DPR April Newsletter

Hi everyone! Welcome to the April DPR Newsletter – including this month a particular welcome to those participating in the Spring beginners and 5k – 5 mile courses.

April is of course a big month for many members tackling a marathon – good luck to David M and Ronnie who are taking on Brighton, and bonne chance to Alex G taking on Paris this weekend. We also have several members doing London Landmarks Half and Battersea Half – best wishes to them (and give them a cheer if you see them in central London). And of course, lots of members will be looking towards London later this month…

On a personal note, this is my last newsletter as I step back from being the club’s communications secretary. Thank you to everyone for reading! You’ll be in great hands with Jess and Lynne taking over. James

Membership Renewals
Membership renewals are now due. You should shortly receive an email from England Athletics with some simple steps on how to renew – it takes around 30 seconds.

We hope everyone has had a great 2023-2024 running with the club. The recent club AGM agreed to leave renewing standard adult membership fees unchanged at £45, which includes DPR absorbing increased England Athletics fees. There are also concession membership rates available.

Our view is that the club offers fantastic value for members, and we hope lots of you will renew.

London Marathon and Social
This year’s London Marathon is on Sunday 21 April. There will be a strong DPR presence, with 8 members running and our usual team of marshals at mile 14-15 (around Narrow Street / Limehouse DPR station). Do come along to say hello if you’re in the area on the day!

We will be doing a post-marathon social at the clubhouse after our club run on Tuesday 23 April after the usual club run, including pizza and drinks. We’d also like to invite along beginner and 5k – 5 mile graduates to celebrate them successfully completing the courses, and we’ll be presenting the medals from the half marathon club championships and the Winter parkrun ladder. 

40th anniversary events and t-shirts
We’re excited to be running some special events this year to celebrate the 40th anniversary of our founding. These will be:

  • organising our own 5 mile running event open to the public and other running clubs in Dulwich Park on Sunday 6 October
  • having a special 40th anniversary party on Saturday 26 October
  • hosting a track and field day for members and their families at Dulwich College track in August (date to be confirmed).

Please do mark the running event and party in your diaries!

If you’re yet to collect the 40th anniversary t-shirt you ordered, then you’ll next be able to collect from Lynne at the club on Tuesday 9 April from 7.10pm – you could even debut it on the 7.30 club run!

AGM report
The club’s AGM took place on Tuesday 26 March. The main substantive items for discussion were membership fees and election of committee members. As above, the meeting agreed to hold membership fees from 2023-24, and to allow members under 25 to qualify for concessionary membership.

The committee was elected as below, including the new and vacant Vice Chair position. Please speak to a member of the new committee if you are interested in this role.

  • Chair: David Mullany
  • Vice-Chair: VACANT
  • Treasurer: Courtney Spittal
  • Secretary: Emma Pond
  • Social Secretary: Shannan James
  • Membership Officer: David Whitehead
  • Communications Secretary: Jess Hodgson
  • Club Captain: Lucy Ross
  • Welfare Officer: Nicole Teszke
  • Stock Secretary: Mark Schofield

We’re very grateful to those who put themselves forward to be part of the committee, as well as those who have been committee members over the past year for their efforts in post.

Full minutes of the AGM will be circulated in due course.

Upcoming races
The following is a list of our upcoming Club races. Please put them in your calendars now so that you don’t go and accidentally double book yourselves!

  • Tuesday 21 May – 1 Mile Club Championship – 7.30pm in Dulwich Park followed by a social
  • Summer League events (all 9.30am):
    • Sunday 16 June – Metros at Headstone Manor
    • Sunday 30 June – Ealing Eagles at Perivale
    • Sunday 14 July – DPR in Dulwich Park
    • Sunday 28 July – Mornington Chasers in Regent’s Park
    • Sunday 11 August – Serpentine in Battersea Park and our 10k Club Championship
  • Sunday 1 September – The Big Half – see below.
There are, of course, many other races around. If you sign up for any do make sure they don’t clash with Club races. Feel free to post on WhatsApp to let others know what you’re interested in –  it’s always nice to have company and/or support and there may be car sharing opportunities. A few suggestions:
  • Saturday 11 May: Bewl Water 10k, Half, Marathon, Ultra – more info here
  • Sunday 19 May: the Chislehurst Half is a really nice half that several of us did a couple of times previously. It’s a mix of road and trail and supports some local charities. More info here.
  • Runthrough do a whole series of events that take place in Crystal Palace Park, Battersea Park, Regent’s Park, Clapham Common, Victoria Park and many more and have events almost every weekend and mid week – more on their website here.
  • The Maverick series is a well organised series of trail runs. They’re not cheap but there are discounts for group bookings and they’re flexible with transferring to other races in the series and with changing the distance you’ve selected – their website is here.

The Big Half
DPR has again been allocated cut-price places in The Big Half on Sunday 1 September.  We have 35 places available at £15 each (the standard price is £56).  These will be allocated on a first come, first served basis so, if you want one, please let Derek Hodgson (email boswedden@btinternet.com) know.

Summer League – First aiders
As above, we’re looking ahead to this year’s Summer League fixture which will be hosted by DPR in Dulwich Park on Sunday 14 July. We will need lots of volunteers to help with this, but foremost in our planning is making sure that everyone is safe and looked after on the day. In previous years we’ve had some lovely volunteers with suitable skills/training to act as our first aiders, and we’re wondering if there are others in the wider DPR community.

Do you have any friends or family members who are healthcare professionals or have relevant skills and might be able to help out? If so, please get in touch with Nicole at welfare@dulwichparkrunners.co.uk. Volunteers will of course be welcome to partake in the much-lauded DPR Summer League picnic.

One from the archives - IB about to start off the Dulwich Summer League last year

Our Spring Beginners and 5k-5 mile courses are on Saturdays at 8am, 9am and 10am in Dulwich Park, meeting at Queen Mary Gate.

We’re halfway through the course now (almost over for 5k-5milers!) but we still welcome volunteers to help out as running buddies. There’s no need to do a whole morning, or any more Saturdays than suit you, but we couldn’t do it without you! If you’re new to this and would like to know more, or would just like to confirm your help as a ‘buddy’, please email beginners@dulwichparkrunners.com.

As usual we offer a free cooked breakfast at a local cafe as a thank you to all helpers. Please note that this will be after the week 7 run on 20 April. After the final run on week 8 (27 April) there’ll be a “meet the club social” in the park. Look out for more information in the mid-April newsletter.

Thursday track sessions
Our Thursday track sessions for April are on the newly laid Dulwich College track, with a series of sessions continuing the emphasis on improving your endurance and speed.

The sessions are free. We don’t know of any other clubs who offer free sessions of this nature, so it is a fantastic opportunity to improve your running. You need to be running at least 10 miles per week to take part. 

On a personal point, I restarted Susan’s sessions in mid-January, and since then have recorded a PB in the Dash and over 10k – so they really do help you improve your performance!

If you are not already in Susan’s list for Thursdays, please email her at coach@dulwichparkrunners.co.uk for more info. Or if you would like help with race schedules, or coaching tips for general running please drop Susan an email.

Edinburgh Marathon Festival
We have a good group of us travelling up to Edinburgh for the marathon festival over 24-27 May. It’s not too late to come along – there are still entries available for the 5k or 10k option. We also have a couple of spare beds in our booked accommodation (for women only) – let James know if you would like more details.

Diamond League Athletics
We’re doing a DPR outing to the Diamond League Athletics at the London Stadium on Saturday 20 July. With thanks to those of you who’ve expressed interest in this already, if you’d like to come along could you please let me know by Wednesday 10 April? Tickets are £23-35 per person.

March racing review
Lots of DPR members out and about running last month!

I’m going to break with tradition and start at the end of the month, and the 15 members who made it to Kew bright and early last Sunday morning for our Half Marathon Club Championship. Congratulations to Amanda who was our first lady and 2nd in her age category overall – a real achievement. David W was our first man across the line and both he and Amanda achieved PBs. Top three age graded results went to Amanda, Lucy R and Tim G. Several members are marathon training at the moment and it is obviously paying off with PBs for many. It was an early start for all especially Tim and Linda who had to be up at 4am on clock change day to make the journey up. It was lovely to see them.

Earlier in the month we had a strong group doing the longer distance races far and wide – Shannan and David at the Merthyr Tydfil half marathon (is there a half in Wales they’re yet to do?!), Jess at the Bath half marathon, Tim securing a PB at the Kingston half, Georgia at the Hampton Court Half and Karen topping them all with the Kingston 20 miler.

On the same weekend Chris was out running the original London marathon (Windsor to White City) – great work!

Attendance Award
An update on the club’s new attendance award. We currently have four members all with the current maximum 3 points – Amanda Larrington, Chris Ince, Emma Embleton and Linda Griffiths (very impressive considering Linda is a long-distance member!).  

The Attendance Award will be awarded based on points scored throughout the year, which are available for attending cross-country, club championships, summer league, beginners, our 40th anniversary event in October and Dulwich Dash events. More details are here.
Eligibility for the ballot for the club’s England Athletics place(s) for the 2025 London Marathon will depend on securing a minimum of two points under the 2024 attendance award before the ballot is drawn.

I’m sure you’re all deeply disappointed that I will no longer be providing jokes in the newsletter. Anyway, I’ve chosen a special zinger to sign off with:

Q: How do you row a canoe filled with puppies?
A: Bring out the doggy paddle.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *