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BA Athletics Club News Digest 5th September 2022

Events Calendar - online here

Events marked "#" are points scoring for the club's participation trophy - for the 2022 title.

Club Event Map: [Clickable link to Google Maps]

For future weeks: inclusions, with photos, please to Roderick Hoffman at

This Week's Events

Please help me by sending in your results, for instance by filling in the tables below and forwarding to Some events will have "Prompts" set up in Facebook. These allow the posting of a single image and some text and make it easy to flip through everyone's entries.

Monthly Mile (submit by 8pm Sunday 18th September):

Run one mile and send me your time or add the details to the Facebook prompt. The mile can be somebody else's formal event or even one mile within a longer run. I'll then produce a fancy graph showing your time this month compared to those of other people and previous runs over the last year.

Mile Participant Location Date How Measured Duration/Time Comment: e.g. event

Weekly Athletic Achievement (by 5pm Monday) or use the Facebook group prompt:

Participant Event Distance Location Day/Start Time or Duration Details or comment, and other achievements
e.g. Running

Big Half Report and Results

Sunday saw the latest edition of the Big Half, a mass half marathon in East London, which effectively reverses the first half of the London Marathon course.

Mo Farah running past the BA course crossing pointLarge numbers of spectators imply the need for crossing points, especially near to the finish, and we have manned the crossing close to Cutty Sark DLR on every occasion of this race.  Although the crowds were not the biggest we have seen, it got pretty busy at lunchtime, as large numbers of finishing runners and families tried to cross Creek Road to get home.

A staggered start meant that we were dealing with runners and wheelchairs passing our point from 09:15 until 15:00.

Mo Farah [pictured from the Television coverage, running past Steve in the crossing box] won the men's event for the third time, while Eilish McColgan smashed the ladies' course record.  David Weir also broke the course record in the wheelchair event, while Eden Rainbow-Cooper won the ladies event, equalling the course record.

A highlight of the day came at the end, when the "Big Mile" took place.  This was designed to enable local youngsters and babes in arms to enjoy the last mile of the course, accompanied by their parents.  Every one sported a running number, which may be a cherished souvenir in the future.  You've never seen so many smiling faces on the course or in the crowd.

Thank you to the seventeen hard working volunteers who kept smiling, dealt with a few grumpy or confused spectators, but who mostly kept the crowd happy with their good humour and help.

Steve Hillier

We also had some runners in the Big Half - including the following: 

Place (Overall) Place (Gender) Place (Category) Name Club Runner Number Category Finish
2006 1766 17 Dennison, Mike (GBR) SHAEF Shifters Running Club 2110 60-64 01:37:51
2450 327 28 Jovani, Maria (ESP) SHAEF Shifters Running Club 2596 45-49 01:40:45
2859 2454 114 Haylock, Ian (GBR) SHAEF Shifters Running Club 16095 50-54 01:43:23
10078 3406 121 Reid, Jain (GBR) British Airways AC 3609 55-59 02:26:46
12124 4733 215 Miller, Melanie (GBR) The Stragglers Running Club 9756 55-59 03:11:58

2023 London Marathon Entry?

This year's London Marathon is fast approaching. It is being run on Sunday 2nd October and we are geared up to provide our usual course crossing teams and we've also got many runners in the event. Next year the London Marathon reverts to its traditional Spring date hence there will be less time to get organised for it. The first thing to do is to decide whether you are interested in entering the event and if so to put in your entry form.

The 2023 TCS London Marathon Ballot is coming. Set your calendar reminders for Saturday 1 October 2022. This year we'll be opening the ballot for the 2023 TCS London Marathon the day before the 2022 event.

Whether you are taking part this year, in person or virtually, or are still waiting to run 26.2 miles on the world-famous TCS London Marathon course, this is your chance to do it in 2023. 

There will be further details nearer the time, including a reveal of this year's exclusive TCS London Marathon donation top and all the information you'll need. For now, simply bookmark this page (How to enter) and remember the date: Saturday 1st October, 2022. 

2022 London Marathon Events

The club expects to have a small number of guaranteed entrees and the committee will have to decide how to allocate these. The first criteria we use is that you need to have applied through the normal process and been rejected.

Roderick Hoffman

Stockley Park NOW event Wednesday 31st August - Report

Last Wednesday we had a good dry run around what will be the Stockley Park parkrun course. I was joined by Barry Walters, Denis Foxley, Julie Barclay and Paul Watt and three members of the parkrun team and we jogged around the single lap 5k course. Meanwhile Steve Newell was measuring the lap distance for what will be an alternative two lap course and John Shaw of Hayes and Harlington Runners was clipping back some of the vegetation. Afterwards most of us had a drink and lunch at the nearby The Hut Pub.

I can't announce a start date for the parkrun but it will be this year.

Roderick Hoffman

Winter Five Mile Handicap Series 2022/23

There will be six monthly runs over the winter starting and finishing at the Bedfont Club in Hatton Road. Two x 2.5 mile clockwise laps. The October and March runs will be during BST, November to February GMT. Runners start from 6pm onwards aiming for a 7pm finish. Walkers welcome to join in too (using a single lap). Please dress appropriately when running in the dark. Points are awarded after each run based on proximity of actual and target times compared with other runners with a bias towards modest improvement.


  • Wednesday 26 October 2022
  • Wednesday 23 November 2022
  • Wednesday 14 December 2022
  • Wednesday 25 January 2023
  • Wednesday 22 February 2023
  • Wednesday 29 March 2023.

In previous years the series winner has been determined from their best four scoring runs so they haven't had to run in each event of the series, and is normally rewarded for their achievement. Please tell Steve in advance to expect you, and what your initial five mile target should be.

> Steve Newell

Recent Activity Achievements

I picked up on 16 club members and friends reporting recent activity achievements this week. I've added a few people to the email list recently so a reminder that you are all welcome to submit an exercise achievement each week or at anytime - you don't need to be a club member and you don't need to have done a double marathon - just something athletic that has pleased you.

Colleague Activity Distance Course When Duration Comments
Barry Walters Running 6km Bracknell Tue am 00:44:15 Easy 2k warm-up to the forest followed by 10x1 mins uphill with 1 min jog back recovery and 2k warm-down. In the evening did one hour of body conditioning (press ups, sit ups, squats etc) at my local leisure centre.
Benita Scaife Walking 5.4miles Bloomingdale Trail ("606"), Chicago. The Bloomingdale Trail (aka the 606) is a disused elevated railway line converted to a public park, similar to New York’s Highline. It runs for 2.7 miles through the northern inner suburbs of Chicago…
John Scaife Walking 5.4miles Bloomingdale Trail ("606"), Chicago. ...We had already done a lakeshore run setting off at 0700 to avoid the heat, and started the 606 at mid-day, causing me to sing "Mad dogs and Englishmen" as we set off. Luckily there are several drinking water fountains en route.
Chris Kelly Climbing Eagles Nest, Cape Town After a scenic-but-also-hair-raising drive along Chapman's Peak, we snuck in a quick climb up Eagles Nest, at the back of Table Mountain national park. Great views of Hout Bay, Lions Head, and the Table Legs, before heading back to CPT, for a full (but not too full ) flight home!
Emma Moreton Running 19miles Somewhere dark! Wed v.early 19 miles starting at 5am… with hill club in the middle! One long run to go! #London
Harjit Jhooti Running 8km Newquay Just a little 8K in Newquay. I ran a little bit of the coastal path.
James Edwards Running 7.31km Bluestone Trail, Pembrokeshire Coast Last week 00:39:23 Quick trail run whilst at Bluestone on the weekend . Ventured to the Blackpool Mill then up to the old Iron Age fort. 146m elevation gain.
Julie Barclay Running 6miles River Severn Mon 01:02:00 Windswept run along the grassy Severn Way footpath…plenty of blackberries to be had afterwards…
Paul Watt Running 6miles River Severn Mon 01:02:00 …photo is from Church Mead on Saturday, heading upwards.
Melanie Miller  Race Half-M The Big Half Sun am 03:06:06
Michael Ball  Race 5km BH5k Naked Run Another BH5k naked run. [Ed: Sorry, the enclosed photograph was of too small a resolution to include so had to be left out. Or perhaps other things being left out was the reason the photo couldn't be put in]
Mike Dennison Running 20miles Thames to Mortlake, back via Richmond and Bushy Park Mon am 02:38:58 First half easy, then from 13k at supposed marathon pace, then easy again. I thought I'd find it hard to speed up, but ended up going too fast on the faster bit (probably just wanted to get home sooner!).
Neil Frediani Running "10k" Blanchland Show races Sun 01:27:06 Trail 10k (almost 12k!). First time I have been 1st in my age group (1st of 1) and awarded a £10 voucher. Also the first time I have received a pair of socks and a biodegradable medal full of wildflower seeds.
Petra Otto Bootcamp All week Non-stop this week, from the gym to ‘Totally Shredded’ and followed by Circuits, ‘Bootcamp’ (running with tyres in each hand), to ‘Friday Night Mash Up’ circuits and, finally, Saturday morning Core Strength. Without any doubt the Bootcamp was the hardest exercise class during the past two decades!!!
Piers Keenleyside Running 7.4miles Cajarc in the Lot Valley, France Sat 01:19:23 On holiday, every morning I ran a loop climbing out of the valley across the causse (moor) and then back down - one very steep uphill trail and the other very steep down on rough rocky trails. 1075 foot of elevation gain. This was the best of the 7 runs (and I walked the route with Kathryn).
Roderick Hoffman Running 19.85km Walton-on-Thames to Richmond Fri 02:27:47 Effectively the old stage 22 of the GBR but continuing from the Hawker Centre to Richmond. The guys in the photograph were undertaking me, shouting to "Pull with your core!", so I let them pass.

Week achievements

Roderick Hoffman

Janet Smith at Edenbook Country parkrunRun 60 in September

I heard about the Run 60 miles in September for Cancer Research from a gym friend.  Sadly, my best friend was recently diagnosed with liver cancer and starts chemotherapy next week.  She has a big fight ahead and I thought this challenge would be a small way of helping with the research for a cure of this horrible disease.

For a change, I was free to run parkrun today.  I had been searching for some tourism and found a newish one not far away in Edenbrook, near Fleet.  This was also excellent as I needed an ‘E’ for my parkrun alphabet challenge.  It was a nice parkrun.  Flat course of gravel paths, free carpark, nice toilets and a café afterwards.  For the 60 mile challenge I ran a few extra miles which will mean I don’t have to run every day as have some in ‘The Bank’.

As you all know, parkrun is such a friendly all inclusive event.  I arrived not knowing anyone and left with a couple of new Facebook friends!  There were some inspirational ladies there today.  Rosemary ran her 400th different parkrun today and her friend had run in 14 different countries *.  She also was an expert on parkrun challenges and explained the Wilson Index to me!!  My Index is only 2 but I now understand how to increase it.

Here is the link to my Just Giving page if anyone can donate:

Janet Smith

* Roderick adds - Rosemary Egbe has run more different parkruns than me - she is 9th on the all-time list whereas I'm back in 24th place. But I have done parkruns in 18 different countries.

Ed: As of this morning Janet has "banked" 16.3miles of her 60mile target - a good start but there is still a long way to go so she'll welcome further encouragement in sponsorship.

parkrun Results for Saturday 3rd September 2022

32 activities are recorded this week. Please get in touch if your activity is missing.

Club parkrunner parkrun Run# Pos Time Age Grade Comment
Emma Moreton Bedfont Lakes 609 18 0:23:36 65.68%
Maarten STENHAM Bedfont Lakes 609 22 0:23:50 59.51%
Jakob STENHAM Bedfont Lakes 609 33 0:24:35 62.24% 74th parkrun
Roderick HOFFMAN Bevendean Down 272 26 0:34:26 47.39% Taking one for the team (see below). BA parkrun #672. One minute slower than Church Mead.
Joe NOLAN Black Park 622 189 0:28:07 60.76% Fastest since Oct 2017 (next target 27:49)
Sarah GORDON Braunstone 546 238 0:36:51 55.86% Slow time but she admits being delayed by having to catch and pass the tail-walker.
Alastair HESLOP Broadwater Timekeeper at Guildford.
Mike DENNISON Bushy Park 892 60 0:20:04 82.81%
Maria JOVANI Bushy Park 892 162 0:22:15 72.06%
Diana Smith Bushy Park 892 1160 0:47:45 49.04% According to the computer a PB by 2:29 on 18th finish...but see below.
Paul WATT Church Mead 22 12 0:23:26 66.71% Splitting the time difference between Durlston Country Park and Seaford Beach. Fastest BA male and best grade.
Julie BARCLAY Church Mead 22 39 0:29:34 63.81% Fastest BA lady.
Paul TIMMS Cirencester 160 18 0:23:24 67.95%
Scott DAVISON Crane Park 471 85 0:28:23 52.38%
Janet SMITH Edenbrook Country 20 208 0:36:13 50.67% An "E" and 3 miles added (see above)
Trish MCCABE Foots Cray Meadows 136 27 0:28:43 55.31% Another London tick. Fastest BA runner from Julie Barclay! (Julie had been tail-walker that day).
Dave DIXON Hackney Marshes 564 8 0:18:44 84.16% 20th run at Hackney Marshes.
David DUGGAN Hanworth 102 44 0:34:22 47.48% First time since January two runs at the same parkrun on consecutive weeks - missed groundhog by 4 seconds (perhaps that was his target?)
John COFFEY Hazelwood 153 100 0:35:41 58.90%
Steve NEWELL Hazelwood 153 111 0:48:07 41.74%
Alice BANKS Higginson, Marlow 118 65 0:26:21 79.32% PB by 2 seconds - on 39th run at Higginson, beating time from next week last year.
Melanie Miller Mote Park 12 152 0:52:25 34.09% Tail walker at Mote Park. BA parkrun #673.
Barry WALTERS Osterley 388 114 0:29:51 56.73%
Adrian HAINES Panshanger 351 9 0:20:13 76.01% Fastest BA Male and best age grade (from Richard Ruffell)
Murray Hogge Reading 565 29 0:21:36 74.92%
Ben Kelly Reading 565 160 0:28:54 44.64%
Jain REID Richmond Park 717 267 0:32:10 56.27%
Joan FOXLEY Rickmansworth 216 342 0:37:41 62.14%
David Cowell Wollaton Hall 61 2 0:18:31 75.97% 48seconds faster than last week's PB!
John TAYLOR Woolacombe Dunes 126 25 0:25:31 61.27% Nearly 5mins slower than last week's Rickmansworth run - sand vs tarmac. First BA male so gets male record but Jacqui retains the age grade record.
Tony BARNWELL Wycombe Rye 450 390 0:56:04 37.49%
Christopher T KELLY Zandvlei 225 74 0:37:23 41.82% There are nearer "Z" parkruns! But he was in SA anyway. Oddly though Chris is the 5th club runner at Zandviei.

parkrun Review Saturday 3rd September 2022

It was a good weekend for alphabeteers.  Janet Smith (36:12) collected an "E" at  Edenbrook.  She already has a valuable "Y" having run at the long lamented Yeovil Montacute but still needs "I", "K", "V" and "Z".  A "Z" was exactly what Chris Kelly (37:23) found at Zandvlei as he attempted rehabilitation after his sub12 hour Comrades triumph last Sunday.  There are no "Z" parkruns in UK yet but they can be found in Europe.

Trish McCabe (28:43) ticked off another London park at Foot's Cray Meadows (Sidcup) and lowered the club female record by half an hour.

Roderick Hoffman tried Bevendean Down near Brighton while Melanie Miller (52:25) picked up volunteer credit at run #12 at Mote Park in Kent. Her Wilson Index moves up to 13. The club total has moved up to 673 different parks worldwide including some which have been discontinued.

Some of our fast guys were running this week.  Dave Dixon (18:44, 84.16%) ran the Hackney Marshes parkrun for the 20th time.   David Cowell (18:31) improved his on his 'pb' at Wollaton set only last week by 48 secs and Adrian Haines (20:13) improved the club record at Panshanger (Herts).  Mike Dennison (20:04' 82.81%) ran round at Bushy while Alice Banks. (26:21, 79.32%) grabbed a 'pb' at Higginson, Marlow.

Those who are still a bit vague about their Wilson Index can now download the "5k" app, key in their parkrun id and it should immediately become very clear.  Paul Watt (23:26) and Julie  Barclay (29:34) scaled the hills at Church Mead, Amersham for what was the 22nd week of parkruns there.  Julie's Wilson Index (WI) Is now 26. Paul is still on 16!

Steve Newell

True or not true? And how slow is the slowest?

Di Smith writes "Just to say that, if you’re checking the latest parkrun (or parkwalk in my case) results, don’t get over-impressed by my new PB. Yes, I did finally crack the 50-minute barrier, (one of my New Year aims, if I remember rightly) - my token at the finish said 1210th and my watch had 49:20 on it. However, in the official results (and Bushy Parkrun have admitted on their Facebook page that there was a problem with them, which they’ve tried to correct), I was 1160th in a time of 47:45. Well, I wish! All I can say is that it’ll be one hell of a target to beat and I don't expect any more PBs in the near future. I may be some time!"

I can sympathise - according to the parkrun computer my all-time all-locations fastest parkrun is 23:39. That was achieved at the second running of Fulham Palace parkrun in October 2013. Soon after that they re-measured the course and made it longer. Then after a year they re-measured it again and made it longer still. When asked I quote my 23:52 run at ECOS in Northern Ireland in August 2014 as my fastest parkrun since it is the one where I don't know that the course was short. But according to the parkrun computer I was 13 seconds faster at Fulham Palace.

Two weeks ago I referred to the list of slowest UK parkruns. Church Mead (and Durlston Country Park) are too new to be listed but of the 706 that are listed Bevendean Down is at number 692 - see my report below. That makes it 'worse' than Henley-on-Thames 686th, Queen Elizabeth 675 and Wendover Woods at 668. Two others I've done in the past are higher on the list - Lullingstone at 694 and Lyme Park at 698. However John Taylor trumps me this week since Woolacombe Dunes is listed at 705, only exceeded by Great Yarmouth North Beach.

The following table also includes, for parkruns I've run, the height ascended as recorded by my GPS device - this is subject to the usual errors (e.g. Victoria Dock should be much nearer to zero). The sand on the slopes of Woolacombe and Great Yarmouth make their difference.

parkrun factor listing height ascend
Victoria Dock 0.8 1 7m
... ... ... ...
Wendover Woods 4.8 668 105m
Queen Elizabeth 5.0 675 101m
Henley-on-Thames 5.5 686 78m
Bevendean Down 6.0 692 119m
Lullingstone 6.0 694 129m
Church Mead ? ? 129m
Lyme Park 6.4 698 124m
Woolacombe Dunes 9.0 705 ?
Great Yarmouth North Beach 10.0 706 ?
Durlston Country Park ? ? ?

Discounting the time I walked around Northala Fields having just come out of hospital, and two parkruns both at altitude and through deep snow, my time at Bevendean Down is my slowest bar one run - I was a minute slower the first time I ran at Wendover Woods, though I did subsequently get a five minute PB there. Were I to run again at Bevendean Down I would expect to get a PB.

Full club parkrun database - {read access to club parkrun database} - Download and explore.

Club Event Map: [Clickable link to Google Maps]

> Roderick Hoffman

parkruns Visited - tell us about parkruns other club members may be tempted to visit

Bevendean Down parkrunBevendean Down

One of those that you have to do, and enjoy, occasionally to make you appreciate the flat parkruns. The "Downs" aren't the problem here, it is the corresponding ups. Two and a bit clockwise laps on a combination of grass and cowpats. You walk the bit from finish to start before the off. Then it's 1000m mainly uphill before you turn the corner and have the 500m steep uphill in front of you. You've then got 800m of enjoyable down running though you are troubled on the first lap by the knowledge that you've got to do all of the uphill again!

I ran this at the best time of year, after a dry summer but having had some rain to soften the surface slightly. In winter I would expect these chalk downs to get much softer and be much harder to run on. They probably won't turn to mud, but may prove slippery including towards the bottom of the downhill section. On a clear day you can see Brighton Beach including the "British Airways i360", going up and down. On a stormy day you are going to be very exposed!

There are no facilities at this parkrun - no dedicated parking, no toilets and no open pub or café afterwards. But the usual friendliness of a small parkrun and highly recommended, and if you visit it twice there will be an almost guaranteed PB for you. But there are five parkruns in the Brighton area and four of them are easier than this one - and no club member has run at East Brighton. Just saying.

 Roderick Hoffman

Mote Park parkrunMote Park (stolen from Facebook)

Mote Park and event #12 and one I badly needed if only to bring my Wilson Index up 2 notches…only an hour away [in Maidstone, nearer to the centre of town than Maidstone parkrun] but what a beautiful park & lake; speak of a stunning start, one of the best in the South East I have ever done. Unfortunately I had to volunteer up my ‘services’ (laughs) as Tailwalker because I am doing The Big Half tomorrow and didn’t want to exert myself so. As it turns out, so are a number of other people doing it too, no less than the other Tailwalker and we’re even in the same wave and exit the same entrance tomorrow out the station, how freaky is that. Anyway the course is undulating but all on tarmac. A lovely friendly bunch of volunteers.

Melanie Miller

Club parkruns

The Club Map is currently up-to-date with the parkruns that we have and haven't run between us. This extract is focused on the south east but click on the image to load the full map to see other areas, or to see the details of a specific parkrun done or not done.

Club parkrun map extract

Next Digest - Results, news, pictures, feedback, jokes, stories - send them to the editor, Roderick Hoffman, at

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