The Chair’s Blog for December comes fresh off of missing the blog for November (which gets written in December) – to be honest this confuses me as well, but each blog is a bit of a retrospective on the month just gone.
Towards the end of last year we had some sad news in losing two members of our club. Other people have spoken and written more eloquently about them as people, and their lives have been celebrated including importantly at our local parkrun of Woodhouse Moor, but instead of talking about them in particular I wanted to reflect on what it has made me think about our running club.
Our Honorary Life President Tom Williams, Chief Operating Officer of parkrun Global, often says on the Marathon Talk podcast that parkrun isn’t about running, it’s about bringing people together and creating a community. In a way that is the same with Hyde Park Harriers. We are a running club, but we also create an opportunity for people to get involved in a community, as well as our club being involved in the wider community, and allow people to connect with each other and form friendships. We support each other and look after each other. That is why I feel that the losses were felt so keenly in our club – we are very much a family. Reading through the nominations for Harrier Of The Month I constantly read of people who are selflessly supporting other people’s running, either on an individual basis or through groups. At difficult times like this it has been great to see Hyde Park Harriers coming together to support each other, which is something that I hope continues.
Talking about supporting each other it has been fantastic to see the start of the PECO season. In particular it has been brilliant to see the whole Hyde Park Harriers crew supporting everyone across the line, with each finisher jogging through to join the line of cheerers. Notably in our PECO season so far I have to pick out two individuals – Steve Milne for helping to deliver our team of volunteers helping Abbey Runners with the Middleton Woods PECO, and Ben Douglas (second claim ‘on loan’ from Leeds City) for his performances and for being a brilliant and involved member of team Hyde Park Harriers. Currently the men are sitting comfortably in mid-table, and the women are riding high in their promotion campaign.
The end of the year brings the Christmas party which Nick Brown did a brilliant job in leading on. Our next big social event will be the awards evening, which we will be starting to plan. Many of the championships are wrapped up while for others the final few rounds will take place in the next few months. Your regular submissions for Harrier Of The Month also go towards nominating people for the Chair’s and President’s awards (and vice versa) so keep those coming in – with the number of nominations it is sure to be difficult to decide who the worthy winners will be.
The end of the year also brings us to start thinking about goals for the rest of the year, with many Harriers already hitting the canal for long runs on preparation for a marathon. One of the big events that is always a highlight of the Hyde Park Harriers calendar is the Calderdale Way Relay. We are currently looking for somebody who would like to lead on organising our teams and participation in the event. If you are interested or have any questions about what is involved, then please get in touch via the club email.
Hyde Park Harriers Chair