Blow by blow at Dulwich #419

Thanks to parkrun ‘tourist’ Pippa White for sending through this run report for our event last Saturday 15th February.

Last week it was storm Ciara, this week 171 parkruns were cancelled across the country as we battened down the hatches in preparation for storm Dennis. Along with other parkrunners we nervously checked cancellation pages before setting off for Dulwich on the bus. The directions on the website and google maps were fab and we arrived in plenty of time for a full inspection of daffodils, crocuses, playparks and the toilets.

Dulwich was a planned excursion for Run Talk Run Tooting. Run Talk Run Tooting is one of many RTR groups that do a gentle 5k run during the week offering a space to talk and a space where it’s possible to share the good and bad of a week or day and its effect on mental health and wellbeing. Our RTR group is on Mondays so parkrun can be a time to stretch out.

The first timers briefing ticked (3 laps anticlockwise, wide paths) we joined the throng for the start. It is known as a fast parkrun so I stayed nearer the back. Sadly the wind was making hearing the run brief really difficult but the wind did magically drop so that we could hear the thank you to the volunteers. Indeed, thank you to Shelby Akosa, Carmel Boylan, Gillian Cavell, Jaspal Dhalley, Clare Dunne, Lucy Ferman-Moore, Nick Gibbons, Rosa Jupp, Philip Lawrence, Ashley Middlewick, David Mullany, Anthony Prangley, Eric Richardson, Cath Rooney, Lucy Ross, Peter Sanders, Ian Sippitt, Filippa Sonne-Rudd, David Synnott, Gavin Wagg, Celia Wenban-Smith, Harriet White and Victoria WIDDOWS (who can also now claim her ‘25’ volunteer milestone T-shirt). Together you made it possible for 592 of us to walk, jog or run safely in the wind and weather.

Lap one and I settled into a run/walk combination. It seemed a very quiet run with lots of concentration and not much chatting. Either the weather or everyone focussing on a slightly smaller field than recently and the ability to get out and stretch. In context, the 3rd week in February in 2019 had 523 parkrunners; in 2018, 293; in 2017, 294; in 2016 235; in 2015 174; in 2014 166; and 2013 103. If this trend continues, February next year could see over 600 runners every week…

This week’s first finisher is a parkrunner of mystery (don’t forget your barcode!) but second across the line in 16:06 was George Roux with first female finisher at 19:10 Amy Rollason. Congratulations to them and all finishers, including 67 with new PBs, 121 completing Dulwich parkrun for the first time (with 14 brand new to parkrun) and four with new milestone run T-shirts to claim: Rachel Simmons Richard Baker, Margaret Marston and Lee Marston for completing 50 runs and Chris Williams for 100.

Post parkrun we managed two breakfasts – one at the café in the park where the queue looked big but was cleared really quickly and one at Gails in the village. It’s certainly a parkrun to revisit with those wide, open, fast paths… and double brekkie.

We survived the wind, Dulwich didn’t cancel, RTR Tooting had a lovely morning out – in all a super morning and thank you to everyone for making us so very welcome

Pippa White

Queen Elizabeth