by Nic Woollard
As the saying goes: "A picture paints a thousand words."
Looking at one of the local history sites on social media this weekend, I came across this interesting photo showing groups of people out for a stroll and a couple of people riding their bikes. For those of you with an eagle eye, it is taken from a position somewhere near the Hawthorns Café, looking towards The Flats on Southampton Common and the start line of our parkrun event. The date of the photo is listed somewhere around the early 1900s and it just goes to show the popularity of our green and open space across the years. The two men in the bikes in their flat caps could easily have been auditioning for the volunteer role of Lead Bike!
In today's world, the path from the Bellemoor Road entrance to the Cemetery Road junction is a busy cycle commuter route as well as for pedestrians, dog walkers and fellow runners. We are lucky to have the use of the Common every Saturday morning, but we must be mindful that it is shared space for the benefit of all users. As one of the points of the parkrun code states, "Be mindful of your local environment and other users."
With over a thousand parkrunners navigating their way up and down the Common, we should always keep an eye out on the course and provide that bit of extra space, even slowing down or moving to one side if the need arises.
The parkrun community welcomes young and old and it is great to see plenty of people at both end of the age spectrum enjoying their Saturday morning exercise. Three female septuagenarians in the finishers were Jessie HEY, Jeanette PARKER from Halterworth Harriers and Barbara CLARIDGE who both clocked very respectable times of under 33 minutes. Dropping down into the next VW65-69 age bracket, Jennifer RICHMOND who has completed 188 parkruns came home in a great time of 27.05.
Among the ranks of our amazing volunteers who come along week after week is Barbara COGMAN. Since 2015, Barbara has volunteered on 176 separate occasions and is a real stalwart of the helpers either out on the course as a Marshal, handing out the finish tokens or barcode scanning. Even after the event has finished, Barbara's work is not done as she will be part of the team in the Bellemoor Tavern putting the tokens back in order ready for next week's event.
Looking down the male list, seven VM70-74 appear in the results. Special mention goes to Gareth JONES, David SINGERMAN and Roy MCLOUGHLIN who have clocked up an amazing combined total of 863 parkruns between them. Finally, we should not forget Keith WALKER from Billericay Striders AC in Essex with a fantastic finishing time of 26.17.
On the milestone front, congratulations are in order for Marley HARRIS and Fraser LE BAS who qualified for their white shirt following their 10th run. Jerry CROCKER and James MOORE completed their 50th to pick up their red shirt. Lastly, Philip LE and David SULLIVAN clocked up a century of runs each to join the 100 Club.
This week 1054 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 107 were first timers and 136 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 60 different clubs took part.
The event was made possible by 60 volunteers:
Gareth JONES • Ian GRASMEDER • Kim Diane KELLY • Roy S MCLOUGHLIN • Trevor Alan ELLERY • John GRANT • Sarah WILSON • Peat ALLAN • Eddie BULPITT • Laura MCKENZIE • Lynne ALLAN • Theresa JURDIC • David KEATES • Alan GRAHAM • Elaine June WINTER • Jennifer MARSHALL • Timothy SLY • Rachael GOLDSTRAW • Sue WILSON • Nic WOOLLARD • Daniel GOLDSTRAW • Mark CRAGG • Peter ROE • Robert AGAR • Paul Henry ARMSTRONG • Sarah GOODWIN • Richard DIGGLE • Pedro TORRUELLA NARANJO • Steven HAYES-ARTER • Ian HOWARD • Kali BANDA • Zillah LEACH • Debbie LLOYD • Emma BRADSHAW • Philip LE • Spencer SIM • Barbara COGMAN • Lucy FRASER • Phil BLAKE • Julian WALLER • Phoebe ASHTON • Imogen ASHTON • Lucy ASHTON • Frazer BAILEY • Pietro FRANCESCHINI • Jerry CROCKER • Dave ELGRAM • Alexander JOHNSTON • Nicky PUGH • David GRASMEDER • Hayley OBEE • Alison CATT • Kate DALE • Kerry SHAW • Andrew TURRELL INGS • Daryus CHANDRA • Kirsty LLOYD-WEST • Mathieu HOURSEAU • Bolek KWIEK • Jd NICHOLSON
Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the
Southampton parkrun Results Page.
The female record is held by Lorna RUSSELL who recorded a time of 16:40 on 18th May 2013 (event number 46).
The male record is held by Mahamed MAHAMED who recorded a time of 14:56 on 17th September 2016 (event number 221) and by Unknown ATHLETE who also recorded a time of 14:56 on 8th September 2018 (event number 323).
The Age Grade course record is held by Austin SOANE who recorded 91.55% (18:09) on 11th August 2018 (event number 319).
Southampton parkrun started on 7th July 2012. Since then 21,529 participants have completed 210,454 parkruns covering a total distance of 1,052,270 km, including 35,824 new Personal Bests.