Guildford parkrun number 368: a beautiful sunny morning

Our run report this week is written by Nick Sirs.

I’m pleased to have this opportunity to write the parkrun report as I have a long association with Guildford, with running and with Stoke Park. The story begins around 45 years ago in the mid 1970s when I was a pupil at the local grammar school. This was a turbulent time for Guildford and the country generally. We were in the middle of an energy crisis which led to frequent power cuts. I remember walking home from school down a darkened High Street with the shopkeepers scrabbling for candles. At about this time we were all shocked by the Guildford pub bombings in which five young people lost their lives and many more were injured. The TV and newspapers at the time were all filled with animated discussion about the upcoming referendum as to whether we should stay in the EU. Thank goodness that matter was amicably settled back in 1975 ...

In the midst of all this my running career had tentatively begun when I joined the school cross country team. On Monday evenings we would do a training session heading out from the school then down into Stoke Park. I remember doing repetitions around the clump of trees in the middle. We would have been a bit of an oddity back then - a group of schoolboys in shorts and vests, trotting along the path. Back then you rarely saw anybody out running. Certainly you would never see a woman running - it was widely understood that women were unsuited to endurance events. The thought of a woman being a long distance runner was as unlikely as there being a female Prime Minister! If we schoolboys, circling round Stoke Park in the mid seventies, had been gifted with foresight, we might have been startled by an image of hundreds of runners gathering at the far end of the park. Not only that - many of the runners were women! Indeed there seemed to be all sorts there - serious athletes, middle-aged men in lycra, grannies and grandads, teenagers, schoolkids, small kids, babies in buggies and dogs on leads - parkrun is truly for everyone.

My first experience of Guildford parkrun was on a frosty morning in December 2012. There were 76 runners there that day and seven volunteers. I’ve run several more times since finishing as high as seventh and as low as 550th (as tailwalker). I’ve done most of the volunteer roles at one time or another and I’ve marshalled at most points on the course, discovering some unfamiliar corners of Stoke Park along the way. Today I was on finish tokens which is usually a good gig as you get to say hello to everybody in the run.

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A sunny Stoke Park waiting for the runners

It was a lovely day for running, one of those days when late summer runs into early autumn. One of the nice things about Guildford parkrun is that you can see all your runners arriving as they all walk across the fields from the direction of the Spectrum car park. Even into its 368th running, Guildford parkrun attracts plenty of new visitors. There were sixty-three first timers this morning and thirty-two of them were running their first parkrun ever. We had a few milestones this morning. Congratulations to Christopher Kennedy, Nikki Storrar, Suzanne Perrin and Katerina Rose for completing their fiftieth parkrun and to Sam Bell and Phil Butler for making it to their hundredth!

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The start

Everything seemed to go pretty smoothly this morning. The 533 runners set off and quickly formed a long multi coloured column snaking around the park. The first finisher today was Josh Carter, one of those first timers to Guildford. Josh more normally runs at Woking but today was first placer here in a very respectable 17:30. The first female finisher was perhaps the youngest person to achieve this honour. Katie Wealden has run many times here, both in the senior and junior parkruns, and today achieved a new PB of 21:04 - a brilliant performance for someone in the JW10 category. Katie’s performance also gave her the best age graded score today at 81.01%.

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Josh Carter

It seemed to be the day for PBs. Apart from the sixty-three first timers who achieved a PB by default, a total of 103 runners set a new PB for this course. I shall throw in a word at this point for John Collins who has been our backmarker in recent weeks but today managed to break the hour for the first time! If you missed a PB this week, you can have another go next Saturday when we shall have pacers.

I shall finish by thanking RD Julie Bryant and her magnificent team of volunteers, without whom this event would not have been possible! I thought the guy who gave out the tokens was especially brilliant!

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RD Julie Bryant delivering her briefing

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

The female record is held by Emily WICKS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 8th October 2016 (event number 227).
The male record is held by Phil WICKS who recorded a time of 15:14 on 23rd September 2017 (event number 274).
The Age Grade course record is held by Jane DAVIES who recorded 90.41% (22:25) on 27th April 2013 (event number 57).

Guildford parkrun started on 10th March 2012. Since then 14,728 participants have completed 112,253 parkruns covering a total distance of 561,265 km, including 19,088 new Personal Bests. A total of 1,127 individuals have volunteered 7,239 times.

 

Guildford parkrun no. 367: A Lovely Cool September Morning

Our run report this week is written by Jacqueline Merlini.

RD Tamara starting off 539 runners

RD Tamara starting off 539 runners

539 beautiful people finished Guildford parkrun this morning, enjoying perfect conditions with refreshing temperatures and dry ground underfoot. We were cheered on and guided by the wonderful course marshals, efficiently funnelled through the finishing chute, and cheerfully scanned in by the barcode team.

Today I moved into a new age-group and cunningly decided to take it easy so I could rise up through the ranks in subsequent weeks. It was so nice to run for pleasure rather than trying to beat last week’s time and simply enjoy the lungfuls of fresh air and the company of 538 motivated and happy people.

First Timers finding out what they are in for

First Timers finding out what they are in for

As usual we had parkrun tourists and parkrun first-timers, parkrun volunteers in droves and parkrun milestoners – all were greeted with the customary uplifting applause – the mutual encouragement and good humour that is always present at parkrun.

It was a special run today for Linda Cairns who was one of the founding Event Directors of the Guildford parkrun back in March 2012 and was today doing her 250th. Congratulations to her and thanks for bringing parkrun to Guildford. Some of you may remember the monthly 5k organised by Guildford and Godalming Running Club which parkrun replaced! Other milestones this week included a magnificent 100 parkruns for Helen Turner, and 50 runs each for Gareth Roberts and Anthea Edwards (who was visiting us for the first time from Frimley Lodge).

Linda and her family

Linda and her family

Helen warming up

Helen warming up!

Here are a few pictures of happy participants:

Jasper the dog

Jasper (isn’t four legs cheating, Jasper?)

Chris and Dave The Dog

Chris and Dave The Dog

Me with husband Jo (a proper runner!)

Me with husband Jo (a proper runner!)

See you next week!

Jacqueline Merlini
Proud parkrunner since 2012

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This week 539 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 74 were first timers and 80 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 45 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 36 volunteers:

Tamara PEDGRIFT • Jacqueline MERLINI • Brian O'KANE • George CAIRNS • Ian MCCARTHY • Ian KENYON • Alastair DAY • Helen PRONGER • Mark BRAIN • Rosamund STELL • Adrian STELL • Graham SAMPSON • Stephen OSBORNE • Helen HOLCROFT • Rob STOKES • Kiera JONES • Harry CONLAN • Ben WILLETT • Grace RAWLINS • Alison CURTIS • Maddie HESLOP • Emily RASTRICK • Paul TATLER • Wayne SMITH • Keith RHODES • Benjamin CURTIS • Beth O'CONNELL • Judith MCKNIGHT • Nicholas GOLDMAN • Jayne YUNG • Brandon ACRES • Sarah ALEXANDER • Ben GREEN • William IZZARD • Henry PARKER • Andy NELSON

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

The female record is held by Emily WICKS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 8th October 2016 (event number 227).
The male record is held by Phil WICKS who recorded a time of 15:14 on 23rd September 2017 (event number 274).
The Age Grade course record is held by Jane DAVIES who recorded 90.41% (22:25) on 27th April 2013 (event number 57).

Guildford parkrun started on 10th March 2012. Since then 14,665 participants have completed 111,720 parkruns covering a total distance of 558,600 km, including 18,985 new Personal Bests. A total of 1,122 individuals have volunteered 7,207 times.

 

Guildford parkrun Event number 366 31st August 2019 By Richard Totty.

Run Report 31-8 (1)

Richard Totty -this week's report writer.

I find running very rewarding, it calms me down, helps me to order my thoughts, I get to meet new people and make new friends, it’s all around great for my mental health and has also made me physically fitter.  

I took up running as a way of keeping fit in the summer of 2016, motivated by seeing a family member’s health deteriorate due to lack of exercise.  I started on a treadmill in a gym, which I found rather boring, made more bearable listening to Sarah Millican as my coach, with the Couch to 5k app.  My first parkrun was at week 7 of that plan, and at Wimbledon Common, thereafter I haven’t stepped foot on a treadmill again (except for testing out new trainers), the great outdoors is now my gym, and bonus, its free! No membership fees!  I moved to Shalford with my husband in July 2018, so Guildford Parkrun became my home. I joined Guildford’s Fitstuff running club, last winter, having been encouraged to do so by a work colleague who was already a member. The Fitstuff group are a very welcoming lot, and have helped keep me motivated.

With help from my friends I have made it into the parkrun 50 club! I never used to be keen on doing any exercise, least of all running, so I amaze myself and continue to amaze my family that I keep on doing it, I’ve definitely caught the running bug! 

All that said, I have recently taken a break from running, due to overdoing it, and various aches and pains.  I’m sure many of you know what I am talking about. Volunteering at Guildford Parkrun has helped me to maintain my Saturday morning routine, and marshalling, and all of the clapping, and shouts of thanks and thumbs up from runners, has helped keep me coming back for more! 

To be able to cheer on friends and everyone involved is very pleasing. 

So, enough about me, to the run report! 

This week 539 lovely people ran, jogged and walked the course in near perfect conditions, partly cloudy, 16oC and almost no wind. 

There were 76 first timers, briefed by Alastair Heslop, who was celebrating his 200th occasion as a run volunteer, an awesome achievement!  Volunteers enjoyed cakes which he had brought with him to celebrate the occasion, they were delicious.

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Alastair Heslop who celebrated his 200th occasion volunteering!

Maddie Heslop as run director, started off proceedings by welcoming all the first timers, and as is the case every week, they all were welcomed with a very well deserved round of applause.  This applause is a great motivator. run report 31-8 (3) Then Isobel Walton, was congratulated for this being her 10th parkrun as a Junior parkrunner.

Mike Harrold should be congratulated for completing an unofficial milestone of 300 parkruns, a spectacular achievement!

Kirsti Reed was congratulated for celebrated her 100th! Supported by Matthew Eldridge in his ‘She’s the best’ T-Shirt! 

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Kirsti Reed celebrating her 100th Parkrun with Matthew Eldridge.

The newest members of the parkrun 50 club, were Dominque Gillan, Jo Tappin, Carolyn Ditton, David Smith and Julie Rae all achieved their 50th!

Carolyn Ditton, was joined by six supporters, dressed up variously, as two mice/rats; a man dressed up with a full size black bin with a rat inside it (rather him than me running in that!); a rat catcher complete with a net and rat; and another gent in a high-vis vest.  We understand this is because they work in pest control.

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Carolyn Ditton (pink tutu) celebrating her 50th with her friends

Then Maddie reminded everyone of the invaluable assistance of the volunteers who made the event possible, there were 29 of us:

Brandon ACRES • Debbie AITKEN • Sarah ALEXANDER • Chris COLES • Kristina COLES • Harry CONLAN • Alastair DAY • Elaine FAGAN •  Ella FOLEY • Nicholas GOLDMAN • Ben GREEN • Alastair HESLOP • Maddie HESLOP • Guy HOLCROFT • Rosie KILLICK • Annalees LIM • Judith MCKNIGHT • Jacqueline MERLINI • Dale MILLERSHIP • Alexandra OLIVER • Stephen OSBORNE • Bev REED • Phil RESCORLA • Keith RHODES • Christine ROBINSON • Paul TATLER • Richard TOTTY •  Sian WILLIAMS • Nick WRIGHT •

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Volunteers briefing by Maddie Heslop.

So it just remained for everyone to get ready to start, and then they were off: 

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Start line, and they are off!

I had the honour of maintaining marshal post #6, next to Burchatts Farm Gate, at the North-West corner of the course, which meant I got a great view of the first runner, Emily Wicks as she sprinted along the path parallel to London Road (Emily is the female Guildford parkrun record holder)

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Emily Wicks leading everyone out on the first lap

Emily finished in 1st position today, in 00:18:10, followed by the 1st male finisher, Joe Taylor, who crossed the finishing line in 00:18:28.

2nd and 3rd female positions went to Carolyne Baxter, finishing in 19:14; and Laura Davies, who finished with a time of 21:16.

2nd and 3rd male positions went to Simon Elsbury, who finished in 18:32; and James Adams, who finished with a time of 18:37. 

Well done to everyone.


I also had the opportunity to photograph many of the parkrunners. 

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Nick Tearle (Blue vest)

 

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Prab Satya (red shirt).

 

 

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Fitstuff runner!

 

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Parkrun junior members showing everyone how its done! Along with one of this weekend's parkrun tourists who joined us from New Zealand.

 

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Dog owners

 

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Thumbs up for the volunteers, always appreciated, thank you!

 

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Kirsti Reed enjoying her 100th parkrun!

 

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Carolyn Ditton (pink tutu) with her friends from pest control.

Close to the end of the race two parkrun participants, John White and Glyn Morgan put in great efforts, both achieving new PBs, with this being their 4th Parkrun each, finishing in 54:47 and 54:48 respectively. This week was the 2nd successive PB in a row, great results guys!

We should also not forget the great and invaluable role of the tail-walkers, who this week were Annalees Lim, Alexandra Oliver and Ben Green (JM11-14 1st timer), who encouraged John Collins to sprint to the finish line with a very respectable 1:00:05 finish time, which was also a new PB for John, great stuff!  

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John Collins, and tail walkers Annalees, Alexandra and Ben.

Representatives of 37 different clubs took part.

79 people recorded new Personal Bests.

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

The female record is held by Emily WICKS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 8th October 2016 (event number 227).

The male record is held by Phil WICKS who recorded a time of 15:14 on 23rd September 2017 (event number 274).

The Age Grade course record is held by Jane DAVIES who recorded 90.41% (22:25) on 27th April 2013 (event number 57).

Guildford parkrun started on 10th March 2012. Since then 14,591 participants have completed 111,181 parkruns covering a total distance of 555,905 km, including 18,905 new Personal Bests. A total of 1,115 individuals have volunteered 7,171 times.  

 

Guildford parkrun # 363 – 11th August, a blustery one.

My name is Henry Parker and writing this week’s run report has brought feelings of honour and pride as parkrun is such a lovely event to be involved in. Being a volunteer, I get to witness and experience the hard work and effort put into to organising a community event such as this. All the other volunteers work as hard as possible to complete their tasks to the best of their ability, some of which include barcode scanning, tail waking and marshalling. My personal favourite tasks are marshalling and tail walking. Being a marshal, you get to encourage everybody who passes by and tail walking gives the opportunity to have a good chat while ensuring nobody gets lost or injured. This week I was tail walking and even though the gentleman we were walking with was further behind everybody else, he kept going and never stopped. As we approached Paul Tatler, shouts of encouragement streamed our way such as, ‘You are a lovely man, soaring on the winds of your ambition’, very encouraging and it certainly filled us all with a new wind.

At the beginning of the run, an amazing brief was given by Rob, the run director, with the usual do’s and don’ts, and shout outs were given to milestone achievers: Mike, Fran and Anna (50th), John and Lucy (100th) and Julian who was about to embark on his 250th run, incredible. I always find it really inspiring to hear these special shout outs and it's this personal support that makes parkrun so special. The weather was looking a bit threatening and it started to drizzle but very quickly the sun came out and everything brightened up again! After the briefing, 418 people lined up to begin the run. Everybody ran, jogged or walked the course and among the 418 runners, 58 were first timers and 37 personal bests were achieved and 41 representatives from other clubs joined in the Guildford parkrun.

Runners passing the start area, beginning lap 2

Runners passing the start area, beginning their 2nd lap

Fran posing prior to her 50th

Fran prior to her 50th

These people joined took part in the event which couldn’t have happened without 30 wonderful volunteers: Nick SIRS • Joe LAW • Caroline WHARTON • Robert PITT • Claire O'DALY • Richard HODGSON • William FORDHAM • Alastair DAY • Richard OVERTON • Alastair HESLOP • Raghini RAJARAM • Mark BRAIN • Robert FELTHAM • William BOLTER • Keith MCMANUS • Matt GOUGH • Simon COX • Maddie HESLOP • Richard TOTTY • Paul TATLER • Chloe COX • Ben BALDWIN • Helen COX • Rob JAMISON • Judith MCKNIGHT • Nicholas GOLDMAN • Brandon ACRES • Sarah ALEXANDER • Ben GREEN • Henry PARKER

This week 418 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 58 were first timers and 37 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 41 different clubs took part.

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

The female record is held by Emily WICKS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 8th October 2016 (event number 227).

The male record is held by Phil WICKS who recorded a time of 15:14 on 23rd September 2017 (event number 274).

The Age Grade course record is held by Jane DAVIES who recorded 90.41% (22:25) on 27th April 2013 (event number 57).

Guildford parkrun started on 10th March 2012. Since then 14,378 participants have completed 109,736 parkruns covering a total distance of 548,680 km, including 18,691 new Personal Bests. A total of 1,101 individuals have volunteered 7,073 times

 

Lots of Milestones & Lots of Smiles. A Classic Guildford parkrun :-)

Welcome All

Hello & a very warm welcome to this weeks run report for Guildford parkrun, our 362nd event (now doesn't that sound like a healthy amount! :-) This weeks run report has largely been brought to you from our smashing guest writer Punam OWENS, who was visiting family this weekend but ensured she fitted in a spot of tourism (go Punam), with her lovely Auntie Rekha.

If you're ever taken by a prose attack and fancy writing our run report one week just put yourself forward and let us know - you will be most welcome :-)

So let's get down to it and enjoy Punam's words on our little event...

It’s a real honour to be able to write this week’s run report for your event. My home parkrun is in Witney in West Oxfordshire, and this week I was visiting my 87 year old grandmother, who lives in Guildford, and my aunt who is here for a few days from Canada. I am sure, many can relate to the fact it can be challenging to miss a parkrun once you have been bitten by the bug, so I had left home at 06:30 am to “fit one in” before heading over to spend the day with Mama as she is affectionately known. It was a real treat when my aunt said she would join me. “I can’t run though” she said. And there it is, the magic of parkrun: there will almost always be one nearby wherever you are on a Saturday morning, there is always room for first timers, no one finishes last, it is a wonderful family affair, and you can walk, jog, run or volunteer.

The excited crowds begin the arrive, the buzz of happiness is in the air once more. It must be parkrun day :-)

The excited crowds begin to arrive, the buzz of happiness is in the air once more. It must be parkrun day. But what are they all looking at...? :-)

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Relaxed and happy - do they know they will soon be doing 5KM. Or have they just completed. It's not really clear to me!? :-)

The Run Briefing

RD Paul’s enthusiasm was infectious, and his 4+1 run brief was excellent (editors note: no money exchanged hands regarding this comment - honest!!):

  1. Respect for each other
  2. Dogs, one and on a short lead
  3. U11’s to stay within arm’s reach of your responsible adult
  4. What happens when you don’t have a barcode had the crowd shouting back – No result!

    +1 The post parkrun social at the Daisy Chain Café :-)

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An excellent run brief is given. Apparently!! :-)

As we know the event cannot take place each week without our hi-viz heroes and this week the event was made possible by 27 volunteers. It was a lovely touch for RD Paul to call out each Hi-Viz hero by their name. It’s something I will take back to my home parkrun :-) (editors note: this is something all the RDs do at Guildford parkrun as we think each volunteer deserves individual thanks and recognition).

Claire O'DALY • Richard HODGSON • Jane THACKSTONE • Alastair DAY • Matthew BAYLIS • Robert FELTHAM • Nick WRIGHT • Harry CONLAN • Sian WILLIAMS • Mark TAYLOR • Caroline CROSS • Maddie HESLOP • Alexandra OLIVER • Paul TATLER • Rosie KILLICK • Punam OWENS • Fran HANDRICK • Peter TURNER • Judith MCKNIGHT • Nicholas GOLDMAN • Elaine FAGAN • Daphne EVANS • Sarah ALEXANDER • Ben GREEN • William IZZARD • Henry PARKER • Josie EVANS

Milestones

There were many milestones to celebrate this week. The crowd congratulated Katie EALDEN and Richard TOTTY for achieving their 50 parkrun milestones.

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Katie EALDEN and Richard TOTTY celebrate achieving their 50th parkrun. Their lovely smiles say it all :-)

While Nigel WILLIAMS, Myles GILBERTSON and Emma TYERMAN-COOK all hit the BIG 100.

And Guildford parkruns very own, the smashing Caroline SAMS, smashed through the humongous, the stupendous 250. Go her, what an absolute star!!!

All milestones are special, whether achieving your first milestone and reaching 50 or something further up the chain. Each milestone reached shows a commitment to ones own well being and choosing to celebrate life. Massive congratulations all round to our milestoners this week. They are all fantastical & runtastical folks who should feel very pleased and very proud of their achievements.Woo-hoo to you all.

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Caroline SAMS celebrating her incredible 250th parkrun with her Fitstuff friends. Brilliant stuff Caroline :-)

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Yes - you really have achieved this Caroline and we're so pleased you shared with Guildford parkrun :-)

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The long route to achieving your 250th parkrun is so much shorter with friends :-

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We also bumped into Simon and John who are working on running 50 different locations. They are on 18 and 38 respectively. Good luck guys!

The Off

And then we were off on what was a warm and dry morning. It is an incredible and an inspiring sight to see so many people, young and older out in the fresh air doing something positive for themselves and their community and using our green spaces to full effect.

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What 500 people look like from behind. Just in case you wondered!!! ;-)

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Possibly one of the most wonderful sights on any given Saturday morning. A parkrun off!!! Don't they look fabulous.

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Still going!!! :-)

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Action shot #1 - you can see how much she's enjoying by her huge smile. Good stuff :-)

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Action shot #2

Each week there are many magic moments. I am sure everyone who joined a parkrun experienced some sort of magic moment – it is the power of parkrun, no matter what your reason for coming out each week. For me, this week, it was the ability to spend an hour walking with my aunt enjoying her first ever parkrun and to be made to feel so welcome by everyone we met.

So, as we approached the finish line, that was a wrap. We really enjoyed being tourists for a week. Guildford parkrun has a wonderful event and it was a real pleasure to experience your 2 laps, including the slight inclines!

We hope to see you again (perhaps in Witney) and in the meantime, thank you for having us.

Punam and Auntie Rekha

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The lovely, the smiley Punam and Auntie Rekha. Many thanks for your report this week.

Many thanks Punam for writing our report this week - I loved the pictures and the words and we (Guildford parkrun) are thrilled you had such a tremendous time with us - we enjoyed your company just as much.

Thank you so much, as always, to all our wonderful and lovely volunteers - please tale a well earned & deserved bow - and to all who turned up, cheered, ran, walked, jogged, smiled and enjoyed. We certainly enjoyed all of your company. So until next week, I wish you all a super week and please do take care of yourselves and others. Enjoy life.

On a final note, for those who love the statistics (and I include myself in that group), please find below all you could (perhaps) ever want to know about Guildford parkrun but were afraid to ask... :-)

This week 487 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 76 were first timers and 70 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 32 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 27 volunteers:

Claire O'DALY • Richard HODGSON • Jane THACKSTONE • Alastair DAY • Matthew BAYLIS • Robert FELTHAM • Nick WRIGHT • Harry CONLAN • Sian WILLIAMS • Mark TAYLOR • Caroline CROSS • Maddie HESLOP • Alexandra OLIVER • Paul TATLER • Rosie KILLICK • Punam OWENS • Fran HANDRICK • Peter TURNER • Judith MCKNIGHT • Nicholas GOLDMAN • Elaine FAGAN • Daphne EVANS • Sarah ALEXANDER • Ben GREEN • William IZZARD • Henry PARKER • Josie EVANS

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

The female record is held by Emily WICKS who recorded a time of 17:31 on 8th October 2016 (event number 227).
The male record is held by Phil WICKS who recorded a time of 15:14 on 23rd September 2017 (event number 274).
The Age Grade course record is held by Jane DAVIES who recorded 90.41% (22:25) on 27th April 2013 (event number 57).

Guildford parkrun started on 10th March 2012. Since then 14,320 participants have completed 109,318 parkruns covering a total distance of 546,590 km, including 18,654 new Personal Bests. A total of 1,096 individuals have volunteered 7,043 times.

With love & respect :-)