After a wet and windy night, and notification that some parkruns had cancelled through their courses being waterlogged, it was a relief to arrive at Kingsway with the sun trying hard to shine and every sign of it remaining dry for parkrun.
I found the historical aspects of the site described on the website fascinating, and it turned out to be a very pleasant parkrun with lots of variety including an orchard, a playground, playing fields, a path alongside a river, and the remains of RAF Quedgeley – but most importantly it was flat, given that my home parkrun is Ashton Court in Bristol!
Another bonus for me personally was the fact that the winter course was used, cutting out the muddy off-path parts of the course – I know many people like the mud, but I was delighted to stay on the paths!
154 parkrunners took part in event 180 with 19 different running clubs represented.
We were welcomed by Glyn Matthews, the RD, who explained the winter course – a short first lap then three longer laps. There were 10 parkrunners visiting Kingsway for the first time including visitors from near (eg Eastville and Ashton Court in Bristol, and Cheltenham) and far (eg Teeside), while 5 were doing their first ever parkrun.
A special welcome to the parkrun family to those five people and I hope you enjoyed your first parkrun and return for plenty more. Of the 7 runners doing their second parkrun, all 7 achieved a PB – congratulations to you all.
Matthew Aylott was not only the first male home in 18:19 but also scored the highest age grading of 76.80% and achieved a new PB - congratulations. Mike Mansfield was not far behind him in 18:42. Jasmine Fern was the first female home in 22:03, while Emily Cross came in as second female in 23:12. Altogether there were 22 new PBs – congratulations to all those who gained PBs but also to all those who participated – we are all faster than we would have been if we had stayed at home! Particular congratulations to Adrian Roffey and Sarah Spinner who both reached their milestones of 50 parkruns.
The volunteers as always were great, offering lots of encouragement all the way round – many thanks to you all. You really make such a huge difference to our enjoyment of parkrun.
It seemed a shame that there were so few tourists visiting – this is definitely a parkrun worth visiting and it deserves to come out from under the radar! It may be of course that there are a lot of more tourists at other times of the year. Thank you to everyone involved for welcoming this particular tourist.