DECEMBER 29th 2013
ANYONE not at the RRR Presentation Night may not be aware that, as a surprise finale to the year, all club members were presented with a special 10th anniversary medal. If you don't yet have one of these, please see Stuart Carroll at club training nights - while stocks last!  [David Emanuel]  

DECEMBER 26th 2013
AS we approach the end of the year, thoughts inevitably start to turn to our plans for 2014...and the curious amongst us wonder what our fellow runners are going to be doing. If you have a few moments to spare over the holiday period, please complete this brief on-line questionnaire - it'll be a great help with the planning of team events & other club competitions!  [David Emanuel]    

DECEMBER 25th 2013

MERRY Christmas to all Royton Road Runners! Hope you have a fantastic day & that Santa & his elves (or 'Subordinate Clauses' as I prefer to call them) have brought you lots of lovely running-related gifts. Relax & enjoy yourselves but be careful - I've already tried 'rockin' around the Christmas tree', but in hindsight probably should have moved it away from the wall first. And, remember, as T. S. Eliot almost wrote, "This is the way Christmas ends, not with bling but with a jumper". Enjoy!  [David Emanuel]  
DECEMBER 24th 2013
THANKS to everyone who turned up in (surprisingly) calm weather for the final track session of 2013, especially those who came along in their Santa outfits & kept them on for the duration of the session! Special thanks also to Ronnie Quinn & his merry men/women who called in at Kingsway Park to add to the festivities. Whilst the whole crowd was there, we took the opportunity to present Brian Moore with a sizeable bunch of Up & Running vouchers as a 'thank you' for his coaching efforts through the year. He also received an Up & Running 'choob' which can apparently be worn as a neckerchief, balaclava, scarf, bandana, headband, wristband...or even used as a 'scrunchie' to keep Brian's ponytail in place. Thanks to everyone who contributed to Brian's gift - hope to see this many people at track sessions in 2014!  [David Emanuel]     
DECEMBER 22nd 2013
MANY thanks to Simon Howard for pointing out that until midnight tonight there is a 25% discount on 2014 races organised by Fylde Coast Running. This includes the Great North West Half Marathon in February, which is part of the RRR club championship - so enter today & pay £15 rather than £20. All you need to do is use the coupon code 'CHRISTMAS' - I've just done it myself so can confirm that it works!  [David Emanuel]

CONGRATULATIONS to Dave Peart & Shane Reading, who have both reached the impressive milestone of 100 parkruns in the last couple of weeks. Judging from their race performances this year, getting up early every Saturday morning for a swift 5K can be highly recommended! Both have still got some way to go, however, to catch Simon Lake, who this weekend completed his 130th parkrun. Impressive!  [David Emanuel]   

DECEMBER 19th 2013
AS you will no doubt be aware, Andy O'Sullivan is in future holding all of his races in Whitworth. He currently has 13 races scheduled for 2014 & you can now see the full list on the Andems Runners website. The list includes two that will be part of the RRR Club Championship - the Ian Casey 5K in May & Ron Hill 5K in September. Worth noting that the new venue for the latter means a race limit of 200 - entries are already being taken via the UK Results website.  [David Emanuel]  

THE Southport Mad Dog website says that the race is already 76% full. Not only is this the first race in the 2014 Club Championship, it's also a fast flat 10K course which gives you a great chance to start the year off with a PB. If you haven't yet entered, don't leave it too long!  [David Emanuel] 

FOR those interested in getting the Greater Manchester Marathon experience, but not yet ready for a full marathon & not wanting to be a part of the RRR Drinks Station team (see below), the event also offers options for a two-person 'half&half' relay team or a four-leg relay with distances ranging from 7.8K to 12.2K. Click here for more details!  [David Emanuel] 

DECEMBER 18th 2013
WITH the Christmas holidays approaching fast, the last 'official' training night (both track & from the cricket club) will be Monday 23rd December, resuming again on Thursday 2nd January (club) & Monday 6th January (track). Enjoy the break, but don't overdo it - I can neither confirm or deny rumours that there will be a 'weigh-in' on the first day back!  [David Emanuel]

IF you have a place in next year's Virgin London Marathon - you lucky person! - please get in touch with Stuart Carroll if you would like to be part of the RRR invasion of the capital. As usual the plan is to travel down on Saturday morning, stay for two nights & return on Monday afternoon. Stuart kindly organises train tickets & Premier Inn rooms for the whole group - so don't delay in letting him know!  [David Emanuel]

WHILST we're on the subject of marathons...if you haven't yet registered to be part of the magnificent RRR Drinks Station squad at the Greater Manchester Marathon on 6th April 2014, please go to the Team Registration page, select 'Drinks Station Marshal' (second on the list) & enter Group Code 'RRR 2014'. Once you've done that, please let me know that you've registered, so that we can keep you informed of our plans in the build-up to the event.  [David Emanuel]      

DECEMBER 14th 2013
MESSAGE from Kirsty White: "A massive big thank you from me for the overwhelming support [in the Asics/Runners World vote] I received from my amazing club. Almost got it, lost to the Runners World forum champion by a handful of votes (approx 12), but still managed to prove yet again that this is the best club in the world."  [David Emanuel]

WHILE we're doing 'thank yous', I'd like to say my own to everyone who supported & sponsored me for my Peddars Way/Norfolk Coast Path run this week. For those who haven't been entertained by Colin Green's daily Facebook updates (which can still be read, just search for 'RRR runs Norfolk', I completed the 93-mile (150K) National Trail in 16 hours, 43 minutes, 35 seconds. The winning prediction was from a work colleague rather than one of the many generous RRRs who donated, so I'm afraid none of you win the Christmas hamper...but since it was full of unhealthy seasonal food & drink, it's probably best that it doesn't go to an athlete! So far your generous donations (plus hopefully a 'matched donation' from Santander) mean that Dr Kershaw's Hospice & the Philippines Disaster Appeal stand to benefit by at least £365 each. Thanks again!  [David Emanuel]  

DECEMBER 10th 2013
IF you've not yet voted for Kirsty White in her bid to become one of the Asics/Runners World team for the 2014 Paris Marathon (see December 3rd news item below), you have until 12 noon today to do so! It looks like it's going to be close, so every vote counts - so please click here, vote for Kirsty & ask all your friends & family to do the same!  [David Emanuel]  

DECEMBER 8th 2013
FOR those not planning to run the Greater Manchester Marathon on 6th April next year, the next best option is to be a part of the RRR Drinks Station team. As reported below (December 6th) we have again been invited to run a Drinks Station at the race & volunteers ideally need to be registered by the end of the year. Simply go to the Team Registration page, select 'Drinks Station Marshal' (2nd on the list) as the role & enter Group Code 'RRR2014'. So that we have an idea of numbers, please e-mail to let me know that you've registered. Thanks! [David Emanuel]

DECEMBER 7th 2013
A fantastic RRR Presentation Night last night, with Royton Cricket Club practically bursting at the seams. I hope the Christmas tree is OK! Thanks to everyone who attended & contributed to the longest raffle in recorded history, thanks to the committee members involved in organising such a successful event & many congratulations to all the prize-winners. For those who weren't able to attend, a full list of the winners can be seen here. The Rod Bowers Trophy, the only award voted for by the membership, was deservedly won by Brian Moore - who somehow manages to combine the Club Secretary role with producing all the stats for this website & coaching two track sessions a week at Kingsway Park High School, whilst still holding down a full-time job. The vote for the RRR Charity of the Year went once again to Dr Kershaw's Hospice, which received 41% of the votes cast.  An excellent night & a great way to bring the 10th anniversary year to an end!  [David Emanuel]   

DECEMBER 6th 2013
IT may seem like a long way off...but after our superb contributions to the last two events, the team at the Greater Manchester Marathon have again invited us to run a Drinks Station at the 2014 event, which takes place on Sunday 6th April. That's a week earlier than next year's London Marathon, so a perfect opportunity for those heading to London to gain a final bit of inspiration! They want to know numbers by early January, so for all of you who would like to be part of the RRR Drinks Station squad (the best one on the course, obviously), I'll be posting a registration link here & on Facebook soon. Watch this space!  [David Emanuel] 

DECEMBER 3rd 2013
HUGE congratulations to Kirsty White! After successfully getting through Bootcamp, Kirsty is one of the four finalists in the 3:30 category of the Asics/Runner's World marathon challenge. Whoever gets most votes in the next week will be one of five runners to be "trained like a pro" in preparation for the Paris Marathon next April. Such a fantastic opportunity...and judging from the RRR Facebook page, RRR members have already responded in typical fashion. If you haven't already done so, PLEASE don't delay, act today!  Click here to visit the Runner's World website, then simply click on the icon where it says "Vote for Kirsty". Then get everyone you know to do the same. Let's make this happen!  [David Emanuel]

GREAT to hear that all tickets have been sold for Friday evening's Presentation Night - for the first time ever, as far as I'm aware. Promises to be a good night...please bring along a prize for the raffle if you can!  [David Emanuel]

NICE to see a couple of familiar faces in the photos from last weekend's Run The Moors Grand Prix presentation night!  Congratulations to Alan Bodell & Bruce Whittam on their thoroughly well-deserved age category prizes.  [David Emanuel]     

DECEMBER 1st 2013
ADMITTEDLY it doesn't compare to the epic single-day completion of the Hadrian's Wall Path by Mike Harrison & Roy Miller earlier this year...but as some of you may have seen on Facebook (sign-up to 'RRR runs Norfolk' for regular updates), I'm shortly going to embark on my latest National Trail run. Between 11th-13th December I plan to run the 93-mile (150K) Peddars Way/Norfolk Coast Path from Thetford to Cromer - an average of 31 miles per day, although the way my overnight stops work out I'll be running 37 miles on the last day...which just happens to be Friday 13th. That's the sort of poor planning on my part which also means that Colin Green isn't able to join me for the run this year, so I'll be running 'solo'. I know this is a rotten time of year to be asking for donations, but this year I'm splitting my fundraising between the Philippines Typhoon Appeal & the RRR Charity of the Year, Dr Kershaw's Hospice. As an extra incentive I'm offering a Christmas hamper (delivered direct to your door!) to whoever guesses closest to my total running time. So if you fancy a bit of a gamble, you can make your prediction at the same time as making a donation. Cheers!  [David Emanuel]    

NOVEMBER 30th 2013
AND the answer is ... they've returned their London Marathon ballot rejection slips & so will be entered into the club ballot next Friday (for the 3 places we have been awarded). If you want a chance of a club place then get your slips to a member of the committee a.s.a.p.

NOVEMBER 28th 2013
A new, free online network, The Athlete's Voice, is designed to connect amateur athletes with elite athletes. Athletes of all abilities will be able to enjoy exclusive videos & podcasts, elite athlete interviews, training hints & tips, prizes & competitions, an active forum...all with the intention of helping you "take your enjoyment & athletic development to the next level". To find out more & register your interest, visit the website here.  [David Emanuel] 

NOVEMBER 21st 2013
AT the risk of repeating myself...PLEASE spare a little time to cast your vote for 2013 RRR Club Runner of the Year (the person you think has made the greatest contribution  to the club in the last months) & our Charity of the Year for 2014. There's only just over a week to go to the deadline of Monday 2nd December & I understand that only about half of the membership have voted to date. Winners will be announced at Presentation Night on 6th December - just click here to vote!  [David Emanuel]

NOVEMBER 20th 2013
THE date for next year's Dentdale Run has been confirmed as Saturday 8th March 2014. A popular fixture in our club championship for many years - not least because of the excellent pubs in Dent & some legendary coach trips - next year is the 30th anniversary of the race, so promises to be an extra special occasion. You can enter now via the link on the 'Club Races' page.  [David Emanuel] 
NOVEMBER 19th 2013
SIGNS of the strength of our club, as we approach the end of our 10th anniversary year, can be seen by the fact that we've recently reached  120 members for the very first time. Looking at the way that some of newer members have enthusiastically thrown themselves into the cross country fray, it looks as though we're well set for the next 10 years!  [David Emanuel]    

NOVEMBER 15th 2013
DON'T forget to cast your vote for 2013 RRR Club Runner of the Year (the person you think has made the greatest contribution to the club in the last 12 months) & our Charity of the Year for 2014. Deadline is Monday 2nd December, with the winners to be announced at the Presentation Night on 6th December. Just click here to go to the voting form!  [David Emanuel] 

NOVEMBER 12th 2013
RRR applied for our "guaranteed club places" for the 2014 Virgin London Marathon and have now been informed we have been allocated 3 places!! If you want to be considered for one of the places you need to get your "rejection slip" returned to a member of the committee as soon as possible. The draw for these places takes place at the RRR Presentation Night on the 6th of December.

IT'S about the time of year when we try to calculate the total amount we've raised this year for our chosen charity, Dr Kershaw's Hospice. It's been a pretty impressive fundraising year - not only from team events such as the Summer Ball & Quiz Night, but also fantastic individual efforts such as Mike Harrison & Roy Miller running the Hadrian's Wall Path in 24 hours & June Allingan completing the Amsterdam Marathon. I don't want to miss anyone out - so if you did some individual fundraising for Dr Kershaw's, please could you let me know how much you raised?  [David Emanuel] 

NOVEMBER 10th 2013
FOR those planning to run the Greater Manchester Marathon in 2014, Elliot Stone is (by popular demand) starting a Sunday Morning LSR Club. This will start on 8th December (two days after Presentation Night!) at 8am from Hunt Lane Tavern, Chadderton. The idea is for someone else to arrange the next long slow run, to ensure variety in the routes. Elliot has also provided a copy of his training plan, as some have said that they would be interested in following it.  [David Emanuel]    

NOVEMBER 3rd 2013
CLUB member Stuart Brown is taking on quite a challenge next April - his "2 in one week" will involve running both the Manchester & London marathons, which are (you're probably ahead of me here) just a week apart. Stuart is using this challenge to raise funds for Sense UK, the deafblind charity, as well as the Firefighters charity. If you'd like to sponsor him, you can do so via his Virgin Money Giving page or into account 'STUARTS CHARITY RUNS' at any branch of Barclays (account number 63590631, sort code 20-72-67).  [David Emanuel]

OCTOBER 31st 2013
WITH the final road race of the season & the RRR Cup Final this weekend, plus the annual Presentation Night only just over a month away, it's time once again for you to cast your vote for our prestigious annual award. The Rod Bowers Trophy for RRR Club Runner of the Year is presented to the person that the majority of members think has made the greatest contribution to the club in the last 12 months. To cast your vote, simply click here & complete the short voting form. Deadline for submitting your vote is Monday 2nd December.

Also on this form you will be asked to select your preference for the club Charity of the Year for 2014 - the charity to which donations will be made from any club fundraising activity throughout next year. Nominations from members this year are as follows (with links to their respective websites):

CARDIAC RISK IN THE YOUNG (CRY): founded in 1995 to raise awareness of & fund research into conditions that can lead to sudden cardiac death in the young. Every week in the UK at least 12 young people die suddenly from undiagnosed heart conditions - amongst many other activities, CRY holds ECG screening clinics for those aged 14-35 around the UK, a simple & effective way to diagnose most cardiac abnormalities. 

DR KERSHAW'S HOSPICE: our chosen charity for the last three years, Dr Kershaw's is an independent hospice serving Oldham & surrounding districts, providing specialist palliative care for adults with non-curable life-threatening illnesses in a peaceful & homely environment. The hospice needs £1.7 million per year to maintain its services, of which only a small part is provided by the NHS. In addition to fundraising, in the last few years RRR has also contributed practical help to Dr Kershaw's through our 'community days' - painting fences, tidying the gardens & redecorating their lock-up. 

OLDHAM BEREAVEMENT SUPPORT SERVICE: a team of trained volunteers offering one-to-one confidential counselling to those who have suffered a loss, no matter how long ago, offering a huge amount of support to adults & children when they are struggling to come to terms with the death of a loved one.

OLDHAM CITIZENS ADVICE BUREAU: provides free, independent & impartial advice on people's rights & responsibilities, with staff trained to give advice on virtually any issue. Many people do not realise that each individual CAS is a charity, relying increasingly on fundraising as Local Authorities reduce the funding available. Oldham CAB is also involved in the local running scene, providing the funds required to resurrect the Oldham Half Marathon & Oldham 10K.

OLDHAM MOUNTAIN RESCUE: a voluntary organisation whose objective is to "save lives & alleviate distress, primarily in upland & mountain areas, without cost or obligation". The team also works as a back-up to the police, ambulance & fire services at busy times, during severe weather & major incidents or where their specialist skills are needed. No doubt we all run in areas where they could be called in to assist should we need it - they helped in the search for fellow runner Kevin Kennedy, who was sadly found dead last year. Oldham Mountain Rescue relies heavily on public donations to meet their running expenses, requiring between £25,000 - £30,000 each year.

SPRINGHILL HOSPICE: opened in 1989 & serves Rochdale & surrounding areas, providing specialist palliative care for people with life-limiting illnesses. An independent charitable organisation which relies on voluntary contributions to keep the doors open. Nominated this year in memory of Jenny Wood.

All responses are completely confidential - no RRR member (including me) will know who you voted for!  [David Emanuel]  

OCTOBER 29th 2013
CONFIRMATION of arrangements for the weekend trip to Keswick for the Derwentwater 10...the coach will depart from the old Royton Assembly Hall at 8.30am (prompt!), leaving Booths supermarket car park at 6pm (similarly prompt!) for the return. In between there will be a bit of running, eating (goulash for me please!) & maybe the odd alcoholic beverage consumed. Cost to travel on the coach is £10 per person (payable to Mr Bernard Goodwin - cash only please). Please bring some change for the traditional in-coach entertainment, the footy card & race prediction competition. See you there!  [David Emanuel] 

OCTOBER 25th 2013
IF you haven't already done so, please let us know your views on which races should be in the RRR Club Championship in 2014. There's already been a great response, but we want to take into account the views of as many club members as possible. Just take a few minutes, before the end of October, to pick your preferred races (to a maximum of 17) via this online form. Thanks!  [David Emanuel]

Moore thinks that club members may be interested in two new races in Devon for 2014 - the Barnstaple Marathon & Half Marathon on September 28th. Not sure if his attention was drawn by the fact it's being advertised as "a completely flat, very fast marathon perfect for PBs & qualifying times, ideal for beginners" or that they have permission to run around the airfield at RMB Chivenor, home of 22 Squadron Search & Rescue helicopters, "a wonderful opportunity to see inside the base & run right next to an airstrip". Chris Lowe has pointed out that it's probably quicker to get to Amsterdam...but if this appeals as part your running schedule for next Autumn, probably best not to hang about - spaces are limited & 20% were apparently taken in the first 24 hours after the entry system was opened. More details & online entry available here.  [David Emanuel]   

OCTOBER 23rd 2013
AS we rapidly approach the end of the year - there are 62 days to Christmas but, more importantly 45 days to the RRR Presentation Night on 6th December - all club members will shortly be invited to cast a vote for the prestigious RRR 'Runner of the Year' award. Over the last few years we've asked at the same time for votes for the club Charity of the Year. Since we started doing this in 2011 the winner each year has been Dr Kershaw's Hospice - we've raised a huge amount for them through social events, raffles & individual fund-raising such as Mike Harrison/Roy Miller's amazing Hadrian's Wall Path run in 24 hours in May this year. Dr Kershaw's will, of course, be on the list again this year - but which other charities should members be given the chance to vote for? This is your opportunity to put forward your nomination to be included on the list. All you need to do is send an e-mail in the next few weeks with the name of your suggested charity, plus a little information about them that I can include on the voting form.  [David Emanuel]    

OCTOBER 19th 2013

IF you didn't get a place via the ballot for next year's London Marathon, make sure that you give your rejection letter to a member of the RRR Committee before the Presentation Night on 6th December, so that you're included in the draw for the club places. There are also other ways to get a place - you can apply for one of the many charity places (just look at any running magazine or website for details), while Lucozade Sport/parkrun have a 'Chase The Place' competition - take part in all eight parkruns between 26th October - 14th December (either run or volunteer, at any venue) & you'll go into a draw for two London places!  [David Emanuel]
OCTOBER 15th 2013
WE'RE very excited to be travelling to Amsterdam this weekend for our 10th anniversary running holiday! There are four flights going out on Saturday morning & one on Friday. Please travel in club colours to advertise the name of the great RRR! To get from the airport to central Amsterdam there are three options - taxi (30-40 euros), train to central station (4 euros & every 10mins, best for central hotels) & buses (3.50 euros). RRR are divided between three hotels & there is a key contact in each for meeting arrangements - Lancaster (x9 plus families; Liz 07712589535), Tupilana (x3; Andy 07810522698) & Hilton Double Tree (x12; Stuart 07983311615). Members should organise their own registration at the Expo. For those who want to meet up on Saturday night, we have agreed to meet in the Hilton Double Tree bar area at 6pm - it will be announced then which pub we will meet in after the race on Sunday (recce by Stuart during the day). Those who want to will then go on to eat at an Italian restaurant. On Sunday, after congregating at the selected pub after the race, there will be time to return to the hotels & change before meeting again back at the Hilton Double Tree bar at 7pm. Then it will be time to move on to eat, drink & be very merry. Enjoy it!  [Liz Phillips]

ANGIE Hart has also been in touch with additional travel details, as provided by the Hampshire Lancaster Hotel: the company Connexxion offers a shuttle service from the airport to the hotel, available between 6am & 8pm, leaving every 30mins. Tickets (26 euros per person return) can be purchased at the Connexxion desk on Schipol Plaza, located next to the arrivals hall. The hotel receptionist will assist with booking the shuttle back to the airport. Alternatively, trains from the airport to Amsterdam Central Station leave every 15mins. From Central Station tram number 9 (direction Diemen-Sniep) will take you to the hotel - you need to get out at the 7th stop "Plantage Kerklaan". From there the hotel is on the left-hand side (about 70 metres). The cost (for train+tram) is about 7 euros per person, total travel time around 45mins. The train service is available 24hrs a day, running every 30mins at night. Trams run until midnight. If neither of those options appeals, you'll find a line of taxis waiting outside the arrivals hall - cost from airport to hotel is around 45 euros & takes about 20mins. Finally...to go to the Olympisch Stadion from the hotel by public transport takes around 40mins. Take tram number 9 or 14 (direction Centraal Station/Slotermeer) to the stop "Spui" & change there to tram 16 (direction de Boelelaan/VU) which stops at the stadium. Have fun!  [David Emanuel]

WITH all the excitement about our huge cross-country squad, it may have escaped your attention (it certainly did mine!) that the 'Run The Moors Fell Race Grand Prix came to a conclusion on 5th October in Saddleworth. Despite failing to capture the imagination in the way that cross-country now has, we still had an impressive 18 athletes taking part (although most of those only did one counting race, either Knowl Hill or Eddie's Revenge). Alan Bodell, Bruce Whittam & Rose Rowson did however get more involved & were each rewarded with a top-three finish in their respective age category - Alan would surely have finished even higher if injury had not kept him out of the last four races. There was also an indication of what could have been - Ian McBride finished first in both races he entered, whilst Barry Greaves was 2nd V55 in his only race. Trophies will be awarded at a presentation evening on Friday 29th November at Bamford Bowling Club. If you would like to go along & support our winners, please let me know!  [David Emanuel]       

OCTOBER 12th 2013
AS the RRR Committee finalises the list of club championship races for 2014, we'd like to take into account the views of our members. There are some significant changes next year, as Andy O'Sullivan moves all of his races to Whitworth & John Lloyd takes over the organisation of a new set of races in Littleborough. We've put together a list of possible races, including some potential new additions alongside others that have featured regularly in our fixture list. Please spare us a few minutes to let us know your preferences by making your selection on this online form, to a maximum of 17 races, before the end of October. Although the Southport Mad Dog 10K in February has already been confirmed as the first race for 2014, that doesn't mean you have to include it in your selection! We're also giving you the option to suggest alternative races not on the list if you wish. Thanks for your time!  [David Emanuel]   

OCTOBER 6th 2013
ATTENTION everyone going to Amsterdam later this month! Andy Schofield has been in touch to say that "we could do with a meeting to sort out arrangements for travel/meeting up etc. Join us at the cricket club on Monday 14th October, after training, at 8.30pm".  [David Emanuel]

COME on all you RRRs! Get behind our Pride in Oldham nominee Natalie Yates-Bolton by voting before Wednesday 16th October. Send your vote by e-mail to the Oldham Chronicle, stating the number 60 followed by 'Natalie Yates-Bolton'. She is such an inspiration & I am sure we can all help to get her through to the final! You can read more details of the nomination here.  [June Allingan]  

OCTOBER 3rd 2013
AS regular readers of the RRR Facebook page will already know, it has been confirmed that the Mad Dog 10K in Southport will be the first race of the 2014 club championship season. Mad Dog 4 takes place on 9th February & is expected to fill up quickly as in previous years. Entries are already being taken via the race website. Rest assured that your hard-working committee are busy looking at the remainder of the calendar & will confirm the full race list as soon as it's agreed!  [David Emanuel]

THE organisers of the Greater Manchester Marathon have been in touch to ask us to help out for a third time at the race on 6th April next year. Annabella Gloster, who brilliantly managed the RRR drinks station this year, has agreed to attend an initial meeting with them...but she is keen to give someone else a chance to lead our volunteers. If this opportunity appeals, please let me know!  [David Emanuel]

THIS probably matters to nobody except me...but we've recently passed 95,000 hits on this website, so there's a possibility that we might (rather neatly) reach six figures by the end of our 10th anniversary year. There may even be an extra special prize for whoever is responsible for the 100,000th visit (unless it's Brian Moore again, in which case I'll probably just get him another mouse mat). The fact that you're reading this suggests that you're already a regular visitor - but there's so much more you can do to help publicise the site & therefore our club, with little effort involved! For example:
1. Change the settings on your computer so that the internet automatically opens on the RRR Homepage. How you do this will depend on the web browser you use, but you'll probably find it under Tools/Options on the Menu Bar.
2. Create a standard 'Signature' for your e-mails, which automatically adds your name & a link to the RRR Homepage to every e-mail you write (you can always remove the RRR link if it's not appropriate to your recipient).
3. If you post messages in Facebook or Twitter relating to your running activities, why not include a link to the RRR website at the end?
4. Do you read/contribute to any other running websites? Do they include listings of running clubs? If we're not currently included, ask them to add us to the list - or send me the details & I'll get in touch with them.
In addition to all that, if you have any ideas for improvements to the site, or would like to contribute to it, I'd love to hear from you! [David Emanuel]     

SEPTEMBER 27th 2013
RECEIVED a rejection letter for the 2014 Virgin Money London Marathon? Don't despair - and definitely don't throw that letter away! As an affiliated club we will get 2 or possibly 3 guaranteed places for next year's race. Normal procedure is to have a draw at the Presentation Night in December to allocate those places, but you must provide your rejection letter to be entered in the draw. More instructions to follow closer to the time - but in the meantime, put that letter somewhere safe.  [David Emanuel]

TALKING of marathons...word reaches us here in RRR HQ that there's a number available for the Chester Marathon on Sunday 6th October. If you have a sudden urge to take part in that race please let me know & I'll put you in touch with the relevant person.  [David Emanuel] 

SEPTEMBER 26th 2013
CALLING all cross-country runners! As if things weren't exciting enough already, with the Red Rose League season starting at Leigh on Saturday, the latest issue of Athletics Weekly (the discerning magazine that made us their 'club of the month' back in February) is an 84-page cross-country special, including an A-Z guide & useful training advice. With the added benefit that, once you've read it, you can stuff the pages into your soaking wet running shoes to help get them dry in time for the next race. Copies available to buy here.  [David Emanuel] 

SEPTEMBER 25th 2013
SAD news reaches us that Paul Whitehead's wife Kay has passed away after a long, brave battle against illness. Some members may not know Paul, who was a founder member of Royton Road Runners. Although he has not been able to run with the club for a while, Paul has still been a regular at local races, giving loud encouragement to anyone in RRR colours. The funeral takes place at Hollinwood Crematorium at 11am next Monday 30th September. Our condolences to Paul & his family.  [David Emanuel]   

SEPTEMBER 24th 2013
JOHN Bassinger from Stainland Lions has been in touch: "Lovely to see some of your runners at our new Stainland Trail race [at the weekend], hoping they all survived it & enjoyed it!" For those who took part, John points you in the direction of photos taken by Andrew Thrippleton & Geoff Matthews, "including a team photo in Andrew's gallery". Click here & select 'Photo Gallery' to view. Looks like a lovely setting for a race - if any of you would like to write a report I'll put it on the website & you may get a few more along next year!  [David Emanuel]

SEPTEMBER 17th 2013
ANDY O'Sullivan has been in touch to remind everyone to get their entries in for next week's Ron Hill Birthday 5K in Littleborough. The entry form indicates that there's an entry limit of 400 & no entries will be taken on the night. Not only is this an RRR club championship race, but it's celebrating Ron's 75th birthday & the event is apparently "very likely to be televised live".  Make sure you don't miss out!  [David Emanuel]

TALKING of club championship races...this year's Derwentwater 10 at Keswick also has a reduced entry limit of 400 & is taking entries online only. This is a great finale to our road race season & as usual we'll be taking a coach up to the Lakes - a list to collect names will go up at the club shortly, but you can book your seat by e-mail if that's easier. But make sure you enter the race too!  [David Emanuel]

MORE advance notice...the RRR Committee met on Monday evening & agreed that tickets for the annual Presentation Night (as previously announced, it's on Friday 6th December) will cost £10 each - that's an inflation-busting £2 cheaper than in 2012! Make sure you put the date in your diary - tickets should start to go on sale around the time of the Derwentwater trip at the start of November.  [David Emanuel]

THE committee also started looking ahead to next year & beyond! We'd love to hear from anyone who may be interested in getting more involved in the running of the club. No need for any firm commitment at this stage - just have a chat with any member of the current committee at training nights or races.  [David Emanuel]         

SEPTEMBER 13th 2013
ANOTHER big date for your diary - a charity event is being organised in memory of Jenny Wood. The event will take place on Friday October 4th at Oldham St Anne's Rugby Club, with tickets costing £10 which includes supper. Jenny's family will be there, so it would be great to have a big RRR turnout. Please see Bernie Goodwin at Monday/Thursday training nights for tickets.  [David Emanuel]  

SEPTEMBER 12th 2013
ON behalf of everyone at RRR, our deepest sympathy to Barry Greaves following the loss of his mother Doreen. The funeral will take place on Monday 16th September at Oldham Crematorium at 1pm.  [David Emanuel]  

SEPTEMBER 1st 2013
GREAT news of another superb race victory for Ian McBride, winning the Wolverhampton Half Marathon today in a time of 69:13. There's no stopping him!  [David Emanuel]

WITH apologies for not mentioning it in the weekly e-mail newsletter...a new RunEngland Group starts at Royton Cricket Club on Monday 2nd September. More details here. If you know anyone thinking about getting started in the wonderful world of running, please let them know!  [David Emanuel]

AUGUST 29th 2013
KNOWING how every member of RRR likes a bit of a competition...after an exciting initial event last year, it's nearly time for the return of the World Baguette Throwing Championships! All the action starts at 2pm on Saturday 7th September at the King Bill, Shore, Littleborough (OL15 9LW). Entry costs just £2 (baguettes included), with all proceeds to charity. There won't be a better chance this year to become a World Champion. Hope to see you there!  [David Emanuel]   

AUGUST 22nd 2013
AFTER a successful first event last year, the Rochdale Kingsway Run is back! On Sunday 22nd September, from Kingsway Park Sports Centre, there will be 10K & 5K races around Kingsway Business Park plus a kids' track race, all raising funds for Springhill Hospice. Full details & entry here.  [David Emanuel]

THE organisers of the Tameside 10K are seeking volunteers to help out with the marshaling for the race, which takes place on Sunday 8th September. If you're available & able to help, please contact Catherine Daly on 07429041172. Dressing up as Jack Duckworth is optional but not compulsory... [David Emanuel] 

AUGUST 15th 2013
DATE for your diary! This year's Presentation Night will take place on Friday 6th December at Royton Cricket Club. As the culmination of our 10th anniversary celebrations it's bound to be a special occasion, so block the date out now!  [David Emanuel] 

AUGUST 3rd 2013
A message sent to us by Derek Bury of Middleton Harriers: "Thought I'd drop you a line to thank your club members for the tremendous turnout by them (your club) at our annual race [the Moonraker 10K]. I count about 38 of your members [actually 39 including second claim] which was one third of the race field. I would also like to congratulate Ian McBride on breaking the course record by 12 seconds. Your club's presence was particularly important due to the disappointing turnout -114 finishers probably the lowest ever. Thanks again for your support, hope you're there next year." I also notice that a discussion paper on the Middleton Harriers website about the current state of their club mentions that "members have to feel part of a thriving family, our local neighbours Royton Road Runners are the best local example...". Thanks to everyone who ran in the Moonraker & all of you for helping to create such a good impression of our club! [David Emanuel]

THE First Aider for Royton Cricket Club has recently had a lot of plasters go missing from the First Aid Kit in the cupboard in the umpire's room. I'm sure it's not one of us - but please don't be tempted to take anything from their First Aid Kit, or at the very least let somebody know if you do!  [David Emanuel]

JUST one week to go to the UK Backward Run in Heaton Park! Unfortunately this year's race clashes with the Great Warford 10...but if you don't feel up to running 10 miles on Sunday 11th August, this could be a fun alternative. Enter here before the closing date of 5th August.  [David Emanuel]

JULY 22nd 2013         
BERNARD Goodwin has been in touch again to say that he's changed the date of the planned pack run, as an alternative to the usual run from Royton Cricket Club, so it will now take place on Thursday 1st August. Probably due to needing time to recover from the excitement of the announcement of the royal birth. The run will still set off from the Boat & Horses pub on Broadway - presumably at the usual start time of 7pm. Please contact Mr Goodwin if you need any further info.  [David Emanuel]
JULY 20th 2013
MANY thanks to June Allingan, Liz Phillips & everyone involved in helping to plan & organise a fantastically successful 10th Anniversary Summer Ball at Smokies last night. Thanks also to all the RRR members, family & friends who attended & contributed to a great night - not least for your generosity in contributions to the auction, raffle & Ronnie Quinn's 'heads or tails' game (even if this did seem to cause a little confusion amongst some of those who'd maybe had a drink or two). The total sum raised for Dr Kershaw's Hospice on the night was just a fraction under £1,000. Hope you all enjoyed it - we'll be canvassing opinion in the coming weeks/months to see if there's an appetite to make this an annual event!  [David Emanuel]  

JULY 13th 2013

IT'S looking like the Summer Ball could live up to its name - i.e. a SUMMER Ball! Events kick-off next Friday  at 7.30pm with a champagne reception, followed by dinner at 8pm. This will be followed by our guest speaker Mr A O'Sullivan MBE, then dancing & a song or two from our own Viva la Diva Liz Phillips. We have lots of great prizes for our raffle draw & some special items to auction - so please remember to donate generously to Dr Kershaw's Hospice & have a fantastic night with some great company.  [June Allingan] 
JULY 12th 2013
A message from our Chairman Bryan Lawton: "Thanks to everyone who helped out at the Royton Trail in whatever capacity, be it course marking, marshaling, lead bike, water monitor, timing, results, etc, etc. It was a real team effort that gave a very professional & yet friendly impression of RRR as a club."  Thanks also to everyone who took part in the race - I made it a fantastic 55 club members in total, which if confirmed will be just one shy of the record. Well done all!  [David Emanuel]

JULY 9th 2013
ROYTON Road Runners paid their respects to Jenny Wood at her funeral today. The fact that so many club members were in attendance, amongst a large gathering of family & friends, tells you how much Jenny will be missed. There will be a minute's silence for Jenny before the start of the Royton Trail on Wednesday.   

JULY 3rd 2013
JENNY Wood's funeral will take place on Tuesday 9th of July at Oldham Crematorium (Hollinwood Cemetery OL8 3LU) at 1pm. Royton Road Runners attending are requested to wear the club green running jackets or hoodies where possible. The family has requested no flowers, but would encourage people to make donations to Springhill Hospice. Royton Cricket Club has been booked for after the service (from 2pm). 

JUNE 29th 2013
IT is with great sadness that I have to pass on the news that Jenny Wood passed away yesterday after her long, brave battle with cancer. The sympathies of everyone at Royton Road Runners go to Jenny's family - she'll be greatly missed by us all.

JUNE 25th 2013
FINAL reminder to Summer Ball attendees - PLEASE submit your food order if you haven't already done so by completing this short form.  More details of the menu choices in the 2nd June post below. Also, in answer to questions from a number of people, I'm advised that the dress code for the ball is 'smart' - suits & ties preferable for the men (if possible), but bow tie, top hat & tails purely optional.  [David Emanuel]

JUNE 22nd 2013
JOHN Cox of Middleton Harriers, race organiser of next week's Eddie's Revenge Fell Race, writes to advise that the quoted postcode for the race HQ is incorrect - it should be OL2 8NB. If youre planning to run the race on Wednesday this might be useful!  [David Emanuel]

GREAT to see so many RRRs at Oldham parkrun today, as the excitement of the RRR Cup continues to build - I make it 21 of 115 finishers, many of whom also seemed to be planning to run the Oldham 10K on Sunday. Next Saturday 29th June sees the final three Preliminary Round matches taking place at Alexandra Park - so if you've not tried parkrun before, this would be a great time to make your debut & see the cup competitors in action!  [David Emanuel]    

JUNE 20th 2013
RRR President Dave Phillips (a man who would surely qualify as 'Exceptional for Age' if such a category existed) has helpfully pointed out that Good for Age entries for the 2014 Virgin London Marathon open on 24th June. Quite simply, you will qualify for an automatic place at VLM if you have achieved the required time for your age category since 1st January 2012. We have quite a few members who meet the criteria, so would really encourage you to apply through this route if you want to run this fabulous race next year. You can view the qualifying standards from this page, where you'll also be able to find the form from next week. Don't leave it too long - applications must be made by 8th July.  [David Emanuel]  

JUNE 14th 2013
DON'T forget that you need to submit your food order for the 10th Anniversary Summer Ball by the end of June - just click here to fill in the form. More details in the 2nd June post below.  [David Emanuel]

I know that some of you have already been taken on a recce of the 'Eddie's Revenge' course...if that didn't put you off, the race itself (part of the 'Run The Moors' Fell Race Grand Prix) takes place on Wednesday 26th June from St Saviour's Church, Buckstones Road, Shaw. Entry on the day is just £4 - but take along a homemade cake for the raffle & you get free entry!  [David Emanuel]

ANOTHER date for your diary...on Sunday 8th September it's the Bill Tarmey (aka Jack Duckworth) Memorial Tameside 10K, raising valuable funds for brain tumour research. This event is open to both runners & walkers, with a charity walk starting at 9am & the race itself at 10am. [David Emanuel]      

JUNE 6th 2013
WITH the Freckleton Half Marathon on 16th June, I know that there will potentially be a fair bit of number swapping going on...please note that you need to act pretty quickly! The race website says that transfers will only be allowed up to 9th June. There's a form to complete (via the same link) which can be printed/posted or e-mailed - I'd suggest that with the deadline so close, e-mail is the best option!  [David Emanuel]

OUR very own club race, the Royton Trail, takes place this year on Wednesday 10th July. Since the race is in the club championship we obviously encourage RRR members to take part - entry forms have already started to come in - but if you can't run (or don't fancy it!) your assistance as a race marshal would be very welcome. Please contact Dave Phillips if you can assist on the day. We are planning the usual club recce of the route on the Thursday beforehand - more details to follow in due course.  [David Emanuel]

THANKS to the great work by Annabella Gloster & everyone at RRR who volunteered for the Water Station at this year's Greater Manchester Marathon, we have again been rewarded with a cheque for £400 from the race organisers. These funds will be used to contribute to the Summer Ball in July & other 10th anniversary celebrations!  [David Emanuel]

JUNE 2nd 2013
THE 10th Anniversary Summer Ball is at Smokies on 19th July - not far away now! Hopefully you've now paid the full £25 for your ticket(s) - if not, please pay by cheque to Richard Fiddling or George Meynell at Monday/Thursday training nights. If you can't get there, you can post a cheque instead to Richard at 16 Cornbrook Close, Wardle OL12 9NN (please make cheques payable to 'Royton Road Runners'). There is also still time to get tickets if you haven't already ordered - so if you thought you couldn't make it & are now able to attend, or would like to bring some friends along, just get a cheque to Richard or George as soon as you can. We need to know your food choice by the end of June - options are "seared chicken breast with chipolata wrapped in bacon with sage stuffing" & "baked salmon, sun-blushed tomato with lemon & butter sauce", while vegetarian & vegan options will also be available. Please submit your selection via this form - if there are two of you, please submit both choices on the same form. June Allingan & Liz Phillips will also be very grateful for any raffle prizes, in advance if possible - bottles of wine or spirits or anything you're able to donate!  [David Emanuel]        

MAY 23rd 2013
ANOTHER generous offer from our friends (and Royton Trail sponsors) at Up & Running - this coming Bank Holiday weekend (Friday to Monday) they are offering a 'Double Discount Deal', a 20% discount available to running club members only. Please make sure you take along your England Athletics membership card to take advantage of this offer.  [David Emanuel]  

MAY 22nd 2013
THOSE nice people at Wacky Nation, organisers of the annual UK Backward Run, have today launched a new challenge to get people to have a go at reverse running ahead of this year's race in August. The 'May 400m Backward Challenge' will see a league table produced of the fastest 400m backward runs during the months of May & June. All you need to do is time yourself running 400m (preferably somewhere safe, like on a running track) & send in your time. There will also be 800m & one mile challenges to follow. Everyone who submits a time will automatically be entered into a draw to win free entry into this year's UK Backward Run. Full details & registration here!  [David Emanuel]

MAY 14th 2013
THIS year's Derwentwater 10 mile race, the grand finale to the club's championship season, takes place on Sunday 3rd November. In recognition of our ongoing support, we've had this message from Race Director Ian Davies: "Due to the increasing popularity of the race we've had to make some changes to the race entry procedure. We wanted to give you some advance notice of this as Royton Road Runners have always been kind enough to support our race & we would not wish for any of your members to miss out. Entry to the race will be pre-entry only & the race will be limited to 400 runners. Entry can be made by visiting the Keswick AC shop. We have kept the cost of entry the same as last year. We really appreciate the support you have given our race in the past & hope your members continue to enjoy the race in the future." [David Emanuel] 

May 9th 2013
WITH the greatly-anticipated RRR 10th Anniversary Summer Ball at Smokies now only a couple of months away, we've reached the time when we have to ask you to pay the balance of your tickets - this is needed by the end of May. The total cost is £25 per person (which gives you a three-course meal plus entertainment!), so if you paid the requested £10 deposit you have another £15 to pay. Easiest method is by cheque to Richard Fiddling or George Meynell at Monday/Thursday training nights - but if you can't get there, feel free to post a cheque to Richard at 16 Cornbrook Close, Wardle, OL12 9NN (please make cheques payable to 'Royton Road Runners'). Incidentally, if you've not yet bought a ticket (or two), there's still time...but don't leave it too long!  [David Emanuel]

CALLING all RRR Cup competitors - hope you're all busy arranging your preliminary round matches, I haven't heard any confirmed dates yet! To add a little extra incentive to this competition, new member Russ Chew has generously offered to donate a pair of high-quality Bang & Olufsen in-ear headphones (worth £120) to the overall winner. Apparently you'll even get to choose the colour!  Many thanks to Russ for this, hope it gives everyone's Cup preparations an extra boost!  [David Emanuel]   

MAY 8th 2013
FOR those not on Facebook you may not be aware that Liz Phillips is unable to take part in the Chester Half Marathon this coming weekend. If you're interested in taking part then you can contact her via email ... contact Liz[Brian Moore]

MAY 3rd 2013
I will get around at some point soon to writing a race report on the Greater Manchester Marathon - maybe when the mental scars have healed a little more - but in the meantime there are a couple of things I must share! The first is the deluge of praise for our wonderful Aid Station team at Urmston - those not on Facebook won't have seen all the fantastic comments posted there, but I've also had e-mails & texts asking me to pass on the thanks of our runners. Chris Lowe, for example, commented on the amazing "wall of sound", while Stuart Brown said "it was a huge boost to my first marathon to have the support when needed". So to Annabella & all the team - we salute you!

The second point is the issue with the chip timing.  I know that several people were questioning their times & at least a couple have now had them corrected (including me - tempted as I was to claim 3:02!). During this week I've had some really interesting correspondence with Stuart Steele from Stuweb, who provided the timing service, and to his credit he's been really open & honest about the problems. I won't reproduce here all of the technical stuff (not least because I didn't really understand it - I'll send you his full explanation if you wish!), but he said, "First of all I am mortified...the issue is that the £4500 printer that I bought 18 months ago basically prints the ink on the tag, pulls it back and then puts the code on the chip...the backfeed setting was either incorrect (my fault) or a part of the printer has worn...the backfeed allowed the printer to pull back too much tag and then encode the tag from the previous runner...at least one tag on every bib is correct...only people with numbers higher than 5001 were affected...". The key point is that if you had a number higher than 5001 & you think your chip time may be incorrect, drop a line to Stuart, telling him roughly what you think your time should be & "that normally points me to the correct set of times".  [David Emanuel]

MAY 2nd 2013
A grand total of 22 RRRs have put their names forward for the inaugural Royton Road Runners Cup - many thanks to all of you brave souls! The draw for the Preliminary Round & First Round were made at the King Bill on May 1st, in front of independent (and reasonably sober) witnesses. Here's the details in full:

PRELIMINARY ROUND (matches to take place by the end of June)
Dave Peart v Val Kilburn
David Emanuel v Russell Ingham
Dave Freer v Ronnie Quinn
Matt Kilburn v Dave Williams
Mary Freer v Liz Phillips
John Sweeney v Ian Dale

FIRST ROUND (matches to take place in July - August)
Stuart Carroll v David Emanuel OR Russell Ingham
Dave Freer OR Ronnie Quinn v Dave Peart OR Val Kilburn
Richard Fiddling v Eamonn Nolan
Greg Oates v Matt Kilburn OR Dave Williams
Simon Lake v Chris Lowe
Mary Freer OR Liz Phillips v John Sweeney OR Ian Dale
Shane Reading v John Lambe
Eileen Ingham v Dave Ellis

I've sent detailed instructions to all competitors by e-mail tonight (if you've not received this please let me know), but for everyone else...matches will take place at a Saturday morning parkrun (probably Oldham or Heaton Park) agreed between each pair of runners. The winners will be decided according to some very clever handicap times that Brian Moore is going to work out using a top secret formula. After several more rounds we'll end up with a Grand Final between the two RRRs left standing. I'm in negotiations over a TV deal for that final, hoping for a late bid from a big satellite channel. I'll be posting results & details of future rounds on a new page on this website. So if you see some tense-looking RRRs at the start of a local parkrun in the next few months, you now know why!  [David Emanuel]

UP & RUNNING, sponsors of this year's Royton Trail, are offering an exclusive double discount deal for running club members only this Bank Holiday weekend. Take your UKA ID card into your local store & you'll get a 20% discount between Friday & Monday.  [David Emanuel]

HERE'S something a bit different...as part of the Whitworth Sports Festival, on Tuesday 11th June at Cowm Reservoir you can take part in the second Treacle Challenge, a 440 yard dash held to celebrate James 'Treacle' Sanderson, a Whitworth blacksmith who in the 1860s was one of the country's greatest runners. The entry form seems to be lacking a few details, such as start time & entry fee, but I'm sure such information is available if you're interested!  [David Emanuel]

APRIL 29th 2013
THANKS to George Meynell for passing on this message from Royton Cricket Club...they have a match on Thursday 2nd May starting at 1pm which should (normally) be finished by 6pm, but could run later if the weather intervenes. Just wanted everyone to be aware as it may affect parking  - might be worth arriving for training a little earlier if possible!  [David Emanuel]  

APRIL 27th 2013
YOU may have heard that former RRR member Gillian Kay was taken to hospital this week after being attacked outside her home. Our thoughts are with Gill, her husband Martin & all her family.  [David Emanuel]    

APRIL 25th 2013
ON behalf of all the RRRs & indeed everyone else running the Greater Manchester Marathon on Sunday, many thanks to all the volunteers giving up their time to work on the RRR Aid Station. I'm sure that the prospect of seeing you all at 23.5 miles will get us through the tougher parts of the race! I've sent an e-mail to all of the RRR volunteers this morning with final instructions from your Group Leader Annabella Gloster, but just in case anyone doesn't see it...Annabella & Eileen Ingham will be at the station for 6am. Please can the others who volunteered for the early shift (Tony, June, Nikki, Bruce & Kay) arrange to meet at the Toby Carvery for 06.45hrs to arrive at the Urmston Pub for around 7am, as the pallets will probably not arrive until nearer that time, but Annabella will be there early just in case. For all other volunteers - the first runners will not be coming past the station until about 10.45hrs, but the roads will be closed from 9.15 (Stretford Road). For that reason we need you at the Drink Station by 9am so that you do not get stuck in the road closures. Annabella will brief you when you arrive as to the fun she has in store for you on the day! Could you all arrange to meet at the Toby Carvery (next to the A627M) for 08.15 - that way you have enough time to sort cars out (to reduce the number going to Urmston) & get there in time. The last runners are expected through at 3pm - as the roads begin to open the majority of you can then leave. Annabella & Eileen, plus hopefully another car-full, will stay just to do the final clear-up. Please remember to bring appropriate clothing (Royton hoodies if possible!) - the forecast is 10 degrees C & sunny, but please bring something waterproof & warm just in case. Annabella has the high-vis vests that you are required to wear at the drinks station. You will be provided with a drink & sandwich, however please bring other snacks/food as you wish. There is a Spar shop right behind the station & Annabella has generously allocated you all a break time! Julie - please bring your trombone so we can cheer the runners on! If anyone has a battery-operated docking station & ipod, feel free to bring along - unfortunately we do not have access to electricity. Postcode for the Urmston Pub is M41 9WE. Annabella's mobile number in case of emergency on the day is 07912622891. Hope you have a fabulous day!  [David Emanuel]

THANKS to everyone who has so far registered for the Royton Road Runners Cup, as introduced below (see April 17th news item). If you haven't yet done so, you have until 30th April to send an e-mail confirming that you wish to take part & providing a contact phone number. Don't miss out on the chance to be the first ever RRR Cup winner!  [David Emanuel]         

APRIL 24th 2013
IF you raced last year, you may already have seen an e-mail from the organiser of the Derwentwater 10, the grand finale to our road racing season. The message is that the race is limited this year to just 400 runners with online entry only & no entries allowed on the day. To ensure that you don't miss out on this favourite day out - or rather to ensure that you get to run a bit before you start drinking - make sure that you get your entry in soon!  [David Emanuel]   

APRIL 17th 2013
FOLLOWING a positive response to a recent post in the forums & on the RRR Facebook page, this is the official launch of the Royton Road Runners Cup! This is a simple, free-to-enter knockout competition open to all current RRR members, building on your regular participation in & support for local parkrun events. All you need to do is commit to running one parkrun per month (probably Oldham or Heaton Park) for as long as you remain in the competition. Here's how it will work:
   - club members are invited to register for the event by 30th April
   - at the start of May we'll make the draw for the first round
   - pairs of runners will be drawn to race against each other at a local parkrun in June
   - you then make contact with your opponent to agree a date/parkrun venue for your June head-to-head race (& let us know)
   - by the end of May, statistical genius Brian Moore will work out a handicap time for each pairing, based on previous 5K times
   - after the runs have taken place & results published, we'll confirm the winner based on the handicap
   - winners go through to the draw for the next round & the process repeats until we reach the Grand Final!

Handicap example: Runner A is faster than Runner B & is given a 30-second handicap. In the parkrun itself, Runner A beats Runner B by just 15 seconds - so Runner B goes through to the next round.

To register for the RRR Cup, just send an e-mail by 30th April confirming that you wish to take part & providing a contact phone number that we can share (by e-mail) to enable your opponent to contact you to arrange the 'match'. If you're not currently registered for parkrun, you can sign-up for free here. If you have any questions please let me know!  [David Emanuel]    

APRIL 16th 2013
THE events in Boston were truly shocking & the thoughts of all at Royton Road Runners are with those affected, including fellow members of the running community. Although (as far as I am aware & having checked the entry list) there were no RRRs running in Boston, we do of course have a number taking part in the Virgin London Marathon this coming weekend - the race website currently states that "we fully expect that Sunday's race, registration & associated events will go ahead as originally scheduled...we are currently reviewing all our security arranegements with the Metropolitan Police & we will post the latest information on all the events through twitter, facebook, emails & our website...". To all of our runners - take care, be safe & we hope that this doesn't spoil your London Marathon experience in any way.  [David Emanuel]
APRIL 10th 2013
FOLLOWING the success of last year's event, Radcliffe AC are once again holding their three-day event this summer. Starting with the Bull Hill Fell Race on Thursday 11th July, followed by a five-mile cross country run on Friday 12th & a five-mile trail race on Saturday 13th, the race offers a Technical T-shirt to everyone who completes all three events & lots of lovely prizes (including for teams & vets). More details available here. Eagle-eyed readers will have spotted that this takes place immediately after our very own Royton Trail on Wednesday 10th July...so why not turn it into a four-day event, for which you'll receive nothing except tired legs & our great admiration.  [David Emanuel]  

APRIL 6th 2013
IT'S been a while since we mentioned the first-ever RRR Summer Ball, the centrepiece of our 10th anniversary celebrations, which will take place on Friday 19th July at Smokies in Oldham. Tickets will cost £25, to include a three-course meal & entertainment, but many members have already paid a £10 deposit to secure a place for themselves, partners, friends & family. To make sure that you don't miss out on this spectacular event you can pay £10 to Richard Fiddling or June Allingan on any club training night - if you can't get to the club, then just put a cheque in the post c/o me at 14 Fellside Gardens, Shore, Littleborough OL15 9LX. Please make cheques payable to Royton Road Runners.  [David Emanuel]

THE Spring marathon season kicks off this weekend for RRR, with a few members taking part in the Blackpool Marathon on Sunday. To celebrate our mass attempt at the 26.2 mile challenge over the next month, I thought I'd share this quote from Iron War by Matt Fitzgerald, a new book about 'the greatest race of all time', the 1989 Hawaii Ironman showdown between Dave Scott & Mike Allen. Replace 'ironman' with 'marathon' & I think this all rings very true: "There is no pleasure in doing a triathlon, but it metes out a kind of suffering that is satisfying in the context of our soporific modern existence with all its infernal conveniences. Driving your muscles, heart & lungs against the gravitational press of extreme fatigue does indeed make you feel alive - as fully present in reality - as any experience life has to offer. It's an acquired taste but, once acquired, addictive...In the hardest moments of a long race, the athlete's entire conscious experience of reality boils down to a desire to continue pitted against a desire to quit. Nothing else remains. The athlete is no longer a student or a teacher or a salesman. He is no longer a son or a father or a husband...There is no yesterday & no tomorrow, only now. The agony of extreme endurance fatigue crowds out every thought & feeling except one: the goal of reaching the finish line. The sensations within the body - burning lungs, screaming muscles, whole-body enervation - exist only as the substance of the desire to quit. What little of the external environment the athlete is aware of - the road ahead, the competitor behind, the urging of onlookers - exists only as the substance of the desire to continue...After he has stopped at the finish line or, God forbid, short of it, the stripped-away layers are piled back on & he becomes his old self again. Only not quite. He is changed, for better or worse...In today's real world, triathlon is one of the best ways to demonstrate toughness & courage, and the finish-line feeling is one of the best feelings imaginable. There is nothing like it. It is a deep, warming satisfaction - an embracing, healthful pride..." Good luck to all those running at Blackpool & the other upcoming marathons!  [David Emanuel]

APRIL 5th 2013
WITH encouraging news reaching us of some improvement in Pete Stals' condition, Vicky Bramley has sent this poem, which she'd like to dedicate to Pete's speedy recovery:

The Running Club (by Patrick Sant)
Plodder through midnight rain,
Everlasting dreams of the perfect mile
That complete run, the faultless race
Just toe the line, so full of fear
The starter: get set and let us go
Just remember my young mind
Remember the words from your master
Not too fast, never too slow
Just replay that last mile over and over
The emotion of perfection fills with each breath

As the joints shout to be remembered
And the midday rain pays witness your reverie
For each mile so lovingly caressed
Stored and a daily reminiscence of perfection
The unconditional joy of an aspiration
The excuse for that one extra mile, extra minute
Meditation shared with those that now
The people who sweat, they bleed and just a single tear
That shares a look, a single wave and a smile of knowing
That only true love belongs to the running club

APRIL 2nd 2013
SOME very worrying news about RRR stalwart Pete Stals, who is seriously ill in hospital having collapsed during a run whilst away visiting family over Easter. Natalie Yates-Bolton has sent flowers on behalf of us all - I'm sure the thoughts of everyone at the club are with Pete & his family as we await further news.  [David Emanuel]         

MARCH 29th 2013
TWO more Andy O'Sulivan races coming up soon! On Wednesday 3rd April it's Brenda & Colin Robinson's 5K race in Littleborough, over the same course as this week's Vera Hirst race so ideal for those who missed that race or were disappointed with their time & fancy an early chance to put it right. Then the following Wednesday 10th April it's off to Whitworth for Joe Salt's 80th Birthday Cowm Reservoir Race. Andy is really keen for a big turn-out to mark Joe's commitment to athletics for some 60 years, not least because he has been very ill of late. A good RRR attendance will be much appreciated.  [David Emanuel]

GARRY Cochrane, currently studying for a Masters degree in Sport & Exercise Psychology at Leeds Met University, has been in touch seeking runners, entered in a marathon between now & the end of May, to take part in a research project. Garry explains that "my study is based on research which demonstrates that people who are able to make positive adaptations in the face of difficult challenges can experience long-lasting benefits physically, socially & psychologically...in running terms I want to see if a self-talk technique called the 3:1 positivity ratio can be used to increase positive emotions & resilience in runners...the study is not complicated or time-consuming but it could help shed some light on an interesting topic & it might also provide your runners with a new way of approaching mental preparation for marathon training". If you would like to participate, you can contact Garry by e-mail.  [David Emanuel]      

MARCH 28th 2013

BIG date for your diary - the RRR 10th Anniversary Quiz Night will take place at 7.30pm on Friday 19th April at Royton Cricket Club. Teams of up to five people (non-members welcome!) are invited to an evening that will include lucky number prize, stand up bingo, supper & a raffle in aid of Dr Kershaw's Hospice as well as the quiz itself. Entry is £6 per head. Please register in advance to help us with numbers for supper - a list will be going up in the changing rooms or you can e-mail June Allingan & Bernie Goodwin. Raffle prizes very welcome!  [David Emanuel]

for all the volunteers for the Greater Manchester Marathon Aid Station, following a briefing attended by Annabella Gloster yesterday evening. Volunteer registration is now open, so please go & do this as possible & let Annabella know when you've registered. Code is RRR2013. The RRR Aid Station will be water only this year (no gels), positioned between mile 23 & 24 right outside the Urmston pub (M41 9WE). Exact time of arrival is still to be confirmed - we will let you know & arrange car sharing nearer the time - but the race starts at 9am & is expected to be completed within six hours. A packed lunch will be provided on the day, plus a high-vis bib & poncho in case it rains, but please bring clothing appropriate to the weather. It'll be great to see as many as possible wearing club jackets & hoodies, even if under several other layers! We're allowed to do whatever we want to 'dress' our station & are already planning for music, RRR banners & balloons in club colours. If you have any suggestions of other things to bring on the day, or ideas for how to support our runners whilst giving out water, please let Annabella know. Thanks for volunteering!  [David Emanuel]
MARCH 26th 2013
JUST heard from Andy O'Sullivan regarding the Vera Hirst 5K in Littleborough on Wednesday: "It's still on! Will hope that it clears!" Andy has promised to keep me informed if anything changes - I'll post any updates here & on our Facebook page as soon as I receive them.  [David Emanuel]
MARCH 25th 2013
NEWS has reached us that both the Chester Half Marathon and Freckleton Half Marathon are filling fast ... enter now to avoid disappointment. 
   Freckleton entry via here >> http://www.ukresults.net/13jun.html#freckleton

DETAILS of whether the track session is going ahead will be posted on the Royton Road Runners Facebook page later on today (at about 5.30 p.m.), hopefully the wind will have blown all of the snow off the track. Link is here >> http://www.facebook.com/groups/127886230556584/

MARCH 23rd 2013
UP & Running Manchester, proud sponsors of the Royton Trail, are currently offering an attractive deal - buy a SUB4 bottle belt, waist pouch or iCAN holder & you'll get a free High5 bottle, supplement sample & Choob (no I don't know either) worth £18. Full details here. Anyone with a marathon in April may also be interested in the in-store event taking place on Wednesday 3rd April from 4.30-7pm: "last minute hints, tips and how to make sure you're making the most of hydration & nutrition".  [David Emanuel] 

MARCH 18th 2013
BERNIE Goodwin has been in touch to say that he's running the Greater Manchester Marathon to raise money for the British Heart Foundation. You can sponsor Bernie via the Virgin Money Giving website (where he appears to be known as 'Bernard Goodwin Goodwin' - so good they named him twice) or through his timeline on Facebook. No confirmation yet whether he intends to run the race dressed as a giant heart...  [David Emanuel]

MARCH 12th 2013
AN interesting article this week by Ian Williams (editor of Fetcheveryone.com) about the accuracy of GPS devices such as our beloved Garmins...Ian explains that when he's "bumbling along at about nine minutes a mile, I cover about 15 metres every five seconds. That's how often my watch speaks to the satellites to find out where I am...And there's the first problem. Even if my watch is deadly accurate, and can pinpoint me exactly at [points] A and B, it won't have a clue what I did as I travelled between them. It calculates the direct distance between the two, and therefore will tend to underestimate how far I've run. But surely, unless I took a real sharp bend, it's not going to be far off, right? Well yes, but if it misses out 50cm every five seconds, and I run for 45 minutes, that adds up to a third of a mile that I'm being deprived of. And if I ran 5.3 miles instead of 5, that also means I ran thirty seconds per mile faster than I thought...So the next time you're beating yourself up because the race you've just done is short or long, or if you're not doing as much training as you hoped, or not running as fast as you like, just remember just how much is going on inside that little bleeping box on your wrist..." You can read the full article (plus some entertaining responses such as "would it be more accurate if I wore 8 watches & a foil hat?") on the Fetch website.  [David Emanuel]   

MARCH 10th 2013
FINAL call for annual subscriptions! As per the news item on 28th February below, there's just a few days to go to the agreed deadline of 15th March for payment of annual fees. Please note that any existing member who has not paid by the deadline runs the risk of any points received in the club championship to date being removed from the results!  [David Emanuel]

BUMPED into Barry Greaves whilst out running on the canal this morning (yes that's how committed I am, a chilly 10-mile run the day after Dentdale!) & he was telling me how problems with his mobile phone mean he's lost all his contact details. So if you've not used up all of your good deeds for the day on Mother's Day, please send a text to Barry on 07960814495 saying 'hi' & who you are, to help him start to rebuild his address book. Thanks! [David Emanuel]

MARCH 8th 2013
THANKS for the great response to the request for volunteers to help on the RRR Aid Station at the Greater Manchester Marathon next month, typical of you generous RRR people! So far the list looks like this: 

Annabella Gloster (Group Leader)
Rob Kellett
Liz Phillips
Mary Freer
Tony Kane
Bryan Lawton
John Lambe
Kay Fitton
Ronnie Quinn
Kirsty White
David Booth
Joanna Bird
Tony Hunking
Julie Greenwood
Andy Schofield
June Allingan

Still room for plenty more - judging from last year we'll want 20 plus - so please spread the word & encourage others to put their names forward! Just waiting for details of volunteer registration, will put instructions here as soon as I receive them! [David Emanuel]

MARCH 5th 2013

IF you haven't (yet!) managed to get hold of a copy of this week's Athletics Weekly, they've now published a very brief version of the RRR article on their website. Obviously not as good as the full one, but it does include a picture that might seem quite familiar. They've also included a link to this very website, which might just give our visitor numbers a bit of a boost! I've also been sent a copy of the awards logo, which is now proudly displayed on our Home Page, with a permanent link to the online article. Happy days!  [David Emanuel]

I'M sure most of you have already entered...but just in case you haven't got around to it yet, please note that the 'early bird discount' for this year's UK Backward Run is only available until 2nd April. This will be the fourth occasion, on Sunday 11th August this year, that the race has been held in Heaton Park...ever-presents Chris Eavers & myself are still waiting for someone else from RRR to pluck up the courage to join us! You can register & claim your entry discount from the Wacky Nation website here.  [David Emanuel]  

ANDY O'Sullivan says of Joe Salt: "Joe has dedicated 60+ years to the sport, a stalwart of the Red Rose Cross Country League & Rochdale Harriers in many capacities...for the last 30 years he has supported me in more than 500 races...we all owe it to him to turn out for this special event...". The event to which he refers is the aptly-named Joe Salt's 80th Birthday Cowm Reservoir Race, a 5K which takes place at 7pm on Wednesday 10th April.  Full details from the usual place.  [David Emanuel]

MARCH 2nd 2013

PROOF if it were needed - photographic evidence that RRR really is the Athletics Weekly Ronhill Club of the Month! Think we may need to invest in a club trophy cabinet...  [David Emanuel]

DELIGHTED to announce that Annabella Gloster has volunteered to be the RRR Aid Station Supervisor/ Group Leader at the Greater Manchester Marathon on 28th April. Many thanks to Annabella...but as we know from last year this is very much a team effort, so I'm sure she'll get plenty of help & support from the rest of the club! Of course the first thing we need is lots of volunteers to help out on the day - so if you're not running in the race itself, this is a great way to be involved (and the weather can't be as bad as it was last year, I hear the long-range forecast is for a heatwave). So please send me an e-mail if you want to be part of the very best Aid Station team, as volunteer registration is due to start soon. If it helps, I understand that this year the RRR Aid Station is going to be positioned outside a pub!  [David Emanuel]  

DON'T forget to get in touch with Bernie Goodwin if you want a seat on the coach for the trip to Dent next Saturday 9th March. Definitely a trip not to be missed!  [David Emanuel]

THE latest issue of the Northern Running Guide has arrived. Don't think I'll be able to get down to the club this week, so your first opportunity to get a copy will be at the track on Wednesday or on the coach to Dent on Saturday.  [David Emanuel]  

FEBRUARY 28th 2013
RIGHT...further to my 'trailer' on 24th February below, all can now be revealed. I'm proud to announce that RRR is the Ronhill Club of the Month in Athletics Weekly magazine, with a two-page spread in this week's issue out today! I think it's a pretty good article, although I don't remember saying half the things I'm quoted as saying & they've spelt my name wrong throughout. If, like me, you can't find a copy in the shops, you can buy online - either the magazine itself (£2.75) or an online version for £1.99. In addition to all the good publicity we apparently get a trophy, £150 of Ronhill kit (not sure how we'll share that out?) & entry into the Ronhill Hall of Fame. Congratulations to you all on being part of a nationally-recognised running club!  [David Emanuel]

THAT announcement seems to make this a good a time to mention annual subscriptions again - after all, who wouldn't want to make sure that they're a fully paid-up member of the club of the month? So just a reminder that at the AGM this year (see February 9th item below ) we agreed a deadline of 15th March for payment of annual fees. Those fees are £40 for first-claim members (of which £10 goes to England Athletics & £25 to Royton Cricket Club) & £30 for second-claim members. You can pay by cash or cheque to Richard Fiddling or George Meynell at club training nights, or Richard will provide bank details for online payment if you contact him. As previously mentioned, please speak to any member of the RRR committee if you think you'll struggle to meet the 15th March deadline so that we can discuss payment options. [David Emanuel]

FEBRUARY 25th 2013
DETAILS have been confirmed for the legendary annual RRR trip to Dent for the Dentdale Run (not to mention the post-race 'celebrations') on Saturday 9th March. The coach will leave the Royton Assembly Hall car park at 8.45am, aiming to be back in Royton for around 8pm. Cost to be confirmed. Please add your name to the list in the club changing rooms at Royton Cricket Club or, if you prefer, send an e-mail to Bernie Goodwin.  [David Emanuel]

FEBRUARY 24th 2013
CAN I suggest that, if you're not a regular subscriber, it might be worth checking out next week's Athletics Weekly, due to be published on Thursday 28th February. Just saying it could be worth a read... [David Emanuel]

FEBRUARY 13th 2013

XTRA MILE events have confirmed that they definitely want RRR back to run an Aid Station at this year's Greater Manchester Marathon on 28th April. As I've mentioned previously, I'm intending to run the race this year, so I'm still looking for a volunteer to act as RRR Aid Station Group Leader. It's not an onerous task - basically it involved being the main point of contact, possibly attending one briefing meeting in the weeks before the race & making arrangements for everyone to get to the location on the day. Please let me know as soon as possible if you'd be prepared to volunteer!  [David Emanuel]

ANOTHER exciting event at Royton Cricket Club! On Friday 1st March they are holding the Tap Room Olympics - a night of a variety of different pub games with a prize for the winning team. Entry will cost £20 for a team of four, with team fancy dress encouraged. Ask at the bar for more details.  [David Emanuel] 

FEBRUARY 9th 2013
NUMBERS were a bit low at the AGM this year - maybe just a sign that everyone's very happy with the way the club is run?! - so many thanks to everyone who gave up their Friday evening to come along, join in the discussions & eat lots of sandwiches. For the rest of you, here's a brief update.

The existing committee was re-elected unopposed - although, as already announced here, Marilyn Guest has decided to step down & was presented with a gift as a token of our appreciation. Brian Moore was duly elected (also unopposed) as the new Club Secretary. I'm sure everyone will give Brian a warm welcome into his new role & leave it at least a few days before they start pestering him with questions...

Annual RRR membership fees were approved unchanged at £40 for first claim members - this despite the fact that England Athletics have increased their membership fees from £5 to £10. With cricket club membership remaining at £25, this means that just £5 of your membership fee actually goes towards the day-to-day running of the club. Since second claim members will normally pay their England Athletics fee via their first claim club, their annual fee to RRR will now be £30.

The decision was also made to introduce a deadline of 15th March for payment of fees - this to help with timing of onward payment of subscriptions to England Athletics/Royton Cricket Club & to make it easier to produce accurate club championship results. However if anyone will find it difficult to meet this deadline, please speak to a member of the committee as soon as possible - we're fully prepared to discuss payment options. Payment can be made by cash or cheque to Richard Fiddling or George Meynell on training nights - but if you'd prefer to pay online, please contact Richard Fiddling (01706-376709 or email) for account details.

A copy of the 2012 club accounts can be found on the Members Page.

There was some discussion about John Sweeney's RunEngland Group, which has been extremely successful in attracting new runners, with the debate in particular about how to manage the transition to running with RRR & becoming club members for those who want to continue their progress. June Allingan & Mary Freer both came up with ideas for helping bridge the gap to their Monday/Thursday training group - but if anyone has any other ideas or suggestions please let me know & I'll pass them on.

Mike Harrison gave a brief update on the epic Hadrian's Wall run that he & Roy Miller are undertaking for Dr Kershaw's Hospice in May (see 19th January news below). They're still looking for RRR members to support in any way you can - so if you're able to help, please contact Mike on 07872617432 or by e-mail.

And finally...as our Chairman Bryan Lawton said in his opening address, the huge success of the 10th anniversary run last weekend augers extremely well for a great year of anniversary celebrations! So if you haven't yet paid your £10 deposit for the Summer Ball on Friday 19th July at Smokies, please get it to June Allingan or Richard Fiddling as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. Full ticket price is £25 to include a three-course meal & entertainment. Also, if you're interested in the overseas running trip to Amsterdam in October & haven't yet booked, time is running out to travel with the RRR crowd! Please contact Andy Schofield (07810522698 or by e-mail) as soon as possible & he can give you details of the flight/hotel that's been selected.  [David Emanuel]     
FEBRUARY 3rd 2013
THANKS to everyone who came to Royton Cricket Club this morning for our 10th anniversary run - we counted a remarkable 92 people running or walking the route! As revealed at the post-run gathering, founder member Trevor Grundy celebrates his 70th birthday on 4th February - many happy returns to Trevor from all at RRR. Finally, a big thank you Gary Gloster for taking the photos, which will hopefully be on the website soon.  [David Emanuel]

IT has been confirmed that an RRR coach will be running to the Southport Mad Dog 10K on Sunday 10th February, departing from the Royton Assembly Hall car park at 8am. If you're interested in travelling on the coach, places are still available - please contact Bernie Goodwin as soon as possible on 07716802393 or by e-mail.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 29th 2013
RADCLIFFE AC are supporting a new relay race on Bank Holiday Monday 6th May. The Terry Nortley Relay Race, dedicated to a well-known runner & coach who died in 2011, will involve teams of four each running two-mile legs. Entries are invited from teams in various categories including vets, super vets (60+) & mixed teams. Given that this falls neatly between the April marathons & the Chester Half Marathon I'm sure we can get a few teams to take part - more details & an entry form here.  [David Emanuel]

IF you're thinking of taking part in this year's Chester Marathon - voted the UK's best marathon last year by readers of Runner's World - please note that the 'Early Bird' discounted entry fee offer ends on 31st January. The race takes place on Sunday 6th October (which unfortunately means it clashes with the Congleton Half Marathon in the RRR Club Championship) & you can enter here.  [David Emanuel] 

JANUARY 24th 2013

ROYTON Cricket Club quiz nights take place every Wednesday evening & are proving to be a great success. The quiz starts at 8.30pm each week & costs £1 per person with no limit on team size (within reason!). The organisers always endeavour to provide free food (pizza, sandwiches, etc). It would be great to have some RRR representation at these events - so if you fancy exercising your brain rather than your legs, why not get a few people together & pop along one Wednesday to give it a go?  [David Emanuel]
JANUARY 23rd 2013
FOR those requiring club kit - particularly anyone wanting a new club vest in time for the Mad Dog 10K - I will be at the club for the 10th anniversary run on Sunday 3rd February, with a full range of available items.  [Bryan Lawton]

UP & Running on Deansgate in Manchester will again be sponsoring our Royton Trail race in July 2013. You may be interested to know that the shop is also offering a 10% discount to RRR club members, plus a free pair of running socks with any shoe purchase.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 22nd 2013
RUNNING in or spectating at this year's Virgin London Marathon? Want to be part of the RRR team? Stuart Carroll has, as usual, booked five twin rooms for Saturday/Sunday nights at the Premier Inn Euston & there are still a few places available! If you would like to be part of the very best weekend marathon trip, please contact Stuart by e-mail as soon as possible.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 20th 2013
ROCHDALE Harriers are planning regular long weekend runs on the canal from Sandbrook Park for those training for Spring marathons. There will be two main groups, each running 18-20 miles, starting from the beginning of February. If you'd be interested in joining some of these runs (still to be confirmed whether they'll be on Saturday or Sunday) please let me know & I'll pass on more details (via Brian Moore) once confirmed.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 19th 2013
HERE'S a challenge that makes those long-distance runs undertaken by Colin Green & myself look like a gentle stroll in the park! Mike Harrison & Roy Miller are in May going to attempt to run the 84-mile Hadrian's Wall Path in under 24 hours to raise money for Dr Kershaw's Hospice. Their plan is to travel up to Bowness-on-Solway on the west coast on Saturday 18th May, start the run around midnight & arrive in Wallsend on the east coast late on Sunday. They'd love other RRR members to get involved - they're looking for a committed support team who would like to run a section of the route with them, or travel in a support vehicle with all of their supplies. You can contact Mike by e-mail or phone (07872617432) - he says that they will welcome "any kind of support or advice, as long as the advice isn't 'Don't do it'!"  [David Emanuel]   

JANUARY 17th 2013

LATEST news on the RRR 10th anniversary trip to Amsterdam in October...after much research, it seems that online booking will be the best option, with a cost of approximately £175 (KLM flights Saturday 19th - Monday 21st plus two nights room-only in the Hampshire - Lancaster Hotel) compared to £205 upwards for group bookings. We'll have a meeting at the Cricket Club at 8.30pm on Thursday 7th February to finalise numbers & details - can anyone interested please add your name to the list in the changing rooms or contact me by e-mail or phone 07810522698. You do of course still have the option to book your own trip - and don't forget that registration for all races (marathon, half-marathon, 8K & 1K for kids) is now open here.  [Andy Schofield]

WITH the start of the 2013 Club Championship fast approaching, the provisional allocation of runners to each group (following promotions & relegations) is now available here. If you think you've been assigned to the wrong group, please speak to a member of the RRR Committee as soon as possible - and certainly before the AGM on Friday 8th February.  [David Emanuel]
JANUARY 15th 2013
MISSED out again on a London Marathon place? Maybe the British 10K London Run might soften the blow a little. Described as "the world's greatest road race route", this event on Sunday 14th July involves 25,000 runners & takes in some top London landmarks - including Trafalgar Square, St Paul's Cathedral, Big Ben, the London Eye, Downing Street & Westminster Abbey. More details & online entry here.  [David Emanuel]

OR if you prefer to race more locally, maybe the Lactic Flashback will be more to your liking? This is a "testing 8 mile multi terrain route with approx 1500ft of climbing" organised by Kiwi Classic Events, starting from Stalybridge Country Park at 11am on Sunday 3rd March. More details here.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 14th 2013
THE Stroke Association's 'Resolution Runs' offer something a little different! There are 18 events across the UK this year, including one in Heaton Park, with the unique feature that you get to choose the distance you want to run - either 5K, 10K or 15K. Click here for more details of the Heaton Park event on Sunday 3rd March (a week before Dentdale). Entry is £12.50 (£15 if you prefer a technical running vest), with no set sponsorship target.  [David Emanuel] 

JANUARY 11th 2013
A reminder of an important date for your diary - the RRR AGM takes place at Royton Cricket Club on Friday 8th February, starting at 7.30pm. Amongst other matters for discussion will be annual fees for 2013, so it's worth attending for that alone! The meeting is also the time for election/re-election of officers & there is a list on display in the changing rooms for anyone to put their name forward. There will be at least one new addition to the committee this year, as Marilyn Guest has announced her intention to stand down as Club Secretary - the Committee would like to put on record our thanks to Marilyn for her valuable contribution to the club over recent years. If there are any items you would like to raise for discussion at the AGM, please send details by e-mail so that they can be included on the agenda. The deadline for submission of agenda items is Friday 1st February.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 8th 2013

BAD news if you were planning to take part in Dr Kershaw's Santa Stroll this Sunday 13th January - the event has sadly been cancelled due to a lack of numbers registered.  [David Emanuel]

JANUARY 7th 2013
QUICK reminder...the next meeting of the RRR 10th anniversary sub-committee takes place this Thursday evening (10th January) at Royton Cricket Club, after training. Lots to discuss, so be there if you can!  [Liz Phillips]

JANUARY 5th 2013
HAPPY New Year to all Royton Road Runners! It's our 10th anniversary year & as mentioned here on New Year's Eve, the celebrations kick-off with a reenactment of the first ever club run, from Royton Cricket Club, on Sunday 3rd February. The 'mass pack run' (plus a walk for those whp prefer) will set off at 11am, with food in the club afterwards (at about 1pm). To assist with numbers for catering, please let us know if you'll be coming along & would like to eat - or add your name to the list that's going up in the changing rooms.  [David Emanuel]

MORE 10th anniversary news...if you are a few too many mince pies over the festive period, what you need is a long-term goal to set you back on the straight & narrow. And the news you've all been waiting to hear is that you voted for AMSTERDAM as the destination for our 10th anniversary overseas running trip. The events (marathon, half-marathon, 8K & 1K for kids) take place on 20th October 2013 - RRR members will need to register for their chosen event individually & registration is now open here. We are currently investigating whether it will be cost effective to arrange group travel - so far this is looking expensive - so if any of you green gods & goddesses have links to travel agents etc please get in touch. We'd love to have as many Royton Road Runners there as possible, but know that we need to keep costs down to achieve this.  [Liz Phillips]

ANDY O'Sullivan has published his full list of races for 2013 (although I'm sure he'll soon be adding more!). To see the current list, click here.  [David Emanuel]