Encouragement from volunteers provides big boost at Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun

Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun takes place every Saturday at 9am
Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun takes place every Saturday at 9am
The start of the Gosport Half Marathon race as James Baker, wearing 85, hits the front early on. Picture: Neil Marshall

Baker’s perfect timing with Gosport triumph

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LEWIS BANNER led home the army of parkrunners at Lee-on-the-Solent on Saturday morning.

It was a cool morning with the sea breeze providing a challenge for the 65th event at Marine Parade East.

Nikki Moxham. Picture: Malcolm Wells

Nikki Moxham. Picture: Malcolm Wells

Gary Heather gave the run briefing as the 298 parkrunners gathered at the start.

Lee welcomed quite a few tourists including a runner from York.

They were joined by some newcomers to parkrun and the briefing for them was given by Emma Noyce, who encouraged everyone and spoke about how much the volunteers helped when she turned up for her first parkrun.

Representatives of 23 different athletics club took part.

The run at Lee-on-the-Solent always attracts big turnouts from clubs including Stubbington Green Runners, Gosport Road Runners and Fareham Crusaders.

Nick Carter, of Absolute Running, in Gosport, was there enjoying the morning 5k with his wife Kim and his daughter Charlie, who got a new personal best of 23min 24sec as she finished second lady.

The Gosport contingent were out in force and in good voice with Jayson Grygiel, Ben Jarvis, Benjamin Wales, David Kitching, who set a new personal best, Adam Mundell, Lee Westwood, Brian Fisher and Caroline Oakes among those running strongly.

At Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun there is plenty of opportunity to cheer on fellow runners as they head in the other direction chasing personal bests, or just enjoying being part of the running community.

Scott Smallman joined the 100 club with his first run at Lee-on-the-Solent, while Imogen Cunningham completed her 50th run and Maddie Brown ran her 10th run to earn her junior parkrun milestone club t-shirt.

The marshals and volunteers helped ensure a fantastic atmosphere.

Their support and encouragement was appreciated by all the runners.

Rebecca Wroblewski was a great help on the day while 13 volunteers took on new roles.

Nigel Kirkby did a fantastic job in the role of funnel manager.

Also volunteering on Saturday were Maggie Atkinson, Jacob Barca, Lara Blake, Rob Byrne, Gemma Christie, Andrea Edwards, Kelly Essex, Kirsty Fletcher, Austin Gray, Catherine Harman, Kerry Irwin-Hall, Paul Jeffrey, Richard Law, Kaarina May, Phillip Moran, Sarah Moulding, Penelope Nash, Amber Schothorst, Lynne Mabon Simpson, David Simpson, Tracy Slade, Louise Tanner, Kerry Welsh And Jason Williams.

Banner was first over the line in 18.07 with Nikki Moxham first lady as she clocked a time of 19.59.

Dan Taylor, of Hedge End, was second over the line in 18.25.

Dominic Roberts finished third in 18.31 and Hannah Griffiths, who is in the junior 15-to-17 age group, was third female (23.50).