Cassiobury parkrun #275 – 14th August 2021

You may have noticed Natalie marshalling just two weeks ago whilst pregnant. Both Nathalie and husband Will are regulars at Cassiobury so it was highly unusual for them to drop out of volunteering last week. Their excuse was a good one, they had just become parents to baby Clara.

Both returned to parkrun this week, with Will barcode scanning and Natalie as a roaming marshal, mostly helping our tail walker Katherine and her baby.

So as a new twist to the run report – an occasional series of interviews with some of our regular runners and volunteers, starting with Natalie and Will, over to you....

NatalieKatherineWill barcode scanning

When and where was your first parkrun, and how many have you each done since then?

Natalie - My first parkrun was 12th March 2016 at Southwark parkrun in London and I have done 134 parkruns. It's a massive part of my weekend since day one.

Will - My first parkrun was Ally Pally in London on 10th August 2013 and I have done 139 parkruns.

Is there any aspect of that first run that you particularly recall?
Will - I went off too quick! Didn't realise Ally Pally is notorious for a big hill.

Natalie - The social side! It was amazing. There was a Wetherspoons nearby that we all went to every week, getting to know the core team and making good friends.

What or who got you into parkrun?
Will - My flatmate Ian asked me to come along. I'd seen him come back the week before and he'd explained it - it sounded fun!

Natalie - I think I'd signed up a really long time ago but never actually run. I think I was trying to make new friends and it got recommended to me by someone from a boot camp I was going to - I had to choose between it and boot camp!

Have you been a tourist, and what is your favourite tourist course?
Will - I enjoyed Vogrie parkrun in Edinburgh as its all cross country.

Natalie - We've done loads of tourism, some local, some on weekends away - we always try to. I would have to say Brighton & Hove parkrun as it was the morning after Will proposed to me and I got a PB - I think I was still on cloud 9 and wanted to impress him!

Natalie, it’s my understanding that you’ve trained before and during your pregnancy. What advice would you give for women who are pregnant and want to continue their walk/job/run at parkrun?
I would say as long as you are taking it easy and being careful, absolutely carry on and enjoy it - I ran until week 34 of my pregnancy when it felt right to stop. I was repeatedly advised by healthcare professionals that it was fine, checked all the guidance and it meant I stayed active throughout and felt so much better than I think would have if I had stopped. It was amazing for my mental health and meant I could catch up with friends in a safe way when legal during lockdown. I was desperate to be still running when parkrun came back but just missed the boat when it got delayed, however was so lucky that I was able to volunteer right at the end and really enjoyed it. I'll be back as soon as I'm allowed!

Will you're frequently our first male finisher with a PB of 16:56. Do you think the tiredness that comes with the birth of baby Clara will slow you down? Do you have any plans on pushing Clara around parkrun so that she becomes the fastest female in a pushchair? 
Haha I'm a bit more relaxed these days! Running is more about socialising - can't wait to push Clara round in a pushchair though but it will be pretty pedestrian! I don't want her to fall out the buggy when turning corners.

Which volunteer role do you each enjoy the most, and why?
Natalie - I would have to say guide running actually, not that I'll be able to do that much anymore! It's amazing to help someone else take part.

Will - Timekeeper - you have to really concentrate !

Do you have a parkrun goal for the future?
Natalie - I want to set an actual PB of 21:30  - I set it at not parkrun and obviously am going to be way off that for some time now!

Will - More tourism! Including Woolacoombe Dunes which is near to where I'm from. Apparently it's the hardest one.

Can you share your top running tip?
Natalie - Don't let your head get in the way, running is fun! Enjoy every step and smile - it makes it easy.

Will - Consistency! If you're going to do a long run once a week, never miss it. Unless you have a baby, that's a fair excuse.

What was your best/favourite/funniest parkrun moment?
Natalie - We dressed up as superwoman and hotdog for our 100th! That was so much fun.

Will - I was pretty obsessed with sub 17 for a while, now I can quit running a happy man.

Hotdog and Superwoman 100th runs


Thank you Natalie, Will & Clara


We're not currently able to give shout outs for milestones or tourists as we need to keep the run brief under two minutes whilst operating under the COVID framework, but that won't stop us highlighting your achievements here!

Congratulations to junior Nathan White on completing his 50th parkrun today, with 43 of the 50 being at Cassiobury.

Nigel Cavill, joined us at Cassiobury for the first time in order to complete his 100th parkrun. His normal parkrun is Ellenbrook Fields.

Finally, who could miss Salim Hamir and his support crew all there to help him celebrate his 100th parkrun, 94 of which have been at Cassiobury.

Salim Hamir with 100 ballon

Photographs Galore

Welcome to the 59 who were completing their first-ever parkrun and congratulations to all 436 finishers. Well done to a massive 65 of you who recorded new Personal Bests.

We were lucky enough to have two volunteer photographers today; Mark Nicholls and Tim Coysh. Between them they snapped 1120 photographs so you're sure to find at least one of yourself here: Cassiobury parkrun #275 14th August 2021.

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


Huge thanks to the 37 volunteers who made your event possible.

Gail WINTER • Russell MATTHEWS • Linda HALL • Tim COOK • Mark NICHOLLS • Sharon DAVIDSON • Ann DAVIDSON • Christine CANNING • Charles HENDERSON • Will FROST • Mandy LLOYD • Tim COYSH • Helen WOLSTENCROFT • Katherine BEANEY • Peter FLANAGAN • Josephine HARVEY • Glyn JAGGER • Natalie FROST • Paul HARRIS • Will BROTHERSTON • Emma JEFFREY • Paul STEVENSON • Stephen HOBBS • Kelly JAGGER • David FENWICK • Chantal PEZOT • Alison HILSDEN • Simone KNAGGS • William LOUCKX • David SUTHERLAND • Martin GARDNER • Sophie ARGENT • David BORLASE • Carole SMITH • Phillip BARTON • Mary FARRY • Nick HESTER

You may have noticed that someone new stepped up to deliver your run briefing this morning and didn't they do well. Stephen Hobbs is currently training to become a run director and he's doing an amazing job. We wish him all the best and hope he agrees to join the core team at Cassiobury, results processing really isn't that scary honest!

Stephen BriefingStephen at the finish

The future roster can be seen here, and offers of volunteering (always gratefully received!) can be sent to:


It saddens me deeply that I feel I must end this run report in a less cheery manner. Today an inappropriate comment was made by a parkrunner to a fellow parkrunner. Please respect your fellow participants and help us build a supportive community event. The comment made today has no place at our event nor indeed in society full stop.

The parkrun code






Casiobury parkrun #273 – 31st July 2021 – second week back post-pandemic

It was fabulous to welcome 355 of you back at parkrun for our second week post-pandemic. It’s easy to see how much parkrun has been missed and how glad everyone seems to be to be back in our friendly parkrun community. Long may it continue.




WELCOME to the first timers! 23 people completed their very first parkruns and we extend a warm welcome to them: Riya PADMARAAJA, Clare HANCOCK, Mark HANCOCK, Kalaivani GUNASEKARAN, Kinika OPALEYE, Eugenia LAM, Stefan LAM, Philip JENNINGS, Caroline THOMSON, Sarah WYNNE, Jack SAUNDERS, Philippa HALLAM-PARKER, Sia HIRANI, Ellie GILBERT-RYAN, Zoe ACUTT, Jonathan BROWN, Laura BRUN OREJAS, Susthama KIM, Kenneth SPEARPOINT, Alexander BROWN, Bekah DAVIS, Joe PATEMAN, and Archie MARSHALL.


19 tourists came from far and wide, with Damian BAKER being the most prolific tourist visiting us for the first time – this was his 309th parkrun.


A couple of homegrown unofficial milestones were celebrated: Charles DYTHAM ran for the 200th time at Cassiobury – he was present at our inaugural run in February 2015 and has run 277 parkruns in total. Family members Lindsay, James, and Yolande were at the finish line to cheer him in. And Linda HALL ran her 200th parkrun in total (187 of which have been at Cassiobury), with husband Graham also in attendance.


There were also a few official milestones. Because we now have to include extra covid-specific safety information in the pre-run briefing, we’re unable to congratulate new milestoners before the run, so you get a very special mention and adulation here! Michael NORMAN chose Cassiobury for his 100th run – this was his first visit here, with most having been at Eastville (35) and Cardiff (22). Running their 25th parkruns (a new milestone club) were Matthew KOWALEWSKI, Jennifer BENGE, and Raza JESSA. And young Thomas KITCHING completed his 10th parkrun (the first milestone for juniors). CONGRATS to all!


With a super-speedy 59 of you scoring new PBs, there were too many to list by name, but WELL DONE to you all, and a special mention goes to Daniel BALDERSON with his PB of 27:25, down from 27:51 nearly two years ago.


A few random shout-outs … Linsey MAYNARD had an outstanding run to finish within just 9 seconds of her PB … Paul HARRIS marked the start of his well-earned retirement with a fantastic new PB of 23:59 … and Will and Natalie FROST ran and volunteered for perhaps the last time for a wee while, and we wish them all the best for the coming weeks and months.


35 people who signed up to parkrun this week have registered Cassiobury as their home run, and we look forward to them joining us soon.


Sadly there were a few “unknown” athletes in the results – this is your friendly weekly reminder that, if you want to record an official finish time, you need to present a PHYSICAL barcode (on a piece of paper or on a wristband or tag – NOT on a phone screen) at the run itself, as volunteers cannot spend more of their free time manually adding barcode numbers of those who have forgotten to bring them, and it’s not fair on surrounding parkrun teams for one event to set their own rules about whether to accept written-down barcodes. No printed barcode, no time, no exceptions – please don’t ask us to add you in manually!


There were NO missing finish tokens, which is awesome! Thank you for returning our finish tokens … they are NOT souvenirs and if you take them home then we have nothing to give next week’s finishers!





30 amazing volunteers made this week’s run possible – THANK YOU to Sophie ARGENT, Wai Meng AU-YEONG, Stella BADDELEY, Warren BAKER, Alistair BALDERSON, Daniel BALDERSON, Katie BALDERSON, Thomas BALDERSON, Donna BANKS, Katherine BEANEY, Danny BRODERICK, Sharon DAVIDSON, Carys DAVIES, Karen ENGLAND, Natalie FROST, Linda HALL, Josephine HARVEY, Charles HENDERSON, Christy HILLMAN, Glyn JAGGER, Simone KNAGGS, William LOUCKX, Sacha MOFFATT, Vix MOORE, June NICHOLLS, John O'CONNOR, Bill O'NEILL, Kate PICKARD, Petra WARNER, and Anya WESOLOWSKI.



We now need more marshals and funnel managers than ever before, as well as a ratio of 1 barcode scanner for every 50 parkrunners (to avoid queues building up), so we really can’t do it without you lovely lot. If every one of the 355 finishers volunteered just once, we would have a full roster for about the next 10 to 14 weeks! You can find out about the various roles here and send your offer of help to, stating your name and barcode number (to make it easy for us to find you on the system). If you would like to try your hand at timekeeping or barcode scanning, please download the latest version of the official parkrun Virtual Volunteer app … and have a sneaky practice at using at home on your own barcode!


See you next week!


The BIG comeback!! – Cassiobury parkrun #272 – 24th July 2021

The headlines:

What an amazing day, so many smiles, maybe a few tears, loads of first timers and PBs, and definitely a cup of tea and a cake from the Cha!

May be an image of 1 person, standing and outdoors

Sharon does the first-timers briefing in the new finish area


It was so wonderful to finally be back doing parkrun in Cassiobury Park, after such a long time away. The weather forecasts had threatened rain beforehand, and even thunderstorms, but in the event we were let off with a bit of drizzle.

The volunteers started arriving at about 7.45 to unload the kit from the storage box. During the break the Run Directors have had a clear-out, and parkrun HQ have issued us with some nice new pink high-viz jackets (the old yellow ones will go back for recycling), so we were feeling all set.

The course change seemed to go well - there were lots of reasons for the change, but I must say I think it was nice to have more space both at the start and the finish. For now the storage box is still in the same place near the croquet club, but we'll see what we can organise with the council once we're feeling a bit more settled.

May be an image of one or more people, people standing and outdoors

A gathering crowd of parkrunners at the new start


The volunteers:

As ever we are so grateful to all out volunteers who helped put on a safe and fun event. A quick reminder that you can volunteer too - all the roles are very straightforward, it's lots of fun and you can learn a little bit about what happens before and after the run as well. Just email us at, and we'll get you organised.

This week's high-viz heroes were:

Rod HEWSON • Robert WALLACE • Jill ROGERS • Douglas MCQUAID • Tim COOK • Mark NICHOLLS • Jane WELCH • Sharon DAVIDSON • Ann DAVIDSON • Linsey MAYNARD • Martyn MAYNARD • Julie ROLLS HARPER • Claire FITZGERALD • Alistair BALDERSON • John O'CONNOR • Thomas BALDERSON • Katie BALDERSON • Katherine BEANEY • Daniel BALDERSON • Peter FLANAGAN • Ian REEDER • Josephine HARVEY • Glyn JAGGER • Natalie FROST • Anya WESOLOWSKI • Paul STEVENSON • Stephen HOBBS • David FENWICK • Alison HILSDEN • Lynne MEDINI • Sadie VILE • Camila GRASSO • Bill O'NEILL


The numbers:

We had 318 runners and walkers and 33 volunteers. 19 of the participants were making their parkrun debut with us in Cassiobury - welcome to the fun, and I hope you find it as addictive as the rest of us. We also had 17 people who have parkrunned (is that a verb?) before, but this was their first time at Cassiobury - hope you liked it!

At the other end of the scale, we had 5 members of the 250 club join us on Saturday - Russell Matthews on 292 runs, Charles Dytham and Helen Gibbens on 276, Vince Deritis on 261 and Rasmi Nanda on 260.

May be an image of 2 people, people standing and outdoors

Russell Matthews shows off his green 250-club top


The milestones:

2 people joined the 100-club on Saturday. Congratulations to Michael Dudley (50 of his 100 parkruns have been at Cassiobury, and he became a parkrunner in 2017) and Andrew Powell (57 of his 100 parkruns have been at Cassiobury, and he also became a parkrunner in 2017)

I also know that Colin Taylor was doing his 50th run at Cassiobury - thanks for joining us Colin!

We have to keep the run brief short and to the point in the new world, so if you have anything you want us to celebrate, send us a few details and we'll include it in a run report or on a Facebook post!


The photos:

Tim Cook was busy taking photos and his full album can be found on our Facebook page HERE! Look out for his video of the participants all setting off as well, which is HERE!

I've included a few here for you to look through, until we meet again next week.

May be an image of 3 people, people playing sport, people standing and outdoors

May be an image of 3 people, people standing and outdoors

May be an image of 3 people, people standing and outdoors

May be an image of 1 person, standing and outdoors

May be an image of 3 people, people standing and outdoors

May be an image of 2 people, people standing and outdoors



The count-down continues …

THANK YOU so much to all the people who have offered to volunteer for our first event back on Sat 24th July. We've got a full roster already, which is great - so if you were meaning to volunteer but didn't get round to it ... there are plenty of gaps on 31st July, 7th Aug, 14th Aug - you get the picture!

Screenshot (1162)

Looking forward to seeing you all on 24th - remember the new start is at the top of the field near the Bowls Club and the Peace Garden (we'll remind you all again with a map soon).

12 MORE SLEEPS until the return of Cassiobury parkrun!

Hi lovely Cassiobury parkrunners!
  • It's only 12 MORE SLEEPS until we can get back to our favourite way to start the weekend - we'll be back in the park ready to say 3, 2, 1, Go at 9am on Saturday 24th July.
  • But for us to do it, we are going to need your help - as you know, the event only happens because of the people who step forward to volunteer each week. And the new Covid Framework needs a few extra volunteers to work properly as well.
  • So please consider whether you can put your name down for either the 24th or a future date - there are lots of jobs, most very easy, and if you haven't done it before, we can promise you will have a lot of fun. Sure, you have to arrive a bit earlier, but let's face it, we're all bored of Saturday lie-ins now, aren't we...!
  • If you want to be one of our superstars, please email us at (please include your athlete barcode number so we can find you on the system).
  • Check out the volunteer section of the website here, and please read the Covid-19 Volunteer Code below.
Thanks, and lots of love,

Alistair, Sharon, Stephen, Glyn and Tim xxx