What has gone over Londonderry’s Peace Bridge more than 27,000 times in the past four years?
The city’s parkrunners.
Since 2013, almost 3,000 people have taken part in the free weekly timed 5k, and this Saturday participants will have an extra spring in the step as the initiative celebrates its 200th run.
The volunteer organisers hope to make it their biggest ever and are aiming to attract the magical number of 200 participants to celebrate the milestone.
Starting 9.30am sharp from outside the Coffee Shop at the Quay, the course follows the promenade towards the city centre then crosses the Peace Bridge to the Waterside and along the St Columb’s Park footway. The turning at 2.5K is marked by a seating area and then return to start by same route.
It’s completely free and available every Saturday morning to walkers, joggers and runners alike.
Derry City parkrun stated: “Since that first outing we have had 2,981 different runners, including those from 220 registered clubs, equating to 13, 777 times registered as running our beautiful course. (So they’ve been over the Peace Bridge and back more than 27,000 times).”
The biggest attendance to date is 139 and the lowest was 18.
“We have had wind, rain, gales, snow and floods, and it has only been cancelled three times due to circumstances out of our control, like the weather and music festivals. We have had Santas, hens and stags, Couch to 5k graduates from all over the local area, we have had visitors from all over Ireland, England, Wales and Scotland, a French duathlon champion, New Zealanders, Aussies and South Africans.
“Catherine Whoriskey from Spartans holds the female record at 17.41 (we are hoping she breaks that again soon) and Foyle Valley’s Scott Rankin holds the men’s at 15.27. Great to have two local runners hold the course records.”
For more information and to log on go to http://www.parkrun.org.uk/derrycity/