Weekly News – Sunday 24th March 2024

Evening all, apologies that this week’s newsletter is hitting your inbox quite late in the evening. Most of you will be in bed by now, but at least you can sip your coffee (or green smoothie) snuggled up under your duvet in the morning and catch up on the Westbury Harriers highlights. Not long to go before some of you toe the line at the Brighton, London and Newport Marathon, loads of you are smashing the long training runs at the moment, so well done. If you need any last minute fuelling or fresh socks for race day, you know where to find me ahem…Up & Running. Especially those who won vouchers at the awards evening, don’t forget, WH members get 10% off at the shop.



Westbury Harriers Annual Awards Ceremony

“What a great evening ! A brilliant video to start the evening and Geraint Torrington and Club Chairman Jim Murphy doing a super-professional presenting job. A full report and photos (courtesy of Neil Miller) to come, but a big thank you to Geraint and all the backroom staff for providing all the trophies, refreshments etc. Our Thanks to Ben and Yvette for making the video and … Congratulations to all our winners!
Nights like this make you proud to be part of Westbury Harriers”.
Words by Mike Mewse

I couldn’t agree more, it was so great to see the hall filled with so many WH members. A lovely evening, looking back on last years events and achievements.

Our hosts Geraint & Jim @Westbury Harriers’ Awards Evening
Men’s Club Championship winners

News from within the Club Membership


Jodie Pearce Bath Half – Amended result:
Apologies we made an error with Jodie Pearce’s race time result. Congratulations on your first Half with a great time of 2:47:47. We hope you’re still buzzing from it!

Sandy Masters:
After an outstanding time of 3:33:01 at the Tokyo Marathon, Sandy Masters is now ranked No.1 in the U.K for 2024 in the V65 age group. Sandy was also ranked No.1 in 2023. Truly impressive! I got to hold the shiny bling, Six Star Finisher Medal at the awards night. That’s one medal you do not want to use as a drinks coaster.

Dan Summers – Sri Chinmoy 100k Perth, Scotland
We love stalking Strava, it came to our attention that Dan ran a whopping 100km ultra road distance earlier today. Incredible achievement, bravo.

“A day to remember at the Self Transcendence Perth 100k. 42 laps on the mostly flat tarmac of the 1.5 mile loop in North Inch Park. This is the only IAU 100k in the UK and so is also the British Champs, Anglo Celtic Plate (Eng v Scott v Ireland v N.Ireland v Wales), the BMAF champs and a few other championships as well.

I did this race two years ago and DNF’d after about 60k just as the race was really getting going. I had big ambitions this year after a great block of training. Whilst I didn’t quite achieve my A goal of going under 7hrs (I just couldn’t hold the pace necessary in miles 50-59 – in hindsight this was probably party due to a lack of fuel and partly just cause I was bloody knackered) I came away with a pretty pleasing 7hrs 6 mins.

The road 100k format is brutal – there’s no where to hide and it’s a very “pure” form of ultra running. You strip away all the variables of trail races and are left with a simple physical and mental challenge. They really hurt and take everything out of you – call me weird but that is part of the appeal for me!!

Anyway, as well as 7:06 I also had a good haul of results, 9th in the British Champs, Silver V40 BMAF medal and a 30 min pb.

I’ll be back for more. The community around these races is ace and the challenge is huge. Thanks to everyone that made it a great day but especially my coach and friend Marcus Scotney for crewing me and providing all the tough love I needed today.

I even spotted two or three people around in the new Harrier Trail Running Lomond jacket – branching out from trails now! The Precision Fuel gels were incredible and I just needed a few more of them!”

Words by Dan Summers.

Midland 6 Stage Road Relays – Women’s team

“Relays always seem hard to organise for some reason. Team managers have a big sigh of relief when they get a complete team to the start line. Well done to Chris Palmer for all his efforts with the men’s team. Looking on back on our ladies history, some years it just doesn’t come together and you have to just look forward to the next year.

The ladies haven’t always fielded a team in this event. Back in 2008 we were 13th, with the formidable Pat Gallagher bringing the team home. 2010 with were 18th. 2012 was our glory year when we won. 2014 6th, 2017 was the last year we fielded a team in 11th place. There were several years where the event was cancelled due to covid 2020 & 2021 and bad weather in 2013.

With 3 unfortunate pull outs from the ladies team in the week before the event. With our reserve runner used, we were super grateful to Emma Woodworth and Lorna Miller for stepping in to ensure we had a team. The team is 6 people with legs 1 & 3 long legs (approx. 8.5km) and legs 2,3,5 & 6 (approx 5km). It’s an undulating course held in the scenic Sutton Park.

It was windy out on the course, which meant the top stretch and beyond was really tough going, as the wind was across you and never pushing you along. We had every weather imaginable. Sunshine and drizzle. Rain on Rhiannon’s leg, hail on Steph’s leg, cloud and then more sunshine.

Rhiannon travelled from Oxford Uni to compete, which we are appreciative off. Rhiannon had a storming leg 1 (long leg). Surrounded by some top class athletes Rhiannon held her own and looked strong came in 8th, 32.33. We always knew our team position would move down after this leg, but we were all really pleased to only drop back over the next 5 legs 4 positions to finish a fantastic 12th.

Steph coming off a night shift and having to run and head straight back to work (hence not in the photos), fuelled with coffee it seemed to work for her as she had a tremendous run in 20.20. Anyone who has run this event knows how the spirts lift when you see the ice cream van and know you are heading right and are homeward bound. For the first time ever I went beyond the ice cream van into the unknown for the 2nd long leg in 36.21. Fabulous to see Robyn Ellis back in action after a long time off injured. Robyn had a super run giving it her all as ever in 21.49. Emma Woodworth had another solid run in 21.55 for leg 5, only 30 odd seconds what she run back in 2017 which is brilliant. New to this event Lorna ran the anchor leg, having a great run and bringing the team home in 12th place 22.29.

2016 was when the 2 longer legs were introduced for the ladies event. Interestingly our time yesterday overall was a minute quicker to when the team finished 11th in 2017.

12th: Westbury Harriers; 2:35:27. 1 Rhiannon Paton ( 32:33), 2 Stephanie Cummins (9) 20:20, 3 Tamsin Chick (11) 36:21, 4 Robyn Ellis (10) 21:49, 5 Emma Woodworth (11) 21:55, 6 Lorna Miller (12) 22:29

Thank you all ladies for making the effort to get there. It was a super day out together as always. The donuts as lovely as ever (thanks Rhiannon).

Don’t forget we have more relay action in the form of the Masters Road Relays in Leicester Sat 25th May (suitable for all aged 35+), The Avon 5km road relays (suitable for all) should be Sunday 25th August and the Midland 4/6 stage road relays for seniors/masters, which will be in September”.

Words by Tamsin Chick

Centenary Features – Books, television and newspapers.

The Centenary is giving us a great opportunity to publicise the club – and its great achievements over the last 100 years.

ITV West Country have scheduled our Centenary feature (filmed under the floodlights at Yate track) to be aired on TV soon, TBC. It was meant to be on Friday evening, but I think it had to be rescheduled.

The Bristol Post has supported the Centenary with a full page article. Just waiting for the BBC now!

Anyone who has an opportunity should read the club’s 75th Anniversary book. It’s a good read and full of great photos and performances from Westbury Harriers athletes. The book was produced by former chairman and international athlete Peter Griffin. We just need to update the last 25 years now – any offers?

*** If you want to share any news, race stories or results, then please email: communication@westburyharriers.co.uk or you can post on the WH Facebook Group Page. We love to hear about everyone’s achievements and adventures ***




Please remember all groups leave from Coombe Dingle promptly at 6:30pm, although the evenings are getting lighter you may still need lights and bright/reflective clothing.


February track session fees (+admin fee) will be taken through RunTogether like other sessions, so there will be no need to pay Yate directly, as the club will do this. Please do cancel if you can’t make the session as the track sessions are popular and there has been a waiting list in recent weeks. As before, if RunTogether doesn’t refund you automatically please message Tamsin. Sign up HERE.

This week the session is:

Goal: Session with more distance @ 5k pace and quicker

200m, 400m, 600m, 800m, 1k, 800m, 600m, 400m, 200m (100m jog recovery, 200m recovery after 1k)

Start off quicker than 5km pace, slow as the intervals get longer, quicker as the intervals get shorter.

If you run regularly at Yate or plan to give track races a go this season. Do make sure you have taken advantage of our partnership with Yate AC and join Yate for free as an associate Westbury Harriers member: https://westburyharriers.co.uk/membership/yate-partnership/


Meet every Wednesday at 12pm at the traffic lights by Saville Road on the Downs. Book on via RunTogether HERE.



28th March – Planned session ON GRASS.

Pyramid session: 1min, 2min, 3min (1min recovery), 4min (90secs recovery), 4min (90secs recovery), 3mins, 2mins, 1min (1min recovery). Aim to maintain 5km effort throughout, option to drop the 4mins down to 3mins.





The current membership year ends on 31st March and I know many of you are eager to renew your membership! You can now do so. Lizzy sent a detailed email (16th March) with full instructions of how to renew – Please check your inboxes/junk for that message and get renewing for another year of running with WH!


Sarah and Louise are organising the next Club Supper on 11th April at the Black Swan at 8.15pm – Curry, £9.50 per person. If you’d like to go, please register your interest and pay by 8th April. All details on the Facebook page.


The club has booked a stand at the Bristol Running Show again. This event is taking place at the BAWA Club on Southmead Road. A great local venue and an ideal opportunity to let the Bristol running community know more about the range of running activities that our wonderful club has to offer. The event features stands from local running clubs as well as local and national groups and retailers. It also has a series of interesting speakers throughout the day, plus yoga sessions, guided runs and even an orienteering course to try! https://bristolrunningshow.com/ Sign up for your FREE TICKET here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/bristol-running-show-2024-tickets-742275224177

We also need volunteers to man the stand throughout the day. Ideally two people in three shifts:

9.00 – 11.00am

11.00am – 1.00pm

1.00pm – 3.00pm

In previous years, we have had a really good mix of volunteers, from longstanding members to more recent recruits. It’s a great opportunity to tell any new prospective members everything they need to know about the benefits of joining Westbury Harriers! Why not combine a visit to the show with an opportunity to help support the club! If you can help this year, please comment on the pinned Facebook post or speak to Mark Andrews – mark.andrews65@me.com


The annual Masters road relays are taking place in May this year. The ladies had a really enjoyable and successful day out last year and we really hope that some men’s teams will join them this year. We can enter teams in V35, V45 and V55 age categories. This is a really good event with each leg being about 5k around the motor racing circuit. The club pays the entry fee, we can share lifts and the club will contribute towards travel costs.

Chris Palmer and Mark Andrews are getting the men’s teams together for this event. If you are interested please speak to one of us at training or email mark.andrews65@me.com If we have enough interest we can enter more than one team in each age group. We would like to put out some competitive teams but also give an opportunity to anyone who would like to enjoy taking part. Representing the club as part of a team is great fun, we hope to have a good day out as well as giving it our best in the race!

For the women, we are hoping to enter a V35 team of 4 and FV45, FV55 and FV65 teams of 3. If you would like to take part in this race, then please get in touch manager.vet.women@westburyharriers.co.uk


There will be no training on Easter Monday 1st April, however there will be a social run from the Clubhouse at 9:30am at Blaise, followed by hot drinks and cakes. Please book via the Run Together app.


Members are asked to put forward their suggestions for a charity of the year. They must be a registered charity. Send nominations to charity@westburyharriers.co.uk by Saturday 23rd March. Members can they vote on their chosen charity.


Applications close on 30th April for the Arthur Dagger Memorial Fund which is run by GWR. This financial contribution is to support young talented athletes. Please feel details on below link.



Thanks to UP & Running and Altra, we will be hosting an evening workshop testing Altra’s running shoes (Lone Peak 8, Paradigm and FWD Experience).

It will take place at Coombe Dingle, time TBC, but it will be a similar set up as before when we had Saucony visit. Choose a shoe you would like to try and run in your groups. More details to follow soon.

Key: Red = Key club team races, Green = Club championship race, Blue = Club Centenary/Other events

– Sunday 2nd April: Brighton Marathon
– Thursday 4th April: Weston Prom series (5 miles)
– Sunday 7th April: Exe to Axe (a bit of a journey, but a brilliant race!) 22 miles of coast path from Exmouth to Seaton.
Link: https://www.sidmouthrunningclub.co.uk/jps-exe-to-axe-2024/
– Sunday 21st April: London Marathon
– Sunday 21st April: Horton Bull Run
– Sunday 28th April: Newport Marathon
– Thursday 25th April 2024: Club AGM after training at Coombe Dingle. Senior training will begin earlier at 6.30pm this evening.
– Saturday 27th April: Butcombe Trail Ultra Marathon (50 or 56 mile options)
– Saturday 18th May: Formal Dinner for Club Centenary celebration. Location: Bristol Hotel (Details have been posted on Facebook)
– Friday 24th May: First 10k in the Towpath series including the Mob Match
– Saturday 25th May: Masters Road Relays. Leicester (Team managers will complete entries)
– Tuesday 11th June – Clevedon Midsummer 10k – a fast flat local 10k
– Sunday 23rd June: All Club Event. Activities for juniors and seniors followed by food at Coombe Dingle Sports Complex


This week’s editor: Yvette Casallas