Active start to 2016 for Catton Parkrun participants

Runners taking part in the New Year's Day Parkrun at Catton Park. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Runners taking part in the New Year's Day Parkrun at Catton Park. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

A night of New Year's celebrations did not stop more than 100 hardy runners limbering up early to start 2016 the way they mean to go on - with a bracing 5km run.

The Davenport family running the New Year's Day Parkrun at Catton Park. From left, Ryan, 16, number

The Davenport family running the New Year's Day Parkrun at Catton Park. From left, Ryan, 16, number checker; Callum, 13, back up timer; Liam, 12, handing out finish tokens; and Shane, 10, run director. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

This morning's Catton Parkrun was also something of a family affair, with four boys from the same family volunteering to fill key roles to help the event run smoothly, while their mother accompanied the slower participants, as tail runner.

Shaney Davenport, 10, wielded a megaphone to get the 116 runners at Catton Park underway, while his brothers Liam, 12, Callum, 13, and Ryan, 16, gave out finishers' tokens, and acted as back-up timer and number checker, respectively.

Shaney said: 'I was really shocked because I did not know there were going to be that many people, because obviously people stayed up for midnight. It was a fun atmosphere.'

Their mother, Justine Davenport, 44, said the family, from Bolingbroke Road in Mile Cross, have been doing Parkrun together since 2014, and while she finds running on her own boring, the volunteer-led, free-entry event is 'completely different'.

She credited her regular participation with enabling her to run a 10km race in 2015, and she now aims to complete a half marathon in 2016.

Shelley Ames, yesterday's race director, said Shaney did a 'good job' starting the race, which attracted a number of first-time participants, some of whom were making an early start on their New Year keep fit resolutions.

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She added that the event, which started 30 minutes later than usual to accommodate New Year's revellers, had a 'celebratory feel'.

The Catton Parkrun is one of 11 weekly parkruns in Norfolk. See parkrun.org.uk for more information.

Do you have a unique New Year's Resolution? Email martin.george@archant.co.uk