TAWD Valley parkrun has got off to a flying start in 2020, smashing its attendance record at its New Year's Day special run, and new faces attending on the first regular Saturday of the decade.
A total of 242 people of a wide range of ages and speeds set out from the usual starting point next to Nye Bevan swimming pool on January 1, with the support of some 25 volunteers marshalling various points on the 5km course and recording times and barcodes at the end of the run.
This beat the earlier record of 188, and gives an indication of how popular this inclusive event is becoming.
Commenting on the positive start to the New Year, event director Paul Cotterill said: "It's been great to see a lot of new faces at the parkrun as we enter the new decade.
“We've had visitors from all over the North West, many commenting on the beauty of Tawd Valley Park - Skelmersdale's hidden gem – but what's really pleased the core volunteer team most is how many people who've never run before are starting to attend, and how many 5k walkers we're getting. parkrun is not about how fast you are - it's about getting out there and enjoying yourself, and those who take 80 minutes around the course get four times as long to enjoy themselves as the 20 minute speedsters.
“After a period of course adaptations to cater for the near-complete bike track development works, I am pleased to say that the whole course is now on a variety of hard surfaces, and the very muddy patches are a thing of the past.
“To sign up for parkrun, which is entirely free, just go to www.parkrun.org.uk, register with a few details, print off a barcode, and turn up for a quick briefing at 8.45am in the main square next to the library.
“If you don't have a printer, just let the Tawd Valley team know by email or on Facebook and we'll sort it out for you."