Telford Parkun #377 Saturday 14th May 2022 by David Poole

This was my first visit to Telford Parkrun and I picked this particular Saturday for a very nerdy reason – it was Telford’s run number 377, which is a Fibonacci number. For those of you with the 5K App, you’ll know that this is one of the many challenges – to complete a parkrun whose run number is one of the 14 Fibonacci numbers, up to 610. They’re like hen’s teeth, so I couldn’t miss the opportunity to drive down from Stoke-on-Trent for it. (In just over two years Bushy Park Parkrun, the first ever event, will reach the next Fibonacci number, 987).

I had wanted to do Telford anyway, so it worked out well. I had heard it was a good one and quite fast. The Parkrun starts and finishes in Telford Town Park, the 2015 winner of UK’s Best Park, which is a stunning well-maintained park, well equipped with visitor centre, lake and fountain and climbing wall amongst other amenities. Parking is easy enough on Brown Elm Car Park, with a brisk walk past the Telford International Centre and retail area.

I was impressed with the volunteers. Some Parkruns you go to, you start wondering if it’s still going ahead at 8.40, with no high-vis jackets or signs in sight; until they amble into view with last minute suave. Not so here. When I arrived at 8.20 there was already a huddle of pink-jacketed volunteers, ready for service. The organisation was first class and very efficient with marshals marking estimated finish times, at the start line, to help put the runners in time order, which is always good to see. The RD gave a clear and entertaining address and we were all set to go at 8.59. The RD counted down the seconds to 9.00 and we were off, bang on time.

The course begins with a satisfying downhill stretch that wends its way down to Randlay Pool. Runners circle the pool once, before completing a second, bigger lap that circuits the bottom end of Town Park, as well as the pool. Unfortunately, what goes down also has to come up. What was a great downhill opening becomes a punishing ending as you climb back up the hill to the start. I felt like I’d almost come to a stop at one point. Despite this hill and few other undulations, it is a quick course and solid underfoot. It is very pleasant and tree-lined throughout – I really enjoyed it.

As for the race statistics, 339 finished what is always a well-attended parkrun, with a male to female ratio of 193 to 134, with 12 unknowns.

Congratulations to Nick Bradley, today’s first person backCF397D27-D83D-4A88-B0E0-8B9F0C9085E6 D20CED78-B535-4B61-A92F-8714DD130889 with a PB time of 17.15 - he was one of 36 runners getting a personal best today. It was a tight finish as the other podium placers were only five and seven seconds behind respectively. These were Adrian Puchala and Lee Firmstone.

The fastest lady today was Sabrina Thomas, finishing in 21.08.

The best runner in terms of age grading was Richard L Jones, who ran a lighting 19.19 in the 55-59 category, achieving an age grading of 82.31%. In second was Alan Brookes running 21.00 dead, in the 65-69 age group – very impressive. The female with the best age grading was Naomi Wrighton, who in the 75-79 age group, came through the finish line in 31.26!

Chloë Belcher and Jenny Jackson will be delighted to have ticked off the palindrome challenge, which is where you record a time that reads the same backwards. They came in with times of 40.04 and 32.23 respectively – must say I’m a bit jealous.

21 of the field were doing their first ever parkrun today – well done for making that first step and hopefully you will be back for more, as you couldn’t have picked a better day for it. There were 16 doing the Telford Parkrun for the first time, myself included.

One of those first timers to Telford, had the most Parkrunsunder his belt. That was Vincent Alcock, with a whopping 456. And there were 12 more who’d run over 250.

Special mention to Charlie Costello, local youngster (15-17) who finished fourth in a speedy 17.34 and finished third in terms of age grading. Also, kudos to Seki Adachi, who aged somewhere between 11-14, ran a sub 20 PB of 19.19; superb running.

Well done Claudia Monica Neves Pereira, the person with the longest name today – with a new PB, to boot. Sue Holl and Sam Hall tie for runner with the shortest name. Just seven letters – efficient.

Other mentions to Graham Bell who rang in a time 31.43 in the 70-74 age group and last but not least Louise and Wayne Hissey, fittingly, recorded his and hers identical times of 32.49.

Thank you to all the volunteers who put on a seamless parkrun; as ever these events wouldn’t run without them

 

Newport RC takeover Telford parkrun- Event 376

Telford parkrun’s event #376 on May 7th 2022 saw a takeover of the volunteer roster by Newport & District Running Club (NDRC), the first time that the club has done a takeover at parkrun since before the Covid-19 pandemic. The response by club members to the request for help with the takeover was overwhelmingly positive, so the roster was easily filled by the time May came around.

The morning of May 7th brought beautiful sunny weather, and the volunteers gathered early at the arena in the Town Park, and preparations built as 9am approached. The course was set up, the marshals were briefed and took position, the pacers donned their bibs, and the first-timers' welcome was completed. 

Just before 9am, Kim Fawke, Event Director and Run Director on the day, gave the 299 massed participants their pre-event briefing and notices, including announcements of milestone runs. Congratulations go to Fay Rayward, Elsa Mackay, Mike Bate-Durward (all of Lawley RC) and Lisa Hardy, all of whom were doing their 50th parkrun - well done! The other milestone on the day was Neil Fairbrother of Newport & District RC, who, as well as pacing 30 minutes and writing this report, was running his 250th parkrun.

At 9am, everyone was set on their way, cascading down the hill past the high ropes and arena, before circling the lake on the “small lap”, passing the Wonderland dinosaurs, and then completing the “large lap” via the Silkin Way and returning up the hill to the finish. The marshals were all enthusiastic in their support for the runners, and a lot of cries of “thank you marshal!” could be heard around the course.

16 minutes, 45 seconds after the start signal was given, Daniel Turner of Lawley RC crossed the line as First Finisher, followed just over a minute and a half later by Phillip Hall of Shropshire Shufflers, who clocked 18:22. The third runner was unknown. Kate Ball, in 13th place overall, was the fastest female runner, and her time was 19:39, a new PB.

In total, 48 people got a new PB during the event, and 31 were doing a parkrun at Telford for the first time. Of those, 17 people were doing their very first parkrun, regardless of location - well done! It was also great to see a number of tourists visiting from other parkruns, such as Newtown, Wolverhampton, Isabel Trail, Leamington, Chipping Sodbury, Delamere, Wycombe Rye and Bognor Regis, to name just a few.

Well done to everyone who took part, and huge thanks go to all of the volunteers! 



 

Run Report by Tourist Frankie Wellings- 14.03.2022

I am visiting my in-laws in Shrewsbury this weekend and having only done Telford parkrun once before, I fancied giving it another go.  So I set my alarm nice and early but was awake well before it went off. I think it was the excitement of running a course I haven’t run for 3 years!

Arriving in the park, I went in search of the toilets and asked another runner if she could point me in the right direction.  She was very helpful and told me we were allowed to use the toilets in the local pub.  As tempting as it was to have a quick half in there, I resisted!

Next I spoke to a very friendly, helpful man who told me we could leave our coats in the boot of the car parked by the finish funnel.  Looking at the names on the roster, I think it was Andrew Crozier, co-RD, I spoke to. He also gave me the very useful tip of not putting all my oomph into the final hill too soon but to use the 2 lamp posts as markers.  Thank you very much, great tip!

As we stood on the start line, the chatter soon turned to silence as today’s RD, Dawn Colyer, welcomed us and explained it was her first time being RD. She asked us to be nice and not laugh at her. Absolutely nothing to laugh at, she gave a very clear and informative brief so well done Dawn!

The majority of today’s volunteers were from Lawley Running Club and what a friendly, encouraging bunch they were too. There was an assortment of cow bells, tambourines, cheers and lots of applause as we weaved our way around the course.  Another friendly person who spoke to me (but I didn’t have enough breath to speak back) was the lady 27:30 pacer. I saw her ahead of me before getting to the amphitheatre and wondered if I could catch her. The cheer of the marshals and spectators gave me a boost and I realised I was closing the gap. As I ran past her, she called out with a very friendly “keep going, you can do it”. 

My home parkrun is Basingstoke in Hampshire which is a mixture of grass, tarmac and shingly track through a wiggly wooded section.  It was a pleasure today to have solid ground underfoot for the entire course.  There seems to be a lot of down hill and I was thinking “this has got to go up at some point” but apart from the finish and an incline in the middle, the rest seemed to be flat.  I’m not complaining!

There were 439 participants today, including 34 first timers, 22 of whom were doing their very first park run.  The first man home was Daniel Galloway in 15:25 earning himself a shiny new PB and a very impressive 87.57% age grade. Second was Jack Cole in 16:33, also earning himself a shiny new PB. Hot on Jack’s heals was Daniel Turner who was the third man home in 16:39.

The ladies were led home by Megan Tibbetts in 21:41, closely followed by Natalie Morris in 21:54 and third lady was Camilla Stewart in 21:57.

Congratulations to the 62 people who all earned themselves shiny new PBs. It’s such a great feeling and on the very rare occasion I get one (today included!) it puts me on a high for the rest of the weekend. I hope you are all still very pleased with yourselves.

Thank you for making us so welcome today Telford parkrun, you are one of the friendliest ones we have ever been to!

 

Official Telford parkrun on New Years Day.

There will be an official parkrun on New Years Day in Telford.

Timings will be confirmed within due course. Should you wish to volunteer please drop us an email at: telford@parkrun.com

 

 

Official Telford parkrun on Christmas Day

There will be an official parkrun on Christmas Day this year in Telford.

Timings will be confirmed within due course. Should you wish to volunteer please drop us an email at: telford@parkrun.com

 

 

Telford parkrun 275

On a clear winter morning (much more pleasant than last week!), 369 people turned up to run, jog or walk Telford parkrun #275.
46 people were first timers at Telford parkrun, including a large turnout of tourists from Northampton Road Runners. In total, runners of 28 different clubs took part, and 69 runners recorded new personal bests. Well done to everyone!

One of those personal bests was first finisher Jack Pickett from Wolverhampton & Bilston AC in a speedy time of 16.21. First lady was Tracie Trueman in a time of 20.17, which was also her milestone 50th run.
Congratulations to other runners celebrating a milestone today. Darren Pickett ran his 100th parkrun, and Steven Langford, Tony Barnett, Liz Holbrook and Debra Lees also completed their 50th!

For me, this was my 34th run at Telford parkrun. I now live in London, but my parkrun journey began at Telford 5 years ago and coming back here always feels like my "home" run. A scenic run on gravel or tarmac paths, not too hilly (apart from that pesky "slope" at the end!), and there aren't many other places you get dinosaurs roaring you on to the finish! It's lovely to see familiar faces, and it was great to run with my dad for the first time this week, since he caught the parkrun bug a couple of months ago! I couldn't keep up with him though as he smashed his PB (again). I look forward to visiting again over the Christmas period.

As ever the runners were supported by a cheery team of 40 volunteers. This week's volunteers were from Telford Harriers, a huge thanks to all of you.
Without volunteers the event wouldn't happen. If you would like to volunteer please check out the future roster page and let the team know if you would like to help out. It's great fun and training is provided for all roles!

Keep parkrunning!

Ellie

 

Telford parkrun 270

Telford parkrun marked it's 270th outing with a strong turnout of 552 on a blustery but pleasant November morning. Amy Aldridge took on the reigns as run director helped ably by our newest addition to the core team in Leigh Holt.

On a day which saw representation from stalwart running groups such as Wrekin Road Runners and Lawley Running Club to the online groups Lonely Goats and UKRunChat it was Dominic Gardner of the Telford AC who crossed the line first in a brisk 17:02 with Wenlock Olympian Emily Gapper claiming first female honours in 21:20. Rounding off the run were our wonderful tail walkers Wendy Cartwright and Joanne Jackson.

Amongst 61 first timers our first time briefer Peter Rawlings welcomed 26 tourists to Telford Parkrun including runners from Barrow-in-Furness, South Cheshire and Boldmere. Wolverhampton regular Stephen Morris marked his Telford debut with an impressive 29th place finish in 21:00 and Avril and I had the tremendous pleasure of meeting Roderick Hoffman - a Parkrun tourist who was notching up a scarcely believeable 249th different Parkrun course (in a total of 320 runs). He has ran parkruns as far afield as Australia and San Francisco and we are delighted he was able to add Telford to his ever expanding list - on behalf of everyone at Telford Parkrun we wish him good luck and congratulations for his 250th next week at Severn Bridge.

We also celebrated some milestones today with Richard and Joanne Banfield both hitting the 50 run mark - a figure now also shared by Gary Watton, Susan Gill and Jennifer Harrower. We also had a runner join the centurion club as Natalie Dimmock racked up her 100th run. 82 PBs were recorded ranging from Stewart Farley at 18:02 to Cassandra Wainwright at 48:54 in only her second ever Parkrun, shaving an excellent four minutes off last weeks time - a huge congratulations to everyone who had reason to celebrate today.

As ever the run was made possible by a merry band of volunteers. In addition to those mentioned already we had Mike Sparson, Darren Fawke, Rosemary Mercantas, Joanna Edwards-Jones, John Williams, Margaret Jackson, John Jackson, Tony Coffey, Sarah Green, Nathan Green, Chris Fawke and Joanne Aston out on the course cheering runners round on marshal duty. Welcoming the runners home were our timekeepers Peter Rawlings and Amber Worthington, funnel managers Tink Brasenell and Peter Welch and our finish token team Paula Johnston and Robin Glover. Scanning the barcodes were Sarah Taylor, Kevin Cain, Jim Buckle and Joe Brierley with Max Smallwood on hand to record any of those pesky barcodes that just wouldn't scan. As always a big thank you goes to our volunteer co-ordinator Kim Fawke and a super special shoutout to Jenny Aldridge whose sparkly new Super Boost powered ourselves and the rest of the runners up that dreaded slope of opportunity. Thank you Jenny!

We would also like to extend some love to our four-legged friends who brighten up the run every week. From Golden Retrievers to French Bulldogs we had our usual eclectic bunch - here are Chester and Wispa feeling pleased with themselves at the end of their run! Chester is a rescue dog and is chalking up some super impressive times!

All in all, another hugely enjoyable morning at a Parkrun that continues to go from strength to strength. On a personal note, next week sees us begin our quest to conquer the Parkrun A-Z with a visit to the good folks at Jersey so until next time, enjoy Telford #271 and don't forget your barcode.

Avril & Pete

 

Christmas Day 2018 and New Years Day 2019

Please note, there will be no official Telford parkrun on Christmas Day.

However we are pleased to announce that Telford parkrun will be taking place on New Years Day, starting at 10:30am.
We hope you can join us and start your New Year the best way!

 

What does a Run Director Actually Do?

You might be thinking of signing up to become a Run Director at Telford parkrun this gives you a good insight to what happens

1. With the ego the size of a planet and head sized to match any role titled “director” is impossible to resist. Especially as I get to boss people around which my wife doesn’t let me do at home.

2. “Director” looks fantastic on your CV, at least until you have to describe what the role entails “I, um, make people run round a park” “NEXT”

3. parkrun is a community and having taken from that community, it feels good to give something back. Its very rewarding to see people enjoying themselves when you have contributed to that.

4. You will look awesome in BLUE

Being a run director is a little bit more involved than standing up on the wall looking and feeling like a berk and cracking a few jokes. Here is a rundown of the activities of my first event on the job.

Saturday brings parkrun day. Plenty to do today I get to the course for 8am and unlock the gate. Before unloading everything from the car. First order of business is to find my shiny Blue Run Director Jacket of Authority so I can strut around the place like an enormous Blue peacock. We have 9 marshal positions. Paula turns up early so So I put her into action on creating my finish funnel. As the volunteers turn up I explain their role and give them their hi-viz jackets, before sending them off with their signs.

As 9am approaches, we get the runners assembled in the correct area and I climb on the bench to give the briefing. I’m fairly sure only about 3 people are listening but I go through the required points and then its time. I make sure some of the eager runners get back behind the start line and 3, 2, 1 they are off and running, walking, skipping, crawling or prancing.

The pressure is now off for just over 17 minutes (15 in Kim is around) and I can enjoy the parkrun experience and cheering on the runners as they thunder around our course.

The first runner comes around to start his final lap so I ensure that the finish funnel team are all ready.

As the last few runners come in, I make sure that we are sorted on the numbers and thank the marshals as they come back once relieved by the tail runner. Big thanks to Ellen as she has marshalled a lot of times and never run the course and I had been pestering her to tail run for weeks and she came up trumps.

Once the run was finished the first task is to dismantle the course. Once again by the time we start dismantling the finish funnel everyone else has gone home. BOO! Need to ensure in future the funnel team manages the clear-up process. This job takes ages due to winding the tape up nicely.

I get the laptop, stopwatches and scanners and we head home to process the results, including the added time penalties. We wait for the laptop to finish last nights update. Doh, should have restarted last night. I plug in the first scanner to download the results – An even number of records is a good start. There is an even number of records on the second scanner too and the third and fourth. Next is the stopwatch and I download the results from there.

We then enter the parkrun results system which has a scary red bar at the top announcing CAUTION – THIS IS LIVE Instils a nice sense of well-being from the start. Maybe they should consider a softer pastel colour and lower case text.

Task 1 Is to confirm the volunteer roster to ensure that every helper is acknowledged. We then go ahead to process the results and upload the scanner data followed by the time data. Once this is all uploaded the results screen appears. This is split into a number of tabs relating to position. If a runner is green then all is good, if they are in a pale yellow colour means that some data is missing.

There were 14 runners with missing barcode data. The general rule is no barcode, no time, no exceptions. In this case the missing data was all recorded by the Number volunteer. On this occasion I follow down the number checker sheet and add them to the results.

The next task was to check the times and positions against my copious Funnel managers notes.

All good to go it’s time to submit for processing

I fire up the parkrun email and there is a results query. Fortunately it was for the week before. I get that resolved with the helpful advice of the other RD’s on our completely focused parkrun Facebook messenger group (wink wink) and post the link to the results on our Facebook page.

 

Telford’s 250 milestone parkrun

A damp, wet morning greeted all the volunteers involved with set-up, which thankfully started to dry up as the morning progressed.

It was always going to be special as Telford was hitting that '250 milestone', and unfortunately the event itself is not eligible for a t-shirt!  No Telford parkrunner is yet to achieve their 250 milestone, so parkrunner's were invited to wear whatever milestone t-shirt they had, or a green top in the absence of a milestone top.

We were lucky enough to have a couple of '250 milestone' tshirts  on display from tourists that had made the trip to Telford.  One of the most fitting was perhaps Doug Richards, who be default was very much involved in the creation of Telford parkrun some 5 years ago. His son Chris Richards started the event off, and was Event Director for a long time.  He is still involved with the core team, but for Telford's 250, he actually got a run in!

Well done Chris!

We also had to C25k graduations with us from Whitchurch Whippets and Broseley Joggers, congratulations to all who completed their first Telford parkrun, we hope it will be the first of many!

A special mention has to be made to the dinosaur, and no not the one's that feature on the course each week, but the young lad that completed the course dressed in a dinosaur suit!

Well done to everyone, we hit a new attendance record of 680 parkrunners and 27 volunteers.

Fantastic!!

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