Event 183 – December 8th 2019 – the one with all the volunteers

Blink and another junior parkrun has whizzed by! It definitely felt like it was over in a flash this morning. We had 24 runners join us up on Mount Gedders this morning and for the first time ever, we had more volunteers than runners!! Maybe everyone was out Christmas shopping or put off by the forecast of wind and rain? It was lovely out... big blue skies, a bit of a breeze, but pretty darned nice for a run even so!

Gedling junior parkrun 8/12/19

So, who were all those wonderful volunteers? Well, we had Evie and Anysha stepping in at the last minute to act as time keepers; Matthew, Tamsin, Madeleine, Jonathan, Joanne, Steve, Karen, Jim, Julie, Nick, Bo, Madeleine, Eloise and Jake acting as marvellous marshals; Sammy and James scanning barcodes; Zoe and Ewan on finish funnel duty; Henry, Helen, Laurence and Ted tail walking the course; Matilda taking photos; Felix sorting tokens and me, Sarah, trying to keep everything running vaguely smoothly!

Gedling junior parkrun 8/12/19

That's 27 volunteers vs. 24 runners! Just shows what a team it takes to get our juniors running each Sunday morning, doesn't it? Even if there were only a couple of runners, we'd still need a full roster to go ahead safely. Speaking of which, if you'd like to volunteer for future weeks, why not drop us a line to gedlingjuniors@parkrun.com and I'll pop you on the roster.

I have a couple of special mentions this morning. Firstly, Ewan, who was presented with a parkrun water bottle today for having volunteered the most this past year. He's made a huge difference to us at Gedling juniors and, while we appreciate everything our volunteers do, Ewan goes the extra mile - turning up early to set up the course, helping out with our Duke of Edinburgh volunteers, taking on the Run Director role etc - and he's still an under-18 himself. What a superstar!

Gedling junior parkrun 8/12/19

Also superstars this morning were Evie, Anysha, James and Sam, all of whom took on timing and barcode scanning using the parkrun app which we've never used before. And why did we choose today to use it? Well, because I'm a bit hopeless and didn't check to see if I'd got the timers and scanners in the bag this morning! Whoops! Thank you to you all for making a difference today.

Gedling junior parkrun 8/12/19

Gedling junior parkrun 8/12/19

Our runners were also pretty darned awesome too. Our first finishers for boys and girls were Lewis and Sienna. Cassius, Safeeya, Paige and Seb earned themselves new personal bests this morning. Plus, George and Henry joined us for the very first time - so a warm welcome to you both and we'll look forward to seeing you again soon! There weren't any milestone wristbands to hand out today, but if you have done 11, 21 or 50 runs, make sure you let the Run Director know and you'll be awarded your half marathon, marathon or ultra marathon band, which we always love to give out.

Gedling junior parkrun 8/12/19

Rightie ho, that's me done for the week. Next week Tamsin is steering the good ship Gedling juniors. We've only got two more junior parkruns until Christmas and then we'll be taking a little break until the New Year when we start again on the 5th of January.

Happy running all!

Sarah H-F


Event # 182 – Pinch Punch, first of the month!

We have been looking forwards to the beginning of December in our house for a little while, which is why the first words I heard this morning were "Pinch, punch, first of the month" accompanied by strikes on the arm and then the words "Can I open my advent calendar now?!"

frostry swing

I'll be honest, I hadn't slept all that well. I knew there was a genuine possibility I'd have to cancel the event and I don't think I was on my own, as I wasn't even the first member of the core team out there, inspecting the course. Not an easy decision, but we called it and we decided to go ahead.

Frosty fox

After the course inspection, I had a fairly easy morning. I got to hand over Run Director Duties to Ewan, knowing he'd do a great job! We're very lucky at Gedling Juniors to have such a team of bright, enthusiastic under 18's regularly involved. Ewan set up the funnel, handed out all the jobs, briefed anyone who needed to be briefed. Gave the volunteer brief, briefed the runners, led the warm up, started the runners off, handled the un-scannables, helped me manage a minor incident, closed down the course at the end and then he came over to the cafe and processed the results, too! So, I don't have much of a problem in declaring Ewan to be today's MVP.

Or at least I didn't until a little bird told me today was also Sarah HG's 50th time as volunteer coordinator, which means she's helped to fill over 1000 roles for 50 events!

And then I started feeling bad for trying to pick an MVP, so this week's Most Valued Players are everyone; Louis ASTILL, Sharon ASTILL, Frances ASTILL, Damian BENNER, Tom BLAKEY, Jake BROUGHTON, Chris COE, Laurence COE, Nicola DICKINSON, Julie DRIVER, Ann FISH, Eveline GRIFFITH, Sarah HORRIGAN-FULLARD, Sammy KING, Matthew MARSHALL, James MARTIN, Steve MARTIN, Richard MILLNS, Bo NOWICKI, Isabella RIELEY, Joanne TANNER, Zoe TANNER, Jonathan TANNER, Ewan WANE, James WILKINS and Emma BENNER.

Team Awesome!

No first timers with us this week, but a few milestones achieved. Oscar and David both qualified for the half marathon wristbands and Evan collected his Ultra Marathon wristband. Well done guys. If you think you've recently achieved a milestone but forgot to collect your wristband, please let us know.


One of the many, many things I love about junior parkrun (and it's 5k sister - it'll never catch on, though) is how many of you and your parents looked outside on this cold and frosty morning and said "yeah, I'm up for that!". 32 of you put on your kit, lined up and set off on a cold, dark, December morning. Your energy and enthusiasm in infectious!

Happy runners at 11

Six of you even managed to achieve PBs this morning. well done Harrison, Oliver, Charlie, Oscar, Beatrice and Ethan. That's about 20% of the field.

Flying feet at 11

That wraps it up for me, for this week. I'll be handing the baton over to Sarah HG for next week.


Event #179 – 10th November 2019

A big thank you to everyone who joined us at Gedling junior parkrun this morning. We had 64 runners and their grown ups as well as an amazing 30 volunteers!


We welcomed 9 "tourists" who had not been to Gedling junior parkrun before so hello to Cole, Joshua, Daniel, Jack, Dougie, Rory, Thomas, Joshua and Andrew who were all visiting us from other local junior parkruns at Hucknall, Worksop and Newark.


There were not any wristbands to hand out this week but do let us know when you have reached your 11th (half marathon), 21st (marathon) or 50th (ultra marathon) junior parkruns.

Well done to Olivia, Seth, Gilbert, Poppy, Charlie, Isla, River, Max, Connie, Joshua, Reuben, Will, Leo, Scarlett, Alberto, Jasper and Charley who all achieved a personal best this week.


We have 2 main ingredients to a successful junior parkrun - our runners of course but also our fantastic volunteers. On Friday evening we were very short of volunteers and thought that we would have to cancel this week but our local community stepped in and we had a fantastic team to cheer you on around the course and do all the necessary jobs around the finish funnel. So a big thank you to Laurence and Tom who were keeping time, Jake and Sammy scanning the bar codes helped by Isabella, James managing the funnel, Ewan handing out the tokens, Oliver and Louise tail walking and the magnificent marshals were Steve, Bo, Jenny, Claire, Chris, Max, Jenny, Peter, Emma, Martin, Laura, Lucy, Eveline, Karen, Neil, Nick, Josephine, Matthew and William.


Ewan also led the warm up, it is 2 years since he first started volunteering with us. He was only suppose to be here for 26 weeks as part of his Duke of Edinburgh award but 2 years on he is still here and rarely misses a week! So a big thank you to Ewan from us all.

If you would like to volunteer in any future weeks please do let Sarah, our volunteer coordinator, know at gedlingjuniors@parkrun.com to avoid us having any last minute panics about not having enough volunteers!

See you soon



Event #178 – Sunday 3rd November

It's been a while but I absolutely loved being back on the hills of Gedling on Sunday morning Directing another 2km run / walk / job around our fabulous park. I say Directing, to be honest, our fabulous volunteers don’t need much directing any more but myself and Jake did our best to make sure all the marshall spots were safely covered off. Here’s a photo of some of the 24 volunteers who made it happen:


We had some fantastic milestones on Sunday too. A very shy Oliver claimed his half marathon wristband before the run but wanted remain under the radar. Another regular received their wristband after James spotted him with his hand up in the briefing even though I missed him. Not so shy were Jasper collecting his Ultra wristband having completed 50 runs….

Gedling juniors 3rd nov 2019

And Jonah wasn’t backwards in coming forwards marking his membership of the 100 club! No wristband for that but you do get an entry on the website. Jonah now joins his sister Grace and Jasper’s sister Tegan along with Theo and Fleur as the 5 members of Gedling junior’s exclusive 100 club!
Gedling juniors 3rd nov 2019


Now to the run, 60 of you completed the course today, 13 of whom managed a shiny new PB (including our milestone runners Jonah and Jasper, Oliver and Arthur). The first finishers were flying through the funnel and we had to check to see if the course record had been broken. It wasn’t but it was incredibly close so well done to Jude and Eddie on your new PBs.

Gedling juniors 3rd nov 2019

Welcome to Jessica and Lexie on your first junior parkruns, we hope to see you soon.


I’ve rambled on for long enough now so its over to Helen who’ll host next week’s run.



Gedling junior parkrun #177 – the halloween edition

I've been really looking forward to run directing this run. I love dressing up! I was so pleased so many of you got into the spirit for our spooky Halloween special too! I went for the scariest thing I could think of; a real apex predator! The silent killer of the deep. Death incarnate. A Great White shark! Imagine how deflated I felt when you lot started singing Baby Shark at me!

Dancing shark

We are very grateful to the terrifying team who made this event happen: Linda ALLEN, Emma BENNER, Damian BENNER, Tom BLAKEY, Jake BROUGHTON, Laurence COE, Chris COE, John ENGLAND, Tom ENGLAND, Ann FISH, Matilda FRANKLIN, Neil Scott FRANKLIN, Sarah HORRIGAN-FULLARD, Matthew MARSHALL, Steve MARTIN, James MARTIN, Ted SELBY, Joanne TANNER, Zoe TANNER, Jonathan TANNER, Judith TOWNEND, Alice TOWNEND, Ewan WANE, Julie WEBSTER. Special thanks to Emma, who stepped in at short notice as a tailwalker (and provided her own tail), to Alice who did double duty as a marshal sprinting from marshal point 2 to marshal point 13; and to Ewan who led the warm up, set up the funnel and also did the umpteen other things Ewan does for us every week.

Team terrifying

Three mistakes happened this week that I will confess to. The first was I forgot the big tub of sweets I'd intended to hand out for all you trick or treaters. I guess next week it'll have to be tricks! (sorry Tamsin).

Skellington Ghost

The second mistake was I got my words the wrong way around and said parkrun was a race and not a run. NAUGHTY SHARK! BAD SHARK! I have had to sit on the step for 43 minutes this afternoon to think about my actions.

On the course

I got to give Seb Sanderson his wristband for completing 50 junior parkruns - What a star! If you're reading this, I suspect you already know that's the equivalent of an ultra marathon. I missed out on the opportunity to give a half marathon wristband to George and a marathon wristband to Esme Cope. Maybe one of the other run directors will have that honour in the coming weeks.

Ultra Marathon

After the warm up led by Ewan, we led you over to the start, corrected myself that it's a run and not a race and you were off!

warm up

You did an amazing job! For me, this week wasn't really about going fast, but having fun! I hope the four of you who joined us for the first time had fun.

On the course

There were another four of you who managed to get a new PB this morning including your first finisher, Ben Taylor. Your highest placed finisher this week by age grading was Megan Taylor, with an age grading of 71.58% in the JW11-14 group. If you're not sure what that means, it means she's quick! Really, really quick!

First finisher

My absolute, hands down, favourite bit from this morning was having young Gabriel, dressed as a very cool Spider-Man, ditch the finish line to run towards me instead, singing Baby Shark. Happy 5th birthday, Gabriel!


Which is what got me through Mistake No. 3, which was all to do with results processing. I'll not burden you with the details, but hopefully most of you now have your results! Five of you may still be waiting. If this is you, reach out to us and we'li do our best to recover your time.

Next week Tamsin will be leading an intrepid team of volunteers If you want to join in the fun, get in touch!


Gedling junior parkrun # 174 – the one with no massive ducks

This week Fyfe and I had our felt tips out to have a go at creating a totally-to-scale map of our new course. It's a work in progress but two things will become apparent if you look closely. One is that if it's to scale, that duck in the pond must be massive! The other is that I really can't draw cows. Anyway, I half-thought we'd have to leave it in the car, but the weather was loads better than expected.

Starting line

This week we were joined by six first timers and two tourists visiting for the first time. A massive welcome to Louie, William, Seth, Will, Matilda, Ella, Libby and Silvie. we hope you had a great time and that we'll see you again some time very soon. By the way, Ella has the distinction of being the 1234th runner at Gedling Juniors.


Well done to Hannah on achieving and collecting her marathon wristband. What an achievement! Don't forget to print off the certificate and show your teacher. I see we have some more milestones.

Finish line

After a warm-up led by Sammy and Ewan you were off! 65 of you crossed the line this morning. The first back was Finn, closely followed by Reece, Lewis and Jack; all three of whom got a new PB.

They weren't on their own though! 14 of you got PBs this week!

Into Stitch alley

We are very grateful to the volunteers who made this event happen: Damian Benner, Jake Broughton, Catriona Buckley, Sonny Chapman, Laurence Coe (and his Dad), Nicola Dickinson, Tom England, Josephine Franklin, Martha Franklin, Sammy King, Matthew Marshall, William Martin, Lucy Martin, Tamsin Millns, Richard Millns, Kelly Morphus, Bo Nowicki, Jolene Sanderson, Oliver Sanderson, Jonathan Tanner, Joanne Tanner, Zoe Tanner, Alice Townend, Ewan Wane and the ever-vigilant Sarah Horrigan-Fullard who coordinates all this.

Team Awesome

Your run director next week will be Nick. If you'd like to join Nick on Team Awesome (and why wouldn't you; it's awesome!) then email the office.


Event 173 – 29th September 2019 – the one where it didn’t rain!

It didn't rain, lovely people! It didn't rain! At 7am when I looked out of the window, it was pouring. Not a little bit of a shower, but a proper deluge. And yet, as 9am ticked around on the clock, the parkrun gods looked kindly down upon us and the sun came out. There I was prepared to rant merrily about the awful weather, kitted out in my bobble hat and mittens (in September!), but the weather behaved itself and it was lovely. Hooray!

It's been a while since I last Run Directed and though I was rusty, the new route was still shiny and special with 33 of you joining us for a run, jog, walk, skip or hop around the hills. We managed an incredible 12 PBs and it was awesome to welcome 6 first timers to Mount Gedders.

It was also lovely to be able to give out not one but two wristbands as Safeeya and Sophie earned their half marathon and marathon wristbands respectively. Don't forget to print out your certificates to show your teachers, both - we're really proud of you!

We're also really grateful to our wonderful volunteers. The new route needs an additional 4 marshal points and with the Robin Hood Half Marathon taking place today, the roster was looking scarily bare for most of the week... and yet, as ever, an amazing group came together to put on the junior parkrun show. If you would like to volunteer for next week and beyond, that would be fantastic. Just drop me an email to gedlingjuniors@parkrun.com and we'll add you to the list of hi-vis heroes in a blink of an eye!

Thank you to Oli and Jake for time-keeping; Matthew, Nick (Hill and Horrigan!), Martyn, Laura, Karen, Neil (Franklin, Gregory and Tucker!), Catriona, Kelly, Debbie, Wayne, Tabitha, Keith and Isabella for marvelous marshaling; Matilda and Jolene for bipping barcodes; Sonny and Ewan for fabulous finish token flourishing; Madeleine (Wells) for terrific tail walking; Madeleine (Horrigan) for marshaling and finish token sorting; and lastly me, Sarah, trying not to forget anything as I put on the Run Director's over-sized vest once more.

There was also cake, courtesy of Maddy Horrigan who joined the 25-club yesterday after volunteering 25 times for parkrun - thank you for giving up so much of your time... and the cake was much appreciated by all too!

Our first finishers were Zara - who was soooooo close to a PB today - and Theo. Well done for a cracking run, both of you.

Also producing some fabulous runs were Seb, Tallyn, Fleur, Emma, Oscar, Sophie, Archie, Belle, Laura, Max, Alberto and Connie who earned new PBs - great stuff! Finally, a very warm welcome to William, Tristan and Annabelle who ran their very first parkruns. Team Gedling juniors hope you had fun with us on the zig-zags!

Right, that's me done for this week. It's been a blast! Next week you're in the safe hands of Damian and with luck the sunshine will join us again too.

Happy running all!



Run #166. 11/08/2019 – the shouty one.

Why so shouty? Well, it was my first time taking the reigns as run director and I quickly discovered that I didn't know how to work the loud haler. Whilst I do think I could have figured it out quickly, doing so whilst 52 pairs of legs were itching to get underway didn't seem the right thing to do. So, shouting! Hope you could all hear. I know those at the front certainly could.

Course conditions

Three children joined the half marathon club; Cai, Amy and Lara. Two joined the marathon club; Ollie and Riley. Four children collected their marathon wristband, which I think includes a bit of catch-up. Given that we didn't give out any half marathon wrist bands, I think we've got a bit more catching up to do in weeks to come.


Actually, that's not quite correct. I did give out one half marathon wristband by mistake. But that young runner left with the correct one and an apology.

The warm up was led by Ewan and Sammy. Thanks! Thanks also to the offer of running the warm up from our Long Eaton tourist. if you're down again, we'd love to get you on the roster to do this. It was a very kind offer.

Warm up

Speaking of which, we had first time visitors this morning from Forest Rec and Long Eaton. we hope you enjoyed our hills! For our other visitors, of which I know there were a few, we hope to see you again. We also welcome two runners for the first time and four runners back for their second run. Welcome back Alfie, Isabel, Henry and Levi.

Seven of you managed to get PBs this morning, even with all that wind! One of those was Ollie Pantling, newly minted member of the marathon club, who told me he thought he had. Pleased to see you were right. So, with our four first timers, 11 of you now have new benchmarks! Great stuff. Chloe Lilley was your first finisher.

first finihser

Finally, a mention for our volunteers. Stars, every one of them! Couple of special mentions. Firstly, myself! Firstly, my 6 yo son, Fyfe, has been desperate to do some scanning for a while now and under Ewan's expert tutelage, did a great job. Remember kids, you can volunteer any time like. You can do pretty much any role you like, too, but you might need a grown up to help you with some of them. secondly, another voluntourist for the second week running, this time Sharon Street from Long Eaton Juniors was your funnel manager. She did a superb job, is welcome back anytime, but given she's on their core team, I suspect she'll be busy most weeks with that. Saving the best for last, Tamsin Millns completed her 100th volunteering gig. Tamsin's contribution to Gedling juniors can't be understated. as well as being a key player at Gedling, Tamsin has completed 117 runs, which is a pretty impressive run to volunteering ratio, she's done 11 distinct volunteering roles and has a V-Index of 5 (meaning she's done 5 of those roles, 5 times).

Voluneer team

That's all folks! thanks again to all our volunteers. Your run director next week will be Helen Smalley.


Event #165 – 04/08/2019 (the one where I didn’t crash the car)

On my way to Gedling junior parkrun this morning to shadow Tamsin as run director, as well as Fyfe in the back of the car, I discovered I had an extra passenger. This one had 8 legs and I found him wandering up my leg as I was driving. Fortunately, I'm okay with spiders, so he was re-homed outside the car very quickly. No need to abandon the car in the road and run away screaming.

Arriving early and intact at Gedling Country Park, the sun was out and it was already getting warm. I found one keen volunteer already getting things ready, with the equipment coming out of the shed as the rest of the volunteer team arrived. This week we were lucky to have so many extra volunteers that we were able to have extra marshal points and relax a little more, with a bit of a party atmosphere. More numbers make light work! A rare luxury we'd love to enjoy some more. A big thank you to all this week's volunteers, especially our volun-tourists from Southampton. Hope to see you again, next time you're in town.
Volunteer team

63 young people joined us for the run and some of them brought their grown ups for a run, too. We had eleven children joining us for the first time, four of whom chose us for their very first parkrun. We are honored you chose us for your first parkrun and hope to see you again soon. Speaking of which, Mei Li, Amelia, Jasmine and Jack came back this week for their second run. Welcome back! We're delighted you returned.

Line up

Finley Young joined the Marathon club and collected his wristband. We noted also that Scarlett Foreman joined the Half Marathon club and Greta Dixon joined the marathon club, but didn't collect their wrist bands. Speak to a run director next week if you'd like to collect your wristband. Don't forget you can also download a certificate which you can use to impress your friends at school. Well done all three of you; we think you're amazing!

Marathon club

Formalities over and after a warm up led by Sonny, our runners were ready and they were off!

And they are off

Our job then was to see who came back again. The first person to do that this week was Alana Cook with a new PB. It was great to see a girl as first finisher. But wait, Zara Collinson was your second fastest finisher this week, too. The boys did outnumber the girls a little this week, but girls, you certainly weren't out-performed. Proof, if it were needed, that These Girls Can!

Alana on the Zig Zags

First finisher

As for our other 61 finishers, I don't know what you lot had for breakfast, but it worked! We had 12 new PBs in total! That, combined with the 11 children running at Gedling juniors for the first time gives a total of 23 (37%) setting new benchmarks for themselves.

Well done everyone who ran, walked, skipped, moon-walked or danced around our hills this morning, whether you were chasing a PB or just out to stretch your legs. You all won Sunday morning! We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did. I enjoyed it so much that I'm going back next week when myself (Damian) and Nick will be run directing together. Have a great week and hope to see you all next Sunday.


Event 161 – Sunday 7th July

It was great to be back in the giant Run Director's vest this weekend - its been too long!

The morning started as usual with our 20 volunteers meeting at the picnic bench to be assigned their duties for the run. As usual, the increasingly willing and able Ewan was there first to load up the trolley and layout the finish funnel. Ewan is one of our longest standing junior volunteers and he has volunteered almost 60 times with us at Gedling - thank you from us to you!

Gedling junior parkrun.  7 Jul 19.

We were also joined by visiting volunteers from Newark Juniors, Matthew and Louise, thanks for popping by! Once everything was set up, Sammy (another one of our fabulous junior volunteers with over 40 volunteer credits since 2017) and Ewan led the warm up and I handed out wrist bands to deserving participants who had reached milestones on Sunday. I didn't get photos of you all due to an unfortunate incident with my camera by the results show that Jacob was due his half marathon band whilst Reuben, Logan and Imogen all ran their 21st runs, earning their Marathon wristband. I'm fairly sure there was another band handed out too - well done all of you! Don't forget you can print off your certificate to show all your friends at school what a fabulous runner you are! Just ask a parent to log in to your parkrun profile to print it off.

Gedling junior parkrun.  7 Jul 19.

So, to the stats! 70 of you completed the course and only five runners didn't have their barcodes. There was quite a tussle at the finish between Finn and Joseph for the top spot, well done both of you for your super sprint finishes, earning you both shiny new PBs. In fact at least 16 of you recorded a new fastest time - I hope you were all rewarded with a warm glow all day. 3 of you were brand new to Gedling; Welcome and we hope to see you again Harriet, Sadie and Reuben.

Gedling junior parkrun.  7 Jul 19.

After the run it was off down to the Willowbrook in Gedling for a well earned breakfast where Madeleine, Eloise and Imogen sorted the tokens all ready to do it all again next week.

Helen will be ready for you just before 9am!

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