Run Report Event #73 – The One With the Coach Full Of Runners!

We say it every week - but what a morning we had on Saturday - it was absolutely fantastic!

So many firsts.... Jo did her first stint as Run Director and was amazing, Josh Smiles completed his first ever parkrun - we hope you've got the bug now, Andrew Jones continues his PB streak and for the first time got a sub 30 time and for the first time in our short history there was a coach parked up in the car park that had brought a coach full of runners! Blimey!

Jo's run brief

The coach belonged to a group from Bishop Auckland and we welcomed Evenwood Road Runners to the forest. Two of them had been before and this time bagged themselves a new PB - congratulations Gary Atkinson who took finish token number 3 & Gail Richards!

Evenwood Road Runners - Bishop Auckland

The group from Evenwood clearly helped to influence the number of first timers this week. Out of the 93 people who came to run, jog or walk the course there were 58 who were visiting for the first time.


So much to celebrate - Simon Canning completing his 50th parkrun and therefore joining the red t shirt gang and 12 people in total gained a new PB - including Keswick Junior parkrun hero Peter Toes! Congratulations to you all!

Thanks very much to the all our amazing volunteers this week - you are the best and all the lovely comments on social media prove it. Without you all we wouldn't be able to do this amazing thing each week. Thanks this week to: Diana MITCHELL • John SCRIVENS • Jo GRUCHY • Rachel JONES • Tanya COATES • Siobhan GASCOIGNE • Sonia DRYDEN • Brendan CARLIN • David WILSON • Andrew KNIGHTS • Janet KNIGHTS

All our volunteers, runners, walkers and spectators create such a brilliant atmosphere and with the forest surroundingS, hills and views, we really do have a spectacular parkrun.

Loop View

If anyone fancies joining us, you're more than welcome - all you need to do is register with parkrun UK.








Run Report Event #71 – another soggy one!

Summer - what can we say??? At least is was fairly warm and the rain at least washed away any sweat that may have been in your eyes. It's just such a shame that the rain was driving and hiding one of the world's most beautiful views!

parkrun tourists

BUT! The rain did not dampen our spirits and we were thrilled to welcome 56 people to the forest to join us for parkrun this week, 24 of whom had never visited us before. Despite the conditions 8 people managed to notch up a new PB this week, including Matthew Atkinson who was our first finisher - following on from his second place last week and a PB last week too - on fire! Joe Hudd was hot on Matthew's heels bagging himself second place & a new PB too. Whinlatter Forest parkrun volunteer Carol Harvey also bagged her self a new PB - well done everyone!

Matthew Atkinson 1st 3

Grace Walker joined the parkrun family this week and completed her first ever parkrun  - an amazing achievement and she was first back in her JW10 age category! Well done.

This week Jasper was our first parkrun dog back, along with his human Tanya!

Tanya & Jasper

All the fanfare this week, must go to our incredible volunteers who were prepared to stand out in the rain to make sure everyone could run safely and have a great time. We don't have enough words to thank you enough.

Volunteers Rachel - Volunteer





Run Report Event #70

Saturday was another fun morning in the forest for parkrun. 140 people came along to run, jog or walk the course with 71 people being new to the forest.

This week it was parkrun pledge day, where GPs and staff associated with GP surgeries pledged to come along to take part or volunteer at parkrun events in the UK. When the question was asked in the run brief it was brilliant to see so many hands go up to say that's why there were here. Our first GP back was Rose Singleton from Castlegate and Derwent Surgery in Cockermouth - our parkrun practice. Rose was also first lady and was accompanied by Gwen who was also the first dog back this week. In Rose's own words - her and Gwen narrowly beat a very speedy hotdog!

Speedy Hotdog

The hotdog in question was joining us for his stag do! It seemed weddings were the next theme of the day as we were joined by Chris Hare who later that day was marrying Caitlin Johnson. Chris was joined by some of his wedding party to make sure that he returned from running for the hills! Nerves or excitement clearly impacted well on Chris who achieved a massive PB - knocking 3 mins and 2 seconds off his previous best time! Chris was presented with a cake made by Rachel Jones to celebrate his wedding - we hope you had a fantastic day!


We met Maria from Oxford University who is undertaking some parkrun tourism research on behalf of the University. Our event is certainly one you'll remember and we're so pleased you could join us. We wish you all the best for happy parkrun travels and look forward to seeing your research!




An impressive 17 people clocked a new PB this week including Chris Crane and father in Law and GP Andrew Knights. Hazel Davies of Bodyfit Cumbria was keen to get to the finish to volunteer after her run that she also achieved a new PB.

Once again our volunteers were amazing, this week we thank: Samantha AYERS • John SCRIVENS • Hazel DAVIES • Jo GRUCHY • Rachel JONES • Rowan MATTHEWS • Siobhan GASCOIGNE • Sonia DRYDEN • Brendan CARLIN • Sally BURCHALL • Alan IRVING • Wendy SHILL remember parkrun only happens because of our volunteers, if you can help at any event in any role please do get in touch. All roles are easy to do and the team is very friendly!

Congratulations to everyone who took part this week and  to Ciaran Forde who took finish token number 1. Celebrations were all around for Esme Shattock who joined the red t shirt gang by completing her 50th parkrun. We also welcomed Lucy Andrews, Rosie Andrews, Josephine Hewson, Chris Jenkins & Ross Cleeton to the parkrun family as they completed their first ever run.

1st Finisher 1st 3

How fantastic is it that parkrun is for everyone? Run, jog, walk or volunteer we are here for you and we love celebrating all that happens in our Whinlatter Forest parkrun community.


Whinlatter Parkrun #65

A more typical Cumbrian day than last week still saw a great turnout of runners, with a group from BodyFit challenging themselves round the course. Training is clearly paying off for this group as many of them achieved a new PB! In fact there were 16 PBs achieved in total this week - well done to you all but a massive shout out to Andrew Jones who was 10 seconds off his best time last week but this week knocked a massive 20 seconds off his previous best!


Congratulations to Nick Evans for completing his 100th parkrun today. An amazing achievement! Welcome to those who completed their first ever parkrun - Archie Pheby-McGarvey & Rosie Wilkes.

In total 100 people came along to run, jog or walk the course this week with 21 different clubs represented. There was a large contingent from Victoria Park Running Club, we hoped you all enjoyed the course.

Victoria Park Running Club

Our volunteers as ever were amazing and this week we'd like to thank: John SCRIVENS • Hazel DAVIES • Jo GRUCHY • Rachel JONES • Rachel PIERCE • Janet EVANS • Maureen MIDDLEWICK • Sonia DRYDEN • Nathan FOX

Results processing

Good luck too, to our regulars who are tackling the London Marathon this week - we'll be watching for you on the television!


Run Report #64 by Jim Upton

One of the most scenic and challenging parkruns in the UK, Whinlatter Forest was a perfect choice for my 50th parkrun. It is also one of the friendliest, and RD Sonia made everyone feel very welcome in her briefing, which started with an Easter Egg raffle! Won by Sam Kent who was taking part in his first ever parkrun.  We also gave our best wishes to volunteer Chris Crane who is running the London Marathon next Sunday. All the volunteers were brilliantly cheerful and interesting to talk to while we were getting our breath back at the end of the run.

Sam Kent

Sonia gave a warm, actually very warm for Easter, reception to the 74 newcomers to the course, including eight on their first ever parkrun!  In fact the first 10 places were filled by runners new to the Whinlatter. On a Bank Holiday weekend it was not surprising that runners were from many parts of the UK, including Bath, South Shields, Dunblane and Enniskillen. Even our volunteers included a Tail Walker from Oldham.

Despite going from an altitude of 327 metres to 387, there is, according to Strava, nearly 200 metres of ascent on what is the hilliest parkrun in the UK. This is due to a 42 metre drop in the first half km,  followed by a two and a half km incline, then a short descent, another up-hill section on the extra loop, finishing fortunately with a 500 metre downhill section to the finish.  This is such a beautiful course, with absolutely terrific views of the mountains and forest.

Congratulations to everyone who took part, with particular praise to:

First Finisher: Dave Archer from Sheffield in 18mins 30seconds, the sixth fastest runner of this course.

David ArcherTop 3

Female Finisher: Amelie Marshall in 24:11. A regular FFF in her home run at Carlisle, running in the JW 15-17 category.

First Finisher JM11-14: Luke Birdseye in 21:14 from Uxbridge

First Finisher JW 11-14: Erin M McGurk in 24:37 from Keswick, the second Female Finisher with a PB

First Finisher JM 15-17: Oisin May in 25:09 from Enniskillen,

Most experienced park runner: Joshua Norman from Humberside who has participated in 432 events over 60 locations! He is in the SM 20-24 category!

22 parkrunners achieved their Whinlatter PBs and there were 17 parkrunners who have also volunteered more than 25 times. Including Andrew Davies who is volunteer at Whinlatter parkrun and celebrated his milestone 100th run this week - congratulations.

Andrew Davies

Nearest to their PB: Andrew Jones missing out by just 10 seconds. Andrew is a regular volunteer and runs mostly at  Whinlatter and Keswick.

And finally to all 125 parkrunners from our youngest runner, Max McGurk in the JM10 category, to James Evans, Tony Duncan, Peter Smith and Diana Mitchell in the 70 plus category. They all deserve praise for taking part in what could be termed the first Whinlatter parkrun of the Summer! It really was great running weather - warm, with no wind.

Of course none of the above would have possible without the fantastic hi-viz heroes: Brendan CARLIN, Laura CRANE, Chris CRANE, Imogen CRANE-PARR, Sonia DRYDEN, Jo GRUCHY, Ian HARVEY, Rachel JONES, Janet KNIGHTS, Andrew KNIGHTS, Erica RYAN, John SCRIVENS and Jim UPTON. Although they possibly enjoyed the best weather of their parkrun year, they have also been there in the freezing cold, teeming rain and raging winds, so a huge thank you to all of you.

As I said earlier this was my 50th parkrun, and I chose Whinlatter as I am a regular visitor to Braithwaite village and have a great love for the area.  I enjoy parkruns locally and also venturing further afield, but I also very much enjoy volunteering at our local junior parkrun where I am an RD. I feel that this gives me the best of both worlds - the enjoyment of running, and meeting new people when I volunteer.

Jim Upton

Many thanks to parkrun and all its runners and volunteers, especially those at Whinlatter!

Jim Upton


Run Report Event #63

It's was a Whinlatter Forest first this week as our Event Director Sonia finally managed to be able to join in and run at the event she set up over a year ago. In her own words Sonia said ' Who on earth designed that course?' Err, that will be you! Sonia was able to run due the amazing group of volunteers we have that dedicate their time to our lovely event and make it possible for Sonia to have the occasional Saturday off.

On that note, we wish to thank the volunteers this week who once again did a wonderful job. Samantha AYERS • John SCRIVENS • Hazel DAVIES • Rachel JONES • Rose SINGLETON • Sonia DRYDEN • Brendan CARLIN • David WILSON • Andrew KNIGHTS • Christopher CRANE • Laura CRANE • Janet KNIGHTS • Wendy SHILL • Imogen CRANE-PARR It was fantastic to see 3 generations of the same family volunteer this week - well done to the Knights & Cranes!

Knights & Cranes

Imogen Crane completed her first ever 5k parkrun whilst tail walking with her Grandad Andrew. Alongside Imogen Tom Hyde, Steve Cooper & Eve Westwood joined the parkrun family this week bu completing their first ever parkrun.

This week 95 people, ran, jogged or walked the course and all of them were smiling as they got to the finish line. Although it was chilly day on Saturday the sun was out which helped the views stand out - it was a beautiful morning for a run in the forest. Out of the 95 people, 46 were visiting the forest for the first time and 24 of you clocked up a new PB! There must have been a PB vibe as everyone from position number 10 to 13 clocked a new PB - Sam Ayers, Martin Bell, Nigel McGurk & Hazel Davies. We were delighted to see that Carol Harvey & dog Choc also gained a new PB this week!

Carol & Choc


There were representatives of 25 clubs at our event this week. Including a group visiting us from Newcastle University Tri Club - we hope it was great training for you.

Newcastle Uni Tri Club

Sam Ayers & Rachel Jones were the Run Directors this week. So far for Sam this role hasn't been plain sailing and this week was  no different with the scanners refusing to download the data. After a bit of a struggle, Sam eventually got there and the results were uploaded. If however, you notice anything strange withing the results, please do let us know and we can sort it out.

Sam & Wendy





Run Report Event #62

What a lovely day we had for event number 62. The snow tat had arrived in the week had melted and the forest was bathed inglorious spring sunshine. Some of our volunteers were without their usual thermals this week, so it must have been warm!

In the news this week is that parkrun world is a small world. David Greenslade who was tail walking this week was amazed to see fellow Winchester parkrunners Robert John Carter & Emma Carter.

Alongside the Winchester contingent, a further 69 people came along to run, jog or walk the course. We welcomed 38 people to the forest that had never taken part here before and we said hello to Carl Wood, Vicky Wood, Ruth Scammell, Susan Toal, Catherine Golby & Charlie Poate as they completed their first ever parkrun. Well done!

1st 3 finishersLucy Stobbart - 1st LadtDavid Greenslade

14 people achieved a new PB this week, including David Recchia who took position token 5, Lucy Stobbart who was the first lady back this week and Richard Jack who gained a new PB for the second week running - all that training with Bodyfit Cumbria must be paying off!

Thanks very much to this week's volunteers: Howard SEAL • David GREENSLADE • Diana MITCHELL • John SCRIVENS • Rachel PIERCE • Gail CASS • Sonia DRYDEN • Brendan CARLIN • David WILSON • Anna FERGUSON










Run Report Event #61

After exactly 50 weeks I decided to make my second visit to Whinlatter Forest. It had been long enough to forget …… to forget why this is officially the toughest parkrun in the UK. But it didn’t take long to remember that after the easy first 500 metres starting downhill, and full of confidence that maybe it wasn’t that bad after all, the uphills begin and some (like me) begin to wind down to a power walk, and then a general walk, and then …….. and then, to a crawl.

But before we look at how everyone did, let’s applaud the volunteer dream-makers this week which allowed the run to take place: Angela BROWN  •  Brendan CARLIN  •  Coral PRICE  •  Diana GUGLIELMOTTI  •  Howard SEAL  •  John SCRIVENS  •  Leon BOND  •  Rachel JONES  •  Samantha AYERS  •  Sonia DRYDEN  •  Suzanna CRUICKSHANK

So it’s now spring and not the winter of the Beast from the East which was just finishing when I last visited a year ago. And spring brought the attendance back into three figures with 100 parkrunners on the start line for the third time in 2019. Despite being 1,000ft above sea level at the start, the weather Gods were kind and presented the runners with 8℃ and a calm day.

After a few announcements from the Run Director she set us all off, so how did we all do?

Ryan Galea of Netherhall AC finished in first place in 20:06 with a new Personal Best time in his 5th parkrun, four of which have been at Whinlatter Forest. He ran 23:00 at his first visit and has run a PB every visit since. David Song finished in second place just over a minute behind in 21:13, with Charles Casey of Harrogate Harriers finishing third in 21:15 which was another Personal Best achievement in his 152nd parkrun.

The first lady to finish (and 5th position overall) was Kate Nicholas of Canicross Midlands who was accompanied by the first dog, in 21:53. This makes her the 6th fastest lady ever to run at Whinlatter Forest. She was followed in by Jodie Laird (12th overall) of Northern Fells Running Club in a Personal Best Time of 23:36. There was another Personal Best for third lady Samantha Ayres of BodyFit Cumbria who finished 19th overall in 25:05.

There were 31 runners who managed to run a Personal Best time which is a stunning statistic because if you discount the 5 unknown runners and those who were running at Whinlatter for the first time, it means that 53% of those who have run here before managed a Personal Best time.

38 runners were ladies and 53 were men, and included in those numbers there were 4 juniors. Don’t forget that while we love the youngsters running with us, if the junior is under the age of 11 they MUST be accompanied at all times during the run by an adult, which doesn’t have to be a parent, but should ideally be someone they know. Three of the juniors ran PBs today, while the youngest of them, Abby Wilkins, just missed her own PB by 30 seconds in the Junior 11-14 category.

There were 36 First Timers who joined the parkrun party today and among them were three who were running their very first parkrun and you have to admire choosing Whinlatter Forest as your first ever event. All I can say is that wherever you go from here, it’s getting easier. These three are worthy of a mention so well done to Brad Williamson, Alex Clarke and Callum Clarke. Welcome to the parkrun family. Now you have done that first run why not have another go at Whinlatter next week and set a new Personal Best time?

On Saturday there were 5 runners who were shown as ‘unknown’. It’s terrible to have a brilliant run, maybe get a Personal Best, and then fail to have it recognised because you have no barcode. PLEASE …. Don’t Forget Your Barcode. Need a new barcode? Or would you like your result as a text? Follow the link to your profile from your latest results email.

And remember please don’t take home the finish tokens. They are not souveniers ……..  DON’T BE A TOKEN MAGPIE.


Runners celebrating milestones this week:

Ian Harvey of Wigton RRC who ran his 200th parkrun, of which 13 have been at Whinlatter Forest. And to celebrate further he removed 34 seconds from his previous best time set four weeks ago.

Number of Commemorative T-shirts on show:

Junior White (10 runs) – 3 runners

Cardinal Red (50 runs) – 13 runners

Jet Black (100 runs) – 21 runners

Green (250 runs) – 4 runners

Blue (500) – 0 runners

Number of runners who have volunteered 25+ times – 11. Well done to them.

The top 5 attendees this week were:

Barry Shackleton (Darwen Dashers) 411 runs

Karen Shackleton (Darwen Dashers) 353 runs

Janet Glover (CSSC Sports and Leisure) 317 runs

Jason Murfitt 261 runs

David Bird 225 runs

These five runners have completed 1,567 parkruns between them.

Want to give feedback? Have anything to say or want anyone mentioned in future run reports?  Are there any corrections needed to this report? Please e-mail

VOLUNTEERS – REMEMBER that parkrun can only take place weekly because of the volunteers and marshals who give up their time on a Saturday morning. If you want to get involved, email This week, we had 11 credited volunteers so thank you all.

And potential runners remember that to officially take part at Whinlatter Forest (or any other parkrun anywhere) you need to be registered at but you only need to register once and the barcode they give you will be needed each week when you have finished the run. DON’T FORGET YOUR BARCODE.

Whinlatter Forest parkrun started on the 13th January 2018 with 139 runners and 13 volunteers. The course record was set the last time I visited Whinlatter at run #11 by Chris Arthur in 17:48, and the female course record was set by Emma Gould three weeks later at 19:56, which is the only time a woman has ever run under 20 minutes. There have been 2,540 different runners on the course, representing 458 different running clubs, and they have completed 4,729 runs. The average attendance is 77 every week and there have been 775 Personal Bests. The attendance record is 279. Whinlatter Forest parkrunners have completed 23,645Km (14,778 miles).

And that’s it for the report for run #61. If you fancy writing a run report, and putting your slant on it, get in touch. I’m sure the ED would love to hear from you, and it would give her another weekend off writing it herself. See you all again soon.

Barry Shackleton #lovewhinlatterforestparkrun

Special mention to Sam Ayers of Bodyfit Cumbria:

Fresh from her magnificent PB and volunteer stint, representing Bodyfit Cumbria Sam Ayers led a group of willing souls around the newly launched 10K route at Whinlatter. A sterling effort by all those who had completed parkrun before it!

For all those looking for a bit more of a challenge the Forestry 100 running series is now underway! The 10K event at Whinklatter takes place Sunday 12th May and entries are now open. If you would like to enter, you can do so here via the Whinlatter Forest website.

1st Finisher Run BriefStart 





Run Report #58 The one with the dogs

A beautiful morning at Whinlatter Forest saw a huge turnout of dogs of all shapes and sizes, with dog accompanied runners taking 1st and 3rd places, and at least 6 more dogs amongst the 58 runners!
Well done to the contingent from Keighley, and thanks to our volunteer photographer - we look forward to some excellent action shots.

REMEMBER No parkrun next week (9th March) and a Castlegate and Derwent GP takeover on the 16th!

This week 58 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 25 were first timers and 4 recorded new Personal Bests. Congratulations to Nick Evans, Wendy Terry, Jeff Cowton & Tristan Reid. Representatives of 17 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 9 volunteers:

Howard SEAL • Ian HARVEY • John SCRIVENS • Jo GRUCHY • Rachel JONES • Tanya COATES • Janet EVANS • Sonia DRYDEN • Brendan CARLIN

1st Dog


Run Report Event #55

Another week and we were once again hit with another road closure. This time Whinlatter Pass was closed at Braithwaite for resurfacing works, all being well this will be reopen in time for next week's event.

It made our day that 46 of you came along to share the day with us, some of you including our volunteers making the very long drive around to be with us - we can't thank you enough.

Out of the 46 people who ran, jogged or walked this week, 13 people were new to Whinlatter Forest. Five of you managed to bag a new PB, including Adam Creswell who took finish token number 1, Adrian Kamis, Jodie Gray, Richard Watson & Adam Gray.

We had a good number of dogs complete the course this week, Pickle was the first dog back and we welcomed Gwen & Sparkie to the Whinlatter Forest parkrun family. We can't forget Luna who was helping to hand out the finish tokens and Jasper who quite literally was tail walking!

As ever our volunteers were amazing, thanks this week to: Howard SEAL • John SCRIVENS • Jo GRUCHY • Rachel JONES • Tanya COATES • Sonia DRYDEN • Brendan CARLIN • David WILSON • Suzanna CRUICKSHANK • Pauline SINGLETON • Anna FERGUSON

A reminder that we have now turned off the private message function from our Facebook page, so if you would like to volunteer, or need to speak to a member of the team, please email Continue reading