Chairperson’s Blog – 5th May 2014

Dear All,

As I suspected, the challenge of putting fingers to keyboard on a weekly basis has proved beyond me…

The new committee came together for the first time last Monday in what I hope was a positive inaugural meeting. As well as considering routine matters, the committee took a little time to reflect on where Bournville Harriers is ‘at’ right now. There was a strong consensus that the club continues to uphold its 4 core values and provides a supportive environment for all its members, whatever their reasons for running. The social aspect of the club was viewed as an attractive feature for members, while the fact that both the men’s and women’s cross country and relay team continue to hold their own among the best clubs in the country was seen as a cause for celebration.

A recurring theme in terms of ‘shortcomings’ was the lack of qualified coaches within the club. Steve Atkinson is doing a fantastic job in his new role as Coaching Coordinator, but he does need support. Steve has already drawn people’s attention to the fact that there is an opportunity for members to enroll in a basic coaching course at no cost to themselves (and little to the club) at the moment, so if you are interested, please let him  know (I’m afraid I haven’t got the specifics to hand, so can’t elaborate myself!). You don’t have to be the strongest runner in the club, just someone with the desire to put something back into BvH and communicate effectively.

Another issue that came up related to the timings of the club runs. Some committee members felt strongly that it would be desirable to bring the start time forward by 15/30 minutes. The view was that it would be unconstitutional to make a change such as this without giving members the opportunity to vote on it, so it probably won’t become a serious consideration before next year’s AGM, but we would, nevertheless, welcome some feedback ahead of that.

Most people will be aware that our Records and Rankings pages have fallen by the wayside somewhat over the last few months. We have a plan to sort this out, but would appreciate your assistance in the meantime. If you could let Paul Gorman know your best times for any official race/run you did in 2013 or 2014 that would be really helpful (please complete the survey below to do so):



While we’re on the subject of competition, Chris H-M has devised a new ‘Grand Prix’ type series, which will be open to all club members. The details of this should be going to press over the next couple of weeks. We would encourage everyone to join in, as there will be opportunities for prizes based on a wide range of criteria, not just the stronger runners.

As always, a lot of Harriers have been racing over the last couple of weeks. I will always endeavour to include everyone who takes part in events in these round ups and will note parkrun PBs as well. However, please forgive me if I inadvertently omit you. To ensure that your achievements are recorded, please make us of the ‘Tell us you race results’ feature on the website.

Rich Bayliss achieved 2 fantastic PBs on Sunday 4th May on the track (somewhere in Birmingham), running 2.04.59 in the 800m and 4.19.21 in the 1500m.

John McKeon, not satisfied with his first sub-3 hour time in the London Marathon 3 weeks previously, posted another PB in the tougher Worcester Marathon on Sunday, with 2.58.21, finishing 7th. Rich Rollins, who also ran London, was desperately close to matching John until mile 22, when cramp struck. Even so, Rich came a very creditable 14th in 3.05.01.

Linda Howell and Matt Slater very kindly agreed to pace Stuart Pearson around the Lichfield Half, also on Sunday. Unfortunately, Stuart ‘blew up’ around the 8mile mark, but Matt and Linda, being charitable sorts, stuck with him and the three of them crossed the line together in 1.39.19 (1.39.18 for Linda, who started a second behind the lads).

Marianne Hensmann, Suz West and Jude Glynn all took part in ‘Britain’s Hardest 10k’ (so they say) at Kenilworth on May Day. Marianne was 3rd woman in 47.29, Suz came in close behind in 50.25, while on her home turf, Jude recorded a time of 53.57.

Barry Roberts was the first M70 home in a time of 6.22 in the Massey May Day Mile in Coventry. Admittedly, Barry was the only M70 in the race, but he beat a number of runners half his age and less, so the achievement remains a fantastic one.

Laura Gale’s fabulous report details her adventures in the Pembrokeshire Endurancelife Coastal Trail Series ‘Ultra’ Half Marathon on Saturday 3rd. Laura was 25th woman in 2.37 in what sounds like an incredibly tough race.

As always, Lesley Pymm has been busy over the last few weeks, as her entertaining reports detail. Lesley ran the Hanchurch Hilly on 10th April, the Milford Murder the following Thursday and the Barlaston Ups and Downs on 24th April as part of the Spring Treble series, then followed this up by doing the Shobdon Wood 6 on 27th April.

Dave Harte and Lizzy Bryans managed to fit in the Helmsley 10k on Easter Sunday, while up in Yorkshire. Dave came 45th in 42.29, while Lizzy ran a PB of 46.10.

There was a large showing of Teal at the Rotary Shakespeare Half Marathon on 27th April. Dean Parker just missed out on a PB, but nevertheless still finished 4th overall and first M40 in a time of 74.37, despite suffering with leg/backside problems for the last 5 miles. Chris Tarren achieved a big PB to come 10th overall in 76.48, while Andy Hall (85.34), Andy Hoole (88.15 – PB), Kevin Oakes (89.22 – PB), Mike Scotney (91.10), Sarah Rock (99.34), James GGittins (99.18 – PB), Jim Clarke (1.46.36), Mark Doudican (1.47.49 – PB), Steve Doswell (1.54.20 – PB), Kevin Peace (1.55.34), Rachel Partridge (1.57.57 – PB), David Jenkins (2.04.41), Mark Lynock (2.07.34), John Cheel (2.11.45), Primo Zavelli (2.21.16), and Clare Forth (2.36.49) all ran great races.

My apologies again, if anyone’s achievements have been left out; as you can see, there’s a fair amount of information for one person to work through as it is! Please drop me a line if you want detail of one of your performances included in the next blog.

All the best,


One Reply to “Chairperson’s Blog – 5th May 2014”

  1. Thanks for another informative Chairman’s blog Oliver. I think this is a great way to keep us informed.