Easton established fantastic community parkrun

The baton for event director has been passed on at Queen Elizabeth parkrun.

Wednesday, 1st March 2017, 6:45 am
Updated Wednesday, 1st March 2017, 9:54 am
Kiernan Easton with his daughters at QE parkrun. Picture: Penny Johnstone

James Leighton has taken on the role after Kiernan Easton decided to step down.

The event based at Gravel Hill, Horndean, has a fantastic family atmosphere.

Everyone taking part is cheered and encouraged.

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Easton, who will be continuing as one of the run directors, has been at the heart of this in his four years at the helm.

Supported and assisted by the great teams of volunteers he has ensured so many people feel part of the running community.

Leighton is now looking forward to taking on the role and praised the influence of his great friend.

He said: ‘Over the past four years Kiernan has put in a tremendous amount of work to establish Queen Elizabeth parkrun as a truly special local event.

‘QE parkrun has a fantastic community feel about it and that is a reflection of the way Kiernan has developed the event.

‘It is a privilege to be able to take over a fantastic thriving event in such a spectacular location.

‘To be event director for more than 200 runs is a huge commitment and I’m sure I speak on behalf of everyone who knows Kiernan in thanking him for everything he has done.

‘He has been a truly inspirational character in the local running community and a good friend.’

Beverly Tune, who ran her 100th parkrun on Saturday, only started running after support and encouragement from Easton and QE parkrun.

She said: ‘Kiernan came into my office one Friday afternoon in May 2013 and we had a little chat about work, then he happened to mention about parkrun of which I knew nothing about.

‘By the time he left my office I was signed up and ready to go the next day.

‘On the Saturday morning I turned up at Queen Elizabeth County Park just before 9am like a fish out of water, not knowing what to expect.

‘I did not know anyone else except Kiernan. He was really welcoming, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

‘From then I was hooked and ran my 100th parkrun on Saturday.

‘Kiernan is a lovely person, he has supported, helped, and encouraged me on my journey.

‘Thank you so much Kiernan, my inspiration, motivator and someone I can call a true friend.’

On Saturday 90 people completed the 5k course.

Paul Turner, of Fareham Crusaders, finished first with a time of 21min 01sec.

Nicky McWilliam was the first female to reach the finish, recording a time of 22.47.