Events Director at Newport ParkRun, Chris Davies, told us about the great community spirit at the event.
“We think what we’ve got here is great and it has been going for over three-years now and the numbers have just picked up, so much so that we’ve almost got to the 400 mark this year,” said Chris.
“ParkRun is definitely a run and not a race, that’s the first thing. It’s all about participation and getting people out and exercising. You don’t have to be fast, and you don’t have to run so you can actually walk all the way around if you want to.
“ParkRun really is all about the community as much as it is about the running, and we’ve noticed that community then extends to people joining the local running clubs.”
The Newport ParkRun is so popular that they also run a junior event on a Sunday and have now set up a beginners course too.
“The original ParkRun has up to a thousand participants but I would say that we are one of the biggest and we are the second biggest in Wales. But we don’t really look at it in terms of numbers it’s just about trying to encourage people really,” said Chris.
“We now also have a junior event on a Sunday that brings in about 100 people. Today is in fact the first time we’ve done a course for people who are perhaps not confident in even walking around the 5k, so we’ve set up a beginners group with a mixture of running and walking so it’s a nice easy start for them.
“The surroundings here at Tredegar House are absolutely excellent. We’re in partnership here with the National Trust and they’re very supportive and help us all the time. They’ve laid extra pathways for us originally just to get this going and make it a great thing for the local public to enjoy.”
We spoke to Miles Thomas, a member of Lliswerry Running Club, who was named Sweatshop ParkRunner of the Month on Saturday for his contribution towards the event.
“It was completely unexpected and really nice to get a reward because I didn’t expect it, but it’s always nice when other people appreciate the effort everyone puts in,” said Miles.
“We tend to get well over 300 people running and walking the course and it’s great to see so many people out on a Saturday morning enjoying it.”