Killerton parkrun is like a community of its own and that is one of the great things I like most about it.
You might know that I've not actually run the route that many times (probably walked it for administrative purposes as often), and although there is an injury that has served as one reason for that, it's mainly due to the fact that I've been so happily engaged in the volunteering side of the event, which is another of the great things about parkrun.
It's been well over two years since I first got together with an enthusiastic group of local runners to set up this event and it's quite rewarding to look back at all the meetings and other activities undertaken to get the event up and running and see how fruitful all those efforts were. In the early days the event was quite small and somewhat more intimate but that enthusiastic band of helpers and new runners who were just discovering what a parkrun is all about have, over time, turned into longer term friends and have become firmly embedded as part of that community I mentioned.
I can see how the event has evolved over its two and a bit year history from an initially slightly haphazard approach to one that is now far more slickly organised and supported, which it has to be if it is to cope with numbers approaching 200 runners as opposed to circa 40 something that was common in those earlier times. With evolution comes change and change is the reason for my message.
When thinking about bringing one of the first parkrun events to the south west I don't think I realised, or even stopped to think, how much time this event would take up in my life; I think I was just more focussed on the excitement of being able to bring the buzz of a parkrun event to Exeter - I must have watched that brilliant parkrun intro video so many times before I even ran one myself. I really can't guess how many days of my time has been spent since late 2010 helping the Killerton parkrun event get going, keep going and growing into what it is. It's certainly an investment well spent and has been a rewarding opportunity that has taught me loads and introduced me to a fabulous community that did not exist in my life before.
For the future development and stewardship of Killerton parkrun I am pleased to announce that we have a new Event Director, and one who is no stranger to our beloved parkrun. I'm grateful to Roger Rowe for agreeing to bring his decades of running experience and thorough understanding of the parkrun ethos to the helm.
Please join me in welcoming Roger as our new Killerton parkrun Event Director.
Lastly, whilst I'm also grateful to the core team and the many willing volunteers who have made this event what it is, I'm especially grateful to the NT Killerton Estate who also makes it a success but without whom this event would not exist at all - well it would probably exist but somewhere in Exeter, although that's a story for another day...
Simon James - Killerton Supporter