessica LANGTREE followed through in 2nd place for a quality PB (22:21)

First timer Stacey HORNER completed the top 3 for the ladies this week, with a time of 23:39.

I can’t speak highly enough of the young runners! many went home with a new PB time, my fingers are working overtime! they are…George DRINKWATER(23:51) Jack GRIFFITHS(26:16) Addison COOPER(26:46) Samuel WILLIAMS(28:34 representing Tamworth AC) Travis HACKETT(29:16) Rowan MEEK(29:43) Tilly SUMNER-QUINN(30:12) Oscar THORNE(40:17) Devon COOPER(40:29) Reenie WEBBER(40:58) Alex MOUSLEY(41:23)…brilliant!

Jacob WILLIAMS, Filip URBANSKI, William DALE, Kyle PEERS and Elizabeth DALE all enjoyed their 10th parkrun.

Carl WALTON and Steve RUTHERFORD celebrated their 50th run.

Smashing through the century mark was Sarah ASPREY!...a big high 5 to all! fact no…big 10’s!


Popular Scooby Doo fan Rich BENHAM(22:16) and Tim GOULD(20:49) took time out from their volunteer roles. Fantastic running both and well earnt, after all of your recent and continued work.

Kings Heath RC member Eleanor LINFORD made a sprint debut to finish in 35:04.

Richard SLAUGHTER took no prisoners as he ran a PB time of 26:49. Sarah FRENCH was no snail as she hit sub 30 minutes for a new PB!(29:54)

Darren GOUGH slogged it to finish in a quality 31:42.

Emily PAINTER produced a glossy finish for a PB(26:33)

Paul DANIELS wasn’t even there at 8am, but still managed to appear across the finish line in 38:20.

A special mention to Badgers club runners!...there have been so many continued impressive performances it’s tough to keep track.

Eamon “Lord” THAWLEY has caught my eye with his recent performances(23:50)

Tobey BRAIN(21:23) will only get better!

A huge well done to Terry ARGYLE(29:33 PB) and Peter BOARDMAN(23:57 PB)

The same can be said for the HANSON’S...not to be confused with the boyband, both have been in great form of late.

Mandy(33:51) and John(25:20) are going from strength to strength and you know what, they are doing it with a smile!

I wanted to end this weeks report with a special mention for 1 runner.

Ability, times, age etc etc aside…we all try our hardest to be the best we can be whilst enjoying the occasion. If we can get a PB having worked hard it’s a fantastic feeling.

I just wanted to congratulate Claire WEBBER for her PB time today of 29:55. I know that means the world to her having worked so hard to break that sub 30 minute time! finish 3rd in her age category aswell is amazing! work Claire!

I’m back next week again for the run report! fact I’m marshalling next week as well!



Smiles better at parkrun!! Run #264

Parkrun report 264 by Beth Dennis

264 parkruns have taken place at KWp! How many! I honestly wish I had been there for the full 264. It is my favourite place and it never fails to put a smile on my face. I’m sure everyone can agree with me! Rich (now part of the core team and marshal today) posted “my favourite way to spend Saturday morning.” If Alex Sandham, Amanda Gould, Brian Adams, Darren Keenan, David Price, Emma Heys, Hannah Coogan, Ian Grigg, Julian Matthews, Katharine Gould, Madeleine Gould, Matthew Green, Natasha O'Callaghan, Owen Slater, Richard Benham, Richard Chester, Richie Bunn, Sarah Maddaford, Susan Hann, Susan Thould, Taylor Matthews, Tim Gould, Tricia Bunn hadn’t generously put their names on the roster today wouldn’t of happened, so a huge thank you to all of them. If you want to put a huge smile on about 400 runners faces sign up today. Follow this link After 25 volunteering days you get a funky purple T shirt.

Today was perfect conditions for a PB so a whole 64 people went above and beyond and got their best ever time at KWp. There were no obstacles except a man on a bike going the opposite way to the runners at the start but other than that is was a puddle, fallen trees or branches free course. I think when it come to the puddle season we should add some hurdles before the puddles to make it a steeple chase to add more excitement.

There were loads of milestones today including Lucy Semple who completed her 10th run, Rachel Longstaff and Anne Devenney who completed their 50th parkrun and Ben Horton, Matthew Jackson and Amanda Gould who completed their 100th run. Not only did Matthew Jackson complete his 100th run he also got a PB! Well done Matt! It was Amanda Gould’s 50th volunteering role and it is her 50th Birthday on Monday. From all of us at KWp Happy Birthday Amanda. Also, it was Mandy Hanson 150th run (only a 100 more till the next milestone T-shirt.)

Top WAVA rating this week were…


1 Lucy Matthews 89.46%

2 Sylvia Phillips 80.87%

3 Natasha Susnik 78.88%


1) Michael Morley 83.13%

2) Dave Masser 80.63%

3) Philip Burwell 77.26%

Finally, there were 33 first timers which is amazing and all of you are welcome to come back and we hope you had a good run. Soon you will be addicted! One first timer to KWp was my friend Sian. It was so much fun going to parkrun with a friend although she was a whole 6 minutes faster than me (21:49) parkruns are much more fun with your friends!

I hope you all had a great parkrun if you can’t wait for another Saturday to arrive then there is Junior parkrun on Sundays for those aged 14 and under, but adults can volunteer or run with the kids! You can check here, to see if there is one near you.

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