“We’re officially in a cloud” – Jo Eccles, 06.02.16


Event #196

The weather forecast was right – rain, rain and more rain. This is obviously what gave Gav the idea to keep the run-brief brief, but it’s all relative when Gav is in charge. He rattled through the parkrun code so we all had a reminder of the “rules”. He added a couple of variations – respect the environment and don’t fell any trees (very topical in Sheffield at the moment), and don’t “jostle” any dogs or their owners. He did miss out one “rule” which needs to be added to the list – no profanities in the funnel (Andy MORRIS) {Editors note – whoops ! sorry, that’s what happens when your expectations are dashed by a bit of Graves style reality !!!]

There was a round of applause for Paul MILLEN and Malcolm TAYLOR doing their 50th runs and a very loud cheer for this week’s volunteers - Andrew CALLAGHAN • Ann BREWSTER • Catherine NEEDHAM • Ceejay HUBBUCK • Charlie LAST • Dawn JACKSON • Erica BRAMHALL • Gavin NEWHOUSE • Geoffrey TWELVETREE • Jane EVANS • Lisa READ • Margaret Elizabeth DUNCAN • Matt RIMMER • Paul GILL • Sally NEVITT • Sheena WOODHEAD • Yvonne TWELVETREE. They knew they were going to be somewhat soggy and frozen by 10.00am and they were.

Special mention to Dawn JACKSON who was volunteering for the 50th time and who said “If you never have given it a go it’s fun and lovely to give something back to parkrun. Happy running & volunteering

Hi vis

Once the 171 runners were gone, the finish funnel was set up on very boggy ground. It was swiftly moved onto the path once the first 3 runners had come through and we saw just how lethal the mud was. Thanks everyone for coping with the funnel of cones and humans and keeping in order as you went through to collect your finish tokens.

There was an interesting comment from parkrun tourist Trevor POTTER, doing his 201st parkrun, and his first at Graves. His home parkrun is Norwich which is apparently flat. As he finished he was heard saying “those hills, those hills”. He seemed to have enjoyed himself, despite those hills.

We were all very impressed to spot a 250 shirt in the crowd, proudly being worn by Graves first timer Andy CULLEN. Today was Andy’s 268th parkrun! Most of Andy’s parkruns have been in Leeds but he is currently on a mission to complete all the parkruns in Yorkshire.


And now for an inspirational story - It was great to see Steel City Strider Nick PORTUS at this morning’s run. Nick has had a “challenging” few months. Here’s his story:

“I was in decent shape when I ran the Chester Marathon in October, and indeed ran a massive PB. But after I crossed the finish line I took a few steps, fell over, got up again and then collapsed. Despite the misfortune of having a Cardiac Arrest, I was really lucky that the St John's Ambulance (we already knew volunteers were brilliant) were nearby and they managed to restart my heart rhythm with a defibrillator. I don't remember any of this, my next memory is waking up in hospital two days later.

A few weeks of observations and tests in the hospital and I had an ICD (it's similar to a pacemaker) fitted. My cardiologist discharged me, but with a warning that I can't run competitively again. I was gutted.

However after a few months of limiting myself to long walks, I was finally given the all clear to do light exercise. I specifically asked about running and they said I could do conversational pace.

Obviously the next day I knew I wanted to go to parkrun so I jogged down with my wife Emma from the tramstop to Graves Park just in time to drop our bags off and go. It was absolutely lashing it down but I didn't care. I was running again and I couldn't be happier. I was a bit nervous at the start, but Emma was running with me - until she dropped out halfway through with a knee niggle. The time was my slowest ever, by some distance, but again I don't give two hoots because I'm running again.

Thanks to the marshals for cheering me on, they really helped me get up those pesky hills!”

Thanks for this Nick and massive well done from everyone at Graves. We hope to see you again soon.

Welcome to the 14 parkrun first timers, we hope to see you again at Graves parkrun next week

Tom Lane Christopher Taylor-Cook David Parker
Celina Hanson James Anderson Charlotte Cullen
Grace Whiting Kelly Slade Rachel Morgan
Emily Lane Karen Barker Kate Lane
Tracy Stallan Jane Mclean


Welcome also to parkrun tourists, we hope you enjoyed our lovely hills

Russel Garner Michael Kenyon Bash Savage-Manasray Rachel Hayes
Isabelle Pound Helen Crimlisk Duncan Jordan Trevor Potter
Adrian Stott Andy Cullen


Here is a link to a lovely blog from Lucy Marris about her run this week at Graves: https://runningscaredsite.wordpress.com/2016/02/06/the-grave-business-of-running-in-the-rain/


Run Statistics – for those that like their numbers

22 Personal Bests (PBs) were set this week, not bade considering the foul weather. Well done to each and every one of you:

Name Improvement Name Improvement Name Improvement
Gordon Wood 2:21 Frances Taylor-Cook 2:18 Matthew Hazelhurst 1:49
Barbara Jenkins 1:46 Owen Wright 1:32 Olivia Wright 1:31
Laura Egan 1:01 Judith Alabaster 48s Ryan Bartlett 40s
Claire Fitzpatrick 39s Julie Allen 25s Miriam Worthington 24s
Sally Smith 24s Sarah Collett 24s Alistair Lowe 15s
Rebecca Bell 15s Mandy Taylor 8s Nick Roberts 5s
Joe McDadd 5s Sam Needham 3s Simon Taylor 2s
Francesca Booker 1s


A special mention to Mandy Taylor – 7 consecutive PBs (the run continues), Laura Egan – 4 consecutive PBs.

The top age graded result this week, once again, was from Graves regular Helen MARY EBERLIN (VW65-69) with 84.72%.

The most experienced parkrunner this week was Andy Cullen with 268 parkruns as mentioned earlier in the report. Two other Graves visitors have also over 200 runs under their belts – Adrian Stott with 247 and Trevor Potter (mentioned earlier) with 201 runs.


Finishing positions

Male Female
Position Name Time Position Name Time
1 Phil Skelton 18:17 1 Claire Fitzpatrick* 20:50
2 Sam Needham* 18:38 2 Rachel Hayes ** 22:39
3 James Storey 19:37 3 Mandy Taylor* 24:08


* New PB

** First timer


Points tables

Male Female
Position Name Points Position Name Points
1 James Storey 3674 1 Janet Glover 3599
2 Simon Nightingale 3140 2 Renee Robinson 3032
3 Mark Vestey 2943 3 Rebecca WALKER 2745

RD sepia

Gav’s notes

Tourism time!

Obviously Graves parkrun will always hold a special place in our hearts, but occasionally it's good to see what else is out there once every few weeks (especially when you've become really bad at running killer hill at a decent speed). So if you've been thinking, "that shouty man hasn't been around as much this year" you'd be right, I've been doing some parkrun tourism!

For the next few weeks, my notes will give a few details on the parkruns I've visited, along with some 'Top Trumps' style ratings for various things, plus overall thoughts and tips from myself and Erica.

This isn't about saying which is the 'best' parkrun, more about showcasing the features of each:


First up - Sheffield Castle


There's no actual castle involved, but this City Road 3-lapper offers a warm welcome, undulations and free drinks

Hills: 8/10 It's got a short sharp rise to the high point of the course, then a loooooong drag uphill at the end of each lap

PB Potential: 4/10 (Graves being a 3/10) The first half of each lap is fairly quick, with the good running surface and wide paths giving plenty of opportunity to push on. Good downhill technique will serve you well here on the steep windy descent.

Room to run: 10/10 Wide paths combined with 50 or so runners mean you can get over the start line quickly and run at your own pace. No real bottlenecks that I've noticed.

Volunteer Team Awesomeness: 10/10 Naturally


Tips: Take it easy on the looooooong hill... remember you've got to do it 3 times. Every time I've run this course people have passed me there on the first lap, only for me to overtake them again the next time around.

Gav's verdict: Bizarrely still under subscribed in terms of numbers, it's a hidden gem of a parkrun which offers some nice variety in terms of topography. Plus there was free water and hot drinks on offer last time I visited, in addition to strategically placed parkrun dustbins for keeping your jackets safe and out of the rain when you're running. I think it's slightly easier than Graves, and have clocked up two times here which are faster than my Graves pb.


Erica's verdict: In my opinion the hardest parkrun in Sheffield. 3 laps means 6 hills in total, with one slightly easier than Graves' "killer hill", then the long drag to finish each lap. The downhill section is faster than the Graves "deathslide" though. A great course for hill training, with some nice scenery on the way round, and the bonus of toilets really close to the start!


Next time: Concord


As usual, the event would not run anywhere near as well without the wonderful group of volunteers that Graves  parkrun attracts. Please remember it’s easy to volunteer, just leave a message on the Graves parkrun Facebook page or e-mail the Graves team on: graveshelpers@parkrun.com or See our volunteer page for details on getting involved in making Graves parkrun happen.

Any suggestions or tips, please e-mail gravesoffice@parkrun.com read - parkrun on facebook at www.facebook.com/parkrun or our Facebook page www.facebook.com/gravesparkrun

Andy Jane 2