Raphael parkrun is cancelled on 4 April 2020: COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Raphael parkrun Report #250

Raphael parkrun Report #250

It was an historic day today for parkrun. It was the first ever parkrun to have been run on 29 February. parkrun has been run on all other days of the year, but 29 February has never fallen on a Saturday since the inception of parkrun, so for those who are looking to complete ‘calendar bingo’ (running a parkrun on all 366 dates of a year), and even those runners who didn’t know about this challenge, you have all bagged the most tricky date of them all! For those of you who missed out, you might want to pencil 29 February 2048 in your calendar (the next time this date falls on a Saturday!)

Ironically, for those of you who were at Raphael parkrun today, you will probably not be remembering it for being the first ever 29 February leap year parkrun. No, instead I expect it will be for the horrendous conditions. Heavy rain, strong winds, cold temperatures and a high water level causing the lake to encroach onto our run route are probably the more likely things to remember today’s event by. And on that note, I know we thank our amazing volunteers each week, but this week they deserve an extra loud round of applause for bracing these awful conditions to allow this event to take place. If you think the conditions were poor for us runners, it was far worse for the volunteers who were all standing around in the cold, wet and windy weather for an hour or more. Even more marshals were needed than usual today. As you will have seen 4-5 extra marshals standing at the edge of the lake looking out for the safety of our runners, since the lake had flooded part of the path, and they did a great job of preventing the run becoming an aquathon event! And I know Nicola (our RD today) did not want the job of completing an incident report for a runner taking an unexpected swim.

The poor conditions may have deterred a few runners, but here at Raphael park we are a hardy bunch, and 293 runners, joggers and walkers came for pacer week. We had pacers covering most minutes between 20 and 40 minutes, and this led to 45 PBs today. An impressive result given today’s weather. A great effort from all of the pacers to help approximately 15% of runners reach their next PB.

We had a number of milestones to celebrate today. Congratulations goes to Victoria Wood and Saad Saheecha who both completed their 50th parkruns, and Luke Summers, Jamie Austin and Martin Vroobel who all reached their 100th milestone. Also, Johann Le Roux, our 21 minute pacer reached the 25 volunteer milestone and can now claim his purple t-shirt.

Next Saturday, parkruns all over the world are joining in a celebration of female participation by hosting a special event, ahead of International Women’s Day the following day. parkrun events, including Raphael park, will be showing their support by encouraging as many women and girls as possible to participate as walker, joggers, runners and volunteers with a suggested purple dress code for the day. Join in the celebrations by bringing a female friend, colleague or family member to participate, volunteer or spectate.

Today’s Results

Male placings:
Chris Goldmsith (SM30-34) of The Salvation Army was first over the line in 18:25.
James Rygate (SM25-29) (Unattached) was second (3rd overall) over the line in 19:06.
Robert Gevaux (VM45-49) (Unattached) was third (4th overall) over the line in 19:09.

Female placings:
Morgan Campbell (SW30-34) of Havering Athletic Club was first (2nd overall) over the line in 18:42.
Isabella Woods (SW20-24) of Havering Athletic Club was second (12th overall) over the line in 19:49 and achieved a new PB.
Bethan Davies (JW10) of Great Leighs Primary School was third (23rd overall) over the line in 21:20.

The three highest age grades were recorded by:
Bethan Davies (JW10) of Great Leighs Primary School – 80.00% with a time of 21:20 (23rd overall).
Tom Davies (VM55-59) of Weald Park Warriors – 79.30% with a time of 20:03 (17th overall).
Morgan Campbell (SW30-34) of Havering Athletic Club – 79.14% with a time of 18:42 (2nd overall).

Interesting Fact/Did You Know?
Out of all our pacers today, it was James Ellender who takes the pacer award (sorry James, this is only a virtual award, or rather getting your name in print in our run report!) for the most accurate pacing, finishing in the precise time of 24:00! Well done James!


**CANCELLED** – Chase the Pacer – 28 March 2020


Raphael parkrun's 'Chase the pacer' weeks normally happen on the final Saturday of each month. If you would like to give pacing a go then please email raphael@parkrun.com and let us know which pace you would like to do.

Pacers of ALL speeds are required (between, say, 18 minutes and 40 minutes) so you do not need to be a fast runner. You just need to do your best to complete the run in the agreed time (at a fairly even pace, if possible). We recommend you take on a time that you're fairly comfortable running i.e. at least a couple of minutes slower than your usual 5km time.

Being a pacer counts towards both your running milestone t-shirt and your volunteering milestone t-shirt. And it is a great way to help other parkrunners achieve a personal best. Why not give it a go? :)

The list below will be updated as volunteer pacers come forward.

18 min -
19 min - 
20 min - 
21 min - 
22 min - 
23 min - 
24 min - 
25 min - Charlie FISHER
26 min - Louise MARSHALL
27 min - Justin BARRETT
28 min - Mark NORMAN
29 min -  Michael WESTMORE
30 min - Richard ROCKLIFFE
31 min - 
32 min - 
33 min - 
34 min - 
35 min - 
36 min -
37 min - 
38 min - 
39 min - 
40 min -


International Women’s Day parkrun – 7th March



We are pleased to announce that on Saturday 7th March, Raphael parkrun will be helping to celebrate International Women’s Day! We are encouraging as many women and girls as possible to join us on the day, especially those who may have signed up and not yet joined us at a parkrun or those who may not have been for a while. Of course, as always, everyone is welcome at parkrun - this is not a female only day!

We have chosen to help celebrate IWD as parkrun research shows us that, across the world, women are less likely than men to take part in parkrun. Despite the fact that females make 54% of registrations, they are less likely than men to take part in parkrun and to continue participating. IWD parkrun is a fantastic opportunity to encourage more women and girls to participate in parkrun events all over the world.

So why not encourage female friends, family members or work colleagues to come along to walk, jog, run or volunteer?

This event will be supported by the This Girl Can campaign and parkrun partners Sport England.

Further info here: https://blog.parkrun.com/uk/2020/02/05/help-us-celebrate-female-participation-for-iwdparkrun/

New to parkrun and need a barcode? https://www.parkrun.org.uk/register/

Please spread the word!


Raphael parkrun Report #247

Raphael parkrun Report #247

We were extremely fortunate with today’s conditions. After the cold snap over the past few days and the 60-80mph gale force winds forecast for Sunday, today really was the calm before the storm. With a number of tomorrow’s junior parkruns expected to be cancelled and Sunday’s London Winter Run already having been called off due to the weather warnings, we couldn’t have wished for a better morning for our parkrun event.

We welcomed 390 parkrunners today, including 29 first timers to Raphael Park, of which 12 were completely new to parkrun. I hope all of you first timers enjoyed the park and will be back again soon. Attendance was lower than the past few weeks, as I expect more people surrendered to their New Year resolution efforts, but we did have strong support from volunteers, 36 in total, helping Louise, our Run Director today. Thank you as always to all our volunteers.

We saw 49 PBs today. Well done if you were one of those runners. One runner whose PB is truly impressive is Amy Stanley. She is a junior and not only has she completed 110 full parkruns (impressive in itself), she has run 107 of those at Raphael park and still manages to achieve a PB! As seasoned parkrunners will know, obtaining your next PB becomes more and more difficult as your total number of runs increases. And it wasn’t just a second or two off her previous best. Oh no, Amy took 22 seconds off her last PB. Great running Amy!

Given the number of runners today, we were light on milestones today (only one), although I have noticed a number of you are closing in on the next milestone if you are running regularly over the next couple of weeks. The one milestone to celebrate was Charlie Moran, who completed his 50th parkrun today and can now claim the coveted red t-shirt.

Today’s Results

Male placings:
Robbie Cooman (SM25-29) of Fraserburgh RC was first over the line in 16:46.
Tom Williams (SM30-34) (Unattached) was second (3rd overall) over the line in 17:39 and achieved a PB.
Stephen Philcox (VM50-54) of Ilford AC was third (4th overall) over the line in 18:16.

Female placings:
Alexa Joel (VW35-39) of Billericay Striders RC was first (2nd overall) over the line in 17:23.
Morgan Campbell (SW30-34) of Havering Athletic Club was second (5th overall) over the line in 18:43.
Milly Presland (JW15-17) of Colchester Harriers AC was third (17th overall) over the line in 19:55.

The three highest age grades were recorded by:
Alexa Joel (VW35-39) of Billericay Striders RC – 86.29% with a time of 17:23 (2nd overall).
Stephen Philcox (VM50-54) of Ilford AC – 83.39% with a time of 18:16 (4th overall).
Morgan Campbell (SW30-34) of Havering Athletic Club – 79.07% with a time of 18:43 (5th overall).

Interesting Fact/Did You Know?
Our VW35-39 age category record was smashed today. Congratulations to Alexa Joel, a regular at Billericay parkrun, but a first-time tourist at Raphael park today, who was the first female over the line (2nd overall) in 17:23. She completed obliterated the previous best by more than three minutes!


Thank you to Event Director, David, as he moves on…

On behalf of the Raphael parkrun community, we would like to express huge thanks to David O’Brien, who has been the Event Director for the past two years. Under David’s leadership, Raphael has thrived. The event has grown considerably and is an important and established part of life in the local community, bringing so many people together to walk, run and volunteer each week. David is moving on to another role within parkrun, (which will see him still taking a keen interest in Raphael) and we wish him all the very best as he takes on this new and exciting challenge.

We are pleased to say that we will be taking over the role of Co-Event Directors, with immediate effect and we’re really looking forward to exciting times at Raphael, especially working with the dedicated Core Team and the amazing people who come forward to support the parkrun by volunteering, so that we can put the event on week after week.

If you want to chat about any aspect of parkrun, please do come and see us. Maybe you are thinking that you would like to try out a new role or even have a go at being a Run Director - we would be really happy to talk you through what’s involved.

Thank you to everyone – participants and volunteers - for your continued support. See you for another parkrun on Saturday!

Louisa Parsons
Suzanne Nott
Co-Event Directors

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