Event #282 – 2 Pirates and a Rum report!!

Chapter 1 Louise

The sweet sound of music awakened me, and my heart began to quicken. I looked loving across the bed to see the love of my life, my Parkrun barcode lovingly placed on the bedside table next to my running kit. I lay there recalling 99 previous hot and sweaty previous Saturday mornings, in the romantic settings of Blackpool, Minehead and Walsall to name a few. My heart leapt for joy as I remembered what today was Saturday 100 at Kingsbury Water Park. Leaping out of bed with excitement, the rest of the house was awakened for this monumental occasion. My thoughts wandered longingly to that black little number that would soon be mine…

Chapter 2 Rob

Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Kingsbury Water Park. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that, if you look for it, Parkrun really is… all around (with apologies to Richard Curtis).

More precisely, this morning I am glad I am still here. Rumours of me looking like death on legs last week were very much accurate, but the golden 99 was so important because today brings up the century. My heart leapt – no, that’s not right – sort of pounded a bit – as I staggered out of bed, the rest of the house coming slowly to life for a wet early morning in North Warwickshire. My thoughts wandered longingly to that bacon sandwich that would soon be mine…

Chapter 3 Rich

Event number 282 12th January 2019 This week 552 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 61 were first timers and 74 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 33 different clubs took part. The event was made possible by 24 volunteers:

Chapter 4 Louise

The sweaty eye-patch made running difficult, as did the sword that kept stabbing me in the chin. All in the life of a pirate. Captain Sam Starkey was the first runner home in a time of 18.28, the fourth time he has lead the crew home. Claire Louise Martin came hurtling in at 20.33 as first female finisher for Canicross Midlands, without a parrot in sight. We had two Captain Jacks today Chapman and Pittaway, hopefully the later will enjoy the treasures of completing his first parkrun. We of course had 3 members of the Jack-son family today who’ve amassed an impressive 359 parkruns between them and have yet to walk the plank. No Jolly Rogers today though at KWP. Congratulations to Emily Carr who moved through the ranks today to earn her red 50 t-shirt. Emily has yet to sail away from the shores of KWP, all 50 runs have graced our hallowed soil. Simon Potter rose to the rank of black t-shirt with his 100th run today, sharing that honour with two inconspicuous characters of Louise and Rob Vernon. Simon debuted parkrun on 17/5/14 way back on KWP run number 44, in the days when the only thing the Vernon’s ran was a bath, and as pirates this was an infrequent occurrence. 8 of the Michy’s Marvels crew graced parkrun today, with Michelle herself poised at parkrun 99 to grab her black t-shirt too. Swigging grog below deck (also known as the café) she was joined by parkrun first timer Michelle Orme, who promises to be back for more.

Chapter 5 – Rob

Who stabs themselves in the chin with a plastic cutlass? Really? Good job I was risk assessed, health and safety approved and sensible enough to wear the eye patch on my forehead while running.

Chapter 6 – Louise

We mustn’t forget those pirates who give up their time so that we all can run. Brian Jones run director today as stood at the top of that crow’s nest surveying the masses for his 30th time today. Since the start of 2018 Sue Thould, bearer of the pirate flag has stood 30 times in that finishing funnel, shouting at us to not throw up and stay in line or handing out those treasured finishing tokens.

There are 16 different roles every week that need to be filled, with around 25 volunteers needed to keep us ship shaped. A simple email in to kingsburywaterhelpers@parkrun.comis all that it takes.

“We’re going this way, that way, through the puddles along the Kingsbury course

With a bottle of water to quench my thirst … the parkrun life for me.”


KWP #281 KWP Wedding Complete

Runners flocked to today’s parkrun in droves, where an air of mystery and suspense filtered through the masses.
Nobody wanted to know who was first up on match of the day, or indeed the latest scandal on the weekly soaps. All the chatter this week has been about the New Years day marriage proposal at KWP. Who were they? Did she say yes?
One thing I can reveal is that I’m still waiting for my 1st proposition of 2019! (rumour has it I was 40/1 with the café staff)
Like every budding reporter though I have my sources. I have been able to obtain the answers to both the above questions, on good authority. Fear not as the suspense will be short lived.

Today’s 281st event was guided under the watchful eye, of smooth operator Judy PARKES. Another bumper turnout of 576 runners, enjoyed the continued togetherness these weekly events bring. 75 were first timers to the venue and 98 struck a new PB!...31 different clubs were represented.

On the subject of love, one of my favourite films is Romancing the stone. One thing I do know is when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Thomas HUDSON (17:53) and Tony DAVIES (17:56) finished 1st and 2nd today both with a new PB time. BADGERS runner Danny WARREN was 3rd back for the men in 18:29.
The more astute runner will probably know, that Billy Ocean actually sang the above song in the film The jewel of the Nile.
It wasn’t just the lake Mallards making a splash this morning. Making waves this weekend for the ladies was Hannah BROOKS. The Crawley AC athlete finished first lady home in a fantastic 17:59.
The experienced Karen TIMOTHY ran a quality new PB time.(19:30) The Sphinx AC runner also left with a superb age grading of 92.82%.
3rd back for the ladies was Pershore Plum Plodder Kate Le CHEVALIER. The first timer sped around the course like a Vauxhall SRI, to finish in 20:01.
With near freezing temperatures, many competitors opted to wear a snood.
A snood is commonly known as a multi use scarf. Not many know however, that a snood is also an erectile fleshy protuberance, which is attached near to the base of a turkeys beak.
Another cosy warming garment of clothing is the Gilet. Paul GILLETT managed to shave time off his latest run, with a new PB (34:40).

The following all ran their 10th parkruns.
Reenie WEBBER (39:24 PB), Charlotte ROBINSON (29:46 PB), Louise TYLER (29:35), Jon FOX (27:45 PB), Martin GEE (25:34 PB), Jon WHITE (22:21), Jon JERRARD-DINN (21:33 PB) and Peter SIDDLE (20:19 PB).

The next roll of honour is for everyone celebrating 25 parkruns.
Steve SANDERS (37:05), William PARKES (33:11), Jeni STARKEY (32:16), Grace STARKEY (32:12), Oliver VALE (27:20), Jack CHAPMAN (23:38) and Steve CHAPMAN (20:09).

3 managed to pocket the 50 appearance milestone.
Elaine BOLGER ran 38:23, with Jon ROBERTS running an impressive 21:24.
Joanne GILBERTS Levi 501 jean loving friend, also ran her 50th event.
A member of the original core team, Tricia BUNN didn’t crack under the pressure, as she ran a straight leg 23:20, followed by a celebratory hand stand.

James BEE (27:40) and Lichfield RC member Anna-Louise BRADLEY (25:50) both ran their 75th parkrun.
Regular Rachael HALLETT remarkably ran her 250th parkrun this week. A huge congratulations for your amazing achievement.

Elsewhere, and BADGERS trend setter and fashion guru Anne DEVENNEY featured. The early morning gym fanatic, took over 5 minutes off from last weeks time. (34:49)
5 local BADGERS runners all got to ring the PB bell!
Neil CLEMONS (19:25) and the rapidly improving Joanne HARDY (26:09) were the first to get in on the action.
Recent mum and staunch supporter Vikki SMITH ran a hard earned 31:08.
Lisa BARNES (32:03) and Helen MORGAN (32:20) will both have their sights firmly set on sub 30 minutes in 2019.

Someone that has started this year off as he finished the last, is Mervyn “the magician” JONES. Fresh from his recent 50th parkrun, he finished in 24:30 to conjure up another PB time (much to the delight of Paul DANIELS (38:15).

New PB times were flying in from all angles like a Dodecahedron. Having never ventured past a Hexagon in geometry, it was educational to find out today that a Dodecahedron is any polyhedron containing 12 flat faces.
As always the following young runners that haven’t already been mentioned, all started the year off with a new PB!
Joseph ORME (20:15), Samuel GILL (26:12 Cliff Lakes OCR), Kyan MARKLAND (26:17), Holly CHILD (29:38 Cliff Lakes OCR), Emeila CHILD (33:45 Cliff Lakes OCR), Jack LADKIN (34:30) and Reenie WEBBER (39:24)…top marks everyone.

A huge thank you to all of today’s volunteers. An extra special mention to regular volunteer Karen GOPSILL. Not only does she dish out the treats for runners during the summer switch back course, she provided cakes today as she celebrates her 50th birthday this Friday. Many happy returns and thank you for your continued support, to help make these events possible.

I previously mentioned Mallards known to many as the common duck. Male birds (known as Drakes) have a glossy green head and are grey on their wings and belly. Females (or hens) have mainly brown speckled plumage.
It got me thinking about the popular family game Bingo.
Young Matt JACKSON finished in 22nd place this morning (21:12)…quack quack

Also taking part in her 22nd parkrun was Emma FOX. Having first appeared in May 2017, Emma ran a time in just over 44 minutes.
I was delighted to hear today she ran 30:57 for a new PB.
Fantastic progress and commitment Emma…so much so on your 22nd parkrun you can have one of these too…quack quack

Michelle DARLASTON (Mitchy’s Marvels) helped colleague Lucie BRADY to a new PB (31:58). How fitting then to learn that Michelle has been nominated for coach of the year award, for spirit in the community of Tamworth.

Finally I’m ending this week’s report with the ultimate scoop!
“Who were they?”…”Did she say yes?”

On New Years day I really enjoyed reading the run report from Vanessa FRANKLIN. I thought it was a real nice touch for a runner from Chichester to take part and also compile the run report.
Can I just express my thanks to her on behalf of the core team, volunteers and all runners. It was a fantastic way to kick-start a new year.
I really liked her personal touch at the end about herself, as many of us perhaps never know the face behind the report, or an individual’s background.

On what was Vanessa’s birthday on New Year’s day, she had an extra special surprise.
Cannon Hill park runner Terry FELASCHI asked Vanessa to be his wife...I’m delighted to report she said Yes!
I’ve had the pleasure of submitting several run reports, but by far this report, the stories and the community spirit make this my favourite.

Best wishes Vanessa and Terry and it would be great to see you back running at Kingsbury as man and wife.


Kingsbury Water parkrun #280 1/1/2019 10:30

Report may contain geeky stats.
The Report:
A whopping 792 runners gathered this New Years Day at Kingsbury Water for parkrun #280, at the later start time of 10:30am. This number of runners is a course record, beating the next highest attendance at Kingsbury Water by 249 (543 runners finished on 1/1/2016).

I’m not sure what happened on 1/1/2017 when ‘only’ 397 runners completed the course, or 1/1/2018 when there were 450 finishers. These high attendance figures were echoed across the UK, with at least 150 runs having their
highest ever number of finishers. Last year (1/1/2018), 74,762 parkruns were recorded (including doubles), while this year a massive 126,767 runs were recorded from 335 events.

Bushy parkrun recorded the highest number of attendees of any parkrun, with 1,156 people finishing there. With the later start time, many took the opportunity to have a lie-in, while other crazy folk (myself included), decided to do the ‘New Years Day Double’ – the only day of the year in the UK where you can run and record two parkruns.

The start was delayed slightly due to the large numbers queuing to get into the carpark (myself included). Despite a little drizzle just before the run, things cleared up by the time we got going, and the weather was a fairly mild 8 degrees.

I don’t need to tell you all what a lovely parkrun this is! While my home run in Chichester is a sometimes dull three laps around a small-ish park, Kingsbury Water is a lovely circular route alongside a large pond. It is very flat and very easy on the knees, being mainly off-road and on gravel paths.

I really enjoyed this parkrun, as well as the chance to blow off the fog from the night before and get the New Year off to a good start. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one! Ladies dominated the top finishing spots, taking first, second, third and fifth place, with the fastest time being a very quick 15:30 by Elaine Sherwin. Elaine was also the outright first finisher!

163 runners completed the course for the first time, and 28 runners completed their very first ever parkrun. 43% of finishers were female, 51% were male, and 6% were unknown. Well done to everyone who finished, and I wish everyone all the best in their running journeys in 2019.

Thank you, Kingsbury Water for a very enjoyable and memorable run. Oh, and to the chap at the end who was spotted proposing to his girlfriend – congratulations!

Other Random Parkrun Facts:
* The most parkruns completed by anyone is 702.
* Over 5,250,000 barcodes have been issued worldwide (2,030,201 of these have never been used to record a run).
* 949,965 of these have recorded 1 parkrun.

About the Author:
My name is Vanessa Franklin I turned 45 on 1/1/19, and my home run is Chichester in West Sussex. I have done 73 parkruns and love a bit of parkrun tourism. Over the past year I’ve become more addicted to parkrun, and I enjoy looking at my progress and the challenges on the ‘Running Challenges’ add-on available on Google Chrome (if you don’t know what I mean, check it out!)


Seeing out 2018 in style!

When you have written several run reports it is good to bring something new to the report. This time I am going to add subheadings!


This week 486 people walked, jogged or ran at Kingsbury. It was an extremely mild morning with near perfect conditions with a splattering of mud just for fun but with very limited puddles (BOOO!) There were 52 first timers and 65 personal bests.



Back to the report…First timers.

There were 52 first timers at Kingsbury. Welcome- we hope you will return soon. For 17 awesome people they completed their first parkrun ever. I hope you enjoyed it and will come for a trot around the lake soon.


This week Sophia Costello visited us from Sydney, Australia. Sophia normally runs at The Ponds parkrun. It has drink fountains around the route. Luxury! I suppose we have the lake to drink from. Paul and Pamela Tranter visited us today for the first time. Their home parkrun is Woodhouse parkrun and for a pound afterwards you can have a shower at Leeds University. Bonus! Suzanne Ravenhall visited today, and her home parkrun is Fareham. It starts and finishes at Cams Mill pub. Sounds perfect! Another tourist was Jason Wade from South Manchester parkrun. The course description is epic “This track can be very wet and puddles often form in wet weather, you must run straight through the middle of these puddles to avoid the drainage ditch that runs alongside the path.” So much fun!


There were 65 pbs today at Kingsbury this week. Awesome running by Andrew, Louise and Erin Mandefield who all got new PBs with only 1 second between them. Well done to all of you. Dean Snowden who got a PB today with sub 21 mins. It is his First PB for 3 years. Also, well done to Simon Hill and Nick Dennis. Simon was paced today by Rob Vernon and Rachael Shelton. When Simon was asked what time he wanted he said 25 minutes. He meant a time starting with 25 so 25:59. Rachael and Rob thought he meant 25:00 so paced him for that. Simon got a PB of 25 minutes 14 seconds. Amazing running. I must mention someone called Nick Dennis. I am proud of him but also want to kick him in the shins to. Nick has had an epic training plan this week of doing a jigsaw and watching TV. He also has eaten his way through After Eight mints and various other treats all week. His training plan will be available in all good book shops soon. He literally said he fancied a PB in the car on the way to parkrun so just ran fast and took over a minute off his PB. I on the other hand went to the gym. Silly idea. He will be sleeping in our shed tonight. Jack Chapman today had the most frustrating time. He got exactly his PB to the second. Hopefully he will be ringing the PB bell soon.


There were loads of celebrations today. Three juniors ran their tenth parkrun. These were Samuel Keast, Rachael Boardman and Erin Mandefield. Three parkrunners ran their 50th run. These were Caroline Smith, Sharon Williams and Holly Meek. Celebrating their 100th run was Allan Williams and Peter Black. Marshalling today on his 25th volunteering job was Paul Drake. Look out for your email so you can claim your free top. Parkrun how have around 2,000 people a week earning these coveted items. Well done.


Today’s Hi-vis heroes were Brian Adams, Richard Benham, Hannah Coogan, Trudie Cruddas, Sarah Dennis, Margaret Downes, Paul Drake, Lisa Fletcher, Leah Fox, Trevor Gasper, Susan Hann, Louie Harrison, Fiona Hill, Ben Horton, Ian Horton, Pauline Howes, Natasha O'Callaghan, Lil Souter, Louise Vernon, Reenie Webber, James Webber, Steve Weller, Sharon Whitehead. That is just 23 people to run an event that makes so many people have a smile on their face before 10 o clock on a Saturday. You could be one of them. Just email kingsburywaterhelpers@parkrun.com to volunteer. When you run you see what you can achieve. When you volunteer you can see what the community can achieve.

WAVA and results

Top 5 WAVA rating were:
Christopher PEARSON 17:31 VM40-44 79.73 %
Claire Louise MARTIN 20:21 VW45-49 79.61 %
Gordon KING 20:44 VM60-64 78.05 %
Dean SNOWDEN 20:52 VM60-64 77.56 %
David COLLINS 22:10 VM65-69 76.39 %

Top 3 were:

Danny WARREN 18:28 SM30-34 70.40 % M 3 00:17:01 69
Lottie MCLAREN 21:53 JW11-14 74.41 % F 3
Katherine SNOWDEN 21:18 SW30-34 69.48 % F 2
Ben HORTON 18:07 SM18-19 73.60 % M 2
Claire Louise MARTIN 20:21 VW45-49 79.61 % F 1
Christopher PEARSON 17:31 VM40-44 79.73 % M 1

Long lost family

Last year Trevor Gasper got a friend request from David Gasper on Facebook. David had spotted Trevor on the Kingsbury results that day. David's local park run is Bedfont Lakes parkrun in London. He ran at Kingsbury last year because he was visiting family in Atherstone. Little did he know they are second cousins. They met up and today ran Kingsbury together.

Bonus New Year’s Day parkrun

There is an extra parkrun on Tuesday at Kingsbury starting at the later time of 10:30 am. Please get there early as it will be very busy. If you fancy doing a double parkrun, you can go to Conkers parkrun at 9am then head over to Kingsbury or you can go to Sutton parkrun also at 9am and then come over to Kingsbury.

If not see you next week.The Gasper cousinsThe Dennis shed


A Cracker of a Christmas Parkrun

What a treat!...the opportunity to write the final parkrun report before Christmas…and what a cracker it was!
Event number 278 attracted an incredible 478 festive individuals (most of which dressed to impress). 30 were first time runners at the event and a jaw dropping 67 of those left with a new PB!

I love a good symbol me, ever since I contemplated changing my name to the artist formally known as Norman.
Talking of musical artists, how fantastic was it to have the Coleshill Town band performing, including the popular Claire WEBBER. A big thank you for dedicating your time and helping everyone capture that Christmas spirit.

The most famous symbol associated with Christmas is the cross. How fitting then, that a first time namesake visitor to today’s event finished first. (you couldn’t make it up)Not only did Ellis CROSS (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC) “cross” the line quicker than Santa’s sleigh(15:01)…he also broke the course record time for an unaided runner. A huge well done from me, to someone that is clearly a fantastic athlete.
Regular Elaine SHERWIN (Leamington C and AC) finished 2nd in a quality 16:06. Vikki HUBBARD (16:57) was 3rd back impressing for Canicross Midlands.

2 local BADGERS runners finished 4th and 5th. Performing together like wrestling greats “The rockers”. Bearded warrior David Mcgowan got to ring the PB bell. With favourite club Arsenal featuring in today’s early kick off, he broke 18 minutes to finish in a fantastic 17:51.

Sam STARKEY(18:48) has had a fantastic year, especially with all his recent extra training. Known to many as “super Sam” he also had a successful footballing career in Spain. Having played in the lower divisions for Salou reserves, he adopted the nickname of “Pedro” by adoring fans. The Tom Selleck lookalike also celebrated his 40th birthday today. Many happy returns!

Royal Sutton Coldfield AC athlete Martin CLUTTERBUCK made the top 6. Not only did he finish in sub 19 minutes, he also bagged a new PB (18:51)
Local runner, volunteer and stalwart Tim GOULD ran his 175th parkrun. (21:11), as did Louise JOHNSON (32:43).
Chris RHODES (25:56) ran his 150th.
Michael BALL certainly appreciated the band, as he took centre stage to celebrate his 125th parkrun with a new PB! (26:59)
In what was another impressive day for Tamworth AC, James STRETTON (23:58) ran his 100th event.
Young Thomas BANKS ran superb to finish his 75th (29:41). Also running their 75th parkruns were Glen SWINDELL (30:16) and Kevin GEARY (32:17).
Ruth Ann NEEDHAM clocked her 50th run representing Lichfield RC. (25:30)
Robert LOCKLEY also left with the same achievement (34:50)
Boldmere Bullet Jim COTTOM ran an excellent 20:27 to mark his 25th turnout. Paul KIMBERLEY (27:24), Thomas CONTI (29:33) and Kelsie JOHNSON (30:21) also celebrated the same milestone.

The following all competed in their 10th parkruns…
Young Briar LEWIS ran a new PB of 27:47, Simon MILLER (28:04), Olivia HARDY (34:56), Stephanie NEWMANN (36:25 New PB), Jo PAYNE (40:04) and Maxine WAINMAN (45:00)…congratulations to all of the above runners.

As always the young runners were on top form. Here is the roll of honour for all of those that have not already been mentioned, that got a new PB time.
Charlie SMITH (20:09), Oliver LEWIS (22:23), Toby WOOTON (24:00 Tamworth AC), Francesca WATTIS (24:31 Tamworth AC), Benjamin GODBER (25:05), Bryn MEEK (25:14), Daniel ASH (26:13), Rex BANNISTER (28:15), Tom BISHOP (30:59), Sophie JOHNSON (32:40), Becky RIDGE (34:03), Sophie GODBER (34:07), Zanna BANNISTER (36:22), Leah FOX (37:09), Rueben PERRY (38:57) and Rowan MURPHY (39:12).

I have already mentioned symbols and having gone through the results list, there were certainly a few signs.
Another symbol associated with Christmas is the Robin. David BIRD took full advantage with a new PB! (24:57)
Being from Coventry, I always enjoy the family films Nativity. Also performing today was Louise SHEPHERD (31:58 Michy’s Marvels)
Aled JONES is a name often banded around this time of year. At Kingsbury everyone was talking about Adam JONES, as he ran 28:40.
3 females called Holly featured. Holly CLARK (Tamworth AC) ran 29:19. Holly MEEK grabbed a time of 33:04. Holly PRESTON impressed in 42:27.

For many it was all about enjoyment and spending time with family. Running around that road (or course) with no problems were Tamworth AC trio Erin, Charlotte and Howard BUSH. All crossed the line together in under 23 minutes.
Other young runners included Sophie HARDY (39:27) and Yasmine KLUCIS (39:50)

John DEVENNEY not only pulled a Christmas cracker, he also left with a new course PB!(25:32). Judy PARKES was different gravy.
90’S pop loving duo Emma and Jonathan VARDY were simply another level, as they ran together.
Jake BRADFORD joined the weekend PB club (22:10) as did Tracey MARVIN (29:32).
Paul DANIELS ran in fancy dress too (48:05).

Finally I would just like to wish each and every one of you a very Happy Christmas. A huge thank you to all of todays 27 volunteers, and to everyone that has contributed towards Crisis at Christmas to support the homeless. I can think of no better way to end this weeks report.

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