Run report event #150
15 April 2017
Report and pictures by Richard Woodfield
Easter Saturday dawned bright and as the number of runners assembling for the new runners' briefing swelled it was already clear that a bumper attendance was in prospect. Our attendance total of 268 parkrunners was the second highest - exceeded only by the attendance last Christmas Eve. Maybe it's something about the imminent prospect of eating lots of chocolate that brings out the parkrunners in force!
It's worth highlighting this notable statistic: We had a total of 62 first timers to our course, of whom no less than 40 were running their very first parkrun. A very warm welcome to all Saturday's first timers (including parkrun tourists) who may be reading this run report. We also had a plethora (63) of personal best times achieved by returning runners, so that was a further cause of satisfaction.
Run Director, Noeline Sims welcomed Daniel Niblett to the junior 10 parkruns club and also announced that it was regular volunteer Nick Fitzgerald's 30th birthday. (He promptly went on to achieve his first sub 19 minute parkrun.)
100,000 and counting....
The honour of bringing up the first 100,000 kms of parkrunning at Royal Tunbridge Wells parkrun went to day's 75th finisher ..... who turned out to be an unknown runner without a barcode! However, on checking my finishing token I was pleased to discover that, as 76th finisher, I had completed the first parkrun to count towards our second set of 100,000 kms!
Another notable achievement was the first time (as far as anyone can recall) that we have had a canine first finisher. Magnus was running with parkrun tourist James Buckley.
You heard it here first!
Those of you who were at our second anniversary event almost a year ago (on 25 April 2016) may recall that in a short speech our local MP, Cabinet Minister and parkrunner Greg Clark said that steps would be taken to dissuade local councils from seeking to charge for parkrun events. This followed the controversy over an attempt by a council near Bristol to make a charge for the Little Stoke parkrun. All went quiet on this front for a number of months. But a few days ago we heard of the public consultation that has just been launched by the Department for Communities and Local Government about "... the Government’s proposals to legislate to put it beyond doubt that local authorities, including parish councils, cannot charge parkrun or junior parkrun for the use of public parks". The public consultation runs until 5 July 2017.
So, it's clear that back last April we had our own exclusive early access to national news during the pre run formalities. The moral of the story: always pay attention to the pre run briefing - you never know what vital intelligence you might otherwise miss!
This week's volunteers were:
Alison BEARD • Annaelle DUFFIELD • Charlie KIRWAN • Deborah DIXON • Deirdre LULHAM • Dominic MARDEN • Dominic RADLEY • Georgia BEARD • Judy GUEST • Louise FITZGERALD • Marian KEEP • Nick FITZGERALD • Noeline SIMS • Richard WOODFIELD • Robin BARWICK • Simon JONES • Sophia DENNETT • Steve BARNFIELD • Steve BOLTON • Vicky DENNETT