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Mayor urges public to discover the joy of parkrun

16 September 2019

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor Michaela Boyle, has encouraged people of all fitness levels to consider getting involved in the two local parkruns held in the Council area.

Parkruns are free, weekly, 5km timed runs held throughout the world at 9.30am every Saturday morning.

The Derry City Parkrun has been hosted on the city’s quayside since July 2013 while Strabane joined the ever growing network of events this June when its inaugural run took place in the grounds of Holy Cross College.

Mayor Boyle attended the first Holy Cross College Parkrun in Strabane, which was also the subject of a BBC documentary about the benefits of exercise featuring Dame Kelly Holmes and she is encouraging the public to avail of the two local weekly events.

“Parkruns are a free and easy way for people to introduce exercise to their weekly routine,” she said. “Everyone is welcome whether you want to walk, jog or run the course and the tail walker at the back makes sure no one finishes last.

“There is a strong social element to the event, with participants encouraging each other around the route while many choose to stay around when they have completed the course to have a coffee or a chat.

“As a Council we are committed in the Strategic Growth Plan to encourage higher levels of participation in sport and recreational activities so I am delighted to endorse our local parkrun events and to encourage people to take part.”

Keelin Begley, Holy Cross College Parkrun Director, said they have been delighted with the success of the event since it began in the summer but they are always on the lookout for more runners and volunteers.

“The Holy Cross College Parkrun has been a great success so far,” she said. “We have a great location that offers a safe course with ample parking and we have welcomed visitors from all over the world.

“We welcome everyone, whether you are a first timer or a member of the thriving local running clubs we offer you the chance to walk, jog or run a safe course with a great atmosphere.

“Parkruns wouldn’t be possible without our network of volunteers each week who look after marshalling, barcode scanning, timekeeping and finish tokens, we are always looking for new volunteers to help out and if you would like to be added to our roster e mail [email protected].

“We are keen to spread the word about our event and would appreciate anything anyone can do to encourage people to get involved either through social media or word of mouth.”

You can keep up to date with the local parkrun events on the Derry City Parkrun and Holy Cross College Parkrun pages which feature results, images and news.

Taking part in a parkrun requires a one off registration on the website Parkrun.com which takes just a few minutes.

Once registered you remain registered for life and you can take part in any parkrun in the world without having to re-register.
Children must be aged 4 and over to register and obtain their own barcode and in order to record a time they must complete the course entirely on their own two feet.
Children under 11 should be accompanied within arm’s reach throughout the run by a parent or guardian at our 5k series.

Participants must print out their own barcode and bring it with them to the event, at the end of the race you will receive a finish token that will be scanned along with your barcode to register your time which is recorded on your account.