February Report – Cool Runnings

It’s been very cool runnings here at Southwick since our last report at the start of February with some challenging conditions typical for the season. Biting winds, pouring rain and slippery surfaces are the norm and all bring their own challenges, not just for our parkrunners but for our volunteers too. Bearing this in mind, we once again say a big thank you to our volunteers who turn out week in week out battling whatever conditions lay in front of them to ensure you get your run. If you haven’t volunteered yet please get involved to help everyone get a chance to have a run. It’s easy, just talk to one of our core team for details and we’ll find you an event day job you’ll enjoy. You can even have a go at writing this report if you fancy it. It would be great to have a bank of writers to summarise our events for our readers pleasure rather than just one writer. Volunteering is very satisfying and helping just 2 or 3 times a year means the load is spread fairly across our Southwick parkrun family.

We’re still attracting good numbers to Southwick despite the time of year, with over 1100 participants during February. We’re seeing plenty of first timers, be they new starters or parkrun tourists and we’ve been pleased to welcome over 150 to Southwick during the month. Our events have proved to be pretty competitive too with around 130 PB times being recorded across the spectrum and at the front it’s been competitive too.

Whilst there have been many performances throughout the field, it has been amazing to see experienced MV55 runner Guy Woods giving the youngsters a run for their money and putting in performances with WAVA ratings in the high 80% bracket, something to really aspire to emulate. He certainly brought out the very best in our first finisher Tommy Davies last week as Guy was just a mere 10 seconds behind Tommy’s time of 17:29, which was a new PB for him.

Though it was too late to include it our last report, we’d like to congratulate our parkrunner of the month for January, Tim Donovan. Tim’s a Southwick stalwart, completing 116 parkruns, all at our event. The core team chose Luke Bridgwater as parkrunner of the month for February, many congratulations to him too.

Finally, good luck to all our parkrunners taking part at Bath Half on Sunday. We can’t wait to hear about your run next week.


Report For January 2019

We've been thrilled to see 1371 people take part at Southwick Country parkrun during January, with our run recording a total of 116 new PB times for our participants over the first month of the new year. Volunteer levels have been good too, despite the weather and despite the fact our home cafe Squirrels has been closed, making it feel a little like an away run most weeks.

With the cafe being closed for refurbishment during January, it has understandably hit the social aspect of our event over the month. Coupled with quite miserable weather, many have understandably chosen to go straight home after their run, though I'm sure all our members would like to join us in thanking Southwicks' public house The Farmhouse for making us very welcome and supplying parkrunners with tea and toast for breakfast every Saturday morning during this period. Don't forget, we're still very welcome to park there and take breakfast there on a Saturday, giving the opportunity for a nice warm up down to the park to get yourself ready to run and a cool down jog back for some hot tea and toast afterwards .

Our parkrun this week was the only local one to survive the snow and ice with those that made it having fun in the snow after a comprehensive pre event brief outlining how to take part safely in the conditions. “With so many local events off due to the weather it was great to see so many parkrunners who started their original association at Southwick returning today and everyone was awesome”, said Event Director Sean Price. It was certainly enjoyed by the 144 that took on the conditions, 26 of whom were first timers and they were led home by Dominic Beddis in a time reflected by the conditions under foot. Of course none of this could happen without our amazing volunteers to whom we are indebted who also braved the conditions to enable our participants to enjoy themselves.

We're currently reporting a months' events at a time. If you fancy getting involved helping to write it would be great to have your help and maybe we could report more frequently. Please get in contact with a member of the core team for more details.


Farewell 2018, & Welcome 2019

It was great to see over 280 parkrunners burning off their Christmas excesses on Saturday at our last run of the year. It was a double for visitors from Bushy on the 29th with Andy Coley-Maud recording a stunning time of 15:15, also scoring the best male WAVA performance at 86.45% and Clare Coley-Maud, crossing the line as first lady finisher in 20:20. Diane Hier recorded the best female WAVA time with 84.45%. A total of 12210 participants have taken part at our event this year with almost 1100 during December having a memorable run at the Christmas event with many sporting seasonal fancy dress. Over the last 12 months in addition to our regulars we’ve been thrilled to welcome visitors from far and wide across our GB events and the globe including Australia.

2018 has been a good one for volunteers with many of our regulars taking their turn to help keep the event a strong one into it’s 7th year further boosted by Southwick regulars Jay Sims and Eloise Nice being recruited to the core team as run director and communications officer. We’re indebted to stalwart Martin Pearce who has volunteered taking photos at our event 200 times as well as the many others who take part every week doing the ‘little’ jobs nobody notices, you know, putting out the signs, checking the course, setting up, clearing down, and many other thankless jobs that go unseen but we’ve been lucky to have some great people coming forward to help make sure we get our run on every week. If you’ve not volunteered yet, why not make it your New Years Resolution to get involved in 2019? Please visit our volunteer roster and put your name down for a future event (or two) here:  https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/14sGEPvELyTO9sqDgUN2zkKciZEo9bPvY1Bdwl_CQiYY/edit?hl=en_US#gid=0

It’s been a great year for all our runners too, with so many accomplishments across the range of abilities. People get started in running for so many reasons and parkrun is able to facilitate at all levels, the recent park bench to parkrun being a good example of this. Many of our runners who started at the back at Southwick Country parkrun have gone on to achieve feats they previously wouldn’t have believed possible. Whilst many continue to run for fun and enjoy the social side, a good number have gone on to join our local running clubs, pushing themselves beyond 10k, half marathon and marathon and even ultra marathon distance. It’s been really rewarding to see this and have some come back and volunteer as pacers at our events.

If you’re able, we look forward to seeing you at the usual time on New Years’ day and remember, if you fancy a double you could go on to take part at Chippenham or Shepton Mallet as they are starting their events at 10:30. In any event, a very Happy New Year to all our parkrun family from your team at Southwick Country parkrun.


Dodging the rain!

With forecast rain absent (until 9.30am!) the parkrun weather fairies were kind to us this week! And what a brilliant way to start a Saturday morning, event number 381 at Southwick Country Park. With a roster full of 29 volunteers and 201 runners, walkers and joggers, it was great to see so many people taking on the almost three laps on offer.

Just 18 minutes after the run started, we saw the first finishers approaching the line. First male Rich McAleer came in at 18:45 and first lady striding into the finish funnel in 20:14 was Jenna French. First junior saw Lydia Louw finish in an impressive 20:57 and overall a huge 30 first timers took part. Welcome to the first parkrun of the rest of your life!

A big congratulations goes to Kim Brown completing her 50th milestone, and Jana Meier and Bill Fullbrook (not forgetting Finn the dog!) celebrating their 100th. As a parkrun tourist I've not had the pleasure of seeing Finn trot past before, so when I saw him today looking very dapper in his 100th parkrun collar it really made me smile! Parkrun really is for everyone, and I can't think of a better way to spend a Saturday morning. Well done everyone and thanks to all the volunteers who made it possible. Until next time...

Sarah Ashby


Christmas at Southwick Country parkrun

We will not be running on Christmas Day.

We will be running at 9am on New Years day, this gives an opportunity to run at 10.30am at another local parkrun as well - TBC

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