Saturday 14 March – run report


The rain stayed off for a rare dry Yeovil Montacute, but at least we were running – obviously with the coronavirus situation, you will please need to keep an eye on our webpage and social media outlets (if there is any announcement about the banning of mass events and this stops parkrun, you’ll hear it here first..)


Even the England rugby shirt has been cancelled for the time being.. to be replaced by Sport Relief; did any of you try to "Beat Beethoven" in the run?

DSC_9551Nice puddles for reflective photos this week - though it's a worry when your reflection is in better focus than you are!


Thanks for adhering to the requests to give the other park users a wide berth – it was said that the definition of “right” in the bit “keep to the right” did seem to have a rather loose interpretation at various parts of the course! (as a hint – it’s the hand you write with, unless you’re left handed of course..)

However we have again received complaints from park users – in particular from two ladies who were completing their run and had the misfortune of just finishing as our runners started, and who were barged off the path – as indicated last week, reminded in the run brief and then seemingly disregarded immediately, this must not happen!

We will try to have extra marshals at the pinch points along the course (as we did this week) and if you see pedestrians / other runners coming, do please shout to your fellow parkrunners to move out of the way.

parkrun is a run, not a race, and should be fun for everyone – if this means that you slow down to avoid other parkusers, then do so – it would be much nicer if we weren’t needing to reply to the weekly complaints!

(we will need to meet with the Ranger at Ninesprings to discuss allowing us to come back again next year, so if complaints continue this may affect that – so please listen to warnings next week…)

Well done to our Milestone runners this week – lots joining the junior 10 Club, including Isaac and Jacob Slight, Matilda Baker and Cleo Randino and William Foster bringing up his 50th parkrun. Another notable, but non-T-shirt, milestone was brought up by Tim Carruthers who completed his 300th parkrun.

DSC_9574Awaiting the scores from the (other) Judges..!

This week 349 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 22 were first timers and 62 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 28 different clubs took part.

No sign of kingfishers - just the one unicorn!


The event was made possible by 43 volunteers: Mike YOUNGMAN • Adam D. HAWKINS • Howard BAILEY • Mark SHOTTON • Taryn MONKS • Martin CHAFFEY • Lynda CHAFFEY • Paul DAVY • Richard DODGE • Nick SALE • Karen TAYLOR • Hilary ASKEW • Richard SALE • Kevin Arthur STENNER • Robert EAGLE • Jen SNAITH • Karen EAGLE • Samantha LLOYD • Rosemary SHEPHERD • James BRATT • Karen CLOTWORTHY • Finlay CHILDS • Lisa HALLETT • Elisabeth BLACK • Carol KNIGHT • Christine GUNDRY • Paul ANGULO • Emma MULLIS • Niki CLARKE • Ian STEVENSON • Claire OBERTHUR • John LEWIS • Janet THOMAS • Kevin CHURCH • Paul SCRIVENS • Gill WETHERALL • Abigail FARMER • Kelly MILLETT • Alice WINES • Thomas LEDLIE • Alan PERKINS • Colin BANFIELD • Ben ADAMS

First across the line this week was Zak Hurrell in an excellent time of 16m45, ahead of Paul Thomas (19m00) and Robin Phillips (19m14)


First lady was Alexandra Bettley of Newbury AC, who finished in 21m34, ahead of Isabelle Whittle (22m40) and Elizabeth Chapman (22m45)


Amongst the Personal Bests recorded this week were Amanda Cox’s (30m07), Lynne Gready (31m23) Elliott Perrin (22m16) Michael Logan (22m08) Jo Hill (27m31) Mark Burton (27m40) Jackie Howe (29m33) Yau Chiu (25m20) Emma Hogbin (29m41) Amy Warman (29m36) Carl Bason (19m51) Ben Stradling (21m52) Leon Fox (22m48) Alan Forster (28m07) Nicholas Harriss (27m30) Natalie Robins (34m49) Jayne Hutton (45m30) Ben Park (21m57) Paul Parmenter (23m38) and Andrew Holt (25m05) – well done all! DSC_9536
Mark Burton ran a PB - this despite the disappointment of no-one wanting to play leap frog with him!


Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Yeovil Montacute parkrun Results Page. DSC_9642

PS The swans were synchronising nicely..
..think we'll have cygnets in Ninesprings again soon!


A bit wet for the visit from Paul & Jo!

Another cracking week down in Yeovil Country Park, where even the ever-increasing rain (which inevitably stopped after the tail walkers had finished…) and one where 453 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 20 were first time park runners, 78 were running new Personal Bests and 1 runner was the founder of parkrun!


Yes, we were lucky to be joined by Paul and Jo Sinton-Hewitt, the founders of parkrun – wasn’t going to say anything but couldn’t resist joining in the First Timer’s Brief; Deb asked “put your hand up if it’s your first parkrun”, I added, “put your hand up if you were at the first parkrun” – only two hands went up!

Next week - Leap Year!

We have a special day next Saturday as it is the 29th February - and as it's Leap Year, expect lots of requests for you all to be Leaping about!! (not that I have been giving this much thought but I reckon as you crest the bridge will be good!)

Imagine a good big leap off this...

DSC_9227 this, but higher!

Still no-one has indicated that they'll be wanting to make a public proposal before the start of the run - it's a lady's privilege on a leap year, so girls, do let us know and we'll see what we can arrange!!

Keep Right


I know we say each week that you need to keep to the right hand side of the course in both directions but again we have had reports that there were groups of runners across the path making it difficult for some of the later runners (and possibly other park users)
It is important that you do please look out for your fellow runners throughout the run please – with so many of you here and the course narrow in places, it does make for a much more comfortable all round!


Don’t Forget the Barcode!

A reminder that we operate the policy “No Barcode, No Time, No Exception” – and need sight of a hard copy barcode (we cannot take those off a ‘phone, I’m afraid).

Also, if you've forgotten to wash your hair, there's an impromptu shower from the Goldenstones roof!

The run

Yeovil Montacute parkrun started on 7th September 2013. Since then 11,472 participants have completed 79,173 parkruns covering a total distance of 395,865 km, including 13,050 new Personal Bests. A total of 844 individuals have volunteered 8,436 times.


The event was made possible by 38 volunteers – thanks to all of you:

Adam D. HAWKINS • Howard BAILEY • Taryn MONKS • Martin CHAFFEY • Lynda CHAFFEY • Paul DAVY • Noel FROST • Richard DODGE • Kevin Arthur STENNER • James LEGG • Robert EAGLE • Mike COLLINS • Karen EAGLE • Kim CAMPBELL • Rosemary SHEPHERD • Aidan MORRIS • Karen CLOTWORTHY • Lisa HALLETT • Christine GUNDRY • Nick KNIGHT • Debora WALKER • Emma MULLIS • Sarah BEERE • Claire OBERTHUR • John LEWIS • Janet THOMAS • Paul SCRIVENS • Gill WETHERALL • Zara SCRIVENS • Kelly MILLETT • Alice WINES • Thomas LEDLIE • Alan PERKINS • Colin BANFIELD • Amy RICE • Ben ADAMS • Cade MCFARLAND • Harisson RICHARDS


Well done to our Milestone runners this week – Trevor Strelley brought up his 100, whilst we had three 50 runners (Nick Davies, Alison Pearson and David Loxton) and to Max Bray who’ll be getting his 10 T-shirt shortly!

Well done Trevor!

You'll be surprised at how many photos are taken this week from under the Somerset Wildlife Trust gazebo....

..or roof of Goldenstones leisure centre for some reason!

First across the line this week was Matt Thackwell, who finished in a time of 17m33, ahead of Jody Bovey (18m02), and with an unknown runner in third place – don’t forget your barcode!


First lady to finish was Daisy Davies, finishing in an excellent time of 19m36, ahead of our Isle of Wight visitor M Lewis (20m06) and Lucy Bickerton (20m26)


Amongst those of you running new PBs this week were (who’ve run 20+parkruns) Elliott Perrin (23m09) Samantha Reed (31m52) David Moore (21m40) Kirsty Andrews (32m15) Matthew Harriss (27m29) Mark Burton (27m52)...

Mark Burton dodges the raindrops to get his PB!

...Rachel Moores (30m06) Rebecca Gould (30m04) Richard Hooper (26m33) Ben Stradling (22m44) Alison Parsons (27m12) Nichola Harriss (28m07) Sarah McDermott (28m58) Cathy Parmenter (28m23) Paul Thomas (18m36) Darren Frost (21m38) Andrew Gould (21m10) Sarah Reep (41m37) Andrew Holt (26m12) Hilary Askew (33m34) Barry Holder (23m13) Lesley Matthews (25m45) and Marcus Albano (18m17) – well done all!!


How to feel old - when someone you were at school with nearly 30 years ago comes to your run.. and his 14 year old has run 332 parkruns!

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

PS You might have seen that Yeovil Country Park has a bird trail running this weekend - you can spot things like this kingfisher!


(what do you mean, that's cheating?!)

PPS You will be pleased to hear that Montacute House was looking good today and that our parkrun tourists seemed to enjoy it!


The Long Gallery looks different - it's gone all "Tudor" - so much lighter..

..and the lawns have had a makeover!

PPPS It seems that it's all meant to be that I came to be involved here..


… will have to look up the family tree!


Go to your Happy place…

A rainy day at Montacute for this week’s parkrun – run number 147 this week, so only 3 left until we reach run 150; I reckon we’ll go for the Great Montacute Bake Off that week as to celebrate with cake seems appropriate! (Runners called Mel or Sue, Paul or Mary who want to volunteer to be judges, just let us know!).

The Greenkeeper Mr Allen gets the cart ready to go, with his caddies all in place to set the course..

..he's got the fairways looking lovely too!


It’s the Ryder Cup this weekend and after the “War on the Shore”, the “Battle of Brookline” and the “Miracle at Medinah” comes the “Mucking About at Montacute” – by far my favourite! (If you see the golfing film Happy Gilmore, you'll remember the advice to always go to your "Happy Place" - that's pretty much here every Saturday isn't it?!)

Putting the flags out near the water hazards..


We have noted before that many of you leave it to the last minute to arrive - this week however was something else!

The scene at 8.50am... where are the runners?!

..there's some under the trees..

..but they're mostly in the Pudding House!

That's better - everyone here now!!



Our event only keeps going with the volunteer marshals who stand out on the course each week - Dan Taylor's been promising that as soon as he reached 50 parkruns he'd break his volunteering duck - so here he is at the top of the Hill!

If you want to look this wet and cold - or come on a nicer day - just let us know through the volunteer e-mail address!

Dogleg - the tail runner spot always needs volunteers too!


We are coming into the Winter season and we have been in contact with the National Trust about the ways in which we can help protect the parkland. They have requested that we repeat our sojourn to our B Course on top of Ham Hill to give Montacute a chance to recover from you lot, so that the long term future of the parkrun is protected.

We will therefore be running at Montacute on Saturday 17th December for our Christmas run (fancy dress essential!)

There is no parkrun on Christmas Eve as Montacute House is closed – however we will have a last hurrah on New Year’s Eve, 31st December at Montacute.

We will then move up to Ham Hill for the whole of January and February – however from experience it can be pretty grim up there in nasty weather so the proviso will be in the likelihood of extreme cold/wet/wind the core team reserves the right to cancel the event at short notice (speak to the survivors of the run on 6th February if you want to revisit the report – - if you want reminding how ‘orrible it can get up there!). We have to consider everyone and whilst it’s bad enough for running in, standing as marshal in the driving rain with no shelter is no fun at all.


Saturday was of course International Parkrun Day – the 12th anniversary of the start of parkrun at Bushy Park, having come from just 13 runners – Paul Sinton-Hewitt’s article can be read here


Celebrating his birthday with us on International Parkrun Day was tourist Nick Dunk – who seemed to enjoy himself, and then dropped into conversation that he was taught maths by Ryder Cup player Lee Westwood’s father – must have known it was Ryder Cup theme for the Report this week!


Congratulations to our latest Milestone runner, with Ken Priest having clocked up his 100th parkrun – on his 50th run Ken finished in 50th place and a PB; fortunately it was 58th, not 100th place, this time (but no PB!).


This week there were 220 runners, and in Kerry Mullen’s 181st place, we reached 28,000 finishes since we first started! In total there’s now been 28,039 runs covering a total distance of 140,195 km – as they say in golfing circles, that’s a fairway!

The Majors

In the run itself, Bradley Seager, in his go-faster gloves, was first over the line in 17m53, the 6th time in 31 appearances he’s achieved that feat, with Jason Scott warming up for his debut as Run Director next week by finishing as second runner in 17m56. Tom Thick of Yeovil Olympiads AC was third over the line in 18m22. With Bradley also topping the age-graded results with a grade of 76.61%, next up was Dave Carnell with 75.04% for his time of 21m22 and Richard Clifton, who has taken long training runs to heart (having just run 104 miles non-stop!), who had a grading of 74.55% for his time of 20m26.

Henry's what golfers call a worm-burner - low to the ground and very hard to beat!

Current standings in the Men's annual points competition sees Rob Gundry at the top of the tree with 409 point0, ahead of Jason Scott on 399 points and Tom Thick with 392 points.

Oops - no barcode but definitely the first lady - not a man!

In the Female placings, the first lady must have forgotten her barcode (“unknown runners” are deemed to all be male!), so in the list, Holly Bigger gets the credit for being first lady, finishing in 21m21, ahead of Chrissy Smith in 23m18 and Kirsty Norman finishing in 23m37.

Read the greens - this one breaks from right to left...

Current standing in the Women's annual points competition has Holly Bigger leading the way with 499 points, ahead of Jo Pittard (468 points) and, fresh from Western Gazette glory and with a new PB of 26m47, Caroline Astington on 387 points.


Looks like Neil's got the yips!

Simon's got no socks on- found he had a hole in one!

Well done to the 30 of you who ran new PBs this week – amongst them (of the runners who’ve run at least ten parkruns) were Simon Carney, fresh from the Berlin Marathon, who ran 20m04 on his 72nd parkrun, James Legg 20m18 on his 110th; Mark Romans made the most of his sprint start as he ran a new best time of 22m12.


Mark tries to get the rub of the green at the start...

Tim Davey (22m23) and Toby Fry (22m39) both beat their previous times. Paul Barber (23m46), Andrew Gould (24m13) Joe Hardy (24m28) and Lisa Hallett (27m05) all got new PBs, as did Neil Mumford (27m06), Anthony Mander (28m17) and Mark Lloyds (28m40). Tony Robinson ran a fourth PB in a row as he lowered his best to 30m10 and Sue Ripley got her new best of 34m53.

There were still some tourists despite the rain, with Marcus Pearce down ffrom Nostell Priory, Robin Hamilton from Fulham and Mike Revis of Tilgate all here, joined by Jon Tofts from Longrun Meadow, Neil Malpas of Dursley and Ruth Watkinson of Stoke Striders.

Welcome in particular to Peter and Paula Speechley from the Conkers parkrun – always impressive to see the green 250 parkrun milestone shirts!

Is this the Belfry - or Amen Corner?

On the charge over the back nine

We also had a number of new first timers – including Rob Brazier, Scott Newton, Philip Mills, Miles Daffin, Louis Burke, Susie Parry-Jones, Nick Bragg, Mike Kendrick, Guy Selby and Anthony Meaden, and also Jimmy Flynn, William Richardson, Elaine Monks, Kim Campbell, Tom Speke, Roma Ryan, Rebecca Flynn, Katie Young and Lynn Cook – it’s impressive enough that we are still having new local runners come along after three years, but doubly so when it’s wet & horrible!

The view from the bunker..

..and from out of bounds..

..but if you're trying to hide in the deep rough don't wear the high-viz!

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

See you next week...

PS The Marshal's view..
..hopefully we won't need the brollies next week!

PPS If you're going for a score, try and get...
Birdie (if you can spot it, there's a green woodpecker in the photo!) - 1 shot under par...

Eagle (2 shots under par)..or even better -

..the Albatross - double Eagle!

PPPS We did have a visit on Saturday from the Fire brigade..
..but they wouldn't get me up on to the roof for a photo!


The scores are in…

The Judges await the runners to give their scores...

..and it’s a Ten from Ken (Priest – forgot to get that photo!) for another fabulous morning at Montacute House for the weekly parkrun, with 295 runners, of whom 25 were first timers and 72 of you recorded new Personal Bests. The annual Strictly Come Dancing series has now started – there was fairly nifty footwork going on this week, obviously in tribute!


The best line-up ever

Watch this space for news of forthcoming runs – we are rapidly homing in on #150 (22/10 – any ideas what we can do?) and on 29/10 the clocks will be going back – so we’ll be running the course in reverse! Bonfire Night on 5th November (hard to forget!) falls on a Saturday if you want to come dressed as a firework – unless you’re going off somewhere – and then there will be the count down to Christmas…don’t mention the C word!   Two stalwarts of Yeovil Montacute were having their last run here as their home parkrun (though will be back as tourists!) as Tom and Kaz Handley are moving down to deepest Devon.


Keep Dancing/running!

Fab-u-lous Darling!

Since we started in September 2013, we’ve now completed between us 27,819 runs covering a total distance of 139,095 km – meaning that runner 181 next week will be the 28,000th finisher!

We had new members of the Milestone clubs this week, with Aaron Seager reaching the ten mark and Aaron Harcom running his 50th parkrun (what are the chances of two Aarons being mentioned in the same week?!) together with Andrew Dunn and Dan Taylor. We were visited by returning tourist Lloyd Millichap who was running his 200th parkrun with us!


Bearded wonder - Lloyd reaches 200!

Phew! Aaron (in orange) makes 50 parkruns!

(Apologies to Dan and Andrew - can't find you in the photos!)


There was a four way leading group for much of the run, with Jason Scott, Nick Sale and Tom Thick only breaking clear from Bradley Seagar up by Odcombe Lodge on the second lap, and it wasn’t until the Hill that Jason Scott finally broke the others to pull away and finish in 17m53 – Nick Sale ran really well to cross the line in second and a personal best of 17m57 (that will be the altitude training of the Mont Blanc ultra-marathon paying off then!) and Tom Thick finished in third and a time of 18m09.

I just want to make it to the Tower - is there a ballroom there?!


Absolute filth darling - I loved it!


The Magnificent "Seven!"


Dancing gold? No - running Apricot!

The first three age graded scores were all gentlemen of a certain age, shall we say, this week, with V65-69 category Clive Harwood’s 20m47 giving a grading of 81.48% ahead of Bob Minting’s 79.94% for 21m11 in the same age category. Nick Sale is a mere whipper snapper (only M45-49) with a grading of 79.02% for his time. Runners now take over from volunteers and make up the top three of the Men's annual points competition, last year’s Points winner Rob Gundry back on top of the standings with 322 points, ahead of Aaron Harcom (302 points) and Tom Rowe (301 points).


Your all my favourites!

In the Female placings, Rachel Astington of Langport Runners (congratulations on the recent wedding!) was first lady for a second time as she finished in 20m50, holding off the challenge of Langport teammate Holly Bigger (21m07) and Jessica Powell (21m17).

Current standing in the Women's annual points competition sees Holly drop a point for the first time this year – now on 399 points – ahead of 2016 points champion Jo Pittard (368 points) and Lynda Chaffey (320 points).

Out of the 72 PBs this week (funnily enough I’m not going to mention all of you!), those of you who have run more than ten parkruns include Luke Baker with a PB of 19m38 on his 77th parkrun, William Parry 19m45 and Jonathan Rendall 21m48 on his 44th . Alex Gatty was also on his 77th parkrun as he ran a new best of 22m01, Mark Romans just behind on 22m19 and in a good week for the Griffiths family Archie ran a new mark of 23m17 with Barnaby just behind on 24m04 (Robert House separating the Griffiths boys with his 23m39).


You came out full bore, all guns blazing - full of energy!

Luke Flannery (24m30), Dale Middleton-Hunt (24m50) and Tom Alsop (missing his little mate Chester but still running new PB of 25m43) all ran well, with Eleanor Thomas the first of the ladies PBS on 25m44. Matt Willieson (25m47), Tom Graham (26m51) and Philip Andrews (26m59) all recorded new bests, as did Sandra Stockford with 27m15 and Slough visitor Robert Preston (27m24). Louie Travers (27m23) and Amanda Travers (27m26) made it a family affair, and there were also PBs for Sandra Levett (28m22), Tony Robinson (30m27) and Arthur Robinson (32m14). We’ll be having Hallowe’en fancy dress soon and we all remember Ali Collier’s outfit from last year – she ran a new PB of 32m36, staying ahead of Gary Hunt (33m15), Sue Ripley (34m58) and Carol “5 PBs in a row” Knight with 48m20 – well done all!

If you wonder who looks after all those fabulous costumes - it's John!

We were joined by a number of tourists, amongst them Sarah Booth down from Wooodhouse Moor in Leeds, the Sutton family from Parke parkrun enjoyed themselves and Mike Vallis enjoyed the course and appreciated that the volunteers were all smiling and cheering! Jackie Warren joined us from Great Carnard in Sudbury, the Mintings from Killerton and Lindsay Birdstall was up from Weymouth. Hope you all enjoyed it guys and will come back to see us again!   

It takes two to tango

Ebby and Gabi joined us after reading the running article in the National Trust magazine; where did you first find out about us? It would be quite useful to know!

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


Night night!  

PS Join us for the 8am course setting and.. DSC_0017 see Montacute in a whole new light

PPS On the week when "Brangelina" announced their surprise separation, unsubstantiated rumours about "another man" began to circulate.. 


..if the tabloids cotton on, remember where you read it first!


Winter is coming…


No, not a Game of Thrones report theme (read the books, not seen the TV series – can’t remember my Starks from my Lannisters…) but rather the realisation that the summer is fading and winter will soon be upon us –  the supermarkets have stopped selling barbeque charcoal and have started stocking Christmas chocolate; closer to home the sheep have left Montacute for the year (I imagine they’ve all gone “to the farm”…), the leaves have started to fall and the weather – well, this morning can only be described as…glorious!!


Next week sees the start of Strictly Come Dancing (and the Handleys' last run here before they move to Devon) - so please feel free to "sequin up" for the occasion!

(Chester - if you're reading this, we're all thinking of you, and look forward to seeing you get that 100th run in)


The first photos of the “Autumn Colours montage” have been taken – have remembered not to go to the side of the House with the evergreen trees this year!(made sure I kept Kevin in the photo as he stands in the same place each week so I know where to take the photo from!)

The Paralympics draws to an end tonight, following the success of the Olympics before it. It would be good to know if any of you have turned up to Montacute inspired by the superb efforts over in Rio of all of our British athletes – it’s been good watching the children singing along to the National Anthem on a regular basis and getting used to watching GB athletes win; I’ve tried to explain to them that it’s not always been this way – Great Britain used to win only a handful of medals (5 Golds in 1992 - well done Greg! – only 1 Gold in 1996, 11 in 2000 and 9 in 2004). Try explaining this to a 5 year old using  parkrun as an analogy – in 2004 there were just 13 runners running round the Bushy Time Trial but now there’s events in 14 countries over 5 continents, with more than 400 events in the UK and 90,000 runners every week; back then only people in the vicinity of Bushy might have heard of Paul Sinton-Hewitt, now pretty much everyone you talk to has heard of parkrun if not actually taken part in one!


At Montacute this week we were joined by Cass Castleton – if you get the chance click on his name in the results (he was tail runner today!) to see his stats. He’s now run 218 parkruns in 65 different locations but by completing Yeovil Montacute he’s now completed the full parkrun alphabet – the 24 letters in England plus Zary in Poland (there is no “X” – though Jason suggested to him he went to “’Xeter”!); he’s run parkruns in every country there is one – except Canada, where they’ve just started so he’ll be off there before Christmas! – and every Region of the UK, so he’s now off to volunteer in every region too (hence his volunteering here this week). Last week he completed a 100km race – he had the organisers delay his start time so he could fit in Fulham parkrun first!

Cass –we salute you!



With Winter coming one thing that might help is look to get yourselves a pair of trail shoes – it’s noticeable that there’s been a bit of slip-sliding about in the past few weeks! (Remember that parkrun is sponsored by Intersport (there’s Tony Pryce stores in Yeovil, Taunton and Dorchester) and you can get 10% discount when you show your barcode (or use code PARKRUN10 if ordering online at

Can you please try not to drop any rubbish at the park as it’s left to the volunteers to pick up any that are found. This morning I had to stop to pick up a buttercup – why anyone leaves a buttock lying about is beyond me… (thank you Stephen Fry for that line!)


Right - limbered up and ready for the Run report!

This week the sun was streaming down the Avenue on 291 runners, of whom 46 were first timers and 74 of you recorded new Personal Bests. There were only 16 runners who forget the golden rule – Don’t Forget Your Barcode! – but unfortunately that included two of the first three!


There's commitment for you - undergoing warm weather training for your 50th parkrun!

Congratulations to the newest members of the Milestone clubs – we had Mike Parrott, John Allan, Richard Davies and both Emma Burnell & Mike Bell reaching their 50 Club marks and Danielle Holm celebrated reaching the junior 10 Club milestone by running a new PB of 32m34.

How do you get to 50 parkruns? Just do it!


The run in the park with friends to the line - eyeballs out! 

Well done to the unknown runner, therefore, who looked suspiciously like Bradley Seagar and who held off the fast finishing Tom Thick of Yeovil Olympiads, and who crossed the line in a PB of 17m55 – this “run in the park with your friends” lark looks quite racy at the sharp end! Another unknown runner was third but our very own Jason Scott finished 4th across the line in a time of 18m46.


Current standing in the Men's annual points competition sees three volunteers still at the top of the standings – just wait until the “running points” start to outrank “volunteering points” now we’ve reached our maximum for three volunteering stints – Neil Biss, Martin Chaffey and Kevin Stenner all on 300 points. In the Women's annual points competition, it’s a similar story as Aime Biss and Jane Cunio are both on 300 points too – however Holly Bigger has a 100% record this year as she’s finished as leading female in each of the first three runs of the Points year to also have 300 points!


In the Female placings, Holly was first lady in 17th place overall in 20m51, ahead of Yeovil Olympiads’ Katie Lloyd (21m28) and Abbie White (21m32).


We had a good group of tourists this week – including Lorna Woodward all the way from Mount Clarence, Western Australia and Graham Wooodward from Chichester, Richard Beetlestone here from Worcester running his 210st parkrun (come back for the Full Monty in December & we’ll take you through the trees Richard!), Andrew Archer (just the 127th parkrun!), Ruth Jones from Nene Valley, Matthew & Ruth Camps from Weymouth, Janet and David Malpas.

Let's play "spot the tourist"!


Joanne Hindle was over from Winchester (where despite being a hilly city, apparently the course is flat!), Rob Huitson and Claire Sacre were visiting and Lloyd Millichip was here for his 199th parkrun and enjoyed it so much he’s coming back for number 200! Matt le Fevre has come down from Oxford and Natalie Reynolds was here from slightly further afield – South Africa! Hope you all enjoyed it guys and will come back to see us again!


When you hear the shout of "jump for the photo"... DSC_0087

..I usually mean over the dip!

Well done to those of you who ran new personal bests – of those who’ve run at least ten parkruns were Archie Tylor (18m58), Huw Vaughan-Jackson (19m41), Adam Maloney (21m11) and Kate Lloyd (21m28), as were Jon Bleby (21m31), Anna Lloyd (22m11), Neil Griffiths (23m05) and Nick Talbot (23m15). Montacute regulars Stephen Suttle (23m58) and Jo Pittard on her 70th parkrun (24m12) both ran new PBs, Andrew Gould (24m17) and Robert House (24m22) got theirs and Stephen Wade ran 24m31 in his 125th parkrun and 10th here at Montacute. Congratulations too to Tim Moores (25m33), Douglas MacKinnon (26m09), Robert Jewels (26m21) and Danisha Kerr (26m53), as well as Caroline Astington (27m04), Linda Membury (27m05 – Linda, the celebratory photo in the finish funnel wasn’t very flattering so doesn’t make the Report!) and Martin Simpson (27m09). Paul Swaine (27m19), Tony Robinson (30m36), Brian Jennings (31m27), Sarah Robinson (31m53), Sue Ripley (35m41) and Natalie Robins (38m44) ran new bests and I’m pleased to be typing the name of Carol Knight (49m01) again – whatever she thought as she crossed the line! 

The photo doesn't do justice to the arm-whirling for the full length of the finish straight that went on!


A sign of success - when there's 291 of you all running quickly the scanning queue soon builds up!

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

DSC_0096 P1010616
Take it easy now and we'll see you next week!

PS The sunshine plays havoc with the barcode scanners...

P1010617DSC_0187 was certainly too much for this one!

PPS Our hosts at the National Trust have Albion Falconry holding demonstrations each Saturday and Sunday during September
Somehow the historical costumes and a Saker falcon hammering between the trees just looks right somehow and well worth seeing!


Phizzwizards are made of this!


After the Birthday sunshine came the September rain, but even this was not enough to dampen the spirits of the 218 runners who made their way to the startline at Montacute this week.

There’s not quite the hundreds of photos of the birthday run to choose from for this week’s report – but with Roald Dahl Day coming up (Dahl’s 100th birthday would be on Tuesday) will see what we can do with the theme! (For anyone looking forward to a Strictly Come Dancing theme – I got my weeks wrong and that will be on 24th September when the thing actually starts!)

Roald Dahl is quoted as saying, “a life is made up of a great amount of small incidents and a small amount of great ones” – as we’re now on parkrun number 144, I tend to agree!

He also created his own language - "gobblefunk" - in which "phizzwards" are great dreams, gloriumptious means "glorious, wonderful" and I like frizzlecrump - the definition for which is "don't have a running race with it if you think you are fast"!

Photo policy

Before starting, we have been given a reminder by HQ of the parkrun photo policy. It would be good to have more of you putting photos up on to the Flickr page (I can let you have details of how to do this if you want them) – I try to use photos from each photographer in the week’s report.. this week I’m using nearly all of the photos taken this week!

The Policy on use of photos and videos includes:

-       no names: ideally, no names would be attached to images of individuals. If the story/communication would really benefit from names being included, only ever use first names

- no ID: avoid the inclusion of detailed information that could make individuals easy to trace.

-appropriate clothing: only use images of people in suitable dress to reduce the risk of inappropriate use.

- think positive: images should positively reflect people’s involvement in parkrun, e.g. smiling and laughing parkrunners. (Photos of people walking will be used only is artistically necessary!)



Pull your Magic Finger out - last one to the Chocolate Factory is a bad nut!

  • be inclusive: wherever possible, photographs should include groups, not individuals, and should represent the broad range of people participating.
  • delete if asked: if an individual, a parent or carer asks for any photo to be removed or deleted, it should be done without question at the earliest opportunity.

Points Competition

Each year there is a Points competition, culminating in the award of Points King and Points Queen at the birthday run – as you will have seen Rob Gundry and Jo Pittard receiving their prizes last week – and are noted on the parkrun bench at the top of the Avenue.

The parkrun points system is primarily for runners. It was designed to reward running. Points for volunteering were added to make it possible for folk who want to run every week of the year to not be disadvantaged when they volunteered and to encourage folks to volunteer at least 3 times a year.

The points system works by the runners being separated into their sexes and allocated points based on the position that they finish.

The first woman to cross the line will receive 100 points. The second will receive 99 and this tally will reduce until each runner only gets a point. This is repeated for the men.

Volunteers are allocated maximum points on the day that they volunteer up to three times per year. Where a parkrunner both volunteers and runs on the same day, they will receive either volunteer points or run points but not both.

Finally, Unknown Athletes are registered as male. This means that the male points are affected by the number of unknown athletes ahead of them in the event.

Watch out as the year progresses to see who gets the most points!


Don't be a vernicious knid and make sure you're not a Bad Nut - warnings given!

The Run

Despite the rain, it was a gloriumptious day for running round the Park. We had 218 runners, of whom 20 were first timers and 32 recorded new Personal Bests.

There was a welcome return to Sam Sommerville who left everyone else standing, crossing the line first in 16m54, with a good battle between Archie Tyler (19m10) and Bradley Seager (19m15). Mat Sparkes in 16th place took second place in the Age Graded standings (behind Sam) with 77.61% for his time of 21m13, with Fantastic Mr Fox (Fred!) taking third place in the age graded standings with a time of 20m40 giving him a grading of 77.58%.

Amongst the others running today were Danny (Taylor), Champion of the World who was practising his 30 minute pacing for the next pacer event - bang on! - and of course, James and the Giant Beech! The Wonderful Story of Henry Burrow continues as he finished in 33m02 this week but think George's Marvellous Medicine is not much cop - dad Neil finishing 2 minutes off his PB this week!

The current standing in the Men's annual points competition shows the benefit of the 100 points for Volunteering, as the top three are all beneficiaries , Neil Biss, Martin Chaffey and Noel Frost all on 200 points (please note only two of these got wet yesterday – I got mine for writing this Report in the warm in front of the TV!).

In the Female placings, Holly Bigger was first lady over the line in a time of 21m04, ahead of Matilda Woodard (who needed to keep away from Miss Trunchball if Mr Dahl is believed!) who finished in 21m35 and third lady Jessica Powell who finished in 22m00.

Current standing in the Women's annual points competition sees Aime Biss (Run Director and Tail Runner) and Jane Watkins (Volunteer Co-ordinator) both on 200 points, as is Holly Bigger – who got hers for finishing as first lady for the past two weeks!


Who's been whizzpopping?!

Well done to the new members of Milestone clubs, with Paul Thomas reaching the 50 parkrun mark and Katherine Fry the 10 Club. Well worthy of mention – though no new T-shirt this time – is Witney Symon who completed his 150th parkrun mark. A milestone of a different kind takes place on Monday as Rob Gundry joins the ranks of the Male Veteran 40 runners – Happy Birthday mate!

Esio Trot or Erah - which one wins?!

Amongst the new PBs this week were Archie Tylor (19m10), John Willy (20m44) and Greg Searle (21m39), with then a procession of PBs as Robert House (24m28), Andrew Gould (24m40) and Alfie Reynolds (24m57) came in in quick succession.  Stephen Hills (26m05), Kate Reynolds (27m17) and Paul Swaine (28m09)  all got theirs, and Corinne Hawkins (30m41), Jenny Pocock (32m10) and Carol Knight (49m39) were all recording new personal bests; well done all!

The Montacute version of the Oompa Loompas!

Amongst the tourists this week (not many as the schools are back!) were Damian Baker from Daventry, Dudley Garner from Norwich and Hannah McQuarrie from Finsbury Park. Anne-Marie Minty is our mate from Ally Pally, Irene Joyce was down from Swansea Bay and Leigh Kennedy usually runs at Berwick Springs – hope you all enjoyed it!

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


“We have tears in our eyes as we wave our goodbyes, we so loved being with you, we three”

PS The BFG had to put up with the other giants including Fleshlumpeater, Bonecruncher, Meatdripper and Gizzardgulper...
...we just have to contend with Sandwichstealer!



Three is the magic number


Shall I compare Three to a summer’s day?


What a day for our third birthday – the sun was out, an Olympic hero started us off, a world record superhero smashed the course record and there was a record turn out.. all this and free biscuits afterwards!


Many thanks to Olympic rower (and survivor of the Ham Hill B course) Greg Searle who kindly agreed to join us to present the Points awards for 2015/2016 and would have had the gold medal for patience after pretty much each and every one of you stayed for a selfie with him later.

There was also a big Montacute welcome to Paul Martelletti, who in 2015 ran a world record time for a superhero of 2hr29m57 in full Spiderman outfit, and followed up smashing our record with 15m14 (taking 50 seconds off Ryan Holroyd’s previous 16m04 time) before heading up to Cheltenham to win the Half Marathon there in an obscenely fast 1hr08m40.

Thanks for coming chaps, it was really nice to see you both and you’re welcome back here any time!

Greg Searle addresses the runners - it's in his contract to be accompanied by a little Herbert...


Greg stops the selfies for a barcode scanning break - "I wish I'd worn some makeup" was heard from the waiting queue!

With a birthday comes presents and we are very lucky to have been presented with a new trolley that will help us set up the course each week, which has come through the generosity of the parkrunning members of Running for Time – thanks guys, it is really appreciated. Following the run we found that we had a present of 100 shortbread biscuits donated by out hosts at the National Trust, so many thanks for these too.


The Running for Time crew present our new trolley (with Dave Purchase hiding behind the balloons!)

We were pleased to present prizes to our Points winners for the past year in the shape of Rob Gundry and Jo Pittard – you can look out for their names added to the parkrun bench at the top of the Avenue!


Rob collects his trophy..

..and like some Great Pretender, in action at the top of the Avenue...(Freddie Mercury would have been 70 today; couldn't think how else to shoehorn the reference in!)

Jo Pittard gets her prize

Does that make Raisin a "Pointer"?!


I'll explain how the Points work in a future report - but do look for the newly-engraved plaque on the bench as you run past

As it is our third birthday I will include the full statistics the parkrun produce each week. Yeovil Montacute parkrun started on 7th September 2013, and since then there have been 143 events with 4,164 different runners, including participants from 356 athletics clubs, who between them have completed 27,015 runs covering a total distance of 135,075 km, and there have been 5,204 new Personal Bests. Total run time is now 1 year 181 days 3 hours 20 minutes and 45 seconds! Paul was the 100th separate first time finisher and the average attendance is 188.9 runners, and the average parkruns per runner is 6.5.

Upping that average are the latest of our regulars to reach the Milestones - Jim Beech on getting to his 100th parkrun and both Helen Nesbitt and Donna Rayner got to their 50th runs; well done all!

It's his 100th run! Well done Jim Beech!

In the run, Paul Martelletti of Victoria Park Harriers & Tower Hamlets AC was first over the line in 15m14 on his first appearance – with an age grading of 87.64%! - ahead of Vincent Riviere who was “best of the rest” in 17m47 (any other day, that time would have been fantastic!) and Owen Astington of Langport Runners won the battle of the newlyweds as he finished third over the line in 17m51, holding off the late charge of Jason Scott.

A sea of red, white and... well, yellow!

Is it a bird...

Is it a plane...

No it's Paul - and he's the fastest Spiderman, not Superman!

The run for the "best of the rest" as Paul disappears into the distance...

Swallow hard! Jase just misses the hard banking bird!

I mention the current standing in the Men's annual points competition (which starts again this week) only as it’s the only time I will be in such exalted company!
Paul MARTELLETTI (Victoria Park Harriers & Tower Hamlets AC) 100 pts.
Neil BISS (Wells City Harriers) 100 pts.
Martin CHAFFEY (Yeovil Town RRC) 100 pts.

Holly on way to PB and leading lady status

In the Female placings, Holly Bigger ran a new personal best to finish as first lady in 18th place overall and a time of 20m49, ahead of Rachel Heard (is that the new Mrs Astington?!) who finished second (25th overall) over the line in 21m06, with Jessica Powell third lady (35th overall) over the line in 21m49.

Some red white and blue outfits were quite criminal... (that's for any New Zealanders reading!)


On a day when there were records being broken all round, we welcomed 57 first timers to Montacute and there was a massive 54 new Personal Bests. Amongst these (those of you who’ve run 10 or more parkruns) were the first placed lady Holly Bigger, a new best of 20m49, Jason Greenwood (20m58), John Willy (21m01) and Adam Maloney (21m21).  Aaron Harcom ran a new PB 21m42 (Aaron’s been getting racing tips on Twitter from Paul so watch out for more to come!) whilst Damon Bridge (21m41) and James Newbury (21m52) also recorded new marks.

Jack Clotworthy has been banging on the door of a PB for weeks – restraining himself at the pacer event and actually stopping in the finish straight at Weymouth so as not to record one on “foreign soil” – and achieved it on our birthday with a time of 23m08, with Holly Parrott not far behind in 23m56, whilst John Bills (24m06), Paul Rothwell (24m21), Andrew Robinson (24m44) and Jenny Pocock (32m34) all going faster than they ever had before!


Tom Alsop got his new Personal best in a time of 25m44 whilst there was double celebrations in the Hawkins household with Adam Hawkins running a stormer to set a new PB of more than a minute to finish in 30m45, just behind daughter Kyra’s new best of 26m22. Carolyn Milner ran 31m28 for her new best and Maddie White got hers with 36m11.

Adam sets the pace from the back - very much like Mo Farah in that regard!

Arthur Robinson ran a new PB of 33m54 (despite the wind resistance of his cape!), outsprinting Sarah Robinson who got her PB of 34m00, and well done to Carol Knight who got her new PB in breaking the 50 minute mark for 49m57.


Spot the tourists!

Amongst the parkrun tourists this week (and there were loads, so apologies if I don’t mention you all!) were our new course record holder Paul Martelletti who normally runs at Mile End and leading the chase was second finisher Vincent Riviere, on his 50th parkrun, who has racked up 36 parkrun venues (he runs at Gunpowder parkrun near the Lee Valley white water centre  - but restrained himself from jumping in the fountain after!). Rachel Revett was down from HQ at Bushy park and enjoyed herself depsit the “bump at the end”!, whilst Martin Kensett usually runs Frimley Lodge parkrun. Adam Rymill was over from Crystal Palace (no Eagles here Adam, but did you see the peregrine falcons on the lawn?!).


Peter and Pat Jackson were down from Huntington parkrun and ran round with Boushka the dog, whilst Jason and Riley Kenney were here from Linford Wood in Milton Keynes

Peter Jackson has run 145 times at Cambridge parkrun and was here for his 216th parkrun, Judith Simmons enjoyed the difference from her usual Aylesbury parkrun (duck!) and the Parkinson family from Bournemouth (Simeon, Caleb and Richard) all enjoyed their run at Montacute – despite the embarrassment of Uncle Mark being the one who took the “red white and blue” theme literally to his head!

What do you mean, "embarrassing Uncle Mark"?!



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


Yey! We're here again next week!

PS He didn't join us this week but you may have seen Chris Burton in the park before the run..
..he still holds the World Record for fastest half marathon dressed as a TV character - but left the Sportacus outfit at home! Two World Record holders in one week - we spoil you!

PPS Everyone ought to have a favourite tree..
..Kev points out his!

PPPS I'm told that Montacute parkrun is a good hangover cure..
..even if it doesn't feel like it at the time!



All for one and one for all!


With Yeovil Montacute parkrun cancelled to allow for a production of The Three Musketeers at Montacute House (which was very good by the way!) it makes you think the Musketeers' maxim of "All for one and One for all" could quite easily apply to parkrun too!

There was no parkrun but there were still a few who hadn't seen that we were cancelled or were here for the I am Team GB event that never was

Well done to all of you who went & did a bit of parkrun tourism - hope you enjoyed your runs elsewhere. Simon Ferneyhough went to Poole, and enjoyed his run somewhere flat "Montacute's inclines have done wonders for my pace though, managed my fastest 5k ever at 30:30", whilst at Blandford it appears someone's stuck Neil Biss up a tree to take photos of the Yeovil Montacuters finishing!





At Andover Simon and Dave joined the Warr family for "Decent weather and buggy run number 2. Hard work on the back!"


The Pollards were off on their travels again... "So we were off to Trowbridge this morning to take in the Southwick Country Park Parkrun. When we arrive we had a warm welcome (from someone I recognised but couldn't place) " you up from Yeovil then are you, havinig read our t-shirts. One of Neil Biss's lot to which we replied yes. I'm your ambassador (then the penny dropped trail run on the B course) Matt Warr used to be event director before Neil didn't he. He then have us IAMTEAMGB stickers and we waited for the start. In the mean time two familiar faces in the form of Karen & Bob Eagle turned up. We all had a good run around a very nice course and as per normal Bob was soaring like an Eagle as he shot past me on his last lap whilst I was still on my 2nd one."


Also at Southwick were Nikki and Neill - "Myself, Neill and Millie decided to attend the  Southwick Country Park PR today as there was no Monty this so happens it's their 5th Birthday next week!

A really lovely run 2 and 3 quarter laps on paths and flat! There was one small incline that you ran twice but certainly no where near the hill we are used to! Very friendly crowd and as usual the dog got more attention and encouragement than us! Happy with a time of 32.52 quicker than my recent Monty attempts! If anyone was to go would recommend getting there early as there is very limited parking! We are trying to get the park run alphabet so we have now ticked S off the list!"



Team Montacute this morning at Moors Valley were Tom and Karen Handley with Fred and Sue Fox. It was a great occasion heavily focussed on the 'I am team GB' event taking place across the country today. Would recommend this parkrun to anyone visiting this area - beautiful location, flatish and off-road gravel tracks - Kaz Handley

At Weymouth, Jack Clotworthy followed up his near PB at the pacing event with another near PB... "So here we are, the only montacuters we could see, at Weymouth's 3rd birthday, and Jack aiming not to get a pb, as he wants to get that at Montacute !! Lots of clapping,singing, warm ups and waving! Not sure Jack enjoyed that bit!! Toffee very excited because she has come too! Then off they went! The Campers in the middle of the park were quite bemused by it all! As expected Jack did it in 23.44, BUT waited before the funnel to get his later finish time! So funny!! But we all enjoyed it!!"

I hate having my photo taken and I am not singing!

The main obstacle to dodge, made a change from sheep, cows and poo!

Smiling and waving ! Woo hoo at the start!


I’m going to do it – I’m mentioning the Big O!


Oh Pretty Woman - that new Volunteer shirt looks good!

Whilst we have been asked not to mention “the O word”, they didn’t say anything about “the Big O” – so a tribute to Roy Orbison it is!

The Crowd

It was Pacer day at Yeovil Montacute, with a team of 10 volunteers running round (with greater and lesser success – though in my defence I was pressed into service at the last minute and my Garmin ran out of battery halfway round!) at set paces – though none of them were fast enough for Sharon Barlow of Darlington Harriers who broke the Ladies’ record time with a new record of 18m44 and an excellent 4th place overall!


Running Scared

Thanks to all Volunteers this week - special mention to Martin Monaghan who drove all night to join us from East Anglia and take up his position at the top of the Hill!


Working for the (Wo)man

No parkrun next week – Saturday 27th August

It was another cracking day at Montacute on Saturday – please remember that next week there is no parkrun here  as there is a performance of The Three Musketeers taking part at Montacute House; we will instead be having a report of travellers’ tales from you all as you go off on parkrun tourism – send your photos and reports to (if you go dressed as a Musketeer to any other run – then much kudos!)

Here’s the sort of thing I want – this is Rachel Holmes’ report from Fountains Abbey parkrun;

“My 2nd Parkrun at the beautiful World Heritage site of Fountains Abbey, the most complete Cistercian abbey remains in the country. A shower came over as the run director did he's briefing, letting us know there was a pacer for 28 minutes, "you will spot him, he's dressed as a monk" The whistle went and off we went.



The course is all on wide tarmaced paths. Two loops, a shorter 2km loop, taking you around the Abbey, then the longer 3 km loop around the Georgian Water Gardens, before coming back around the Abbey. The course is relatively flat, but there is a long hill, which you run twice. The second time, the finish is at the top. The showers stayed away while we ran, but returned as we made our way back up to the visitors centre. I got under the 30 minutes at 29:45, position 211 after a determined sprint up the final hill.”

Thanks Rachel – there’s no Montacute run next week, you might as well stay up there; we’ll need about 300 Fat Rascal cakes for the Birthday if you think about it!


If you go further afield, we like to see photos of that too!

Saturday 3rd September – Party Time

To coincide with Donna Rayner’s 50th run – oh, and our third Birthday! – we will be having a Party!

Please come back to Montacute resplendent in your Red, White and Blue outfits. If you want to bring cakes or anything, do feel free…

There will be a presentation of the awards to the Male Points and Female Points winners for the year – watch out for a special guest presenter! The final standings in the Points competition sees Rob Gundry and Jo Pittard both hold on to top spots – well done both!

Final standing in the Men's annual points competition:

Rob GUNDRY (Wessex Wizards Triathlon Club) 3827 pts.

Michael PARROTT (Unattached) 3783 pts.

James LEGG (Yeovil Town RRC) 3365 pts.

Final standing in the Women's annual points competition:

Jo PITTARD (Unattached) 4174 pts.

Nicola HAYES (Running for Time) 3606 pts.

Kirsty NORMAN (Gillingham Trotters RC) 3241 pts.

Running with Juniors - IMPORTANT; PLEASE READ

There really are very few rules for running at parkrun; register & get your barcode, turn up, run – don’t forget your barcode; if you’re running with dogs, one per person and keep them on a short lead; respect the other park users and your fellow runners; and the rule on under 11s running within arm’s reach of a responsible adult.


This is the right way...

On the last point, the parkrun rules on their Wiki page (which is the instructions to the core team who organise the event) says:

We are really pleased to say that children are permitted to run at all our events. While the official guidance from UK Athletics does not permit children under 11 to race at the 5k distance, there are no obstacles to allowing them to take part in our events for fun.

The following statement clarifies the official parkrun position on children at our events. Parents of children under 13 should note the following: We should make clear that the governing body (UK Athletics) say children under the age of 11 should not take part in open competition of 5,000m distance. However, provided these children are not put under any undue pressure to perform by teachers, coaches, parents or guardians they may take part for fun. The phrase undue pressure to perform is obviously open to interpretation and is a rather sensitive issue. Enforcing the policy will always be tricky, but we should all be ready to explain it to parents, guardians and coaches if approached.

Our general rule of thumb, however, is that we prefer to see our younger runners smiling when they cross the finish line. There's plenty of time when they get older for pain and suffering. Children under 11 must be within arm’s reach throughout the run at our 5k series events by a parent or guardian. This is a requirement of our insurance and you do not need to be apologetic about it. Please include this in both your New parkrunners' & Tourists' Briefing and your Pre-run Briefing. The policy is also stated on the course page of every parkrun event website, mentioned every week in the national newsletter, and in the public-facing FAQ - ‘Can children take part?’ so no-one should be surprised by this. As Event Teams you have our full backing to remove persistent flouters of this non-negotiable rule and Head Office will be happy to write to them if deemed necessary. Under 11s who are volunteering or spectating should also be accompanied by their responsible adult throughout their time at a 5k parkrun.


Junior marshals need to be kept under control too!

At 2k junior parkrun events children can run unaccompanied. Please note that whilst we don’t have a junior parkrun at Yeovil Montacute, our friends at Longrun Meadow in Taunton do -  - and David German organises his free monthly junior runs over at Langport.

Please be aware that we do take the rule seriously – ours is a tricky course for little legs and some of the sheep are nearly the size of an 11 year old; we don’t want anyone to get hurt. If a “loose” child were to get hurt the insurance that covers our event may be invalid.

Please also note that the Core team cannot, I’m afraid, find appropriate adults for your children to run with.



Congratulations to Yasmin Rayner who completed her 50th parkrun this week; there was only one joiner of the 10 Club  – me! (what do you mean I’m too old for a T-shirt!). We will have Mike Parrott, Donna Rayner and Paul Thomas all reaching 50 on the birthday run – can I suggest you don’t have breakfast that morning; I can sense a cakefest coming  on!

Run Report DSC_0011

This week there were 269 runners, of whom 51 were first timers and 37 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 37 different athletics clubs took part. DSC_0129

Only the Lonely - Tom loses his barcode but finds a friend

#DFYB – Rule number 1; don’t forget your barcode! At this week’s run the first two runners to cross the line both forgot their barcodes this week so are “Unknown Runners” with no times recorded – first legitimate runner to finish was therefore visitor Liam Marsh of Blyth RC who finished in a time of 18m38.


In Dreams - Sharon zooms to new course record

In the Female placings, Sharon Barlow ran the new course record of 18m44, but Lilly Hawkins wasn’t far behind, recording a new personal best of 20m02 to finishing 11th place overall. Abbie White of Yeovil Olympiads AC was third lady (28th overall) in a time of 21m46.

Judge your Pacer!

Well done to all of you who recorded new PBs as a result of the Pacer event. The lovely Fitbit vests are good and stand out well amongst the crowd.

Pace time:           Name:                  Actual Time:                       (PBs inspired!) DSC_0143

20 Minute           Neil Biss                               19m59   - pretty much bang on!

(Luke Baker (19m41) Lilly Hawkins (20m02) Max Davies (19m46))


22 Minutes         Rob Gundry                        21m49


24 Minutes         Jack Clotworthy                23m45 – gave up his own shot at  a PB to pace you lot; we'll make him the 23 minute pacer next time!

(Kevin Doherty 23m48, Michael Waters 24m17)


26 Minutes         Nicky Hayes                        25m42

(Zoe Kirby 25m54 Jake Denney 25m50)


28 Minutes         Lyndon Coles                     27m50

(Heather Membury 27m39, Nick Cawlishaw 27m44, Jeff Dawe 27m50, John Forrest 27m53)


30 Minutes         Tom Handley                     29m25


32 Minutes         Janet Pollard                      31m48

(Sarah Stone 32m13 Katharine Sheehan 32m31)


34 Minutes         Kaz Handley                       33m50

(Graham Ambridge 33m24 Simon Ferneyhough 33m24 Jackie Calderwood 34m04)


36 Minutes         Roxanne Pratt                   35m51

(Mark Burton 35m33 – 3.5 minute PB! – Tracy Collins 36m12)


Wooly Bully - there are ways and means of encouraging!

38 Minutes         Martin Chaffey                                 37m09


Love Hurts... -DSC_0384

...but also helps up the Hill! DSC_0389

Crying - "I was alright for a while" said David

Amongst the others of you who got PBs were Darren Frost (22m50), Andrew Dunn (23m24), Jo Pittard (24m28) and Daniel Burnell (32m53) – well done all! DSC_0213

I'm Hurtin' - the Hill has that effect...

With the summer holidays drawing to a close, we had a whole host of parkrun tourists join us as they head to or from further south west. Joining us this week  were Colin, Miranda and Joely from Kings Lynn, Sarah and Emily Halll from Shrewsbury, Eleanor from St Albans and Helen Manners who usually runs at Cirencester. Emma Mason was up from Southampton, Tom Hartgill (who was scared of the sheep!) here from Basingstoke and Dan Beeston here for a third time from Nottingham (hope your Mum’s OK – you know you’re welcome to join us any time you need a beer and an ear (or a run and a bacon sandwich)).

We had some visitors from much further afield – Max and Jade Davies joined us from Toronto and the Buckland family enjoyed a typically English run as they visit from central New Jersey!

Arthur has been inspired by the other "O" - watch this space; "(I'd Be) A Legend in My Time"

Kevin and Lisa from Bournemouth have now got parkrun envy and we also had Jason from Bath, Mark Athier from Norwich and Kim Hunt & Maggie Stokes join us from Poole. Oscar and Giles Pavey were here – any relation? (If you want to bring Auntie Jo here one day I think she deserves a bacon sandwich!). Good to see you all – you all behaved yourselves so you can come back any time you want!

This week’s full results and a complete event history can be found on the Yeovil Montacute parkrun Results Page.


It's Over!



Nice legs - if you've got it, flaunt it! DSC_0223
Think we all need a T shirt like this!

PPS Reflections in the mirror...
.. it's OK, it's just one of those top of the Hill mirages - you don't really look like Steve!


The Montacute Tales

All that glitters is not gold - except in the case of Montacute House, where it is always pretty golden!

The Prologue

The goal of pilgrimage may well be a religious or spiritual space at its conclusion and reflect a psychological progression of the spirit in yet another kind of emotional space” – so join our weekly pilgrimage to the spiritual space of Montacute House for a bit of emotional space!

On a day when Montacute House played host to both the weekly parkrun and an outdoor theatre edition of “The Canterbury Tales” (one called almost say a super Saturday…), the sun came out and the setting looked glorious. In Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales the characters are divided into those who pray, those who work and those who fight – here we’re more those who volunteer, those who run and those who do both!

Those that run...

..and those that work!

We had a number of milestones this week – joining the 10 Club for juniors were Archie Tyalor (who ran a PB of 20m04 in doing so), Shaina-Rose Verral and Arthur Robinson, whilst Montacute’s very own Adam Hawkins joined the 50 club this week after returning from travels round Ireland. We were also joined by Melanie Young and Wendy Watson who both chose to celebrate their 50th runs here as tourists.

Joining the 100 Club was James Hawke – who was disappointed that he wasn’t allowed to order his black 100 shirt until he had actually completed it so made his own – and a milestone for Richard Dodge who has now done 112 parkruns but was completing his 100th at Montacute. Well done all! (It’s Lynda Chaffey’s 100th volunteering stint next week – if I think about it you might get a bit of Dorset Apple Cake to celebrate with her!)

The pre-run nerves ahead of the "big day" - 100 up!

This is James when not heading towards the toilet!

Another personalised T-shirt - there's some Tales in those 100 runs I dare say!

Adam Hawkins - 50 not out!

This week there were 273 runners, of whom 17 first timers (including Haiden Watts, substituting for mum Caroline – though she still had a bacon sandwich at the end!), and 48 tourists – which included representatives of 26 different athletics clubs and means that since we started just under three years ago, there have now been 4,055 different runners completing runs at Montacute, including participants from 347 athletics clubs!

The Summoner's Tale - Aime calls them to order!

The Pardoner's Tale - what did the run director say? (I was behind them and heard every word!)

In the run, there was an unknown runner crossing the line first and just in case you didn’t know who he was the first time, Tim then ran a second lap so you didn’t know him all over again! First finisher with a barcode was Daryl Phillips of Bristol & West who finished in 18m28, with junior Tom Richardson crossing the line third in 18m37.

The Tale of the Unknown Runner - do you know this man?!

The Priest's Tale - Ken keeps those behind him enthralled!

The Parsons' Tale - Dale appears to be keeping Mark Larcombe amused!

The current standing in the Men's annual points competition, with just one exciting week to go, sees Rob Gundry still atop the list with 3,727 points, ahead of Mike Parrott, who doesn’t get extra points for a PB of 19m00 but does go up to 3,686 points, and James Legg appears to have consolidated bronze medal place with 3,312 points.


In the Female placings, Lilly Hawkins of Wells City Harriers was first lady (14th overall) in a new personal best time of 20m19 - the third time in 13 appearances she’s been leading lady – with Holly Bigger of Langport Runners second (28th overall) over the line in 21m20 and tourist Sarah Henderson of Edinburgh University Hare & Hounds third lady (38th overall) in a time of 22m21. Alison Engledew topped the age graded standings with 80.64% for her time  of 23m04 (43rd overall). In the Women's annual points competition, Jo Pittard now stands on 4,080 points ahead of Nicky Hayes’ 3,519 points and Kirsty Norman on 3,146 points.


There were 35 new Personal Bests recorded, amongst them John Bills (24m50), Philip Andrews (27m07) and Simon Ferneyhough (34m47), whilst Carol Knight got a second PB in a row with 51m21. Henry Parish ran a new best time of 21m08, Gary Millner got his with a time of 27m55 and Amanda Travers was another to PB in a time of 27m45.

Travellers’ Tales

The marked absence of a balloon festival in Montacute meant that the pilgrims of Ashton Court (where there was one!) came down for the day to join us – perhaps we can all return the favour on Saturday 27th August when we are cancelled here due to another event at the House; I’ll be looking out for your Traveller’s Tales that day, to be sent please to

The Canterbury Tales set out the tales told by pilgrims travelling to Canterbury with a prize of a free meal at the Tabard Inn – no promises but there might be a bacon sandwich at the Courtyard Café in it for the best submission!

A Tale of grim determination!

We had lots of tourists at Montacute this week – amongst the throng from Ashton Court were the Hoskin family, David and Taryn Taylor and Julie & Julian Jardine. Liz Hill, Paul and Jane Duffus and Rich Kennington – parkrun’s good isn’t it, meaning you’re able to get back together with people you first met at the Plymouth Half Marathon about 15 years ago! Kim Wehden and Ruth Trehane were both here from Parc Bryn parkrun, finding our course “beautiful but tough”, Sally Evans usually runs at Arrow Valley parkrun and says our course is beautiful “almost as nice as Arrow Valley (as it has a lake!)”.

Kevin Camp was over from Salisbury, Sarah Henderson from Telford via Edinburgh, Elisabeth from Huntingdon and Chris Lewis & Michelle Edgell were Little Stoke Refugees (running under the general parkrun banner rather than their own flag!). Cathryn Peppard normally runs at Hilly Fields in London and enjoyed our hilly fields & sheep, Rob Rowntree was here from Exeter Riverside, Anne-Marie Matthews from Kingsbury Water Park and Tony Hardy usually runs in the Forest of Dean and thought our setting was “lush” – couldn’t agree more!

We had some visitors from further afield – the Purchase family returned to see us from their new Paris home, and Oscar showed he’s not lost his touch as he ran a new PB of 31m39. Dom and Sam Mornement were over from Lake Joondalup parkrun in Perth, Western Australia – have a look at their page  (though there’s no photos of the lake on their webpage – Dom, you need to sort that out!)

Salut! L’histoire de la famille Purchase de retour

The Knight’s Tale


On a day of Montacute Tales, it's only fitting that we have a contribution from our very own Knight of realm, Carol Knight!

I am slow. I get round the course just one place in front of a tail runner each week but I love it. Why, well mainly down to fellow runners and volunteers. Before I even started coming, 3 months ago, there was nervous messaging between me and the organisers, with them assuring me I could not be "too slow", I nervously turned up.

I found a fantastic welcome and support. So how do volunteers support a non runner like me? event directors - in those initial weeks they encouraged me and just a simple "see you next week" at the end made me feel wanted. I had been convinced I would be gently told not to return. Tail runners - these have been my stars. The first one I had with me gave me confidence, she virtually talked me through each step, since then I had ones who have pushed me when I wanted to go faster, and those who have refused to let me give up when I have struggled. Never underestimate the role of a tail runner, they are not just there to tell the marshals they can leave their post.

Marshals - well done to those who stand there and clap and shout words of encouragement. Knowing you have done that whether a runner is first or last is a really good feeling. I feel bad, I am keeping you from your hot chocolate in the cafe, but your cheers are appreciated. It's almost a feeling that I don't want to let you down. Each new cheer carries me to that finish line.

The fast runners - those who lap me or finish before I even get down the Avenue, it's great when you just shout "well done" or "keep going" as you run past at what seems to be a sprint. All parkrunners - being welcomed each week, as if I belong, makes me want to come back each week. I have learnt that it does not matter how fast I do it, I am only racing myself. If I continue to improve, hopefully fitness and weight loss will follow. 11 done and hopefully more to come!

Thank you Carol - that 50 shirt will be yours before you know it!

Time and tide wait for no man - but Sandra the tail runner will!

The Montacute wall of noise at the last corner - guaranteed to help anyone in!

The Junior’s Tale


A Report has also been submitted by one of our junior runners, young Ellen Chaffey who recorded a new PB on Saturday as she’s 40% of the way to her 10 Club T-shirt:

I went really fast at parkrun  and did a PB and I went like a rocket love from Ellen xx”

(Found on the computer when I came down to start the “proper” Report this morning!)

Next week is the latest Pacer event – we’re back on to the Even numbers so watch this space for details (or to offer your pacing services!)

What pace was that? Need some help next week?

A big thumbs up all round!

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

Take it easy, and see you all next week!

PS Have you heard the Fryer's Tale?
Mandy is busy in the kitchen getting your bacon sandwich ready!

PPS Spot the difference -


Canterbury Tales pilgrims in the Tabard Inn... DSC_0087
..and Ashton Court pilgrims in the Courtyard Cafe - 700 years apart, but pretty much identical (Geoff needs a feather in his cap!)!

PPPS A true Montacute tale - or tail to end with..

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