Tilgate parkrun 413 – 5k for those not in Tokyo

As we arrived this morning on the front lawn, we were welcomed with aspects of blue sky and a glimmer of summer sunshine but as we are writing this report and looking out the window, the rain is pouring down!  Think we made the best of the morning!  Mike and his crew had already made a great start with the set up and a few last-minute touches were being made to the finish area – notably the new finish funnel and there was lots of discussion and movement of posts and ropes!  However, we think it worked – could we remind people to move away from the finish funnel and barcode area once they have completed their run to clear the area a bit more.


Slowly but surely, the volunteers began to make their way and we cannot thank them enough for coming forward as it was a very close call this week whether we had sufficient volunteers to stage the event.  Our volunteers along with you the runners are what make the event happen but without them the event cannot take place so a HUGE thanks goes out to every single one of you who volunteered this week.  With the new COVID regulations we do need more volunteers so if you would like to give something back to Tilgate parkrun why not think about volunteering one week  - just email in to tilgatehelpers@parkrun.com - we would love to hear from you!


Unfortunately, due to the new COVID regulations, our run brief is brief which does not give me a chance to welcome our new runners or tourists.  Overall, there were 43 first-timers, 19 of which was their first-ever parkrun.   However, no one came as far as a few joggers that travelled over to Tokyo to run their 5k, and that is on a 12.5 lap course!  I’m sure you’ll agree our course is much more picturesque, albeit not as flat.


Out of the 413 total runners today, there were a few runners at the back happily chatting (or running late!) who made their way through the pack and began their run!  It must be noted that one runner in particular, David Bull ended up finishing in a close second behind Ian Black, our leader for two consecutive weeks.  Well done to you both!  Our first female finisher was Katie Foss who got an amazing 27-second course PB finishing in 20:15. This was just one of our 35 runners who also got a PB this morning.


Milestones: As we no longer mention people achieving their personal milestones in the run brief we will try to mention them here in the weekly run report. So here goes for this weeks run:

  • 50th run for Helen Howard, all at Tilgate
  • 50th run for Phillip Tidd, 49 at Tilgate
  • 100th run for Julie Sanders, 95 at Tilgate, who was dressed up for the occasion (thanks to Annabel Kolter)
  • 100th run for Chris Hastings, 88 at Tilgate (Take note Chris, fancy dress next milestone!)

Although these are not official parkrun milestones they are still worthy of a mention...

  • 200th run for Clare Clarke-Jones, 172 at Tilgate
  • 200th run for Nick Dean-Webb, all at Tilgate
  • 200th run for Frances Johnston, 195 at Tilgate
  • 200th run for Martin Owens, 191 at Tilgate


See you all again next week.

Claire and Darren 


Tilgate Run Report 412 – New beginnings. Familiar but different.

It has been a long long time in the planning but today we were finally ready for event number 412 and it was so good to see parkrunners back out in the park. Known faces mixed in with the new, to be welcomed to Tilgate, boy was there some catching up to be done.  9am charged toward us at an alarming rate.  A real nice buzz in the air, felt like the mood was high, excited, with happy and smiling faces, yes we were at it again.  Although I did notice that there weren't quite so many smiling in the finish funnel!

parkrun came back to Tilgate, not quite sure what to expect, so familiar, yet different, how many would turn up seemed to be the big question on a lot of lips. Would anybody turn up? How would the adjustments go?  What would go wrong?  What had we overlooked?  A new way of things, malfunctioning PA's (something simply had to go wrong), brief run briefs, no stopwatches or scanners, missing tables, no golf club or results processing and barcode sorting. In came long funnels, QR Codes, hand gels and buckets on sticks.  Lots of buckets and lots of sticks, so many barcode scanners.  I'm sure there will be a few more changes and tweaks in the coming weeks, one down, next please!

So long in the making, Tilgate Event 412 gets underway. (curtesy Chris Laker)

So long in the making, Event 412 gets underway.
(photograph curtesy of Chris Laker)

Milestones: As we no longer mention people achieving their personal milestones in the run brief we will try to mention them here in the weekly run report. So here goes for this weeks run:

50th Run for Tom Hayward His first at Tilgate.
100th Run for Melissa Cheeseman, 63rd at Tilgate.
100th Run for Hannah Cartledge, 83rd at Tilgate.
100th Run for Nina Ware, 95th at Tilgate.
200th Run for Paul Codd, 179th at Tilgate, no T-Shirt, but well done.

(Means we can slip in a few extra mentions Paul)

Highlights of the day:

Percy Jordan and Len Golding back on the steps by Smith and Western, how great that was that to see. The former and the current master of the steps, together, is this a Tilgate first?

313 runners on our first day back, with barely a hitch in the results despite the new (to us) phone app regime, thankfully nobody wandered off without scanning the QR code.

20 runners started their parkrun journey at Tilgate today.

23 parkrunners clearly worked hard through the break to set new PB's today.

33 parkrun Volunteers conspicuous about Tilgate park in their new bright pink vests.

Simply seeing so many people happy to be back running, walking, jogging and volunteering, being sensible and working together in the strange new normal we find ourselves in, familiar but different.  This bodes well for the coming weeks. A big thank you to everybody, form us, onwards and upwards.

Lets hope the next event is not quite so long a wait.
Happy Running


Awards Finalists 2020

Awards picture

Our anniversary is fast approaching, after our very first run on 9th June 2012 when we had 171 runners, we will soon be celebrating our 8th anniversary. In that time we have had another 410 events and in total 15,881 different barcodes have been scanned recording a total of 165,312 runs and 26,944 PB's.

Despite the lockdown we have decided to continue with tradition and have our annual awards ceremony; and we can now reveal all our finalists and their categories.

Finalists 2020

* Colin Hibbet on Male performance of the year should read Colin Hibbit

Good luck to all our finalists and we hope many of you will tune in next week (Saturday 13th June at 1030) on facebook when we will announce our well deserved winners.

Thank you to everyone who has attended #Tilgreatparkrun over the last 12 months, we have been missing you all very much over the #lockdown as well as our regular parkrun fix. We hope you are all keeping well and we look forward to the day we meet again for some #LakeParkLake fun.

Tilgate parkrun management team

Alnur, Darren Julie & Martin


Chevron Assistance

The Tilgate parkrun management team are always keen on supporting new ways of individuals getting involved that will also provide benefits to our wonderful parkrun community. So when a local rugby team contacted us to identify ways that they could improve their fitness once we have overcome the restrictions of COVID-19, we got our thinking caps on and have come up with what we believe is an innovative solution that will help the rugby team whilst also adding a little bit of fun and enjoyment for our participants.

We have created a new volunteer position of chevron puller, in essence the rugby players will congregate on the path between Pete’s crossing and the bottom of Chevron where those lucky enough to have been selected for some 'Chevron assistance' will make themselves known by wearing a specially designed bib.


The rugby players will be wearing a harness, with a bungee cord attached, the lucky runner grabs hold of the bungee cord with the rugby player then sprinting up Chevron pulling our parkrunner along, trying to hold on for as long as they can.

The rugby player gets some much-needed resistance training whilst our parkrunner gets some assistance up the mighty Chevron #WinWin.

So how could you benefit from this innovation? All you need to do is submit evidence to our email address (ivebeenpulled@parkrun.com) demonstrating that you are showing no improvement in your times going up Chevron – Garmin/Strava segment analysis would be best.

The management team will then randomly choose 10 lucky winners each week and their names will be read out during the pre-run brief; so if you're noisy or not listening you may miss your name being read out!

All being well, we hope to be able to offer this innovation as soon as we are back parkrunning, it will certainly be great to see you all again and what an occasion that is for us all to look forward to.

Until then #StaySafe and have a very Happy April fools day.

Tilgate parkrun management team :lol:


#410. It’s a man’s world? Erm, not today mate!

With the absence of the torrential rain and high winds of the last few weeks, we arrived at Tilgate park for our very special 410th event. I haven’t managed to undertake Run Director duties for so long that I was rather nervous today to see if I could remember what I was doing but thankfully Run Directing is like riding a bike (though with less falling over) and I was soon back into the swing of things. Mike ‘The Signs’ Brice and his able assistant Ant Weller had kindly completed the set up and even ran a quick loop to check the course condition before the start.

We had a marvelous 596 athletes today, 59 of those were first timers and a staggering 102 athletes scored PBs. We also welcomed the Reigate Priory Athletics Club and their Couch to 5k course graduates.

As always it was my pleasure to announce some milestones and our parkrunner of the month for February, Matt Palmer. Ian Price, Sam Frampton, Sarah Killick-Bird and Georgina Cave completed their 50th parkruns and Gary McMahon completed his 100th. Ant Weller also volunteered for the 50th time today.

410 photo

Now we cannot talk about parkrun without mentioning our volunteers, of which we had 43 today. These high-viz superheroes allow us to be able to stage Tilgate parkrun every week. This week however was a little different as the usual ‘call to arms’ volunteer email requested as many female heroes (sheroes if you like!) as possible to fill our roster. This was no sexist stunt by our VC, but due to today being the official International Women’s Day parkrun. For those unfamiliar with IWD, it has been celebrated since 1909 in the US, adopted globally in the 1970s and was designed to celebrate women’s achievements in social, economic, cultural and political arenas. parkrun is supporting this event in conjunction with the #ThisGirlCan campaign to encourage women’s participation in sport. Despite 54% of parkrun registrations being attributed to women, research shows that women are less likely to participate or continue to participate in parkrun events.

This got me thinking about the reasons why and what I was like at my first outing at parkrun 6 years ago. My reasons for not taking part initially were due to lack of confidence and worries about being too overweight or too slow or being last. IWD’s theme this year is #Each for Equal, trying to redress the gender balance across all walks of life. This got me thinking about women’s involvement in running in particular and I felt that lack of female engagement is certainly not due to lack of role models. Kathrine Switzer was the trailblazer for women’s marathon running when, in 1967, she became the first female to finish the Boston marathon as a numbered entrant. There was a little subterfuge on her part as she entered using her initials ‘K.V. Switzer’ and her defiance and determination paved the way for future generations of women to be allowed to run marathons. Closer to home, Jo Pavey is another tremendously strong role model in women’s running. At the age of 40, 10 months after giving birth to her second child, she won her first major gold in the 10,000m at the 2014 European championships. Today she was first female finisher at Exmouth parkrun in a blistering 16:57, as a 46 yr old mother of two – proving age is no barrier to speed! Last year we were lucky enough to have Dina Asher-Smith – 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay runner and fastest British woman on record, as an ambassador for Run Gatwick. These are just three of the multitude of athletes who inspire generations of women to take up sport every day.

It is their strength, grit and tenacity that has got them to where they are today and as role models for girls and women everywhere. So, to pinch a quote once cited by another inspirational human being, Michelle Obama: Here’s to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them.

Happy International Women’s Day. (P.S. Fellas – in case you were wondering, International Men’s Day is 19 November!)


PS - Claire Page took some photos during the run today - another way to get involved and volunteer at parkrun - you can find these photos following this link


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