Event 180 (19th May 2018) Seasoned parkrunners were a plenty!

A big thank you to one of our tourists today Karen Cole of Havant (Portsmouth) parkrun for providing the run report. I took a look at the stats from Karen, its always nice to hear what someone from far afield thinks when they tour at Perry Hall. Karen is certainly someone who has lots of parkruns to compare us against, she has completed 109 DIFFERENT parkruns!! - Wow, that is incredible, and run a total of 243 parkruns. Not long until you achieve the much loved green milestone tee for 250 parkruns - Well done, we hope to see you again soon.

On turning up at the start line, we found a cheery band of volunteers, who were massing and being briefed as to their duties which lifted our spirits as they do each parkrun morning. The parkrun fairies were working hard today and bathed the park in glorious blue skies and sunshine, so provided perfect opportunity to talk to others before we started.

Thank you to Helen Johnson for the runner's briefing where new runners were warmly welcomed and introduced to the course layout. What a beautiful course you have too, with 3 slightly different looping laps in stunning parkland. Locals were telling me that it used to be a mining area, not that you can see any evidence of that now, where trees and rivers run alongside well maintained paths.

Today, tourists from Telford, Coventry, Riddlesdown, Havant, Bolton, Melton Mowbray and as far away as Spain were using Perry Hall as their tourist venue. 5 of these were sporting the much coveted green 250 shirt.


A big thank you as always to the volunteers who gave up their time to ensure that we were able to run this morning. There were certainly a cheery band of marshals out on the course, all supporting by giving encouragement and clapping, certainly the change round of the lap number boards were a welcome sight as we went round.

Don't forget if you are unable to run, have a race coming up or are just generally a good egg, then volunteering is a great way to give back to the parkrun community. Head over to the Perry Hall parkrun webpage for details of the next few weeks roster and sign up for a position that suits you- you get to wear a hi-viz jacket! -what more incentive do you want? We were also reminded that the lost property tree was starting to fill up nicely. Don't forget to have a look if you have recently mislaid an item. FB_IMG_1526748086818

First timers, as mentioned above, are always warmly welcomed and are on the start of their parkrun journey and working towards their first milestones. The trick is when working towards your milestones is #DFYB- Don't Forget Your Barcode! 13 of you were listed as unknown runners this morning. That's one run less to count towards those milestone tees. Milestones this morning announced were Stephen MCCann who was running his 250th parkrun.

That's the great thing about parkrun isn't it, that each person has their own individual journey to talk and share about. Especially pertinent though to also remember to hand in your finish token, parkrun needs them for next week as they unfortunately are not a souvenir, medal or indeed your own version of Bingo!

Goodfellas, just outside of the park on the main road, provides the venue for the apres parkrun. We already had booked our brekkie, so couldn't go but hear that although cheep and cheerful they do great breakfast- maybe next time

Thank you again Perry Hall parkrun for starting our weekend off on a positive note. Look forward to seeing you all soon.

This week 170 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 21 were first timers and 19 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 30 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 22 volunteers:

Alexander COLE • Karen COLE • Clare TAYLOR • Janice MCCREARY • Lorna WITTER • Angelina FARRUGGIA • Roy GREAVES • Julie MORRIS • Sarah GIBSON • Claire CARPENTER • John-Paul GLASSFORD • Aman PARKAR • Richard GREAVES • Christopher JONES • Russell BURNS • Emma HAWKEY • Helen JOHNSON • Phil SMITH • Roger LEE • Imogen GUNSON • Claire TAYLOR • Annie MOSELEY


Event 177 (28th April 2018) Boathouse Runners Volunteer take-over.

We were delighted when Boathouse Runners of Handsworth asked to do a volunteer take over. They are a running group, based from Handsworth Park on a Sunday morning at 8:30 or 10am - suitable for all ages. It is free to run with them. They were also promoting their 10km Fun Run which takes place on Sunday 16th September, again this will be in Handsworth Park - see below for further details.
By John Hayes

It was such a miserable morning, as I met Lorna at the start area and started to set up the course with Chan ( who had just realised that he would be doing his 50th parkrun today as he had volunteered to tail walk as well, well done Chan), I thought we might not see many runners today. Who would want to run on a morning like this? Well I should never have doubted the spirit of parkrunners. On our return we were met by a crowd that already looked well over a hundred before the first timers had been briefed by Roy.
group photo

It was great to see all of our Boathouse Runners and Clem Dench Crew assembled to be ready for their volunteering jobs, so it was perfect time for a photo.

Already the cold hands felt warmer with greetings and handshakes, watching everyone else doing the same, many saying hello again after the run last week, and getting ready to run again today. greetings

Lorna started us off with a lovely thank you for our efforts, with a great response from the crowd, before letting us know about some important milestones for a pair of the core team of Perry Hall parkrun volunteers.

Today marked the 50th parkrun for Phil Thompson, who was rightly acknowledged as the loudest supporting volunteer, as I have to vouch that his cheers at the bridge on the first lap often spur me on to performances that I didn't think I could achieve. It was also an amazing 250th parkrun for Andy Wadsworth, who was set the challenge of impressing us again with another fast PB. No pressure then!
andy running

Andy running strong and on his way to yet another great time.

Both are incredible achievements, especially when you consider that they have each earned their t-shirts for 25+ volunteering weeks as part of the core team and beyond. Lorna called them the Twin Towers, and they did indeed resemble the old Wembley monuments as they nearly reached her height on either side of her as she stood on the bench! twin towers

Lorna gives her congratulations to Andy (left) for his 250th parkrun and Phil for his 50th.

Then we were off, after Tony and Kerry on timing duties had established exactly what time to start the stopwatches ("is it on 3 2 1 or go?"), I got into place for a few photographs and cheered everyone away. 

It was great to be at the bridge cheering on the full range of runners which parkrun attracts. From the front to the back of the field, smiles and grimaces were on show, sometimes at the same time. It was great to capture some moments of pride and determination as I dodged the raindrops with my camera.

John looking rather happy to be taking photos from the bridge.

The atmosphere with the volunteers was lively, energetic and funny. What really came across here was that we had volunteered en masse to raise awareness of our running groups and 10k run, yet we were also showing our runners the greatness of Perry Hall parkrun, which we value so much, and the joy that can be gained from volunteering at parkrun in general. Hopefully it will spark a whole new set of Saturday runners and volunteers.


Then it was off to the finish line as we saw our parkrun tourist from Wrexham coming back round at speed. I later found out that he was here for the weekend for an athletics conference at Alexander Stadium, though his time was impressive he wasn't too happy with it, though I very much agreed with his sentiment that it "wasn't bad for a 59 year old". 


Now was the time to get the nervous parts of the timing and scanning jobs done for the first time in all cases today. All of the duties seemed scary at first but worked like clockwork for our volunteers as they got going through the field. Time seemed to speed up with the pace of the runners as a great field of over 160 runners flowed through the line, with some impressive sprints being put on by many including the usual greatness from Sukhbir, a familiar face at Perry Hall parkrun.


It seems appropriate that the amount of runners matched almost exactly the amount we had for our 10k run last year. If you want to join us for the Handsworth Park 10k Fun Run this year, find out more and enter online at www.handsworthpark10k.co.uk 10k

Details of the Handsworth 10km Fun Run.

Finally, the tail walkers came in behind a spirited group of young achievers, and we got together for one last group shot with some more of our group who had joined us. Then a few of us got to sample the post parkrun session at Goodfilla's café across the road from the park. Four of us sorted the tokens and chatted while Lorna nervously inputted all of the data into the laptop and cross referenced all of the extra information that was gathered by John with the clipboard today. 
tail walkers


Chan (with baseball cap) making his way to his 50th parkrun by tail walking. Thank you Chan and congratulations.
Once she did her victory dance to signal that everything had gone in correctly, it was time to settle in for one of Roy's washing line tales, which today took us all the way to Bumble Hole ("I beg your pardon!") after I had asked whether the Birmingham and Black Country Half Marathon went through the long canal tunnel or not.


Today I must say was special for two reasons. Firstly, it was great to get our groups together in a different context. The team spirit between us was wonderful to witness and the response from the parkrunners today was very valuable. Secondly, it exemplified how rewarding it can be to volunteer at parkrun. It means so much to have the run happen every week and it couldn't happen without volunteers. So, book yourself in, you won't regret it. You may get to feel how well received you are for making it happen for others and you might even get to see what the different Run Directors' victory dances look like if you stay all the way to the café. Most of all, you get a whole different perspective on the whole experience as you cheer and watch a wonderful group of people doing a great thing. 



bridge volun

Volunteers on the bridge cheering through the runners on their first lap.

This week 160 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 6 were first timers and 31 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 21 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 19 volunteers:

Dee ALLEN • John HAYES • Lorna WITTER • Angelina FARRUGGIA • Roy GREAVES • Anthony HAYES • Tonia CLARK • Fiaz SETHI • Sarah GIBSON • Aman PARKAR • John CLINTON • Emma HAWKEY • Rajvir DHILLON • Kelly STOKES • Chan NANDHRAY • Bal KAUR • Saroj WATTON • Kerry WILLIAMSON • Finn MCGUINNESS

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

The female record is held by Hannah OLDROYD who recorded a time of 18:10 on 16th May 2015 (event number 28).
The male record is held by Ben GRIFFITHS who recorded a time of 15:47 on 29th October 2016 (event number 104).
The Age Grade course record is held by Margaret KENCHINGTON who recorded 86.71% (21:27) on 28th May 2016 (event number 82).

Perry Hall parkrun started on 22nd November 2014. Since then 3,181 participants have completed 17,214 parkruns covering a total distance of 86,070 km, including 3,062 new Personal Bests.


Event 168 (17th February 2018) Aldridge Running Club volunteer take-over.

By Sarah-Anne Fitzsimmons

Aldridge Running Club (ARC) have done quite a few parkrun "takeovers" in the last few years but as far as I know this was the first outside our usual home of Walsall Arboretum parkrun, and this one found us moving en mass to our new home for the weekend, Perry Hall. 




The ARC flag would be flying high once the boys got it sorted!   IMG_4634

Just checking the stopwatch is working - I've got runners to time!

Emma (the resident ED and ARC freshman member) was our volunteer co-ordinator and challenged us to fill every role on offer. This gave the valued core volunteer team at Perry Hall a well earned weekend off and instead of a lie-in some took a chance to take part in their own event.


The ARC high viz hero's from Saturday.

Cindy Tierney completed her 50 milestone with a silver balloon bobbing in the breeze and not even a threatening chance of a rain shower was stopping her. Having volunteered an impressive 33 times this will be her second milestone, after completing the run she handed out chocolates to mark the event.


Cindy Tierney arrived with her 'go faster' balloon to help her fly around the course. Jo Yarnall and Emma Hawkey were very impressed.



I found the event a challenge, each lap being different means you don't seem to get a chance to drop into autopilot, surface changes underfoot and sharp u-turns mean you have pace yourself and try not to land in the moat as you come into the home stretch!



The lovely moat at Perry Hall Park

Ron Reynolds captured a lot of the fun of the day in the 250+ photos that were added to the Facebook page on Saturday afternoon, worth a look too see if you've been caught with flying feet.

Here come the tail walkers and marshals to complete the event.



There were 20 clubs represented overall and 8 people decided to start their parkrun journey at Perry Hall this weekend as first timers.  Sure we will see them again soon and some of the Perry Hall regulars at our running festival of 10k, 5k and childrens races on June 10th, further details can be found at http://www.aldridgerunningclub.co.uk/aldridge-10k.html



This week 135 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 25 were first timers and 20 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 21 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 19 volunteers:

Helen HIRST • Ronald REYNOLDS • Gillian Jean HASTINGS • Terence Anthony HASTINGS • Jo YARNALL • Sarah Louise HINKLEY • Barinderjit CHEEMA • Lynda ELMORE • Sarah-Anne FITZSIMMONS • Judith TOASE • Barbara JOHNSON • Dan NEWBERRY • Sarah GIBSON • Emma HAWKEY • Dave ELLIS • Rebecca GRIMSHAW • Robert FOSTER • Kevin GALER • Tracey CHADWICK


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

The female record is held by Hannah OLDROYD who recorded a time of 18:10 on 16th May 2015 (event number 28).
The male record is held by Ben GRIFFITHS who recorded a time of 15:47 on 29th October 2016 (event number 104).
The Age Grade course record is held by Margaret KENCHINGTON who recorded 86.71% (21:27) on 28th May 2016 (event number 82).

Perry Hall parkrun started on 22nd November 2014. Since then 3,053 participants have completed 16,096 parkruns covering a total distance of 80,480 km, including 2,924 new Personal Bests.


Event 167 (10th February 2018) D of E volunteer loves parkrun!

We have our second Duke of Edinburgh participant with us at the moment. Some of you may be recognising her face now as she has been with us for a couple of months. Beth chose Perry Hall parkrun for her bronze level volunteering section.

It's a pleasure to have her with us and she is certainly growing in confidence and is an important part of our team. She has carried out most of the different roles we have at Perry Hall and we are certainly hoping that once her Bronze Award is complete, that we continue to see her on Saturday mornings.


My name is Beth, and I am doing my Duke Of Edinburgh’s award at Perry Hall parkrun. Over the past 3 months, I have volunteered nine times and enjoyed ever minute of it. Naturally, I decided to do it through the coldest months of the year, and have suffered the consequences of not bringing gloves one too many times. Nevertheless, I have had the pleasure of working in a fantastic team with some truly lovely people, and have felt welcomed into the Perry Hall community, for which I am grateful.

After the runners briefing, the volunteers collected at the bridge to cheer them on, and the massive lead of our first finisher was quite a sight- he really knocked it out of the park.   This week, my volunteer role was as a number checker, which essentially consists of approaching exhausted runners and kindly interrogating them about their watch time. It helps us to cross reference with our results when they are later processed.


This role, just like with many at parkrun, allowed me to meet and talk to new people who are always lovely, and for that reason, it was a fun week- even if I could hardly write due to my cold fingers!   Many thanks to all our runners and volunteers, and see you next week at Perry Hall! -Beth, DofE volunteer

This week 116 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 19 were first timers and 14 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 21 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 18 volunteers: Lesley PYMM • Ronald ADAMS • Phil THOMPSON • Jason HOLT • Tracey LIMBRICK • Brian BESSANT • Dee ALLEN • Lorna WITTER • Roy GREAVES • Amorelle CAMPBELL • Sarah GIBSON • Emma HAWKEY • Beth HUBURN-GREEN • Kelly STOKES • Alison COOPER • Maria OSBORN • Simon STANFORD • Sally NULTY


Event 163 (1st January 2018) Happy New Year All

What a wonderful 2017 Perry Hall parkrun had. We had many milestones met - 50s, 100s and 250s, plus many joining the volunteer 25 club. We had more different volunteers than ever before, and I would encourage anyone who has not yet volunteered to have a go - parkrun cannot happen with you and you are welcome to put your name forward for any roles, even if you have never tried them before.

This weeks run report has been provided by a Walsall Arboretum parkrunner - here is her perspective of the very first event of 2018.


By Sally-Anne Bynoe

What a great start to 2018, if somewhat unexpectedly soggy! We had a lovely turnout of 213 runners, some first timers and quite a few tourists. Plus a plethora of volunteers, some even offered their services on arrival.

Did you do the double today? It's the one time in the year when parkrunners can try and do two parkruns on the same day as start times are slightly staggered. It's great fun if you've never tried it before, so maybe something to give a go for next year...

My double today was volunteering roles as I'm currently unable to run. I signed up to write the run report and also tail walked with the lovely Angelina. If you've never volunteered before, why not make that one of the things to do this year? It's great fun and you get to see parkrun from a different side.

tail runner

Michael the marshal with tail walkers Sally-Anne and Angelina (Left to Right)

I had great fun today chatting as I walked, swapping injury and recovery stories (that's what runners do right?). Also loved giving encouragement on the way around. Not just to those who we were following but also the faster runners as they zoomed past us but still had the energy to say thanks to us for helping out. Volunteering really makes you see the bigger picture of parkrun and get a feel of what it means to different people. You also feel great afterwards and everyone is so friendly, you'll surely make new friends too.

2018-01-03_03-42-03lorna dancing

The Green family who had a super time marshalling, and core team volunteer Lorna cannot contain her excitement to be running on Saturday,

Special mention to Sarah who ran her 100th parkrun today but has also volunteered a massive 107 times! That is truly amazing. Congratulations Sarah and thank you! And thanks too to everyone that volunteered today. Smiling through the cold and rain, you did great!
sarah and ange

Thank goodness Sarah (right) has achieved her 100 runs, she can now claim her parkrun black tee shirt :-) - CONGRATULATIONS.

Here's hoping that you enjoyed your run/jog/walk this morning and that it's given you a good boost for the year ahead. Well done for starting the year on the right foot. Wishing you a happy, healthy 2018 and see you on Saturday as we don't have to wait as long for another parkrun this week!



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