PARKRUN EVENT #313 15/04/2017

Happy Easter to all members of Burnden Road Runners.

A dry morning at Leverhulme always helps boost the numbers at Bolton parkrun and this week was no different with the second highest turnout of runners ever at the event. The Burnden contingent of the 377 strong field this week was 29 runners, the biggest club representation at the event again this week.

With the Rivington Pike race and other events going on, there was not a single PB to report from the Bolton event which is highly unusual. In fact, Paul Johnson was closest to a PB at 27 seconds outside his best on his 259th run, 245 of which have been at Bolton – the highest number of runs by a member of Burnden.

Over at Heaton Park, Helen Shan and Chris Greenall represented the Burnden team in a field of 662 runners. Helen has visited Heaton Park 10 times and Chris 24.

Ken Beevers had his 6th run at Torbay on their 15th event and Sheila Christie was the sole representative at Worsley Woods this week.

Andrew Hardingham marked his 49th run with a first visit to Fulham and a respectable 18th place finish and his time of 18.58 being his best at any parkrun, despite previously having led home the field in Chadderton!

Jackie Oakes and Iain Conner found themselves in the Lakes this weekend and took on Fell Foot, along with a couple of former Burnden members. Others arrived at the event to find nowhere to park so went off on solo runs! Jackie obviously likes the event having run it 17 times and Iain 7.

Nia Bell headed to North Wales and Conwy for the second time, 13 months after her first visit – the only course other than Bolton Nia has run.

Bolton parkrun started with just 60 runners back on 5th February 2011, with 8 Burnden runners taking part. To date 233 current Burnden members have taken part at Bolton parkrun, eclipsed only by Darwen Dashers with 237 members having taken part. Collectively, Burnden have run Bolton parkrun 9,103 times which means we should see the 10,000th run completed sometime around Christmas – who will take the honour?

Burnden has 1 member of the 250 club, 34 members of the 100 club, 43 members of the 50 club and 13 runners stuck on a single appearance. The average number of runs for a Burnden member is 43.6 with 30.1 at Bolton.


5 Burnden males have taken first place at Bolton, covering 19 of the 312 events. The ladies fare better, with 12 first females taking 81 events.

Keep on parkrunning and enjoy Easter!

PARKRUN EVENT #312 08/04/2017

4 PB’s from this week’s 32 Burnden runners at Leverhulme to report. A big Burnden welcome to new member Johnny McGowan who took almost a minute and a half off his March debut time to record a new best time of 38 minutes and 3 seconds. Keep those PB’s rolling in, Johnny. Keeping it ‘in the family’ was Gillian McGowan who, like son Johnny, also recorded a faster time than her March run. Gillian took off 23 seconds to set herself a new personal best time of 34 minutes and seven seconds. Kate Ellis is closing in on that sub-23 time and her new best time of 23:02 means that we now have 4 of the top 7 female vet 55-59 times recorded at Leverhulme! Strong category for Burnden. He been trying for 10 months and has had a couple of close attempts, but this week Steven Bate finally managed a new PB. Not only that but Steven broke the 22 minute barrier by taking 24 seconds off last June’s time to set himself a new best time of 21 minutes 45 seconds. Philip Glassbrook, Maggie Slamin and Kate Ellis were all category winners this week. Running together this week Linda O’Byrne, Gareth Doherty and Mark Jackson all celebrated their 100th parkrun. Tony Wall ran his 160th parkrun, while Sharan Drew ran her 10th.

Tourist PB’s this week for Michael Caine at Fell Foot and over on the coast at Blackpool Lesley Fisher and Dave Pearson were also celebrating. Peter Whiteside had his first run at the Blackpool parkrun as did Don Nichol who ran over in Burnley. Chris Greenall and Helen Shan both ran at the popular Heaton parkrun, whilst over the Pennines in the ‘other’ shire Isaline and Martyn Pollitt made their debuts at the Sheffield Hallam parkrun.


PARKRUN EVENT #311 01/04/2017

Only a mere 43 runners turned out on Saturday, many of them running for 2nd claim club Ramsbottom in their 3rd club race of the season. There were 3 PB’s to celebrate for Burnden, so let’s get to them straight away. Marcus Taylor continued his countdown to London by slicing 24 seconds off his February PB and setting a new best time of 19:20. This is a 5K record for Marcus, as it beats his chip time from this year’s Central Lancs 5K by a whole second! Next runner home with a Leverhulme PB was Adrian Merritt, who crossed the line in a time of 20 minutes and 39 seconds. This was Adrian’s first PB at Leverhulme since May 2015 and he took 11 seconds off that time. The final member of our PB trio was Sarah Watton who clocked a time of 22:03, taking 6 seconds off her previous best time set in March last year. Sarah is knocking on that sub-22 door and it would be a fool who would bet against her reaching that goal sometime in the near future. Category winners this week were: - Sarah Watton, Shirley Staveley and Philip Glassbrook. Special runs today for Tony Foster (130 parkruns), Louise Wall (110), Louise Geoghegan (80) and Shirley Staveley (30).

We will start our tourist roundup this week with Cuerden Valley where first timer Peter Whiteside guided Dave Pearson round to a new PB, taking 7 minutes off his debut time just 2 weeks ago. That must be without crutches – Dave! At the same parkrun Lesley Fisher set the fastest time for a female vet 55 by almost a minute. Izzy and Martyn Pollitt again both ran at nearby Worsley Woods, with Izzy winning her age category and Martyn just 9 seconds behind the winner of his category. Finally Paul Johnson became the first Burnden runner to compete in the university city of Oxford’s parkrun.


PARKRUN EVENT #309 18/03/2017

With yours truly at the helm as Run Director this week, a slightly different slant on the report to highlight the work of the volunteers, of whom there were 29 this week and 8 were Burnden Road Runners.

So the day of a Run Director starts with filling the water and making the post run tea and coffee having made sure all gadgets are charged and tokens sorted from the previous week. Print the roster and allocate the roles and we are good to go. Get down to Leverhulme to greet the usual crew ready to check the course, open the gates and set up the funnel, bollards etc. Gareth Doherty took on the role of Volunteer Co-ordinator this week, ensuring all marshal points and key roles are covered and each volunteer knows their role. Christine Pendlebury briefed the 31 first time runners. Sharon Drew, Don Nichol, Jackie Oakes and Peter Whiteside cheered on the runners whilst ensuring all made it safely around the course and Craig Leatherbarrow helped dish out the finish tokens, while Linda O’Byrne and Gareth helped the quest for a PB by pacing at 30 and 26 minutes respectively. Without the support of the volunteers there would be no parkrun – please join in and email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to bag a role in the future.

Following last week’s Burnden Ladies leaderboard, the men hit back claiming 3 of the top 5 spots, including the first 2, with Rob Short leading home Marcus Chester by just shy of a minute and Andrew Hardingham a further 20 seconds back in 5th place.

The 34 runners from Burnden this week failed to record a single PB, so Pauline Shepherd’s first run takes pride of place – welcome to the parkrun family Pauline.

Tourists this week included Dawn Evans taking on the Bushy Park event, where parkrun all began, in a field of 1,127 runners. This was a warm up for the following day’s Palaces Half Marathon around the capital.

Chris Greenall made the short trip to Heaton Park for the 22nd time and Kenneth Beevers found himself at Tobay for the second consecutive week, unable to emulate last week’s PB at that event. Dave Pearson travelled to Cuerden Valley for the first time and Michael Caine was just 2 seconds adrift of a PB at Fell Foot – his last 6 runs at the event separated by only 21 seconds, great consistency given they stretch 10 months.

16 first time runners from Darwen Dashers as their latest new starters group mean that Burnden Road Runners drop to second place in the table for the higher number of runners, though untouched in terms of the number of runs.




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