Backing for plan to launch parkruns for young athletes

Weston Junior Parkrun is returning to Walford Avenue this Sunday.

Plans for parkruns in Axminster have been boosted - Credit: Weston Junior Parkrun

The starting pistol has been fired in a bid to stage regular junior parkruns in Axminster. 

Devon County Council has given permission for the event to take place on part of the Stop Line way path between Weycroft Bridge and Cloakham Lawns.

Axminster Town Council met earlier this year to consider the request and was also enthusiastic in its support for the event which is popular throughout the UK.

Junior parkrun is an international initiative which offers four to 14 year olds the chance to run a 2km route every Sunday morning at 9am and have their effort timed.

A key partner for the initiative is Axminster Town Football Club which has agreed to host the runners’ warm up sessions and finish on their site.

Rachel Burrough, speaking on behalf of the club, said: “We are delighted to be part of this important initiative to encourage our youngsters to enjoy running for health, fitness and friendship. There is an incentive now to raise the start-up funds to ensure the run is free for the young people forever.”

Local resident and core team member, Sarah Shepley, said: “I am so pleased that Axminster Town Council and Devon County Council have given permission. We will now work with the local UK parkrun ambassador to make sure we have everything in place before we can start. This will take a few months at least.

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“We will be approaching local businesses and organisations to assist us with the £4,000 we need to fund the startup costs, and we will be working with Seaton parkrun and other junior parkrun events to learn from their success.”

Local running club Axe Valley Runners is also lending its support and practical help to the event.

The parkrun initiative started back in 2004 when 13 runners got together on a blustery day in Bushy Park, Teddington, UK.

More details about parkrun in the UK and around the world can be found at parkrun.com

For more details if needed about the proposed junior parkrun in Axminster or about parkrun in general please  contact Lesley.adams@hotmail.co.uk
 

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