Press Report 28th April 2019 from Nick Budd

Nick Budd, Helen Jeffery, Paul Steel Photo: P Steel

This week’s press report - It’s a sweet report this week:  Kinder Surprise and a Marathon bar none.   Some standout performances from those competing down in the “Big Smoke”:

 If you have participated in a race or any other newsworthy event, then please let Nick know by emailing [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] with the results and details.  

Deadline for the press submission is Tuesday morning so details through to Nick by Monday at the latest please!

Carol Bird Photo: Julie Murtle
Roy Cochran-Patel, Sarah Oakes Photo: Roy Cochran-Patel

Three different events to report on this week involving Congleton Harriers. One a rather well publicised, large congregation of runners down in London, one a much smaller low-key affair up in the Dark Peaks of Derbyshire and one a spot of volunteering in the town park.  More on the fantastic exploits of the roadies in London and the park helpers later, but we will start this week with the exploits of the off-roaders.

This year it’s the 87th anniversary of the Kinder Trespass.  In April 1932 a group of determined common folk congregated in a small quarry just outside the picturesque Derbyshire village of Hayfield and began an act of civil disobedience with profound consequences as it paved the way for the freedom to roam the countryside we now take for granted.  Hundreds of workers challenged the landed gentry’s right to enclose the countryside and staged a mass trespass up to the top of Kinder Scout, a bleak but beautiful gritstone and peat plateau.  Six of the group paid for their disobedience with their liberty.   

Almost 90 years later three Harriers congregated on the bridge in Hayfield at the start of the popular Kinder Downfall fell race to retrace part of that trespass and make the most of the result of their hard-fought win. For one of the Harriers, Helen Jeffrey, there was a personal connection as her grandfather was one of the trespassers  all those years ago.  The three, Paul Steel, Nick Budd and Helen Jeffery were amongst 275 runners who set off up Snake Path, past Kinder Reservoir on the tough 10-mile race which is predominantly “up” for seven of the ten miles (or at least it felt that way to the runners).  Steel was the first back in 132nd place in 1:41:23 followed by Budd, 161st in 1:45:29 and Jeffery 229th in 2:00:36

Down South there were six Harriers participating in the London Marathon.  A cozy, small-scale affair featuring a paltry 42,428 runners.  There have been a few national news stories about Olympians, elites crawling over the finish line on their knees and even Big Ben getting stuck at the end.  However, there were also some performances from those from Congleton that deserve equal recognition.  The first two back were very close to being in the top 10% of all the runners competing.  Emma Weston finished 4599th in 3:18:59 and was 63rd out of 4288 in the F45 Category.  Carol Bird was 4937th in 3:21:15 and was 8th out of 800 in the F55 category.  Both standout performances. 

Emma Weston and Carol Bird before London
Andy Eaton London Marathon

The remaining four Harriers also put in lung busting performances after months and months of dedicated training for the event.  Andrew Eaton was back in under 4 hours finishing 12882nd in 3:54:42, Roy-Cochran-Patel was 21062nd in 4:24:14, Sarah Oakes was 21066th also in 4:24:14 and Martin Wood, running for The Christie Charity was 24664th in 4:37:45.

In parallel to the above two races on Sunday there was also the Congleton Sprint Triathalon taking place in Congleton Park.  The fun sporting event is designed to inspire people of all ages to become more active and get into swimming, running or cycling as well as raise monies for the Mayor’s chosen charities.  Repeating the support given last year the Harriers had a healthy number of volunteers on marshalling duty at this worthy cause.

If any of the above has inspired anyone to get more active, it’s a timely reminder that it’s the first Saturday of the month this weekend and therefore members of Congleton Harriers will be pacing at the Park Run at Asbury Mere this weekend


Martin Wood London Marathon

The club is always keen to welcome new members whether you are a speedy racer or more of a social runner.  So, if you are thinking of thinking of joining then just come along to one of the regular club runs for a few weeks and try us out for size; you will be made to feel more than welcome with no obligation to join.  You can find full details on our Congleton Harriers website:   You can also connect with the club on Facebook where details of club activities are posted regularly.