Tim Cooke suffers his own series of unfortunate events at Lancing College

PUBLISHED: 07:00 14 November 2018

A selfie taken by Garden City Runners' Terry Wolfe Tristram after he completed the 5K Poppy Run in aid of the Royal British Legion.

A selfie taken by Garden City Runners' Terry Wolfe Tristram after he completed the 5K Poppy Run in aid of the Royal British Legion.


Garden City Runners’ Tim Cooke was one of eight guest runners to take part in a private cross-country race between two Sussex colleges.

And it was made even more memorable by a series of mishaps along the way.

The Lancing College Cross Country is hosted by Lancing College, whose imposing gothic revival chapel would not have looked out of place on the set of a Harry Potter movie.

But getting to the finish there proved a tough ask for Cooke.

He said: “After processing parkrun results in the morning, I made a quick stop to fix a friend’s heating system before setting off for Worthing.

“Traffic hold-ups and roadworks used up my remaining margin of time and I arrived and parked with only seven minutes to go before the start, which was half a mile from the car park.”

A “non-deferrable call of nature” further delayed him and when he finally started he was three minutes behind everyone else.

But things didn’t improve form there.

Cooke added: “ When I reached the marshal point at the first turn there was no marshal, instead just an arrow that it turned out was pointing the wrong way, but I didn’t find that out until I’d run half a mile downhill.

“So I ran the entire 5.6 miles, plus the extra 1.1, without seeing any other runner in front.”

And to round things off when he arrived at the finish 20 minutes after everyone else, he found the gates locked and was forced to clamber over the wall.

But he concluded: “It was a glorious afternoon with lovely views plus the chips in the college canteen were edible and the vegetarian sausages were large. I call that a win.”

Things were a lot more normal for Terry Wolfe Tristram who clocked 32 minutes 49 seconds in pouring rain at the 5k Poppy Run, an event that raise money for the Royal British Legion.

In parkrun action a strong GCR turnout at Panshanger was led by Hannah Frank and a team of Year 9 children from Simon Balle School, completing a parkrun as the culmination of a wellbeing running programme she runs.

She said all had enjoyed the experience with one saying “there was so much support it was amazing”.

The club’s Sam Smith completed his 100th parkrun in a time of 25:27.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Welwyn Hatfield Times. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Welwyn Hatfield Times