Photocredit: Nathan Bayle.

Five North Norfolk Beach Runners were among 566 who ran the Snetterton Half Marathon at the eponymous race track on Sunday. In fine and dry conditions, all five opted for super soft compounds and a no-stop strategy and spread themselves evenly down the field.

In a race won by Ben Spratling of City of Norwich AC in 1.12.15, Beach Runner Neil Adams (M40-49) claimed 8th overall and 2nd in category with 1.38.26 while Alex Curtis (Male Senior) ran 1.38.26 for 99th overall and 49th in category. Next in the NNBR order of things was Miles Wiggington (M 40-49) in 1.51,03 for 231st and 70th, followed by Richard West (M 40-49) in 2.10.46 for 406th and 158th . Libby Ashton (F Senior) kept an eye on the chaps from astern with 2.14.50 for 438th and 76th out of 117 in category.

Meanwhile down south, in fact a long way south, Nathan Bayle (M 20-29) ran the wonderfully scenic Queenstown marathon in New Zealand in 3.48.23 which made him 253rd out of 2150 finishers, 63rd in category and officially a PB (Pommie Bastard). From the photograph, it seems to have been a hair-raising experience.

Going longer again but closer to home, Beach Runners Vinnie Purdy and Colin Stark ran the Marriott’s Way Ultra, 37.4 miles from Norwich to Reepham and back, finishing together in 5.28.54 for joint 3rd, although Vinnie in particular admitted to blowing hard all the way on the return leg. Trains used to have the same problem on that line. But in his case, it was part of his preparation for the Great Union Canal Race at Whitsun, involving 145 miles along the canal from Birmingham to London without a narrowboat, running as he will be mostly on the bank because it is of course a bank holiday.

Author: John Worrall

Fourteen North Norfolk Beach Runners were among 273 who finished the Broadland Half Marathon, organised by Norwich Road Runners on Sunday 4th November. The race, on a course through autumn leafiness south of the River Bure with three water stations and Woodfordes Brewery, was won by Joe Skipper (M Senior) in an impressive 1.13.03, more than three minutes in front of second placed Dominic Blake (M40-44) in 1.16.18.

But Beach Runner Darren Neale (M40-44) was 8th in 1.21.55 for 3rd in category, while the first lady Beach Runner home, Beck Maun (F 45-49), ran 1.39.37 for 64th overall and 2nd in category. Another notable performer was the always notable Derek Sadler (M60-64) in 1.46.00 for 96th overall and 2nd in category.

Meanwhile, down in Suffolk, at the Endurancelife CTC Suffolk marathon, more notable again was Beach Runner Charlotte Neale (FO) who was first female home and a hugely impressive third overall in an even more impressive course record of 3.30.15.

And then closer to home, on 28th October, five Beach Runners were among 569 at the Trowse 10k organised by City of Norwich Athletic Club on a course centred around Whitlingham Broad where two senior Beach Runners demonstrated yet again that old Beach Runners never die, they just lose their pebbles. In a race won by CONAC’s Ben Spratling (M Senior) in 31.44, the first Beach Runner was Gary Linder (M 60-64) for 141st and 5th in category, while septuagenarian Sam Weller, officially the fastest 70-year-old in the county, as evidenced at Run Norwich 10k back in the summer, but at Trowse categorised as 65+, clocked 46.53 for 148th but 2nd in category, beaten by a younger man.

Letting those old men – but not just any old men – go first were three lady Beach Runners, (all F 15-39): Kathryn Head in 50.26 for 234th ; Libby Ashton, 58.35 for 425th and Vicky Hampson, 58.40 for 427th

Author, John Worrall


Fifteen North Norfolk Beach Runners were among the 3500 or so who got their motors running for the Perkins Engines Great Eastern Run on Sunday on one of the wetter days of this autumn so far. And there was a bit of Mister and Missus about their endeavours, because kicking up spray at the front of the NNBR pack were Mr Darren Neale (M40) who ran 1.18.50 for 89th overall and 11th in category and Missus Charlotte Neale (F Sen) in 1.24.18 for 159th and 13th. Somewhere between them in the NNBR order of things, but in no way disrupting domestic bliss, was Chris Parker (M Sen) in 1.21.44 for 123rd and 85th.

A mention in dispatches goes to Darren Armstrong (M40) who also flew the flag for the older male with a time of 1.25.43 for 190th and 28th.

Equally rained upon were the three Beach Runners who finished the Leicester marathon along with 566 others, first home among whom was Vinnie Purdy (M40) in 3:10:45 for 28th overall and 10th out of 121 in category, Tony Money, also M40, ran 3:39:32 for 117th and 33rd in category, while the third of the triumvirate was Andy Mclaren (M V50) clocked 3:48:09 for 164th overall and 26th out of 81 in category

Meanwhile, a further straggler from last week’s NNBR diaspora, which saw members competing in races near and far, was Emily Haughan (F35) who ran the Yorkshire marathon at York in 3.51.00 for 1212th position overall out of 4234 and 27th in category.

But going large this week was ultra-woman Maria Greaves who ran the Autumn 100, a 100-mile course in four 25-mile out-and-back spurs radiating from the villages of Goring and Streatley in the Thames Valley. Completing the whole thing in 24 hours, 40 minutes, she said “Everything that could go wrong did go wrong”, but even finishing would be success for most people. Indeed, some could still be out there because no results were available at the time of going to press.

Author: John Worrall


North Norfolk Beach Runners were scattered to several points of the compass at the weekend.

Closest to home were the Magnificent Seven who tackled the Marriott’s Way 10k between Aylsham and Reepham, the most magnificent among whom was SuperSeventy Sam Weller. Competing in the M60+ category despite his advancing years – and because yet again that was the highest age category – he was the first Beach Runner home, running 46.28 for 27th out of 404 finishers and 3rd in category, having probably conceded a few years to the two in front of him.

Following on came Lisa Stickells (FO) in 51.51 for 140th and 10th in category out of 102; Helen Hagon, (F55-59) in 53.07, 157th  and 2nd out of 13; Richard West (M45-49), in 55.47, 207th and  26th; Heather Morton (F50-54), 59.20, 280th and 6th; Linda Melton, (F55-59), 1.02.16 for 315th and 9th; and Karen West (F55-59), 1.06.28 for 351st and 11th.

Out east, at the Lowestoft Half Marathon, Fish Sadler (V55) grabbed 32nd place out of 411 finishers and 2nd in category with a time of 1.30.31. Two other Beach Runners were there,   Becky Garratt (V40 W) running 1.53.10 for 158th and 5th; and Deborah Gillespie (V50 W) in 2.25.45 for 367th and 10th.

Down south in Carrot Cruncher country, four Beach Runners were seen running the Flower of Suffolk Marathon from Walberswick which took in such Cruncher eccentricities as trotting Dunwich Greyfriars Priory, dodging coastal erosion and negotiating the seasonal deer rut on Dunwich Heath.  No results had been seen at the time of going to press but neither had Anita Bullen, Chris Gibbons, Kirk Price and Colin Stark. Nuff said.

Meanwhile well out west, Beck Maun (F45-49) ran the Oxford Half Marathon  along with around 8500 others and posted a pb of 1.39.32 for 1372nd overall but 8th out of several hundred in category.  And even further out west, Neil Adams (V40) did the Plymouth 10k in 36.08 for 14th out of 1298 and 2nd in category.

But this week’s award for farthest flung Beach Runner goes to Nathan Bayle (M16-39) who ran the Aroraki-Mount Cook 21km on South Island, New Zealand in 1.36.21 for 27th out of 226 runners and 20th in category. But then he’s been kicking around down there for a while and is just showing off, really.


Author: John Worrall


Sixteen North Norfolk Beach Runners were among the 299 who had fun on the Bure Valley 10 Mile around the still leafy lanes north of Banningham and east of the A140 on Sunday.

The race, organised by Bure Valley Harriers on a scenic and convoluted route through bow-and-arrer country where traffic rarely ventures, was won by Kevin Holland (M40-44) of Wymondham AC in 55.28.4, but two Beach Runners were in the top 10 – Chris Merrylees (M40-44) in 7th with a time of 59.42 for 3rd in category, followed by Neil Adams (M40-44) in 59.53 for 8th and 4th.  Darren Armstrong (M40-44) was also in the mix with 1.04.28 for 24th and 10th.  And as the race winner and runner-up were also M40-44s but can only get one prize each, Chris M got the vet’s prize with Neil A second, the two of them with Darren A getting the vets’ team prize. It’s good to keep the old boys happy.

First lady Beach Runner was Charlotte Neale (FO) in 1.04.41 for 25th overall and 3rd in category, while Super Seventy Sam Weller (M65+) who claimed never to have previously run that far, finished in 1.18.03 for 101st and 2nd .

Meanwhile, back at the clubhouse on the previous Thursday, NNBR was able to present another cheque, this one for £2,115.18, to George Burroughs of the Stroke Association, that amount being the fund raising proceeds of this year’s Chase the Train race which NNBR organises in May. It brings the Club’s total amount raised for the Association this year to £6565.18 which will be further enhanced with donations from the Holt 10k on October 21st.


photocredit Clive Hedges.



Author John Worrall


It was a rain-lashed Coltishall runway which hosted 503 runners for the Jolly Jaguars 10k organised  by Coltishall Jaguars on Sunday but it wasn’t too wet for some flying North Norfolk Beach Runner performances when a dozen of them got their flaps down and tails up.

In a race won by Kevin Holland (M 40-44) of Wymondham AC with a time of 32.50, the first Beach Runner home was Darren Armstrong (M 40-44) in 12th position overall and second in category with a time of 38.43. Following on came Beck Maun (F 45-49) in 43.57 for 94th but 3rd in category, after whom came Super Seventy and increasingly usual suspect Sam Weller (M70-74) in 44.35 in 110th and 1st in category.

Finishing order thereafter in the NNBR pack was: Karl Harper (M45-49), 50.26, 206th and 23rd; Alison Lowe (F18-34) 50.28, 207th and 10th; Sophie Saunders (F18-34) 51.10, 222nd and 14th; Vicky Last (F18-34) 52.35, 243rd and 16th; Richard West (M45-49) 54.56, 292nd and 32nd; Vicky Hampson (F18-34) 59.59, 371st and 40th; Karen West (F55-59) 1.06.14, 45st and 6th;  Super Seventy Liz Letzer (F70+) 1.06.52. 457th and 1st; and Super Seventy Robin Rush (M75+) 1.09.44, 475th and 1st.

Meanwhile, at the Norfolk Coastal Half and Full Marathons, Gemma Woolrych (F45-49) ran the half in 2.09.52 for second in category while Sue Ilsley (F55-59) got third in category for her 2.12.45. In the full, ultra runner Hazel Wray (F50-54) enjoyed a gentle training jog in 4.57.36, but special mention goes to Nancy Crow (F45-49) who completed her first marathon in 5.58.18 which included an entirely intentional solo side track through Holkham dunes to admire the view. North Norfolk’s like that.

Author: John Worrall


The big event of the East Anglian club running season, the Timberwolf Round Norfolk Relay, took place over the weekend.

This 198-mile course is run clockwise around the county in 17 stages varying from 5.49 to 19.68 miles, starting and finishing in King’s Lynn. First stage runners set off from 5.30 am onwards on Saturday, depending on their team’s predicted course time, the theory being that all teams would finish by 10.00am on Sunday.

It is a huge logistical exercise, each runner needing an accompanying cyclist during the day and accompanying vehicle at night, together with transport to and from the start and finish of each stage. There is then marshalling, provided by various Norfolk clubs at each of the changeover points where lashings of cake are available, more particularly at the changeovers marshalled by North Norfolk Beach Runners at Cromer and Mundesley where, at the latter, Sue Simms and the increasingly famous Mundesley Cake Ladies excelled yet again.

The 60 participating teams included some from Greater London, the Home Counties and East Midlands, as well as East Anglia from where NNBR entered two teams.

The fastest time, 20.43.22, was set by City of Norwich Athletics Club, followed by Ely Runners with 20.53.57, but not far behind was NNBR’s A team in 22.06.49 for third overall and second fastest Norfolk club.

Stand-out NNBR individual performances included three stage winners: Charlotte Neale running 1.19.28 on the 10.81 miles stage 5 from Cley to Cromer taking in Beeston Bump; Finlay Swanson, who only recently joined the senior ranks and still runs in short trousers, posting 54.44 over the cake-fuelled 9.24 mile stage 7 from Mundesley to Lessingham, and the star turn and British international Robbie Britten running 1.57.52 over the 19.67 mile night time stage 12 from Scole to Thetford.

All concerned had a slow day on Monday.


Author: John Worrall


Eight North Norfolk Beach Runners headed west to the edge of the Fens for the Wissey Half Marathon on Sunday 2nd September and spread themselves fairly evenly among the 255 finishers.

On a warm sunny day, the first Beach Runner home home was ultra man and member of the 100 marathon club, Vinnie Purdy (M40-44) in 1.25.57 for 14th place but first in category. He was followed by a triumvirate of M60+ Beach Runners: Adrian Dyde  in 1.46.30 for 99th overall but 8th out of 20 in category; Derek Sadler in 1.48.32 for 113th overall and 9th, and Jim Hayes, a SuperSeventy-plus-a-few showing the younger lads  how it’s done with 1.51.33 for 128th and 10th. Hopefully all races will soon have categorisations which acknowledge that people are running well in their eighth decade.

Completing the NNBR contingent were: Keith Phillips (M50-54) in 2.09.41 for 196th and 19th; Nicky Phillips (F50-54) in 2.12.26 for 201st and 7th; Nancy Crow (F45-49) in 2.36.53  for 250thand 18th; and Karen Stubberfield (F50-54) in 3.12.19 for 254th and 14th.

Meanwhile, down on the farm the weekend before, Fish Sadler (M55) went to the East Farm Frolic marathon near Blandford Forum in Dorset and over eight laps of agricultural terrain clocked 3.54.54 for 6th overall out of 128 starters and 1st in category. He also put in the 3rd fastest lap with 25.52.

And then,  on a higher plane again, Colin Stark took part in the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc which involves running up Mont Blanc. He covered 170.1km (105 miles) in 36.20.19 and temperatures down to -10C but at the time of going to press, his finishing position out of 2561 starters wasn’t known because some were still out there. A bit like training nights at Roman Camp, really.

Fish Farm – Fish Sadler down on the farm in Dorset. (Photocredit F Sadler.)


Indiv time cumul time Indiv time cumul time Indiv time cumul time Indiv time cumul time cumul time POSITION
TEAM runner 1 runner 2 runner 3 runner 4 combined lap
1 Michael Protheroe 12’44 Dawn Protheroe 25’44 Debs Last 38’05 Rob Last 50’04 61’48 11
Dereham 12’44 13’00 12’21 11’59 11’44
2 Gill Wooghouse 12’50 Stuart Rose 22’20 Jan Totterdale 35’37 Neville Knights 46’55 58’14 9
Dereham 12’50 09’30 13’17 11’18 11’19
3 Di Renshaw 15’49 Wayne Ramsbottom 26’15 Keith Moore 36’55 Hazel Cason 51’27 63’45 12
Dereham 15’49 10’26 10’40 14’32 12’18
4 Louis Preston 11’42 Beth Barrett 24’58 Paul Richardson 35’23 Sam Swales 44’51 55’07 6
Dereham 11’42 13’16 10’25 09’28 10’16
5 Hannah Konteczny 16’01 Kareana Symonds 27’43 Brian Titchiner 38’26 Phil Websdale 49’22 60’44 10
Dereham 16’01 11’42 10’43 10’56 11’22
6 Ryan Lingwood 09’11 Mike Barrett 19’53 Jake Stearman 28’10 Laura Dixon 38’30 47’56 1
Dereham 09’11 10’42 08’17 10’20 09’36
7 Todd Lake 08’51 Jacob Last 19’43 Bradley Marsh 32’57 Pete Swales 43’21 53’21 2
Dereham 08’51 10’52 13’14 10’24 10’00
8 Olly Constable 12’11 Lee Bryer 22’23 Paul Harrison 34’32 Jon Beverley 44’03 54’27 4
Repham 12’11 10’12 12’09 09’31 10’24
9 James Beadle 09’04 Susie Towning 21’48 Peter Gowing 33’00 Steve Chapman 44’29 54’55 5
Reepham 09’04 12’44 11’12 11’29 10’26
10 Rob Greeves 11’16 Maxine Gowing 25’39 Nick Bowden 35’31 Jeremy Haslett 46’08 56’27 7
Reepham 11’16 14’23 09’52 10’37 10’19
11 Steve Brown 10’19 Mike Marshall 23’30 Rachel Robson 35’52 Tom Rivett 46’11 56’45 8
NNBR 10’19 13’11 12’22 10’19 10’34
12 Gav Dent 10’32 Karen Balcombe 21’08 Gav Dent 31’54 Jim Hayes 43’45 54’24 3
NNBR 10’32 10’36 10’46 11’51 10’39

The scoring has two objects:

i) to ensure that every teams’ performance contributes to the result.

ii) to penalise clubs which enter a small number of teams and reward those which enter many teams.


Teams are ranked in order of finishing, with the first team ranked as “1”

For the club entering the largest number of teams, their score is the sum of their finishing ranks.

The remaining clubs are given extra, fictional teams to make their number of teams the same as that entered by the club with the largest number of teams.

These fictional teams are ranked below the slowest real teams.

Applying this system: Last real team was 12th, so fictional teams are ranked 13th and upwards

Dereham 11+9+12+6+10+1+2 51 First
Reepham 4+5+7+13+14+15+16 74 Second
NNBR 8+3+13+14+15+16+17 86 Third

This was the 8th time the event has been held.

Course records are held by Logan Smith (7’41) and Carol Devlin (9’14) (both in 2016)


5 Mile Worstead Handicap 23’08’18 – Result

Handicap Run
Time Time Difference
1 Steve Brown 00:40:18 00:36:46 00:03:32
2 Kevin Smith 00:48:00 00:45:26 00:02:34
3 Garry Hobart 00:41:31 00:39:15 00:02:16
4 John Stares 00:40:45 00:38:08 00:02:37
5 Russell Harmer 00:40:00 00:38:16 00:01:44
6 Ian Wade 00:41:30 00:39:52 00:01:38
7 Sal Ryder 00:44:34 00:42:55 00:01:39
8 Sue Ilsley 00:45:00 00:43:29 00:01:31
9 Dean Howard 00:34:18 00:32:33 00:01:45
10 Amy Smith (Guest) 00:54:00 00:52:35 00:01:25
11 Anne Smith 00:54:00 00:52:36 00:01:24
12 Martin Eden 00:41:00 00:39:45 00:01:15
13 Jim Hayes 00:40:57 00:39:49 00:01:08
14 Stephen Roe 00:41:25 00:40:26 00:00:59
15 Keith Dickens 00:50:00 00:49:40 00:00:20
16 John Folkard 01:02:30 01:02:23 00:00:07
17 Karen Balcombe 00:39:10 00:37:58 00:01:12
18 John Gay 00:35:56 00:34:30 00:01:26
19 Liz Harris 00:43:30 00:42:43 00:00:47
20 Zoe Parish 00:42:00 00:41:19 00:00:41
21 Sam Weller 00:38:39 00:37:59 00:00:40
22 George Gay 00:30:00 00:29:32 00:00:28
23 Darren Armstrong 00:32:34 00:32:04 00:00:30
24 Nick Dash 00:35:00 00:34:36 00:00:24
25 Charlie Ennals 00:39:10 00:38:37 00:00:33
26 Richard West 00:46:42 00:46:39 00:00:03
27 Neil Adams 00:30:00 00:29:43 00:00:17
28 Natalie Drake 00:42:00 00:41:46 00:00:14
29 Carl Neale 00:42:00 00:41:47 00:00:13
30 Tom Gay 00:32:00 00:31:48 00:00:12
31 Vicky Last 00:42:48 00:42:19 00:00:29
32 Libby Ashton 00:50:09 00:49:54 00:00:15
33 Ian Smith 00:41:00 00:41:08 00:00:08
34 Kerry Smith 00:50:09 00:50:18 00:00:09
35 Eddie Carman 00:36:08 00:36:29 00:00:21
36 Rachel Robson 00:43:00 00:43:06 00:00:06
37 Garry Linder 00:35:30 00:36:22 00:00:52
38 Finlay Swanson 00:30:00 00:30:57 00:00:57
39 Derek Sadler 00:38:11 00:39:11 00:01:00
40 Chris Merrylees 00:30:00 00:31:23 00:01:23
41 Tony Witmond 00:32:20 00:33:37 00:01:17
42 Karen Stubberfield 01:01:55 01:03:55 00:02:00