Though today has seen a much sunnier day than we have had in a while, our parkrun course is so very saturated and it's simply not drying out.
Our Core Team has therefore regretfully decided that we will CANCEL the forthcoming TWO events on Saturday 29th February and Saturday 7th March to give the course maximum chance of recovery, with an aim to relaunch for our 2nd Birthday on Saturday 14th March. Of course, this will also be subject to the normal pre-event safety checks and we will keep you posted with progress nearer the time.
We are of also hugely disappointed to cancel our plans for Leap Day on 29th February and International Women's Day on 7th March.
We hope this early cancellation will give our wonderful, supportive, understanding Witney parkrun community of runners, joggers, walkers, volunteers and supporters the opportunity to make alternative plans for your next couple of Saturday mornings.
This winter has seen an unprecedented amount of rain with more cancellations throughout Oxfordshire than we have ever known in our collective many years of parkrunning! We should also remember that last winter, we only lost one single Saturday to snow and none to waterlogging. That said, we are working with several stakeholders to see what course improvements are possible for the future. While this is unlikely to help us right now, it will hopefully help reduce the impact of any future wet winters.
We thank you for your continued patience and we look forward to seeing you for cake and a Witney and West Oxfordshire Food Bank collection on Saturday 14th March. Please keep fingers and toes crossed - plus sun dances underway - until then! We miss you so much and look forward to seeing you soon.
Though it probably won't come as much of a surprise, we have sadly had to cancel Witney parkrun tomorrow. Here are a few photos of our pretty snow-covered course with a note from RD Dan:
"I look forward to my stints as Run Director. I love seeing and speaking to you on a Saturday morning so it is with a heavy heart that I have to cancel tomorrow’s Witney parkrun.
I’ve just walked our little Narnia of a course and whilst it’s looking spectacular in the snow, it’s not safe enough to allow us to parkrun tomorrow.
The snow has settled very inconsistently – in some areas the grass is poking through but only a few steps away it’s drifted to 8 inches deep. It’s very difficult to spot fallen branches, tree roots and in some places in the woods even seeing where the course is difficult. With temperatures due to be low overnight there is also a significant risk of ice.
Fingers crossed I’ll see you next Saturday. Enjoy your Saturday morning and keep safe and warm."
We look forward to seeing you next Saturday. Please share with anybody you know that might have been planning to come along tomorrow.
As you won’t have failed to notice, the Beast from the East has brought an icy blast and with more snow forecast in the next 24 hours, the Witney parkrun core team has made the very difficult decision to cancel our launch on Saturday 3rd March and postpone the inaugural Witney parkrun to Saturday 10th March.
After months of planning the first ever Witney parkrun, this has not been an easy decision, however, your safety is our first priority and with temperatures not expected to be above zero, the course is likely to be frozen making it dangerous in certain areas. Conditions are unlikely to improve between now and Saturday and as the course is mostly off road and new to almost all participants, we felt this increased the risk factor.
As the temperature is so low and the wind chill making it feel much lower, we were also concerned about the welfare of our volunteers who would have likely spent an hour in sub-zero temperatures. We want our volunteer heroes to come back time and again so we don't want them frozen on week 1!
With roads likely to be bad in places, we would rather you didn't end up having an accident trying to get to parkrun. The paths and roads in and around the Windrush Industrial Estate and untreated parking areas are also likely to be slippery and we don’t want to be the cause of any accidents.
By cancelling early, we hope we can get the word out to as many people as possible to save any wasted journeys, so please share this post to all your friends. It also gives you an opportunity to make other arrangements/plans for your Saturday morning. Many other local parkruns are also cancelling, so if you are considering going elsewhere, please make sure you check to see if they have cancelled before you leave.
Thank you for all your support thus far and we’re sorry for any inconvenience caused by cancelling, but we’d rather see you all in one piece next weekend where we will be celebrating our launch and first ever Witney parkrun.
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