Sunderland’s award-winning Herrington Country Park is now hosting a free weekly timed parkrun.
Since 300 people took part in the first Herrington Park run in July, more and more people have been joining in with the weekly 5K events.
The attractive circular course – which boasts some wonderful views and passes beneath the impressive Penshaw Monument – is suitable for people of all ages, abilities and levels of experience.
The parkrun kicks off every Saturday at 9.00 am. There is no need for runners to sign up to longer-term commitments like in a gym. If you wish to take part, you just need to register for the run of your choice online in advance.
All you then have to do is print out a barcode and present it when you arrive for your run.
The only rules are that children aged under 11 should be accompanied by an adult and that dogs are limited to one per runner and must be kept on a lead.
The Herrington Country Park course begins near the wheeled sports park. It then proceeds via tarmac tracks and gravel paths, skirting the lakes, before coming to an end in the amphitheatre.
In addition to the Herrington Country Park run, Sunderland boasts other free timed runs at Mowbray Park, Princess Anne Park, Washington, and Silksworth Sports Complex.
Sunderland City Council’s cabinet member for communities and culture, Cllr John Kelly, said, “Herrington Country Park is the perfect venue for a parkrun with an idyllic setting and stunning views, and a traffic-free route which means that runners from beginners to the more experienced can relax and take part in safety.”
“Experience from other participation runs we have in the city shows that these events quickly develop their own community, and we are looking forward to the weekly runs becoming an integral part of the Herrington Country Park calendar.”
“As well as being a fun activity, park runs such as this one in Herrington Country Park contribute to a number of local health initiatives which encourage and support residents to become more active.”
The director of the Herrington Park run, Keith Tilmouth, said, “We have seen almost 2000 people take part so far and run, jog or walk around Herrington Country Park.”
“We are seeing a great sense of achievement from participants leading to improved self-confidence, strong community spirit among runners and spectators, and runners of all ages and abilities improving their physical and mental wellbeing.”
You can learn more about the route and course at https://www.parkrun.org.uk/herringtoncountry/.
To register for Sunderland’s parkruns, including those at Herrington Country Park, and to get your barcode to print out, please visit https://www.parkrun.org.uk/register/.