Parke parkrun run report for 18th May 2019

How many people usually do Parke parkrun I asked Run Director Andy when I’d crossed the line? 126 is the average he told me.  So since there were 126 finishers on Saturday does that make it an average parkrun? Not at all!

I’d read the course description and listened to the tourists and new runners briefing, but it doesn’t tell you everything.

As a visitor from Bedfont Lakes, this was going to be a challenging course; there aren’t many hills around Heathrow, and I was under physio advice not to run.  So I settled myself at the back of the crowd to walk the course.

3, 2, 1 and we were off. An easy start led down to the first hi-vis volunteer, who smiled and pointed left and there it was… ‘The Hill’ which meant that suddenly I had dozens of people ahead of me walking too. It certainly spread us out as we went up through the woods, weaving through the trees with a carpet of bluebells spread underneath them. Luckily for me it was dry underfoot, but evidently trail shoes are necessary if there’s been rain.

What I loved about the course was the music all the way round. Not the planes, trains, police sirens that I’m used to, but birdsong and lots of it.  The woodpigeons were the baritones, the cuckoos were the tenors, and the blackbirds led the melodies with a chorus of different tunes joining in. It was amazing, and it continued all around the squished figure of 8 course that we followed across bridges and along both sides of the river.

Well done to the 26 people who were first timers at Parke, I hope you enjoyed the course as much as I did and are already looking forward to your next one.
29 people recorded Personal Best times – congratulations to you all.

First home was Tim Pratt in 18.53, Daisy Rowe was first female crossing the line in 4th place in 21.48, and Bob Small as Tail Walker (and his 4-legged friend also with a tail) recorded 52.48 and made sure nobody was left behind.

Essential to the smooth running of the event were 14 hi-vis heroes – thank you to all the friendly volunteers who encouraged everyone whether they ran, walked, pushed buggies, or held small hands and dogs.

I’d thoroughly recommend this parkrun to tourists finding themselves near Bovey Tracey; and do go to the café afterwards to socialise and have a special parkrun baguette and hot drink.

Jenny Hodson

 

Event #258 20/4/2019 The View From Pontypridd!

Thanks to Karl Johnson from Pontypridd for this Run Report:

Absolutely privileged to be writing your run report today, a parkrun that nearly didn’t happen for me. Today marked my 125th parkrun BUT for the first time I forgot my barcode, believe me it was a mega panic. With massive thanks to Premier Inn and some quick thinking we were eventually on track at 8:15am.... I hate being unorganised and late for parkrun.

Parke, a national trust site is just stunning - I have never run in such a beautiful location, and the April sunshine made for another perfect parkrun. A short wait to pay to park and a quick dash to the start line to be greeted by a fun and informative first runners brief, we were ready for the off.

Now I had been pre-warned of the small hill at the start of the course..... well in, sorry but no pre-warming will ever etch the memory of the HILL out of my mind, haha. Brilliant....
I can honestly say I have never experienced such a challenging parkrun in the 67 events I have now participated in, thank you.

Today saw 232 parkrunners attend Parke, with many first timers and the second highest attendance in its history. 33 new personal bests and 28 different running club members including a couple of local clubs to myself in South Wales - Pencoed Tri and Women’s running Penarth....

One final mention if I may - parkrun is a fantastic community and I’ve been fortunate to make some amazing friends from all over the county through this amazing movement. Today was no exception - turning up to an event and bumping into a lovely lady whom I’d previously met at Llyn Llech Owain parkrun back in November 2017 - Elizabeth Czaban.... a parkrunner at my neighbouring home event of Penalta.... no idea we were both touring and turn up to the same event... mental

Anyway enough blabbing - thank you to the amazing core volunteer team and volunteers today - you truly have a unique parkrun venue. Although I don’t usually revisit parkruns I will make an exception for your beautiful course in the future for sure!

With many thanks to all

Karl
A2301276

This week 232 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 64 were first timers and 33 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 31 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 13 volunteers:

Alison ENGLEDEW • Hugh MARSDEN • Kieran DORE • Sarah HEARN • Finn HEARN • Wilfrid TAYLOR • Ken DYER • Mary CORNISH • Karl JOHNSON • Jenny SPENCER • Toby PASCOE • John CORNISH • Kate WATT

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

The male record is held by James BAKER who recorded a time of 16:44 on 11th August 2018 (event number 225).
The female record is held by Katie SYNGE-CURTIS who recorded a time of 19:45 on 8th September 2018 (event number 229).
The Age Grade course record is held by Xavier BLY who recorded 84.68% (22:05) on 24th October 2015 (event number 82).

Parke parkrun started on 5th April 2014. Since then 6,555 participants have completed 32,880 parkruns covering a total distance of 164,400 km, including 5,721 new Personal Bests. A total of 357 individuals have volunteered 3,333 times.

 

 

Parke parkrun Event number 229: 8th September 2018

This week 173 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 30 were first timers and 36 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 19 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 13 volunteers:

Sally SHOOLBRAID • Mary WYLIE • Alison HYDON • Rob POLLARD • Andrew WATSON • Graham NEAL • Steven THOMPSON • Andy HARD • Mary CORNISH • Zilpah WALTON • Ewan WALTON • John CORNISH • Suzy THOMPSON

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

The male record is held by James BAKER who recorded a time of 16:44 on 11th August 2018 (event number 225).
The female record is held by Katie SYNGE who recorded a time of 19:45 on 8th September 2018 (event number 229).
The Age Grade course record is held by Xavier BLY who recorded 84.68% (22:05) on 24th October 2015 (event number 82).

Parke parkrun started on 5th April 2014. Since then 5,834 participants have completed 28,704 parkruns covering a total distance of 143,520 km, including 5,150 new Personal Bests.

 

Parke parkrun no 228 – 1 September 2018 : A visitor’s viewpoint

Written by Val Brockwell
Bevendean Down parkrun

As a fairly regular parkrun tourist, I have a mental list of “scenic parkruns I want to visit”. These are mainly very rural, hilly, and lacking in tarmac – and very often a long way from home (Brighton). Luckily, our holiday in Cornwall this year provided an opportunity to head to Parke (near the top of my list!) on our way home.

I’d offered to tail walk as a knee injury prevented me from running it properly, and run director Angela kindly added me as sidekick to this week’s official tail walker, Ken Dyer. After a very clear and helpful first timers’ briefing from Mary under a beautiful canopy of trees, we were off. We started with a few hundred yards of gentle downhill slope, then we took a left and were confronted with an impressively steep incline, up through the trees. Maybe it was a good thing I was just walking today. It was an excellent route though – I love woodland running – and Ken and I chatted about keeping fit and healthy as we get older (having discovered we are a few months apart in age).

As we progressed along the ‘undulating’ figure-of-eight route, Ken was collecting up some of the many parkrun arrows marking out the course. It made me reflect on the differences between this course and my home run at Bevendean Down. According to one list I’ve seen, Bevendean Down is the 6th hilliest parkrun in the country, while Parke is the 26th hilliest. Both seem equally hilly to me! The biggest contrast is the trees – Parke has thousands and Bevendean Down has none, being on open chalk downland (equally gorgeous in its own way – we do have views down to the sea with the Isle of Wight visible on a good day). Bevendean Down doesn’t need much in the way of course markings as the one path makes it fairly obvious which way to go, while Ken seemed to be collecting armfuls of arrows, which must make setting out the course correctly a really important and fairly time-consuming part of the event set-up. Well done to all the volunteers! (Including the friendly marshals out on the course who were supplementing the arrows by pointing out the correct path).

We got talking to parkrun newbie Bridget Fairbrother who was walking at a good pace just ahead of us.  She was also enjoying the beautiful scenery (already familiar from dog walking) and the fine weather. She has decided to take on the “if-you-can’t-beat-them-join-them!” mindset, and plans to walk the route fast every Saturday while husband Dean runs it. [Will she stick to that plan when the winter mud that Ken told me about arrives…?] She claims that she won’t be tempted to break into a jog over the coming weeks as she gets fitter, as she doesn’t like getting sweaty. However, she mentioned that she enjoys the feel-good factor you get from a brisk walk, so we suggested that running gives you that x 10. And she did jog down that slope just before the final incline, and then broke into another jog to the finish line – well done First Timer!

After the finish funnel, I got scanned, handed back my hi-viz, and thanked Ken for his company. He said we really should visit again in winter if we enjoy running through mud and puddles. By the way, the less said about my partner Stewart’s run the better. His thigh seized up en-route and he was reduced to a slow painful hobble (he was described to us by Mary Cornish as “walking wounded” when she passed us by the bridge – Ken said he’d check him out when he reached him). He was okay to get to the finish but didn’t go through the funnel, so there’s no record of him having been there!

We headed for the café with all its lovely outdoor seating and chatting parkrunners. We had very delicious scones and strawberry jam for breakfast, sharing the enjoyment of the jam with about 10 wasps. After that we had to head on home. Thanks to everyone at Parke for making us feel welcome and for embodying that wonderful parkrun spirit of enjoyment, encouragement and inclusivity. Your beautiful parkrun fully warrants its place on the “most scenic rural parkruns” list.

In addition to Bridget, there were six other people brand new to parkrun: well done to Isla Zalman, Karen Murray, Ann Donnelly, Simon Oliver, Rebecca Thorne and Becci Thomson. Hopefully you all enjoyed it so much you’ll be parkrunning again next Saturday!

Well done also to the 38 people who got PBs – too many to mention them all by name. I guess most PBs on this course happen in balmy summer weather when it’s dry underfoot. Congratulations to first finishers Tim Pratt (new PB) and Melanie Brooks (new PB), and to top age-grader Vaughan Lindsay (74.66%). And grateful thanks to all the volunteers:

Thomas ALLAN – Val BROCKWELL – Mary CORNISH – John CORNISH – Oliver DRINKWATER – Ken DYER – Thuza EDWORTHY – Angela EVANS – Alison HYDON – Ian MORTIMER – Martha NEAL – Sally SHOOLBRAID – Colin SHOOLBRAID – Jenny SPENCER – Ewan WALTON

 

Easter parkrun

Whilst it might have been another wet and rather cold Saturday as winter appears to hang around for another week, that wasn't enough to deter 135 intrepid parkrunners this morning. Our numbers were boosted by a handful of first time runners along with a number of people down in Devon for the Easter break.  Last weeks appeal for volunteers seemed to have done the trick, and in true parkrun community spirit, we had a full roster by midweek with some new faces among our team of 14 volunteers helping out this morning.

This morning we were joined by Anne-Marie one of our Race Directors who has recently moved away from Devon, but has been a stalwart at our parkrun since the early days of 2014 when the event was established.  Since starting parkrun, she has clocked up 110 parkruns, 95 of which have been completed at parke and in that time has taken on volunteer roles an impressive 59 times!  And true to form Anne-Marie volunteered again this morning before setting off on the run.

This week 135 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 34 were first timers and 14 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 26 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 14 volunteers:

Michele SANDHU • John Frederick MITCHELL • Sally MITCHELL • Angela EVANS • Mary WYLIE • Alison HYDON • Anne-Marie BAKER • Ken DYER • Mary CORNISH • Rosa TIBBETTS • Zilpah WALTON • John CORNISH • Gavin FORBES • Victoria FORBES

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

The male record is held by James BAKER who recorded a time of 16:50 on 1st August 2015 (event number 70).
The female record is held by Vikki THOMPSON who recorded a time of 20:08 on 29th October 2016 (event number 135).
The Age Grade course record is held by Xavier BLY who recorded 84.68% (22:05) on 24th October 2015 (event number 82).

Parke parkrun started on 5th April 2014. Since then 5,125 participants have completed 25,248 parkruns covering a total distance of 126,240 km, including 4,572 new Personal Bests.

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