The Course

The course is 5000m (5K) long. The course is in Hesketh Park, Southport. The course is run entirely on tarmac paths. Some sections of the course may accumulate mud, leaves and puddles after rain. Dependent on availability, marshals will be at key sections of the course, or signs will be in place.

Please remember that the parkrun uses shared paths. For the continued success of the event, please give way to other park users. This won't hurt your time, it won't stop you from getting a PB and it will make sure everyone continues to enjoy the event.

Please, wherever possible walk, jog, cycle or use public transport when attending the event. If you do have to drive, please consider car-sharing to reduce our impact on both the environment and other park users. Please also watch out for other park users when arriving and leaving. Parking may be limited so try to arrive early.

Course Safety

The Southport parkrun is a fun, free event organised by volunteers for the benefit of everyone. We wish to make the run as safe as possible, so runners, spectators and helpers are asked to take care about the following:

  • Please be considerate to the park and other park users at all times.
  • Children under the age of eleven must be accompanied (within arm's reach) throughout the run by a parent, guardian or appropriate adult of the parent's choice.
  • Please arrive by foot, by pedal-power or by public transport if you can - your efforts help to reduce our impact on the park and the planet.
  • Please consider volunteering to help occasionally - this event survives only because of your generosity - please visit the volunteer page for more information.
  • Take care near roads and car parks - some vehicles drive very quickly. Please congregate away from the cars and be careful in particular if you have children. If you’re driving to the run, please drive carefully even if you’re late!
  • When running, take care on uneven surfaces - whether on grass or on tarmac. Watch out for cyclists, other runners, pedestrians, children, dogs, wildlife, park animals, vehicles, park maintenance work, falling branches, bollards, posts and other obstacles around the course.
  • Please ensure that you are fit enough to walk, jog, run 5k (3.1 miles) with us. Health advice about running can be found at the excellent Runners' Medical Resource website (although this external website focuses on preparation for a race and does not describe parkrun events).
  • Remember to warm up before the run.
  • If you see a runner with a serious problem, please stop to help them out and get help as soon as possible.
  • If you’re watching, keep clear of runners on the course, and look after any children and dogs you may have with you.
  • It is not permitted to run with a pushchair and a dog at the same time.
  • Runners wishing to run with a dog are welcome, but please keep the dog on a short lead or harness and under control throughout the event. Please also review the parkrun support page article about running with a dog at parkrun events.
  • Runners pushing buggies are also welcome, but please take extreme care of other runners around you. If possible start from the back of the field and try to keep to one side of the main body of runners.
  • Lyme Disease is a bacterial infection spread to humans by infected ticks. Consider protecting yourself by wearing repellent when at parkrun events in grassy or wooded areas. See lymediseaseuk.com for further details.

We hope these tips help to ensure that Southport parkrun is fun and safe for everyone.

Age Grading

All parkrun events use Age Grading to help athletes compare results.

Age Grading takes your time and uses the world record time for your sex and age group to produce a score (a percentage). This score allows you to compare your personal performance against other people's performances even though they might be a different age and a different sex to you - the higher the score the better the performance. The scores can also be compared across different race distances - to allow you to, for example, compare a 5km time against a marathon.

For more information, please see our Support page.

Course Map

Course Description

The course is made up of 3 laps.

It starts near the café by the junction of paths behind the play area.

Laps 1 and 2 follow the perimeter path in a clockwise direction until it reaches the access path to the lakeside, it then follows the lakeside path in anti-clockwise direction until it re-joins the perimeter path and continues around.

Lap three follows the perimeter path avoiding the lakeside path, this time the route turns up past the observatory building and then onto the finish next to the Café.

The route is mostly flat with small undulations for laps 1 and 2 and a small hill past the observatory on lap 3.

It is a twisty route around the whole of the park and the path around the lake is slightly narrower than the main paths.

Facilities

There is free parking around most of the perimeter of the park, but do be aware of short no-parking sections where there is a narrowing of the road.

The cafe should be open for us to use and there is a children's playground. 3 toilets are located at the entrance by the junction of Park Crescent /Cambridge Road. There is a charge for these.

Getting There

Location of start

The run starts near the café by the junction of paths behind the play area.

Getting there by public transport

The nearest stations are Southport and Meols Cop, each around ¾ mile from the park. Timetables are available on the Merseytravel website.

Many busses head from Southport to Preston and stop on Albert Road, which is the opposite side of the park to the Cafe, or on Park Crescent, which is near to the cafe. Again, Merseytravel provide current timetable information.

Getting there on foot

For those parking or living near to the park, the start is at the Cafe / Mini Golf / Playground by the Park Crescent entrances. The start is on the opposite side of Hesketh Park to the fountain. If you find yourself in the park and are unsure of which way to go, follow the perimeter path until you see the cafe.

Getting there by road

Postcode nearest the start is PR9 9ND.

From Preston: Entering Southport at the Plough Roundabout, take the 2nd exit following A565 towards Southport. Continue straight on at all junctions and mini roundabouts until reaching the park. On reaching the roundabout by the park, the start area can be found by taking the 2nd exit (Park Crescent) and using one of the park entrances to the right.

From Ormskirk: At Kew Island take the third exit (Meols Cop Road). Follow this straight down onto Norwood Road then Norwood Avenue. At the end (a T-Juntion on a hill) turn left onto Roe Lane, then first right into Park Avenue. At the end of Park Avanue, take the first exit off the roundabout and use one of the park entrances to the right.

From Liverpool: Follow Coastal Road / Marine Drive towards and out of Southport. Turn right at the roundabout about ¾ mile beyond the pier onto Fairway and then left at the end onto Promenade / Park Road West. Straight on at the lights then first left. Use on of the entrances into the park on the left.

Post Run Coffee

Every week we grab a post parkrun coffee in Hesketh Park Café - please come and join us!