Event 105 – Happy 2nd Birthday Moors Valley parkrun!

Written by Daniel Webster

In this report, we celebrate the 2nd birthday of Moors Valley parkrun and reflect on how much we have grown in the last two years. It provides an excellent opportunity to reflect on the growth of other local parkruns. Also, as an avid buggy runner I am going to discuss buggy running at parkrun.

Moors Valley parkrun 4 Nov 2017

Happy birthday! 2 years and counting. There was a wonderful atmosphere this morning despite the rain. The rain abated for the run brief and was certainly much calmer than that of Storm Brian two weeks ago. Thanks again to the volunteers who helped out in this weather. Event 105 saw 390 finishers and headed by two unknowns again! There were 373 finishers when Moors Valley parkrun was 1 year old, 404 at the very first ever Moors Valley parkrun.

What has made it such a success! Obviously without a very loyal core team and volunteers this parkrun would not be able to happen. However, I think Moors Valley owes a lot of its success to ease of access, easy parking, a big starting area and a single lap course. I love the course – a mixture of trail and tarmac with some undulations and a fast finish. The impact of being a single lap cannot be underestimated – some people do not like doing laps especially those that can be lapped. Moors Valley parkrun is in a very healthy position attracting over 300 runners each week providing a great atmosphere without feeling too busy.

Moors Valley parkrun 4 Nov 2017

As this is a week of milestones (I celebrated my 40th birthday on Tuesday!) I thought I would reflect on how other local parkruns are doing. As Moors Valley is on the Hampshire/ Dorset border it feels fitting to talk about the parkruns in these two counties. Here are the attendances last weekend for local parkruns:

  • Basingstoke 404
  • Blandford 135
  • Bournemouth 321
  • Brockenhurst 139
  • Eastleigh 286
  • Fareham 195
  • Havant 246
  • Lee on the Solent 346
  • Lymington 73
  • Moors Valley 390
  • Netley Abbey 227
  • Poole 611
  • Portsmouth Lakeside 203
  • Queen Elizabeth 70
  • Southampton 783
  • Southsea 319
  • Upton House 248
  • Weymouth 343
  • Whiteley 158
  • Winchester 315

That’s a staggering 5812 parkrunners in Hampshire and Dorset alone on a grizzly November morning. What a fantastic number of options – talk about spoilt for choice.

To close, I am going to talk about buggy running. I have done 210 parkruns and over 100 with the buggy. Most of these are running with my daughter in a single buggy but my son is now 10 months old so have been running with the double buggy for the last three months or so. I cannot remember the last time I ran without a buggy and it would feel very strange to run “solo.” We bought a running buggy before my daughter was born and I knew I wanted to run parkrun with her. I had no idea it would end up being every week. Even though I am slower with the buggy, I set my own targets and know my single and double buggy PBs at all the local parkruns! Buggy running really fits the parkrun ethos of inclusivity – it enables my whole family to participate. My wife and dad run, my mum volunteers.

Moors Valley parkrun 4 Nov 2017

What’s it like running with a buggy? It’s great fun – we would not do it otherwise. Going uphill is about 1000 times harder than without – undulations at Moors Valley feel like mountains. Downhill is also tasty – the buggy pulls you along so you don’t want to lose grip! However, one of the biggest things running through our mind is concern for clipping the heels of runners in front of us. With our 3 wheeled buggies, we cannot see where our front wheel is. I tread very carefully at the start to safely navigate traffic but after a half km or so, the path opens up and we are away. My daughter loves it and I know I would be in trouble if I suggested anything other than parkrun on a Saturday morning! She wants to do parkrun every day!

We all love parkrun and long may it continue. Looking forward to the 3rd birthday

We are very grateful to the volunteers who made this event happen:Jason BEECH, Samuel BOGGUST, Lindsay CASS, Rachel CASS, Steve DAVIS, Carole DAVIS, James GILFILLAN, Steve GOODWIN, Mark GOULDING, Joanne HANSELL, Jort HILLE RIS LAMBERS, Celia HODGSON, Eddie HONEY, Phillip HORSCROFT, Martyn HOULDSWORTH, Michael KING, Deborah LAMB, Anna PARNUM, Lewis PARRY, Ellie PIPER, Sue PULMAN, Chris RICHMOND, Helena SHAW, Jerry SHIELD, Harry SIMS, Heidi SNOOK, Sue TIPPING, Julie TYLER, Simon WALDING, Katie WALDING, Ronald WALMSLEY, Gillian WALMSLEY, Alison WARD, Glenys WATERS, Clifford WATERS, Ross WHITE, Steve WICKENDEN


Event 104 – 28/10/2017

Bbbbrrrrrr! This is how I describe my first go as the run reporter for Moors Valley parkrun number 104 as I stepped out of the door from a nice warm house this morning. There was frost on next door’s roof but luckily the car didn't require deicing. The short drive from home to Moors Valley I could see that Autumn had well and truly arrived with the array of orange, red, brown colours on the trees and the snowfall of leaves from the trees tumbling down with every gust of wind.
I first encountered parkrun 4 years ago back in 2013 at Bournemouth parkrun in its infant days, when they were short of volunteers and a friend who had taken up running suggested about helping out there. This in turn led to volunteering for a number of different roles there in allsorts of weathers (especially rain) so that all you lovely people could run, amble, jog, push a buggy, get pulled along by your dog, walk in the fresh air around a 5k course first thing on a Saturday morning.
A set back in health led to a break from parkrun (during which time I swam the channel and London marathon in my local pool over a number of months.) The start of Moors Valley Park Run had a feeling of de ja vu when on run number 3 I volunteered for my local event as well as being a Christmas fairy marshall back in 2015 (who can forget the pink wig or tinsel skirt at the top of the incline/hill!)
Upon arriving at Moors Valley last Saturday, it was great to see so many people raring to go for a quick (or slow) trip around the course in the forest. Why do so many people enjoy Park Run? Well it can be used as a training exercise, a way of improving your fitness, a test to see if you are getting faster and can beat your PB, or just a chance to get out of the house and get some exercise in the fresh air. parkrun appeals to everybody!
I came back to doing parkrun back in May when I needed to see that I could do a 5K distance again as I had entered the Race for Life in June. A couple of parkruns later led to a new PB and I have since used parkrun to assist me on my way to getting fitter (plus helping to lose weight.) I even spent my birthday back in September doing Park Run (so that I could wear the birthday hat!) The greatest gift that day was knowing I had inspired a couple of friends to do parkrun for the first time and another to volunteer. So when I asked a group of first timers I had half expected to hear a similar answer to the one I gave but instead was told that “I wouldn’t get a taxi home if I didn’t do parkrun with them”, wasn’t the answer I had expected.
The visitor from furthest away came from Durham as well as having visitors from Reading and Cheddar (nice cheese and caves!) There were also a number of runners celebrating milestone parkruns with clocking up 50 parkruns. One Junior had been doing parkrun since January 2016 and was celebrating her 50th with a 50 tiara to compliment her pink outfit.
As the everyone taking part headed off into the forest, I grabbed a coffee enroute to the lake. At the finishing area it was truly picturesque with the mist rolling across the lake and a pair of swans moving gracefully through the water. The tranquillity was soon broken by the pounding feet of various runners coming into view on their approach to the finishing area.
We had the grim reaper keeping time and a dark angel taking part in the run. Inspired by the colours from the trees I began to make a note of all the different running vests/tops that people taking part were wearing. (Apologies if I missed anyone.) We had Clapham Chasers, Weymouth 2015 10km, Hendy Eastleigh, parkrun Killerton (lovely National Trust property in Devon,) Cheddar R/C, Purbeck 16, AFC Bournemouth, Wiggle SS, parkrun Homewood, Sunderland FC, Bournemouth Marathon Festival, Verwood Runners (quite a few of them,) White Star Running (orange top,) Waterpolo Southampton, Great South Run Finisher 2017 (well done), 10K Durham City, Park Run Reading, Christchurch Runners, Stroke Association, Duberville Dash, Poole 10K, 10K Mummy, parkrun Moors Valley (where’s that again), parkrun Brockenhurst, Run 100 mile challenge, Bournemouth Bay Run and Team W.
From the results there were a number of people who took part that forgot to bring their barcode. Over various events and volunteering I have known people to keep various copies of their barcode so that in the event that they forget one there is always another back up. (In your bag, in the sun-visor in the car, in the glove compartment, in your mobile phone case, with your car keys.)
So as the sun hide behind the clouds, the temperature started to warm up slightly, the finishing area was dismantled by the volunteers, and everyone headed off to the café for a warm beverage or off home, thank you to all of the volunteers that helped with event # 104 this week. If you have an injury or are unable to take part in the parkrun think about volunteering instead and you too can wear a lovely hi-vise tell people where to go (marshalling), walk around with signs, click a stopwatch (timekeepers), chase after people for their name, give out finishing tokens, zap barcodes, ask people to keep in line (finish funnel manager) or bring up the rear and ensure no one gets lost (tail walker.) Obviously these are all different roles but if you wish to volunteer visit the Moors Valley parkrun page for future roster and email the core team with whatever date or role you wish to volunteer for.
So next week is Moors Valley parkrun’s 2nd Birthday. The theme is food. (Interpret into fancy dress if you like.) There is also donations for a local food bank  https://ringwood.foodbank.org.uk/give-help/donate-food/  So check their website for details of what sort of things to bring with you. Bring your friends and let’s try to beat our own attendance record.
Here's the scientific/results bit…

This week 423 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 65 were first timers and 90 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 38 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 31 volunteers:

Michael KING • Sue TIPPING • Guy BELLOWS • Carole DAVIS • Christine WALDRIDGE • Sandra JONES • Glenys WATERS • Clifford WATERS • Kaye OCONNOR • Jason BEECH • Stewart WALDRIDGE • Penny ALVIS • David MCQUILLAN • Gillian WALMSLEY • Richard FOX • Jamie ANDERSON • Paul HANSELL • Lindsay CASS • Rachel CASS • Helena SHAW • Angie HARPER • Toby DEDRICK • Peter LALEY • Steve WICKENDEN • Rose MCQUILLAN • Michael BRATCHFORD • Steve GOODWIN • Anna PARNUM • Adrian BLAKE • Mark GIBSON • Eddie HONEY

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

The female record is held by Ruth MCKEAN who recorded a time of 18:35 on 15th July 2017 (event number 89).
The male record is held by Max COSTLEY who recorded a time of 15:53 on 16th September 2017 (event number 98).
The Age Grade course record is held by Caroline HORDER who recorded 91.48% (22:30) on 20th February 2016 (event number 15).

Moors Valley parkrun started on 7th November 2015. Since then 6,664 participants have completed 31,763 parkruns covering a total distance of 158,815 km, including 7,118 new Personal Bests.

See you next week, Sandra Jones



Event 103 – 21/10/2017 Six years, 100 parkruns and Brian


On 19th November 2011 I nervously drove all the way down to Poole on a Saturday morning to take part in my first ever parkrun. Like most first timers I didn’t really know what to expect. I was worried that I’d be slow, that I’d finish last, that all the ‘proper runners’ would think I was a bit rubbish. It wasn’t so! I finished 156th out of 178 runners  so yes, I was towards the back of the field, but I was made to feel very welcome and was really spurred on by the faster runners (who had already finished) clapping and cheering as the slower runners came past the pavilion for the final lap. I was hooked from that first visit.

Nearly six years later I did my 100th parkrun at Moors Valley. How did I get here? What took so long? Why haven’t I got bored of it yet?

To answer the first question, I spent two years running at Poole parkrun most weeks. I also found that I really enjoyed volunteering, so when Bournemouth parkrun started up and was looking for people to join the core team I jumped at the chance. After a while I ended up as Event Director at Bournemouth for about a year before taking a few months off then helping to set up Moors Valley parkrun. I was injured at the time so couldn’t run, but I must have walked and cycled the route at least 10 times before we even started and was able to start running again soon after.

What took so long? In short, volunteering! I just love volunteering! In addition to my 100 runs I have carried out 155 volunteer roles on 114 different occasions. So I have volunteered more than I’ve run. If you’ve never tried volunteering give it a go. The roles are all super-easy (if I can do them, anyone can!) and you’ll go home feeling like you’ve really done something worthwhile. I think my favourite role is barcode scanning because you get to see the names of those people that you see every week but don’t know who they are.

Am I getting bored of it yet? NO!!!!! I can honestly say that the majority of my friends are people that I’ve met through parkrun. I love that I can chase a PB if I feel like it or I can have a slow, sociable plod and chat to my fellow runners on the way round. Moors Valley is close to home so I can run to the start and make it part of a longer run if I want to. Most weeks I just come for the coffee, cakes and banter and if I happen to run 5k while I’m here then so much the better. Of course there are weeks where I’d love to just stay in bed and sleep and sometimes I do (it feels weird and a bit naughty, like bunking off school) but I can’t think of any better way to start the weekend than joining a few hundred people running round our beautiful park.

So how was my 100th run? Two words that I think will sum it up for everyone, whether running or volunteering:
It was very wet and very windy. It was touch and go as to whether the event would be cancelled due to Storm Brian but RD Jason made the decision to go ahead on Course B. I have to admit that it wasn’t a great run for me, although running with birthday girl Lorraine meant that at least the company was enjoyable. The first half through the woods was difficult and my legs felt very tired and stiff, as though I’d done the other 99 parkruns that morning.

2017-10-21 20.55.06

As we turned towards the out-and-back section Storm Brian hit us with everything he had! My balloons were blowing about in the wind and trying to strangle me. (Sincere apologies to anyone who got a balloon in the face – I was trying my best to keep them under control but Brian had other ideas!) The rain was horizontal and my multi-coloured hairdo started dribbling down my face.

Despite the rain, the extended out and back was my favourite bit as I had so many “congratulations” and “well done” comments from people heading the other way, it really gave me a boost. The nice long downhill to the finish is always welcome on Course B and I was very glad to get across the line.

I already mentioned that my main motivation is found in the café afterwards, I can confirm that the coffee and cake were excellent (thank you Michelle and Lorraine and the rest of the Tutu crew) and well worth running 100 parkruns for!

2017-10-21 10.01.41

Huge respect and a massive thank you to all the marvellous volunteers that stood out in the awful weather so that we could *enjoy* running in it! Not all superheroes wear capes, many of them wear hi-viz and parkrun wouldn’t happen without them. This week’s heroes were: Michael KING • Sue TIPPING • Gary TYLER • Alison WARD • Tim CHALLIS • Julie TYLER • Glenys WATERS • Clifford WATERS • Andy PALMER • Samuel BOGGUST • Jason BEECH • Sarah RILEY • Clare FOOTE • Gillian WALMSLEY • Julie PEGORARO • Katie DAVIES • Rhys PEGORARO • Jamie ANDERSON • Mark GOULDING • Lindsay CASS • Rachel CASS • Helena SHAW • Marianne PATERSON • Hannah SOUTHBY • Steve GOODWIN • Teresa BOWES • Graeme GREGORY • Michelle OAKLEY • Anna JONES • Anna PARNUM • Louise ARNOLD • Harry SIMS • Jort HILLE RIS LAMBERS • Eddie HONEY • Judith COX • Nathan KENNEDY • Anna KENNEDY

There were 290 hardy souls who make their way round the course this week including 44 first timers. The weather clearly motivated some people to run faster – 41 people managed to get a PB.

Male placings:
James BAKER (VM40-44) of Chichester Runners & AC, was first over the line in 16:05 - first appearance.
An unknown runner was second.
An unknown runner was third.

Female placings:
Lin LASCELLES (VW50-54) of Maiden Newton Runners, was first (16th overall) over the line in 20:17 - third time in 4 appearances.
Sarah WREN (VW50-54) (Unattached) was second (54th overall) over the line in 23:35.
Hannah COOK (VW35-39) of Poole Runners, was third (63rd overall) over the line in 23:55.


Event 102 – Moors Valley parkrun Saturday 14 October 2017

A lovely warm autumnal morning for our beautiful Moors Valley 102nd parkrun today.

This is my first time as volunteer run reporter, so I took it very seriously and arrived extra early with pen and paper. Only the swans were around at the finish line at 0830 but they weren't interested in being interviewed:


"Come on Penelope, time to move, it's that time of the week again, sigh"

But it was great having a valid excuse to talk to lots of you warming up and chatting at the start area shortly after: the four young men poised right on the start line; the lady with her 250th parkrun shirt (I didn't know they went up that far!); a couple of my fellow club runners; a determined lady undergoing chemotherapy; acquaintances from Ringwood, Verwood and Bournemouth; and loads of people sporting their newly-acquired purple Bournemouth Marathon Festival t-shirts from last weekend. I was speaking to a lovely trio - Alison, Glenys and Cliff - and mentioned I jogged a slow Bournemouth Supernova 5km last week, as my mum fell over so we had to stop. They said their friend, a doctor, also stopped to help a faller - turned out it was my mum the doctor had helped! So I now have their name to contact and thank them - I would never have found that out if I hadn't been appointed as the Moors Valley journalist!

Anyway, a beautiful day for a run and it was great to see you all enjoying yourselves (even if you didn't know it until after you had finished). I too was having a great run until 4km when one of my running buddies overtook me - however that spurred me on for a personal best today. Although I was disappointed to find there was no trophy for being 20th fastest female...ah well.

One surprising common theme was the amount of you that told me you were running with a hangover...I'm not sure if that is a good thing but at least you were out there clearing your head and calories!

A fantastic range of you runners today - 6 of you over 70 yrs old and 15 of you only 10 years old! With times from 17 mins 48s to 59 mins 47s.

Other exciting news from the finish line includes Rachel letting me know she had 100% success with her bar-scanning today - and Tim (who I couldn't find but apparently he made the token sorter board) who celebrated his 50th volunteering session today - so congratulations all round! Enjoy the rest of your week and WELL DONE everyone :)


Warming up and checking those vital GPS signals!


Event 101 – Happy 13th Birthday parkrun

This week’s parkrun was a special one – parkrun is 13 years old!

Moors Valley parkrun celebrated by decking out in our apricot colours and 346 runners set out on an autumnal Saturday to complete their 5ks.

Moors Valley Parkrun 07.10.17

In celebration of parkrun’s 13th birthday I’ve put together 13 facts about parkrun. Here we go!

1. There are 13 people who make up the central team of park run UK (very conveniently for the purpose of this post!). You can find out more about their role and about them here: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/aboutus/

2. You can run parkrun in 15 different countries from Australia to the USA.

3. Parkrun was started by Paul Sinton-Hewitt when he became injured training for the London Marathon. A few different factors conspired with Paul’s injury to lead to parkrun but said: “I considered what I could do that was unique and different and niche, but also what I could do for my community.”

Moors Valley Parkrun 07.10.17

4. The largest attendance at a parkrun was in South Africa – 2,092 runners achieved a 5k in one go.

5. The first parkrun was held in Bushy Park but it took two years for a second run to start. Wimbledon took the title of the second parkrun.

6. Caroline Wood currently holds the record for the highest number of first place finishes at parkrun: 159!

7. Some park runs hold additional runs on Christmas Day and New Years Day! If you would like to get involved click this link to find out where you can run: http://www.parkrun.org.uk/christmas-compendium/ (Moors Valley will not be holding an additional run on Christmas Day as the park is closed.)

8. Parkrun held 111 events at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan from 2011 to 2014. The course record was 16:31.

Moors Valley Parkrun 07.10.17

9. Darren Wood is the global record holder for the most number of parkruns. He has taken part in 630!

10. There are currently 10 members in the 500 club.

11. The age-graded record holder is Fauja Singh (179.04%, set when finishing Valentines Parkrun in 38:34 on 31 March 2012, the day before his 101st birthday).

12. Lanhydrock parkrun in Cornwall is the hilliest course. You climb a total of 453ft over the 5k compared to Moors Valley which is only 71ft!

13. The total time run to date (correct at 9 October 2017) by UK parkrunners since the first event is 984 years 80 days 10 hours 36 minutes and 12 seconds. Globally this figure is 1,602 years 89 days 18 hours 58 minutes and 4 seconds! An amazing figure to be part of!

Moors Valley Parkrun 07.10.17

Now to this week’s results:

We welcomed twenty two first timers at Moors Valley this week and hope you enjoyed your runs!

Christopher COATES celebrated his 50th parkrun this week and Sally WEBSTER celebrated her 100th parkrun – congratulations to both of you!

Male placings:

Oliver POXON (SM30-34) (Clapham Chasers RC) (1st overall) shot over the line first for the gents with a time of 18:37, followed closely by Oliver HERDSMAN (SM30-34) (Vegan Runners) (2nd overall) in second place with a time of 18:45. The third place runner was unknown this week so we turn next to fourth place (6th overall) Jason PRITCHARD (SM20-24) (unattached) who clocked a time of 20:06 in his first time at Moors Valley.

Moors Valley Parkrun 07.10.17

Female placings:

Sian THOMAS (SW30-34) (unattached) (3rd overall) shot over the line first for the women in 19:53 with Amy JARAMAZOVIC (SW20-24) (Andover AC) coming in second (5th overall) in 19:54. Third place (10th overall) this week went to Anja HEIJNEN (VW45-49) (unattached) who was over the finish line with a time of 20:35 and set a new PB! It was Amy’s first time at Moors Valley. Great times and congratulations to all.

Moors Valley Parkrun 07.10.17

The three highest age grades were recorded by:

Ian BARNES (VM70-74) – 83.64% for the time 21:05 (13th overall).
Anja HEIJNEN (VW45-49) – 80.49% for the time 20:35 (10th overall).
Angie HARPER (VW60-64) – 76.18% for the time 25:28 (88th overall).

Our most experienced runner this week was Annabel THORNE with a fabulous 285 parkruns to her name.

Of course, none of us could take part, achieve our PB’s and milestone runs without the hard work of the volunteers. Thanks this week to Adrian WALKER, Anna KENNEDY, Beki MARSH, Bettina F CHURCH, Carole DAVIS, Cathy BASCOMBE, Celia HODGSON, Chris RICHMOND, Clare MCKNIGHT, Ellie PIPER, Fred UNDERDOWN, Gary TYLER, Hannah SOUTHBY, Helena SHAW, Jan UNDERDOWN, Jason BEECH, Jason OAKLEY, Jenny LUPTON, Joanne WESTON, Julie PEGORARO, Julie TYLER, Kim BAILEY, Kirsty HURLOCK, Linda Mela BURN, Lindsay CASS, Matt WESTON, Nathan KENNEDY, Nick SOLOMON, Rachel CASS, Ronald WALMSLEY, Sarah CANDY, Steve GOODWIN, Tim CARTER, Tim CHALLIS and Tracey SMITH for giving your time and enthusiasm to this week’s run.
We look forward to seeing you all next week for another parkrun

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