Walthamstow parkrun event #368 – 14th August 2021

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After last week’s slightly soggy parkrun, it was great to see that the sun had put its hat on and came out to play for the 140 people who ran, jogged and walked around the Peter May centre this morning.

We were particularly pleased to see the sun today as we had Will Haydon from Waltham Forest Council filming some of our regular parkrunners for a campaign the council is doing to show Waltham Forest residents what sporting facilities are on offer in the borough, and to encourage people to get out there and take part in communal activities. And what better place to do so than parkrun?! When the resulting film is complete we will put a link up to it on our website and on our facebook page so that you can all see it and hear from our parkrunners about what parkrun means to them.


First timers

32 people had already made the decision to get out and join in for the first time at Walthamstow parkrun, and of these first timers, 10 were doing their very first parkrun ever! A huge warm welcome goes to:

Thomas Rajaona, Louie Molloy, Declan Andrews, Marco Duva, Ronan Redding, Kynan Redding, Ryan Price, Ian Atkins, Laichan Chau, Nicki Johnson, Anibal Santaella Sanchez, John Rainbow, Sara Erviti, Marianne Capes, Rizwaan Malik, Louise Sheppey, Felix Gott, Tim Woodman, Robbie Drye, Molly Critchley, Sophie Wilkins, Robin Lomax, William Bowry, Oliver Kenney, Hein Gunnewicht, Christopher Ward, Owen Edwards, Chris Day, Jason Nourse and John Punt.

Some of these first timers at Walthamstow are old hands at other parkruns, such as Chris Ward (pictured below) who had come all the way from Ellesmere Port, and who I think just edged Mark O’Leary from Macclesfield as the furthest parkrun tourist! We hope you both enjoyed your time with us this morning.


First finishers and PBs

Our first finisher this week was Patrick Brown who ran barefoot around the course in 18:32 minutes, whilst our fastest female runner was Sally Harrild in a time of 21:55 minutes. Patrick tells me that he enjoys running barefoot and he thinks that it strengthens the feet and he has had fewer injuries since taking up barefoot running, so maybe I should give it a go!

The conditions underfoot must certainly have been very good today because no fewer than 28 of you recorded new Personal Bests! A huge congratulations to:

James Glossop, Gareth Marshall, Kevin Ryan, Wilkie Hollens, Darren Fryer, Ben Dolman, Mo Allen, Stuart Grey, John Parkinson, Simon Nash, Diana Kennedy, Stephen Cole, Pablo Gonzalez de la Pena, Steve Burr, Lorna Ross, Rowan Barrington, Mika Sembongi, Jake Rajaona, Frieda Johnston, Mark O’Leary, Adriana Stankova, Phillip Marshall, Tom Myers, Kate Myers, Julie Marsh, Sue Malherbe and Jean Norton.

Those with new PBs included Jean Norton who has recorded a new PB every week since she did her first ever parkrun four weeks ago! Another PB next week, Jean?!  Also Mo Allen got a new PB, showing that all his hard work and training running up Pole Hill over the lockdowns has really stood him in good stead, although he had to have a long sit/lie-down afterwards to recover!



One of the things I love about parkrun is that people of all ages can take part, including children. I didn’t manage to capture Thomas and Jake giving each other a congratulatory hug after finishing their parkrun this morning, but fortunately they posed for a photo – and I really hope they enjoyed their runs.


We want children to have an overwhelmingly positive experience at parkrun; participating because they want to, in a way they want to; and in a safe environment at all times. But I completely forgot to say in the run brief this morning, that one of parkrun’s rules is that in order that this can be achieved, children under the age of 11 must be within arm’s reach of a parent, guardian or designated adult of the parents’ choice at all times. Hopefully if I put it here I’ll remember to say this the next time I’m Run Director!


I’ve saved the best until last, but I want to give the hugest of thanks to our wonderful volunteers who stepped up this week to make sure that the run could take place. So thank you to:

Alex PICKERING • Sharron ROONEY • Bridget SOLECKA • Angela LAMBERT • Steve PEACOCK • Maggie BAVINGTON • Ali SHEPPARD • Maureen BARRY • Anna ROMAN • Dylan WILLIAMS • Lynne DURRANT • Darren LAMB • Holly LAMB • Gail SEAL

One thing that we noticed today is that the Virtual Volunteer app that we use for timekeeping and scanning is very sensitive, which is a good thing from a Covid point of view, as sweaty, heavy-breathing runners don’t need to get so close to the scanners – the app will pick up the barcode from 2 metres away! However, one person this morning approached the barcode scanning station holding two finish tokens and two barcodes – because the app is so sensitive it got a bit confused and couldn’t work out which token went with which barcode! So could I put out a request that when approaching the barcode scanning station you keep a good social distance away and just hold up one barcode and one finish token at a time please?

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Our future volunteer roster is looking a bit thin on the ground for the next few weeks, which is always the way in the summer when people might be away on holiday. So please take a look at the roster here: future roster | Walthamstow parkrun and see if there is a week you could help out – why not try a different role that you haven’t done before? Just email walthamstow@parkrun.com with the week that you would like to volunteer, the role you would like to do, and your barcode number so that we can add you to the roster. And then you too could have that warm glow and look as happy as Anna does in the photo below!

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That’s all folks – next week your Run Director will be the very capable Steve Peacock so you are in good hands!

Ali Sheppard, RD

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Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Walthamstow parkrun Results Page.

The female record is held by Linda HUYCK who recorded a time of 19:11 on 12th April 2014 (event number 62).
The male record is held by Euan BROWN who recorded a time of 16:09 on 9th June 2018 (event number 274).
The Age Grade course record is held by Paul REDDAWAY who recorded 86.57% (18:22) on 22nd June 2019 (event number 328).

Walthamstow parkrun started on 26th January 2013. Since then 4,708 participants have completed 30,139 parkruns covering a total distance of 150,695 km, including 5,128 new Personal Bests. A total of 529 individuals have volunteered 4,364 times.