Event Report July 24th – We Are Back!

There were literally tears of joy today as parkrun finally returned to England and the Town Moor. It's been months in preparation, and in the end it couldn't have gone better.


This week 471 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom a massive 63 were first timers at our event and 34 were total parkrun first-timers - welcome!  67 participants recorded new Personal Bests for this event, no mean feat for an event that's been going since 2010. Representatives of 49 different clubs took part, and we had our biggest ever turnout of volunteers - 50 in total, without whom none of this is possible.

Thank you to all runners for sensible spacing at the start and for seeding yourself in roughly the right order. These aspects worked even better than we hoped.


Our new pink hi-viz volunteer bibs certainly made for an arresting sight.  Our new route allowed for lots of social distancing at the start, and with no gates until 2km we had no bottlenecks.  The new route was well-received by runners, though we will struggle to remember that "Malcolm's Gate" is now Gate 2 and not Gate 1!

Lining up the barcode scanners near the fence seemed to work well and no queues built up. Russell the Run Director today was also over the moon with the new Virtual Volunteer app, as results were posted before he even finished his first coffee!


Urban Green Cafe were delighted to see so many runners come along after the race, and the core team retired there for a post-mortem of an event that couldn't have gone better.


We are always looking to improve, so if you have any ideas or feedback for us do get in touch here.


Don’t Forget Your Barcode (DYFB)

parkrun is free, for everyone, forever...all you need is a printed barcode. No printer? Get a friend to print one. We can't scan barcodes on mobile phones, sorry - and please don't ask, as our lovely scanners will just feel bad. So make sure you are ready for Saturday 24th by getting a barcode. For the future you can even buy durable ones from parkrun very cheaply - but a simple paper one is just fine. Store it in the back of your phone case so you never forget it... see you Saturday at our new location (see “course” for a reminder where that is). #dfyb

printed barcodes mobile barcodes x


Getting Ready for July 24th

With England entering Stage 4 of the government's roadmap on Monday 19th, the way is clear for Town Moor parkrun to return on Saturday 24th. Set your alarms to be there for 8:55am...

As we are all a little rusty with the routines, and some things have changed, parkrun UK have created this handy guide to parkrun. Even if you were a regular before lockdown it is worth a scan through.


We will be adding further posts next week to help you get ready for the return. Keep an eye on ITV local news where a parkrun feature is planned next week with some Town Moor footage...


Preparing for the return

You'll have noticed the subtle change in our name from Newcastle parkrun to Town Moor parkrun. When we started at this location we were the only parkrun in the city. Now that there are 3 of us (with more planned), it made sense to take this opportunity to better reflect where we actually run.
We’re all disappointed that the restart has been pushed back but when life gives us lemons the Town Moor parkrun team makes lemonade and we decided to take the opportunity to get together on the Moor tonight and have a practice of the new finish funnel set up (I know…. we’re a wild bunch, I can’t wait for the Christmas do!).
Anyway we learned 3 important things; Peter has really perfected his Event Director pointing technique in just a couple of weeks, the cows approve of the new funnel design and most importantly, the last 2 km of the new route is pretty much downhill so we’re anticipating some tasty times in the first week back!

Meet The New Team

We are delighted to introduce you to the new "Core Team" in charge of taking our parkrun forward. In parkrun lingo, an Event Director (ED) has overall responsibility for the event - liaising with the local authorities, parkrun HQ, ensuring we comply with all safety requirements etc. A Run Director (RD) is in charge of the run on a particular week.  No single person could replace Ian Kirtley, so we now have two EDs sharing his old role, plus several RDs - a mix of the old and the new. Read on to find out about them all...

Simon Barrett (Run Director)

Simon has been part of the parkrun family for several years, running 123 parkruns and volunteering over 70 times. He’s recently moved to Newcastle, having previously been in Glasgow where he helped set up a new parkrun, and is excited to join the Town Moor team as one of the Run Directors.

Simon B

Kate Black (Run Director)

Kate joined parkrun when she moved to Newcastle in Summer 2014 and has now completed 235 parkruns (the large majority of which have been Town Moor) and has her 25-volunteer shirt!  Kate loves the atmosphere of parkrun, that welcomes everyone.


Peter Chamley (Co-Event Director)

Peter has recently retired after a long career in local government. He is a big supporter of the parkrun philosophy of inclusiveness and wellbeing and jumped at the chance to become involved as Co-Event Director. Peter has completed 80 parkruns and has volunteered on a number of occasions previously including as run photographer.


Russell Dickinson Deane (Run Director)

Russell has been parkrunning since 2011 and was on 199 parkruns when the clock stopped in 2020. He has also been a Run Director since 2013 and loves welcoming people onto the Town Moor in all weathers. When not at parkrun, Russell is a running coach and a timekeeper for England Athletics.


Nigel Hooper (Run Director)

Nigel only started running late in life, to get fit after struggling to run for 5 minutes on a treadmill. After a few years trying, the habit kicked in and he started to enjoy it. When he says enjoy…sometimes it’s was just knowing it’s was doing him good that keeps him going! Nigel found parkrun by chance after a few years and was quite nervous turning up, not wanting to be too slow for everyone, but soon realised most runners were just like him. Ten years later, after also volunteering over 200 times now, the friendship, encouragement for anyone setting out trying to run or walk the full distance, is a fantastic thing to be part of.


Paul Patterson (Co-Event Director)

Paul took up running in his mid-30’s to raise funds for a charity in memory of a friend and quickly found a love of getting out of the house for a jog. You’ll never find Paul anywhere near the front of the pack. He is not in it for the racing. Running has taken him to events all over the world and enabled Paul to experience things and meet people he otherwise never would have. Paul hopes that during his tenure as Co-Event Director he can continue to host an event that welcomes and encourages participants of abilities to come along and enjoy a lap of the Town Moor and to start their Saturday with a smile.


Larry Taylor (Run Director)

Larry has completed several circuits of the Town Moor.  Parkrun encourages everyone to participate and promotes healthy living in the community so it’s basically the best thing ever.  Feel free to enjoy his accent and ever-changing hair styles.


Penny Wilmott (Run Director)

Penny started running in her 30’s after never having enjoyed PE at school or organised sport. She ran her first parkrun in 2009 and was very happy when parkrun came to Newcastle in 2010. Since then, parkrun has become part of Penny’s life and she has completed 247 parkruns and volunteered 144 times. Penny has been a Run Director for 5 years and has been a parkrun ambassador for 4 years. She loves the fact that parkrun is for everyone, whether they walk, run or volunteer and everyone is welcome.


Killian McCartney (Run Director)
Killian started parkrun at Newcastle parkrun in 2012 and has since completed 257 parkrun at 148 different events. He's used parkrun as an excuse to travel and so has completed parkrun events in 10 different countries, including Ziegelwiese parkrun in Germany to collect the 'Z' on the Alphabet challenge. Just two to go. Killian has volunteered 63 times and was a Run Director at Sunny Hill parkrun in North London before returning to Newcastle in 2020.
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