Blackpool parkrun is cancelled on 30 May 2020: COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

virtual parkrun report #9

This weeks report is brought you by another valuable member of the core team - Dave Lardner

This weeks virtual run report covers the VPR count hitting just short of double figures at 9. We still don’t know quite how much longer we shall have to remain virtual but it’s great that we’re all  together in some way.


A magnificent 63 participants managed to walk/jog/run/cycle  with one extra walker clocking in a few KM’s to join in with this weeks spelling challenge. Ok ... it also took a couple of miles on a bike to get the letter U covered!


Chris Williams may have attempted to grab token one by spelling 1st place but Andrew Fairburn had a great time of 18:16, with Gina Whiteley being the quickest female with 25:25.

A great turn out of 9 first timers with the mighty Izzy knocking it out of the park on her junior parkrun.

The stand out for this week has to be the number of families getting out and about for some exercise with the health and well being benefits this brings. It continues to be challenging times and carefully taken exercise  is  great for you and a great help to mental health for anyone that is finding these times troubling.  The great job done by Kate James with the virtual awards is really brightening everyone up.


For those , like myself, that may have fallen off the exercise wagon a little, then embrace the ethos and walk where possible.  It all builds up those fitness levels and my mind feels a lot better for it. You are always welcome to join parkrun in  it’s current virtual world or back at Stanley Park when we can.  Don’t worry if you’re not up to sharing your times or distance yet .. you will always be welcome and supported.



Have a good week, stay safe and we hope to see you all again next week.

If anyone would like to contribute a report or article please get in touch!!





Virtual parkrun report #8

Thank you to Christina Mercer & family for this weeks virtual run report!



Well this is my first attempt at a run report and it was a warm day to say the least!  We had 68 runners this week for our virtual parkrun #8 with 6 first timers - welcome!  As many of us should have been running the Beaverbrooks 10k this weekend we had some overachievers who braved the heat and covered double the distance to tick off both virtual parkrun and virtual 10k, well done to you, the conditions were tough.


So this weeks challenge was 'club colours' and you didn't disappoint!  We had a number of representatives from Blackpool Freedom Runners, Thornton Cleveleys Running Club and Blackpool, Wyre and Fylde Athletics Club together with other sporting clubs from cricket to scuba diving!  It was great seeing all the different photos of you all.


It might have been blisteringly hot out there but it didn't slow down our fastest male, Mick Arthur (20:31) and fastest female Collette Clarkson (24:44) - impressive times from both of you.


We had our first junior parkrunner this week, 5 year old Erin!  Maybe you live with small people that might like to join in one week - remember you don't need to run it all, it's about getting out and having fun.  (You can register them from 4 years old and they can have their very own barcode!).


"I feel great after I did it because it makes me feel proud and happy and it's kind of easy!" Erin (age 5)


"It was hard this week because we aimed to do a fast pace and it felt good when I got home" Harry (age 8)


I can't end this report without mentioning our core team volunteers and calamity couple, Mr & Mrs Bump! - Chris and Leanne, its not a competition you know! We all wish you both a speedy recovery.

Have a good week, stay safe and we hope to see you all again next week.

If anyone would like to contribute a report or article please get in touch!! Email:



Virtual parkrun #6

This weeks report is brought to you by Andrew Woodward ... the man with the broom aka Hi Viz guy

This weeks Blackpool ‘virtual’ parkrun came with some surprising warm weather but we happened to see a lot of rainbows, slightly confusing as there was no rain. We had 60 VP runners this week, 4 down from last week but we welcomed 10 new VP runners! We also had 4 fabulous juniors out on the course this week, well done!

Picture1   Picture2


This week’s challenge was find a rainbow. Plenty stepped up to the challenge and were very creative in their findings. Photos varied from a cluster of balloons to flowers and all the way to clothing.

Our early riser was non other than Co-ED  Catherine Fletcher. Catherine started the pack at 07:38 and our final runner Dawn Simmons who came in at 21:40.

Just remember, each week you can listen to the ever-expanding list of songs on the two play lists that have been created by the fb group Friends who like Blackpool parkrun (unofficial). They have created over 13 hours of music to listen to while you are out running, jogging or walking your 5k VPR.

Look out for next weeks challenge and we look forward to seeing your photo’s.

Please don't forget to follow government rules: run solo or with members of your own household; keep 2 metres away (ideally further) from other people - be the one who moves out of the way/crosses the road, and do so with a smile and a cheery ‘hello’. Keep dogs on a lead and clean up after them. Most importantly, stay safe, smile and have fun. #DFYB


As always, if any of you would like to contribute a report or article please contact us: We would love to hear from you!



Virtual Parkrun #5

Thank you to Liz Powell for this weeks virtual not parkrun report

Well that’s Blackpool ‘virtual’ parkrun number 5 (hope you’re keeping up with the numbering Chris Bluck/Andrew Woodward) in the bag and although the forecast hadn’t looked too great we were actually blessed by the sun even though for those out early it was a little cold ……………….. maybe the temperature and the fact that none of us actually know what day/month/year we are in anymore is the reason Santa got confused and made an appearance!!
Having said that we all seem to remember that Saturday is our day to don the trainers and get out to do our virtual parkrun, whether you are out just past the stroke of midnight or roll over into Sunday, a big thumbs up to you all. It’s good to see everyone get into the spirit and do their walk/jog or run.
This week we welcomed 16 new runners and our total reached 64 from the first week being just 16. We had some amazing ‘routes’ mapped out in fabulous shapes and words, along with some amazing times, including a few PB’s, all mentioned in our great category awards posted each week by Kate.  Get creative … you never know you might get an award. Along with our new runners this week we also welcomed a pony and not to forget to mention Max our regular K9, both as required, on a short lead.

To assist us along the way and during our daily exercise trips out and about, we are getting the fantastic play lists put together by Declan … I’m sure he enjoys your suggestions although some of them are a bit ‘off the wall’ but, as he says no, Daniel O’Donnell please (hahahaha)!!!

It was great to see some tributes to say ‘thank you’ to our NHS and keyworkers and on that note, remember when out running to keep to the government guidelines. It was good to see some couples and families out running together.  At least after four weeks of lockdown you are all still speaking to each other and are happy to get out running together. Let’s hope it stays that way until we all get back to our beloved Stanley Park and meeting at the Cocker Clock Tower.

Thank you to the core team for the great video this morning, if you haven’t seen it got check it out on this page and they are even achieving their usual coffee/breakfast virtually even though there are no tokens to sort.
So on that note I will finish, have a good week and stay safe. Stay at home apart from your daily exercise, wash your hands and lets help protect our NHS and all the key workers out there..…that way we can get back to normal sooner rather than later.

If any one would like to contribute a report or a story please email us:



Virtual #4

Run Report Declan Sheridan


Thanks to Catherine Fletcher, one of our ED’s, for asking me to have a go at writing a run report . so here it is 

The 4th Blackpool Virtual parkrun report Saturday 11th April 2020

There’s a couple of well-known sayings, “there’s a first time for everything” and “practice makes perfect”. So, having set out to write my first run report on Easter Sunday I decided overnight to scrap the first attempt. Having gone for a long run this morning looking for inspiration, here’s my second attempt.

We all know about the current health Emergency and why we can’t use our beloved Stanley Park or run Blackpool parkrun. So, I won’t dwell on it. We all know that we will return when it’s safe to do so.

My inspiration came from remembering a Facebook post from Claire Dunn (a Blackpool pr regular and parent to our ace scanner) last week, talking about how she was missing the parkrun family and how parkrun had given her an opportunity to meet people who she wouldn’t have normally encountered. This really struck a chord with me, firstly I’m a relatively new runner and have only lived on the Fylde for a short time.

A couple of weeks ago, I got an invite from Chris Bluck to join a Facebook group “Friends who like Blackpool parkrun (unofficial)”. Initially I thought, here we go another dull Facebook group. But the more I thought about it, the more I thought what a great idea!

parkrun is not just about a weekly timed 5k run but its about community and wellbeing. It’s easy in these days of lock down to feel isolated and to lose motivation, park yourself in front of the telly and over eat. Some of us are lucky in that we have a husband , wife , partner or family but there will be people who run on a Saturday morning who live on their own or who have mental health issues who our Saturday morning is a lifeline. Keeping our community and parkrun family together is more important than ever.

Through the Facebook group, we’ve created virtual parkruns to keep us active on a Saturday. Members are encouraged to share their other lockdown runs, both the Facebook page and our new Strava group. We’ve attempted emoji quizzes (set by the devious minds at parkrun HQ) and we have created 2 Spotify playlists to give members the opportunity to share their favourite tunes and to inspire others with their runs. We now have over 40 hours of music to run to, covering a wide ranging and diverse musical spectrum, from Pop to Techno to Punk to Metal to Jamaican Dance Hall and Grime

On Easter Saturday, we had 50 virtual parkrunners out on the streets of the Fylde coast for our first themed run. Following a Facebook poll, we chose a Race finishers shirt run. Having searched through our cupboards and wardrobes, we saw shirts from a range of events from local races to major marathons.

Our first runner was out at 00:47hrs! Andrew Woodward, (a member of the set-up crew)  using a virtual run as a cure for insomnia. The beauty of virtual runs is that you don’t have to make the 9am start. Our tail walker, Chris Williams was out at 20:40 hrs. Given the warm temperatures on Saturday, Andrew and Chris probably were out at the best times. Once again thank you to Kate James for processing the virtual results and awarding the weekly virtual awards or the closest we have to run bling. I have no idea how I won the Brightest smile award, but bling is bling.

It’s traditional in the run report to thank our volunteers who make our events possible. So, if you were a virtual volunteer please take a bow.

But the biggest vote of thanks has to go to our group members who work for NHS or who are Key Workers. You guys are amazing and complete Heroes.

To misquote David Bowie, you are Heroes not just for one but every day! Thank you

Stay safe and healthy


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