Telford parkrun #267 – 13th October 2018

With many of us avidly watching facebook for updates in case Calum caused a cancellation it was a pleasure to arrive at the park and see a throng of hi-vis ready and raring to go… even if the rain was causing most of us to find shelter! Special note to the core team for making sure the route was safe for us all.

We had a small band of first timers to the course for the initial briefing – I have to apologise to the lovely volunteer I alarmed for my hopping with some exclamations, how many people could be ‘lucky’ enough to be stung twice by a wasp and all before 9am in October!?

For those that know the route there was a slight change in the finish due to other events in the park, but no chance of getting lost in such a well marshalled course – they aren’t joking when they say every turning has a marshal, thank you  Despite the persistent rain you all were cheerful and supportive every time I passed, even the mini-marshals seemed to enjoy themselves.

This course for me takes one of the top spots for enjoyability – picturesque surroundings, and strangely feels like there’s much more downhill than up (I haven’t worked out how that is possible when you start almost next to the finish).

In total 354 parkrunners walked, jogged or ran of whom a 25 achieved new PBs, well done all!
Milestones were achieved by 1 into the ’100 club’, 2 into the ’50 club’ and 1 into the ’10 club’ – I’m sure they’ll be looking forward to proudly wearing their respective black, red and white shirts before long.
We were joined by 15 first timers who hopefully enjoyed themselves so much they’ll return and maybe even catch the tourist bug, as I was one of 9 tourists.
Final note always has to be a thank you to the hi-vis heroes of which we had 37 volunteers, we really couldn’t enjoy our run without you!


Christmas Day 2018 and New Years Day 2019

Please note, there will be no official Telford parkrun on Christmas Day.

However we are pleased to announce that Telford parkrun will be taking place on New Years Day, starting at 10:30am.
We hope you can join us and start your New Year the best way!


Run Report 02/09/2018 / Big Thanks to Lee Barnard

Though this was only the second time I have done Telford parkrun, it does seem like an old familiar friend, having done the Dark Runs since they started and having worked in Telford for 6 years in the past. I also see some familiar faces along the course.

Today I was Tail Walking, in preparation for a plod around RAF Cosford tomorrow. I met Honor and Avril this morning, who were both Tail Walking and we compared parkrun tourism stories, with Avril planning an imminent trip to Jersey to tick the J off the Alphabet Challenge!

Telford parkrun, as most parkruns do, has its own style and personality, with a friendly core group of volunteers and the added bonus of bags of Haribo for the volunteers! Something I've not experienced elsewhere :-)

If you get a chance to visit Shropshire, then you should try and take in the Telford parkrun course, set in the Town Park and with the Southwater development on the doorstep for a post-run coffee or Full English! If you are a regular at Telford, then try volunteering one week, you get a completely different perspective of the course and a credit towards that purple 25 t-shirt.

Huge Thanks to Lee for putting this together!


What does a Run Director Actually Do?

You might be thinking of signing up to become a Run Director at Telford parkrun this gives you a good insight to what happens

1. With the ego the size of a planet and head sized to match any role titled “director” is impossible to resist. Especially as I get to boss people around which my wife doesn’t let me do at home.

2. “Director” looks fantastic on your CV, at least until you have to describe what the role entails “I, um, make people run round a park” “NEXT”

3. parkrun is a community and having taken from that community, it feels good to give something back. Its very rewarding to see people enjoying themselves when you have contributed to that.

4. You will look awesome in BLUE

Being a run director is a little bit more involved than standing up on the wall looking and feeling like a berk and cracking a few jokes. Here is a rundown of the activities of my first event on the job.

Saturday brings parkrun day. Plenty to do today I get to the course for 8am and unlock the gate. Before unloading everything from the car. First order of business is to find my shiny Blue Run Director Jacket of Authority so I can strut around the place like an enormous Blue peacock. We have 9 marshal positions. Paula turns up early so So I put her into action on creating my finish funnel. As the volunteers turn up I explain their role and give them their hi-viz jackets, before sending them off with their signs.

As 9am approaches, we get the runners assembled in the correct area and I climb on the bench to give the briefing. I’m fairly sure only about 3 people are listening but I go through the required points and then its time. I make sure some of the eager runners get back behind the start line and 3, 2, 1 they are off and running, walking, skipping, crawling or prancing.

The pressure is now off for just over 17 minutes (15 in Kim is around) and I can enjoy the parkrun experience and cheering on the runners as they thunder around our course.

The first runner comes around to start his final lap so I ensure that the finish funnel team are all ready.

As the last few runners come in, I make sure that we are sorted on the numbers and thank the marshals as they come back once relieved by the tail runner. Big thanks to Ellen as she has marshalled a lot of times and never run the course and I had been pestering her to tail run for weeks and she came up trumps.

Once the run was finished the first task is to dismantle the course. Once again by the time we start dismantling the finish funnel everyone else has gone home. BOO! Need to ensure in future the funnel team manages the clear-up process. This job takes ages due to winding the tape up nicely.

I get the laptop, stopwatches and scanners and we head home to process the results, including the added time penalties. We wait for the laptop to finish last nights update. Doh, should have restarted last night. I plug in the first scanner to download the results – An even number of records is a good start. There is an even number of records on the second scanner too and the third and fourth. Next is the stopwatch and I download the results from there.

We then enter the parkrun results system which has a scary red bar at the top announcing CAUTION – THIS IS LIVE Instils a nice sense of well-being from the start. Maybe they should consider a softer pastel colour and lower case text.

Task 1 Is to confirm the volunteer roster to ensure that every helper is acknowledged. We then go ahead to process the results and upload the scanner data followed by the time data. Once this is all uploaded the results screen appears. This is split into a number of tabs relating to position. If a runner is green then all is good, if they are in a pale yellow colour means that some data is missing.

There were 14 runners with missing barcode data. The general rule is no barcode, no time, no exceptions. In this case the missing data was all recorded by the Number volunteer. On this occasion I follow down the number checker sheet and add them to the results.

The next task was to check the times and positions against my copious Funnel managers notes.

All good to go it’s time to submit for processing

I fire up the parkrun email and there is a results query. Fortunately it was for the week before. I get that resolved with the helpful advice of the other RD’s on our completely focused parkrun Facebook messenger group (wink wink) and post the link to the results on our Facebook page.


Telford’s 250 milestone parkrun

A damp, wet morning greeted all the volunteers involved with set-up, which thankfully started to dry up as the morning progressed.

It was always going to be special as Telford was hitting that '250 milestone', and unfortunately the event itself is not eligible for a t-shirt!  No Telford parkrunner is yet to achieve their 250 milestone, so parkrunner's were invited to wear whatever milestone t-shirt they had, or a green top in the absence of a milestone top.

We were lucky enough to have a couple of '250 milestone' tshirts  on display from tourists that had made the trip to Telford.  One of the most fitting was perhaps Doug Richards, who be default was very much involved in the creation of Telford parkrun some 5 years ago. His son Chris Richards started the event off, and was Event Director for a long time.  He is still involved with the core team, but for Telford's 250, he actually got a run in!

Well done Chris!

We also had to C25k graduations with us from Whitchurch Whippets and Broseley Joggers, congratulations to all who completed their first Telford parkrun, we hope it will be the first of many!

A special mention has to be made to the dinosaur, and no not the one's that feature on the course each week, but the young lad that completed the course dressed in a dinosaur suit!

Well done to everyone, we hit a new attendance record of 680 parkrunners and 27 volunteers.


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