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Last updated 05 December 2022


General bits and pieces


Norman Park re-development 5-12-22

Peter Mulholland and Derek Hogg VP 28-03-20

Isabelle Bridge needs some help... 7-12-19

Tokyo 1964 & 2020  26-10-19

Jack Petchey Foundation  1-12-18

Review of new book about Sydney Wooderson by Rob Hadgraft 15-11-18

Wendy Leach - Bromley Sport Volunteer of the Year award for 2017 29-04-18

Peter Long VP (May 1927 - April 2018) 19-04-18

Fergus Anckorn (10 December 1918 - 22 March 2018) 17-04-18

Sir Roger Bannister CH CBE (23 March 1929 – 3 March 2018) 6-03-18

We are pleased to announce the 2017 London Volunteer Award winners are: 16-11-17

Volunteer Awards Ceremony at Bromley Library - 6 June 2017 8-06-17

Dick Griffin is Bromley's Coach of the year 23-03-17

50 year Membership awards for Haines & Shepherd,18 January 2017 19-01-17

Royal Albert Hall, Dorando Pietri and 1906 ‘Olympics’ in Athens 18-01-17

EA's special video - a review of 2016 22-12-16

Jack Braughton VP 1921 to 2016 28-11-16

Peter Baigent PP - 70 years membership 14-11-16

Alan Brent PP - 70 years membership 1-07-16

John Disley 1928 to 2016 28-04-16

Tony Weeks-Pearson PP 1932 to 2016 12-03-16

Bill Graham 1941 to 2016 14-02-16

Christmas Raffle 13 December 2015 13-12-15

Sport Bromley - John Blackie Coach of the year 8-10-15

Ron Clarke  29-06-15

Results of Club Survey  26-11-14

Centenary of birth of PP Sydney Wooderson MBE  6-8-14

Manchester Mile &  David Coleman 6-08-14

Article on Chris Chataway updated 29-03-14

The book of Shake Jogle & Roll19-01-14

Article on David Coleman 14-01-14

Dale Lyons book on the London Marathon Everpresents 30-12-13

Press release re: Norman Park 8-11-13

John Leeson's quest 3-11-13

Winners all - 2013 awards  22-10-13

Trailwalker 27-28 July 2013 - The 'heathens - they did it! 29-06-13

Alex Littlewood got married... 8-07-13

Carolyna and Adi's Wedding Pics 5 May 2013 6-05-13

The Young Athletes Raffle was drawn on Saturday 4 May 2013 5-05-13

Winners all - 2012 awards  18-11-12

Message from an Old Member  5-11-12

News of Older Members  23-10-12

Kent London Athletics Network won "Network of the Year" for the London Region 2012  2-10-12

Alex Littlewood is a father 27-09-12

Olympics 2012 15-08-12

Criminal Record Bureau (CRB) checks for club volunteers 10-05-12

Member to Member  27-03-12

Two 50 years membership awards presented in New Zealand  26-02-12

Darryl Hillier and Kim's wedding  9-02-12

Obit on Ron Eaton 27-07-11

Colin Poole will be running his 300th Marathon in November 27-07-11

Annual Report for the Kent London Athletics Network  19-05-11

Message from Cliff Keen  28-04-11

Can you, will you, help PP Les Roberts in his latest quest?  15-04-11

Fund Raising  26-11-10

Kirsty & Mel Got Married! - 29 August 2010 30-08-10

Tony Weeks-Pearson  29-03-10

Past member Rory Byrne  23-12-09

Another note from Mike Salmon 2-11-09

Tributes to PP Sydney Wooderson MBE  13-10-09

The 2009 England Athletics National Awards programme  29-09-09

Good news for Andy Edwards  12-09-09

And Clare Lodwig is now Mrs Smeaton... 27-05-09

A note from Gary Plank 21-09-07

Past President Jim Day 17-09-07

The Pleas page has been updated 7-03-06

Tributes to John Hoy 12-06-05

THE RUNNERS YEAR - EXPLAINED by Ian Wilson 9-11-04


Tributes to Will Bolton  28-06-07

Norman Park re-development

The downstairs of the new Clubhouse is partly open - the upper part should be ready in early January 2023. 5-12-22


The work at Norman Park continues and is due to finish around November 2022

23 April 2022

The work at Norman Park is continuing at a pace...

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Peter Mulholland and Derek Hogg VP

I knew Pete well. First met him when I joined Hercules Wimbledon (HW). Good quality Athlete, made all the HW teams for major events. Teams included two of the Holt triplets, Dave being the 1972 Olympian. Also Mike Beevor and Mike Fuller. He ran the first leg in the National 12 stage one year when HW were expected to place in the first three. He had a disaster, from which they never properly recovered. I never managed to beat him, got close on a freezing day in the South of Thames Senior. So cold I still wasn’t warm after seven and a half miles at Epsom Race Course. My goatee beard was frozen solid! Pete was always such a friendly guy and a great servant of his Club and Athletics. He was rightly awarded the BEM for services to Athletics. He had a brother or half brother who was blind. Tommy used to collect for all the Blind Charities at Railway Stations. Anyone who travels from Bromley South will have seen him. Pete was very proud of him. Last saw him and another Athletics stalwart, Kev Kelly of HHH, at the funeral of Chris Chataway. Had a great chat. At the funeral they showed the recording of Chris beating Kuts and breaking the World Record. At the end everyone applauded even though they knew the result. That was also the last time that Pete and I saw Sir Roger Bannister.

I knew Derek Hogg through his son. We sang together for West Wickham Operatic Society on many occasions. He was a great bass and was pleased his Dad came to see our productions. On one occasion at Hever I managed to introduce Derek’s son to PP Peter Baigent and they had a good chat. Peter was married to the Director’s sister in law. Small World. I kept Derek up to date on Club Affairs. As he was Club Secretary for 3 years he knew Alan Brent, Peter Baigent, Jack Braughton and many others. Derek, not doing e mail or internet, was pleased that I printed off things from the Club website to give to his son for him. Last contact I had was Derek’s signature on a recent greetings card. It may have been a ‘Get well soon’ card. He made 91 and I know about his 90th and it was celebrated well.

Mike Martineau

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Isabelle Bridge is a club member and a race walker, her race walking achievements are: English Schools, 2016 3rd, 2017 2nd & 2018 1st. Internationally she has represented England for the SIAB - 2017 4th & 2018 3rd and in the Nihill Shield v Irland she was 3rd.


Isabelle Bridge has signed up to run the Manchester Marathon in April of next year in order to fundraise money for her wildlife research and conservation expedition to Mexico next year. She was wondering whether you would be willing to sponsor her. She is greatly appreciative of any donation! As well as this she has been organising many fundraising events at her school to help cover the costs.
Here's the link to her sponsorship page:


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Review of new book about Sydney Wooderson by Rob Hadgraft


Rob Hadgraft has produced a brilliant book about the Club’s greatest ever runner. But it is much more than that. Very essential reading for anyone interested in Club history and for any long standing member. It surprises by mentioning that during the War, Sydney joined Manchester AC and ran in their colours. Tells the real story about why as a 21 year old he failed at the Berlin Olympics. Talks so much about Club life, Mob matches at Epping Forest and Coulsdon, the Boxing Day paperchase, the dinners and social occasions. Mentions many well known names like Gordon Monshall, Derek Reynolds, Harold Thompson, Alan Brent, Jack Braughton, Westerham solicitor Tony Brill and many more. Sydney was a prolific racer but a light trainer. He was a team man and a great club man, turning out as often as he could not necessarily to win. His appearance at a meeting could add massively to a paying crowd, so if it was a charity fundraiser, he helped raise much money for charity. He often travelled in difficult circumstances but would always be there. The book is very much about Blackheath Club life. Rob is to be congratulated on producing an excellent and entertaining read that is a great and important addition to the Club’s history as it enters its 150th year.


Mike Martineau 15 November 2018


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Wendy Leach - Bromley Sport Volunteer of the Year award for 2017


29 April 2018

Wendy Leach being presented with some flowers at Norman Park by Yasmin and Zoe Austridge (on behalf of the club) after being named ‘Bromley Volunteer of the year 2017'



Photo of Wendy Leach receiving the Bromley Sport Volunteer of the Year award for 2017 at the Bromley Sports Forum last night. She follows the late great Brenda Brent who was the second ever recipient and Heather Williamson.

Nomination commented on her abilities as an unsung hero at the Club and at the Track on refreshment duties and anything else that needed doing. Also the inspiring work she has done with Zero to Heroes working with new runners and managing their ‘homework’ sessions. Amazing for someone who had a stroke just 8 years ago. Not forgetting either the support and encouragement she gives her daughter Amy.

MM 27 April 2018

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Peter Long VP (1928 - 2018)


Peter Long, who sadly died recently, was just short of his 91st birthday. He had joined the Club on 2nd April 1979 so had been a member for 39 years. He became an excellent and diligent Club Treasurer when he retired from his job at St Pauls Cathedral at the age of 65 and continued in that role for a quite amazing 15 years. Dave White made him a Vice President in 1996, a very well deserved honour. Some humour at the time when it seemed that all of the financial ‘establishment’ of the Club were simultaneously elevated. At the AGM when Peter assumed the position of Treasurer he wore a Sports Jacket and someone suggested he looked more like a bookmaker than a Club Treasurer. He never again wore anything other than a Blazer at the Club AGM! He greatly enjoyed a trip with our young ladies to one of the European Club Championships that they qualified for. He had been managing the finances for these trips for some time. When Athletics’ Governing Body was in difficulties and the Club was owed a sizeable sum he attended a creditors’ meeting in Birmingham to ensure that the Club’s claim was not forgotten and the Club was eventually paid. He was a delightful man and very good company and always knowledgeable and good to talk to on a variety of Sports. Peter became a life member of Kent County Cricket and spent a lot of time at their ground in Canterbury. He had an almost encyclopedic knowledge of Kent Cricket and always took delight in gathering as many of his friends as possible when Kent played for a week in Tunbridge Wells. Very happy days spent with Peter, with excellent picnics and fine Ale.


He enjoyed many aspects of Club life including Wednesday night runs with his friends, mob matches, Club Dinners and other social functions. He did long distance walks with other Club members and one particularly memorable walk in 1991 being the 100 mile Cotswold Walk with Derrick Brickwood, Len Dalmon and Ray Gibson. He was part of the Club’s ‘Geriatric’ Sunday Times National Fun Run team and he completed one London Marathon, his time being 4.11.12. He loved everything about Club life. He briefly took up timekeeping and could be seen at Club fixtures with his stopwatch. He also occasionally acted as a Marshall at home Cross Country fixtures. His 80th birthday party at the Clubhouse was a most enjoyable occasion shared with family and friends. He greatly enjoyed going to the Commonwealth Games when they were in Manchester with friends from the Club. He was an excellent Clubman who had many friends and admirers.

National Service was done between 1946 and 1948 in the Army Pays Corps in Ghana. Peter reckoned he spent most of the time playing Cricket and Football! He joined St Pauls as an Accountant in 1949 and spent his working life there. He was promoted to the position of Registrar and after retirement he was called back to help them out. His work at St Pauls was highly regarded and he was rewarded by an invitation to lunch with the Queen Mother just before he retired. He had a son who lived in Zimbabwe and Peter and wife Jean made several trips there. Also jaunts to Dubai, and again to spend time with their family. His daughter Janet was a Club member and was one of Anne Cilia’s early team members in the newly formed Ladies Vets Track team. Janet always had a smile on her face and Peter was often there to support her.

His decline in the past few years was very sad to witness. He still came on a Wednesday morning to join his friends for a jog/walk and always wanted to shake everyone’s hand and had a snippet of conversation prepared on something of mutual interest. Quite often this was about his favourite football team, Charlton Athletic.

Peter was a lovely man with great warmth and intelligence and an excellent but quiet sense of humour. He is much missed and we send our deepest condolences to his wife Jean, their children Stephen and Janet, their grandchildren and their great-grandchildren. It was a privilege and a real pleasure to have been his friend.

Len Dalmon and Mike Martineau, April 2018


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Fergus Anckorn (10 December 1918 - 22 March 2018)


Celebration Service for Fergus Anckorn

What a delightful occasion! Held at Holy Trinity Church in Hurstpierpoint on 16th April and attended by over 200 people, family, friends and admirers. Over 90 minutes, including no less than 8 personal tributes and some excellent music. Finished with the ‘Last Post’, delivered by a member of the Household Cavalry. Blackheath Harriers was mentioned in dispatches and the many prizes he had won at Athletics events.


Both his son, Simon, and daughter, Deborah, spoke as did two granddaughters, the writer of his autobiography, a member of the Magic Circle and a member of his Masonic Lodge. Arguably the star attendee was 2016 Britain’s Got Talent winner, Lance Corporal Richard Jones. He mentioned that the appearance of Fergus at the Final of that Show kicked off almost as a joke as Richard never expected to make that Final. But when he did, Fergus was delighted to fulfil a promise made. He had his own dressing room which was always full of people listening to his stories and watching him perform his magic. Fergus had been a member of the Magic Circle for 81 years, was their youngest ever member and then eventually their oldest. He regularly attended their Monday night gatherings even up to last December and received a standing ovation on one memorable occasion from the Magic Circle in 2017. Scott Penrose from the Magic Circle performed the ‘Broken wand’ ceremony where the wand belonging to Fergus was broken (you half expected it to then be miraculously repaired!). Scott also pulled out his mobile phone to read some of the Facebook messages about Fergus. The phone immediately burst into flames when opened!

Stories about Fergus included the one where because of flies in his Japanese Prisoner of War Camp, his captors promised a grain of rice for each fly killed. The response from Fergus was to breed flies so he could then kill more and get lots of rice. Another story was of him passing the Institute of Advanced Motoring test aged over 90. This was his response to a comedian stating that all drivers over the age of 70 should be banned. He taught special needs and disabled children at Valence School in Westerham and was very disappointed to have to retire from that at age 65. Words frequently used were “remarkable”, “friendship” and “kindness”. After his wartime experiences, everything to him in life was a wonder. He touched so many people and even at his deathbed the tools of the Magician’s trade were at his bedside. He was rightly saluted by all eight people paying tribute to him. He was well worthy of those salutes and more.

Mike Martineau


Club Member since 4th October 1954 and of the Magic Circle for 81 years.

I last wrote about Fergus in 2011 having bumped into him in Cobham, Surrey. Discovering that he was a Blackheath member, I’d talked to him over lunch about people he knew in the Club. Alan Brent, Jack Braughton, Tony Weeks Pearson and others. He loved hearing about the Club. I mentioned that Tony had recently been given his 50 years membership award and he immediately said: “I’ve not had one of those”! Thus I discovered that we had lost track of him after his move from Westerham to Hassocks. So, with his new address, the Club was able to re-establish contact and John Baldwin visited him and made a belated 50 year presentation later on in 2011 (photo of this is on the website). I was also able to update the name and address list for the Lottery Syndicate which I was managing for Brian Hartley. Fergus was a syndicate member.


The last time I met Fergus was at the Spitfire Café in Biggin Hill. They are massively into WW2 memorabilia, the Royal British Legion and all things related. The Café itself is a veritable shrine and well worth a visit. They have many celebratory events and the last one that Fergus attended, along with several other veterans, was last Spring. The Mayor was there and local Councillors as well. Fergus was in fine form and I chatted to him about all things Blackheath and gave him updates on all the people he knew. At the end, when we parted, he said: “You’ve made my day”! He was so robust, I always expected him to make 100 and never thought that those would be the last words exchanged between us.


Of course he made the big time with his celebrated appearance on Britains Got Talent in 2016. He appeared with winner Richard Jones who performed magic tricks while telling the story about Fergus.


I had both of his books: ‘Surviving by Magic’ and ‘Conjuror on the Kwai’. They are excellent reads with many amazing stories. I say “had” because during my regular visits to Alan and Brenda Brent I leant them these books as well as my copy of Peter Rogers and John Turner’s epic exploit from John O’Groats to Lands End. Expect they have all ended up in a Charity Shop.


His expertise with Magic saved his bacon during his time as a POW in Japan. He tells the famous story of obtaining 50 eggs so he could practice a trick for senior Japanese Officers who were visiting his Camp. These were all distributed to his comrades. He was too skilled to need them and used the opportunity to help his mates. A later story of an incident in Marks and Spencer in Bromley when at the age of 80, a Japanese man shouted at him. His reaction was prompted by the promise he had made to himself that he would never again allow himself to be shouted at by anyone who was Japanese. Interesting episode for the Store Manager to handle without any outside interference!


He has been to Japan, accompanied by a Son, and made his peace with that Nation. He was a widower and has two children and four grandchildren.


What a man!


Mike Martineau, 27 March 2018



The remarkable Fergus Anckorn

A life member of Blackheath Harriers who joined that Club on 4 October 1954 and who was born on 10 December 1918.

One of those amazing co-incidences took place on the morning of Tuesday 26th July 2011.

I went over to Cobham in Surrey to do a talk about the Olympics to a Probus Club for which a mate is their Speaker Secretary. The arrangement was that if the speaker he had originally booked turned up then I would speak at a later meeting. My friend told me that he had experienced difficulty in maintaining contact with this guy who had been a POW in Burma during the 2nd World War. Thus he had cautiously booked me as a reserve.

As it happened one Fergus Anckorn turned up and handed his CV over to my friend David and on it was the fact that he was a life member of Blackheath Harriers. David couldn't believe it as, with his wife, he had been my guest at the Club for one of the many suppers in my year as Blackheath President. Fergus used to live in Westerham and was an unknown near neighbour of mine for over 30 years. He will of course be 93 in December. He still had happy memories of his time in Athletics and he claimed to have run 45,000 miles in the years between 1951 and 1980 which works out at about 30 miles a week. He recalled the names of Brent, Braughton, Wooderson and Weeks-Pearson. I showed him the recent Jack Braughton article from Athletics Weekly and then sent him a copy.

His talk was just amazing. He spoke without notes for over an hour and went on for two and a half hours when he spoke to Oxford University. I have never known an hour go so quickly. It was truly mesmerizing and he could have gone on for more. The following is a summary of his talk. For those interested, there is a book about him called “Surviving by Magic” and another one is in the process of being published. The title of the book refers to the fact that he is a member of the Inner Magic Circle.

Fergus was born in Sevenoaks and went to Tonbridge School. Later in life he was a Lecturer at West Kent College. He has been a member of the Magic Circle for 74 years and is also an amateur artist. He brought with him his medals and many interesting photos. He was a Gunner and never achieved Officer rank.

He counts himself very lucky to be alive and it seems he was left for dead on more than one occasion. His parents were even informed that he was ‘missing presumed dead’. He got engaged just before the War and says that his fiancée turned down 5 offers of marriage while he was away. My next Production is ‘Half a Sixpence’ where two sweethearts cut a sixpence in two and keep their half as a token of their love. Fergus and his fiancée did the same thing with a farthing but unfortunately Fergus lost his half. It was only when he returned after the War that he realized that his half had the letters ’hing’ on it. Thus you will appreciate the other four letters of ‘farthing’ were on his fiancee’s half!

Via Canada and the USA and many other places he was at sea for three and a half months en route to Singapore. He had been trained as a Gunner. He was on an American Ship about a week prior to the fall of Singapore and apparently it was a bit of an embarrassment that there were extremely few English servicemen on Singapore. Thus he and his battalion were left like sacrificial lambs just a few days before the Japanese captured Singapore. 80% of the Allied troops in Singapore were killed. The day after his arrival he was with 9 others in the Docks when they were bombed. 6 managed to get into the shelter. He and three others, for whom there was no room in the shelter, dived into the Sea, passing a sign that said “Danger, Sharks”. When they got out of the water after the attack, the shelter had received a direct hit and all 6 inside had been killed. His first escape!

While driving a lorry to collect a Gun a day or so later he was bombed and shot at and received some dreadful injuries. He still has a bullet from this attack in his knee. He was also carrying a live shell which exploded and amazingly did him no damage. However, he was left for dead and a fellow soldier took his tags and he was then reported ‘missing presumed dead’. After the War he met up with the guy who had taken these tags and this ex-colleague really thought he was seeing a ghost and almost died of a heart attack himself.

Over the next few days or maybe weeks he drifted in and out of consciousness but recalls being under fire while being taken to hospital. The Japanese had taken over the Hospital but killed the doctors, nurses and patients before departing. They used bayonets but didn’t attack him as he was bleeding so profusely that they either thought he was dead or that they had already seen to him. A further lucky escape. He then recalls the peace and quiet in a Girls School before being taken to a POW camp in which there were 150,000 prisoners. It took him two days crawling on all fours to find someone he knew. He had very nearly had an arm and a leg removed and had bones protruding through his skin.

There was then a 5 day trip to Thailand with extreme cold at night and massive heat during the day and dysentery. Many failed to survive the trip. Once there, he became part of the amazing effort to build a railway. Amazing when one considers the language barriers as none of the Japs spoke English. The only clothing he had for the best part of three and a half years was a loin cloth. In that and still with fearful injuries and disabilities he worked for 18 hours a day. He still has problems with his balance but his right arm and hand was fixed after the War following a chance meeting with the surgeon who had nearly removed it during the War.

He was once badly blistered when a Japanese soldier threw a couple of gallons of creosote over him. His mates washed him in the River and were all killed for their efforts.

The prisoners were often put in the firing line by the Japanese and he well remembers the RAF bombing him and the damage done by 5 stray bombs. He was buried by this attack which was followed by incendiaries. Later, in another chance meeting, he met the RAF bomb aimer responsible for another of his lucky escapes. He was one of two people out of 13 to survive this attack.

He also did magic tricks with a decent Japanese soldier who was subsequently killed for fraternization. Fergus speaks several languages including Japanese and French which he mostly picked up while in captivity. The camps had no fences so the inmates were free to roam about at night. They met up with Natives who gave them information about the War but they got the feeling that they were being fed false information or being told what they wanted to hear. They gave up on this source of information when told of what they thought was a cock and bull story about an atomic bomb in Hiroshima.

With 4 others he was also taken out to be shot by machine gun. There was no blindfold but there was a last minute reprieve. They then found out the War had ended 3 days earlier.

The above probably does incomplete and insufficient justice to an amazing talk and an even more amazing man. Fergus displays an astonishing attitude to the Japanese, he doesn’t hate them, but he does hate War. He still has nightmares about the noise of War and of Bombing. He isn’t on any medication and has no arthritis in his repaired arm and hand. Over lunch, he mentioned that whilst in capture he cooked his maggots rather than eating them raw! The famous film, he greatly enjoys but states that it is 100% untrue.

Truly a privilege to meet and listen to this exceptional person.


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Sir Roger Bannister CH CBE (23 March 1929 – 3 March 2018)


Sir Roger Bannister, who has died at the age of 88, was the first man to run a mile in under four minutes. Read more on BBC website...

A couple of photos below are from the party that celebrated the belated MBE that our Sydney Wooderson received. In the photo is Sydney’s wife, son and daughter as well as John Disley, Chris Brasher, Sir Roger, MP Kate Hoey and Eddie Kulukundis. Also Tony Weeks Pearson.




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We are pleased to announce the London Volunteer Award winners are:
Club of the Year:
Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC

Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC, based in South London, is one of the UK’s oldest clubs and thrives today, with over 800 members and full charity status. It has a strong governance structure, underpinned by relevant policies. The club is perhaps best known for its senior athletes’ recent successes, including the... read more...  16-11-17

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Volunteer Awards Ceremony at Bromley Library - 6 June 2017


The event celebrated and recognised the valuable input volunteers make to our local communities. PP Dick Griffin was awarded his for his work on Zero to Heroes and his other work in Athletics. VP Colin Poole was standing in for his wife Shirley whose many years of volunteering for Bromley Mencap was being recognised.


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Dick Griffin is Bromley's Coach of the year 22 March 2017



Dick was presented with Bromley Sports Coach of the Year for work done with Zero to Hero Runners.


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England Athletics CEO Chris Jones has recorded a special video with a review of 2016 and a look ahead to athletics and running in 2017. Blackheath & Bromley get a couple of mentions at 3:10 in. 22-12-16


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50 year Membership awards for Haines & Shepherd,18 January 2017


PP Chris Haines & VP Pete Shepherd receive their 50 year membership plaques



The plaques were presented by our President Bill Foster, after PP John Baldwin had given a very interesting insight to the various achievements that both had had over the last 50 years. Both had impressive marathon times, Chris 2:24 and Pete 2:28. Pete was also our regular DJ, month in month out during the 70'sand 80's and Chris is still our cross-country handicapper. Hopefully they have many more years to give the club.


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Royal Albert Hall, Dorando Pietri and 1906 ‘Olympics’ in Athens


Performing with the London Concert Chorus in 6 Christmas Concerts in December at the Royal Albert Hall led me to a discovery which in turn led to me researching the 1906 ‘Olympic’ Games in Athens.


We line up in a corridor before taking the stage and all around the corridor are photos which usually have some historical significance related to the RAH. A photo of Frank Sinatra, for example, in his last ever UK appearance. But where I had to stand in the queue was right by a photo that really grabbed my attention. It was a page from the December 25 1909 edition of the London Illustrated News and was an artist’s impression of a Marathon race that had been staged a couple of weeks earlier in December 1909. There were just two runners at the Royal Albert Hall in this professional race. The first was Dorando Pietri, the guy who was famously disqualified after being helped over the finishing line at the end of the 1908 Olympic Marathon in London. Interestingly there were 12 British runners in that race. The Queen subsequently presented Pietri with a special gilded Cup. He had been seriously dehydrated and had taken 10 minutes to finish the last 350 metres and was helped over the line by two officials. This race started at 2.30pm on a very hot summer’s day. The runner-up and eventual recipient of the Gold was the American Johny Hayes, less than a minute behind Pietri who had crossed the line in 2.54.46. The Americans protested and this was upheld. What would they have made of the recent incident involving the Brownlee brothers? The other competitor in the 1909 race at the Royal Albert Hall was C W Gardiner from London who won the race in 2 hours 37 mins. Pietri did not finish, dropping out in his 24th mile. He had problems, having run in new shoes! How many people still make the same mistake! The lap was boarded, with the boards covered in coconut matting. There would have had to be at least 10 laps to the mile. There were doubts expressed and many believed the course was short. Gardiner, not long before, had run the professional Windsor to London Marathon in 2 hours 53 mins.

Pietri raced as a professional for three years after the 1908 Olympic Marathon and earned over 200, 000 lira, a considerable sum in those days. He retired from Running in 1911 at the age of 26. His first income came from a collection organized in 1908 by Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle which raised the equivalent of £28,000 today to help Pietri set up in business as a baker. Such was Pietri’s fame even Irving Berlin composed a song in his honour. He was very much an International celebrity and raced all over the World. He beat Olympic Gold Medallist, Johny Hayes, twice while taking part in many exhibition races on a tour of the USA. One of these races was in Madison Square Garden. His final race was in Sweden and before that he had run his fastest Marathon of 2.38 in Buenos Aires. He eventually opened a Hotel in Italy but went bankrupt. He died at the age of 56 from a Heart Attack.

Before his 1908 Olympics appearance he had run in the 1906 ‘Olympic’ Games in Athens. He had won the qualifying race but didn’t finish the ‘Olympic’ Marathon, dropping out when leading by 5 minutes. At the time, the 1906 Games were approved by the IOC but they are not now considered to be part of ‘official’ Olympic history. They had 200 more competitors than St Louis in 1904 from 8 more competing Nations. De Coubertin apparently wanted the first Olympics to be in Paris in 1900 but as is well known, they were first held in Athens in 1896. Athens wanted to be the permanent host of the Olympics and it was agreed in 1901 that in the in-between years Athens should host an Olympics Games. The first and last of these was held in 1906 and was subsequently renamed the ‘Intercalated’ Games. The 1906 event was considered to be far better than the 1900, 1904 and 1908 Games that were all spread over several months and linked to an International Exhibition. There was no event in 1910 due to problems in the Balkans and the rest is History. The format in 1906 was crisp and took just 10 days. For the first time teams paraded at an Opening Ceremony and also, for the first time, flags were flown at medal presentations. Other firsts were the Olympic Village and march past during the parade. The 1906 games were attended by 3 members of the British Royal Family. Quite interesting how something approved by the IOC at the time has been airbrushed from Olympic History.



Mike Martineau

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Jack Braughton VP 1921 to 2016

Jack Braughton PP 1921 to 2016


Local 1948 Olympian, Jack Braughton, has just recently died at the age of 95. He was a member of B&B and also a Director for many years of Norman Park Track Management. Photo attached is of Jack and my Dad. It was taken at an event in Manchester in 1991 to which all living Olympians had been invited. This was attended by Princess Anne and was in support of the bid by Manchester to host the 1996 Olympic Games. All Olympians were presented with a gold lapel pin with the year of the Games that they took part in. I still have my Dad’s pin. There were people in attendance from as early as 1924.

My Dad and Jack had quite a bit in common and 1991 was the first time that they had ever really met and spoken. They were both blue collar workers, Jack as a builder and my Dad as a printer’s warehouseman. Jack had to get time off from work, which was unpaid, in order to take part. I asked B&B member, Alan Brent, to point Jack out in the men’s athletic team photo. Alan’s reply was: “Jack wasn’t in it, he couldn’t get time off from work”. My Dad had a not too dissimilar experience and did his weekly night shift for the News of the World, 6pm to 6am, a few days before he took part in his event. Coincidentally, they both competed on the same day, a blisteringly hot one where temperatures hit 91 degrees. While Jack, who had travelled by public transport from Sidcup for the day without his wife, ran his 5000m heat, my Dad was out on the roads in the 50k walk. 31 miles in an event that started at 1.15pm (nobody had then thought about starting distance events early in the day to avoid the worst of the heat!). My Dad’s trial event at 50k was held just 6 weeks before his Olympic appearance. That wouldn’t happen these days either!

Jack was invited to the 2012 Games for the 5000m final on ‘Super Saturday’. He went with his son Graham. I’d had lunch with Jack in January and he said he had the tickets but probably wouldn’t go. I asked him why and he said: “How would I get there”. So I wrote to Lord Coe and didn’t hear anything for a couple of months. Then Adele, Coe’s transport manager, called me and arrangements were made and Graham and Jack were given the VIP treatment which also involved B&B Past President Denis Lawrie and his taxi. Jack sat with his 1948 5000m colleague, Belgrave’s Bill Lucas (still alive at 99). Only complaint they had was that everyone in front of them kept jumping to their feet!

Jack was a quality athlete who admits he wasn’t at his best in the 1948 Games. He competed alongside Sydney Wooderson but they had their differences, particularly on training methods. Jack was behind Sydney in the Blackheath Harriers team that won bronze team medals in the 1948 National Cross Country which Sydney won. He ran 13.51 for 3 miles, 30.01 for 6 and 2.36 for the Marathon. He raced until he was 80, I remember him having it over on me as Club Handicapper in a 5 mile Yacht Handicap one Christmas! He continued to jog and he heard that one neighbour had said something along the lines of: “I see that old guy out jogging but he doesn’t seem to get any better”!

One other thing that Jack and my Dad had in common was that 31st July 1948 was their one and only International appearance in a GB vest.

A lovely man who has given so much to the Sport and who has left so many great memories.

Mike Martineau

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Peter Baigent PP - 70 years membership

On 10 November 2016, Hanna & Dave, the President and Derek visited Past President Peter Baigent, in York, to present him with a memento of his 70 years membership of the club. 10-11-16

Thank you all for the lunch last Thursday and the presentation of the glass plaque in mark my 70 years membership of the Club. it will enhance my collection of Club mementos .

I appreciated the effort that you took to come to York and make the presentation personally. Unfortunately distance makes it difficult for me to attend Club functions, but I nevertheless still retain a strong interest in the Club’s activities.

Best wishes to the Club and you all.


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Alan Brent PP - 70 years membership

On 1 July 2016 PP Alan Brent was presented with a memento of his 70 years membership by President Bill Foster. Several club Past Presidents and Vice Presidents were in attendance.
Alan will be 98 years old in November.

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John Disley 1928 to 2016

John Disley

I was privileged to attend the Memorial Service for John Disley the Thursday before the London Marathon.  It was at All Hallows Church by the Tower with the reception after at Trinity House, a wonderful building full of art and antiques. 

John was seriously a very top guy.  Co-founder with Chris Brasher of the London Marathon but also an Olympian and a bronze medallist at the Steeplechase in 1952.  Was also 6th (when recovering from pneumonia) in the same event at Melbourne, the race famously won by Brasher.  The other 1956 Steeplechaser, Eric Shirley who was 8th,, was also at the service.  He is still competing and winning Vets prizes on the Track as a V85.  He is 87 and looks exceedingly fit.

Others at the Service were Lord Coe, Paula Radcliffe, David Bedford, David Hemery, Bruce Tulloh, Tim Hutchings (thrilled with the success of the previous Sunday’s Brighton Marathon), former London winner Hugh Jones and many other Internationals including at least one from the 1948 Games.  Sadly no Sir Roger Bannister who one would have expected to see had he been fit and well.

John was also a mountaineer and was on the shortlist for the successful 1953 Everest expedition.  He had to choose between that and the 1952 Olympics.  He was also jointly responsible for the introduction of Orienteering into this country.  It was claimed that he shared 4 loves with Brasher:  Mountains, Running, Porridge and Whisky.

Former lady winners Veronique Marot and Joyce Smith were also there.  Veronique had just turned 60 and was doing the London as a 60th birthday present to herself.

A reading was given by a former British Lion and Welsh Rugby star, Ken Jones.  Ken had preceded John as BBC Wales Sports Personality of the Year.  John won the award in 1955.

All Hallows is the venue for a pre-London Church Service on the day before the Marathon.  This was a thing picked up from Berlin.  You won’t be surprised to hear that the Vicar who conducted the Service was running the London.  Wonder whether he gets a guaranteed entry!

A brilliant occasion befitting a brilliant man.

Mike Martineau

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Tony Weeks-Pearson PP 1932 to 2016

TONY WEEKS-PEARSON, Past President of Blackheath Harriers

Sad to report that we have just heard from Christine Weeks-Pearson that her husband, Past President Tony, has died at the age of 84. He had been in poor health for some time, suffered with Dementia and had almost totally lost his sight.

He was elected to membership on 4 April 1949 but sadly left the Club in 1997. He rejoined having been offered Life Membership in 2008 and was presented with his 50 year membership award in 2010.

His application was in the name of Anthony James Pearson of Hastings, Sussex. He was proposed for membership by Sydney Wooderson, who also became his Coach, and seconded by Sydney’s brother Stanley. As an under 19, he paid 10/6 for a year’s subscriptions.

A top class Athlete, who represented Britain in what is now called the World Student Games, he was also a UK record holder for 3000m indoors, won several mob matches and County titles and was a consistently good performer at the highest level.

He was twice 11th in the National Cross Country Championships in 1955 and 1958 and also 11th in the Southern in 1956. He was twice joint winner of the Varsity Cross Country race, the first time with Chris Chataway in 1952, and was Cross Country Captain at Oxford.

He never won the Kent Senior Cross Country title but was an individual medallist 5 times and four times in successive years was either 2nd or 3rd. He did win Kent 20 and Kent Marathon titles.

He ran his fastest Marathon in 1967, 2.31.23, missing the Club record by just 15 seconds. In the 1957 Poly Marathon he would have broken Charlie Busby’s existing Club record of 2.34.06, but on a blistering hot June day he came 5th in 2.41 some 4 minutes behind the winner. This winning time was some 15 minutes slower than usual. Blackheath’s Johnny Withers was 8 minutes behind Tony and he, about 7 weeks later, ran 2.31.08, an 18 minutes improvement on his Poly run, and this was still the record when Tony missed it by just 15 seconds 10 years later in 1967.

When representing Britain in the 1953 International Student Games, he won silver in the 5000m with an excellent 14.49. Leading up to the finale of the Club Bennett Cup some 56 years ago in 1960, he won the Club 10 in 54.59.

He did the questionnaire in Athletics Weekly in 1958 and one question was: “which performance gave you most personal satisfaction and why”. His reply was: “the 2nd handicap spoon in the mob match against SLH, I always thought this impossible under handicapper George Brooks”. Anyone thinking today that they have been hard done by Club handicapper, Chris Haines, it was ever thus!

Alan Brent made him a Vice President in 1967 and the late Don Gillate chose him as his successor, so Tony was Club President in 1990/1. But a comment in the 1990 Club Gazette says it all: “We are, above all, grateful to Tony for all the work that has gone into our two priceless histories”. 1969 and the 1989 update.

He remained close to the Wooderson family and spoke so eloquently at Sydney’s funeral in January 2007 and again at the Memorial Service held the following September. His support with the preparations for the Memorial Service was crucial to its success and led to the offer of Life Membership which he was delighted to accept. The Service was generally considered to be a successful and fitting tribute to the Club’s most famous member and ‘Heathen.

Last Club visitor to Tony was the late Graham Botley in his farewell tour last March. He was accompanied by Mike Martineau and Graham remarked afterwards that this was probably the last time he would see Tony. It was a sad occasion as Tony really didn’t recognise his visitors and could not communicate in his usual and entertaining way. Graham had been Tony’s choice as his successor for the role of Club President.

Tony’s son is remembered as he and Christine presented the Club with a trophy named after Robert Weeks-Pearson. Tony taught and had a very fine intellect, often surprised that others were not as gifted as he. In his year as Club President, he ran all the major CC races, including the Club 10. Quite a feat at the age of 60. Many will have their memories of a quite remarkable man, even the member displaced from the ‘National’ team who witnessed him drop out of the race after about 150 yards!

Mike Martineau, March 2016

Joan Burns has just discovered an old Vets magazine called Veteris (the magazine of the association of Veteran Athletes). It is dated April 1974 and cost 30p. Its mostly reporting on the male side of things but Maeve Kyle is mentioned!

In this issue is an article by Tony W-P (copy attached). taking a "light-hearted look at the phenomenon of compulsive running". He was 43 at the time and had spotted what was going on in the Vets scene with runners loath to give up and retire gracefully. He was running CC and often in the Crawley vest, for whom he was a 2nd claim member.

A very typical piece of writing. His style being very recognisable.

Mike Martineau, 22 March 2016

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Bill Graham 1941 to 2016

We have just heard that Bill Graham has sadly succumbed to cancer at the age of 74.  After playing football at a very decent level, Bill joined the Club in Oct 1987 and immediately found his place in a wide circle of like-minded distance running friends. His best Marathon was in the 1992 London in which he recorded a very respectable 3.32.55.  He was an excellent photographer and plied his trade with the Express Group of newspapers.  His work often featured in the Gazette and I well remember his photos from the day that we hosted Dame Mary Peters in 1996.  Many of us will have his excellent and colourful work on our walls where he has recorded for posterity a family occasion like a wedding, significant birthday, anniversary or birth of a new child.  His generosity with this particular skill of his was legendary.  And it was always a delight to have him at these occasions.   He had a twinkle in his eye and ensured that everyone was relaxed and happy.  He had a wonderful sense of humour and it was always a pleasure to speak with him.  Conversations were rarely short, especially if the subject of his beloved Arsenal came up!  Probably one of the most straightforward people you would ever hope to meet. A warm, loyal man of immense integrity who when he retired and moved to Whitstable, with wife Val, worked with those with special needs at a wild life centre and in carpentry.  He was a very practical man and he loved his garden.  Both he and Val successfully made a new life for themselves in Whitstable and it was only a few years ago that he became a local hero when abseiling down a tall building on the sea front for charity. They both loved their holidays and travelled far and wide to many exotic places.

It was always a pleasure to visit them in Whitstable and when they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, a special party was held in our neck of the woods so that their friends up here could mark the occasion with them.

8 of us had lunch with Bill & Val a month before last Christmas.  It was a happy, joyous and emotional occasion that we all enjoyed and Bill was on great form.  Bill hugged everyone when it was time to leave.  It was an unusual gesture for him and a little out of character but now it is very understandable as he was really saying goodbye and expressing his gratitude for the friendship that we have all shared since 1987 with a very special man.  It was a touching moment that none of us will ever forget.

I remember writing about Roy Parris when he died the best part of 20 years ago and I remarked ‘how as an athlete, he had never troubled the International selectors but that with regards to Clubmanship, he was Olympic Gold Medal standard’.  Exactly the same with Bill, he will be greatly missed and our hearts go out to Val and his family. 

Mike Martineau, Feb 2016


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Christmas Raffle 13 December 2015



I wanted to thank all those who bought raffle tickets, the parent council and 'Up and Running' Sports shop in Sevenoaks for donating the prizes. We raised a grand total of £412!

1st Prize Christmas Sports Hamper - Hannah Cordell, 2nd Prize Drinks Hamper- Ken Daniel, 3rd Prize - £50 Boden Voucher- Chris Hollingdale, 4th Prize Champagne & Chocolates - Simon Heffer, 5th Prize -Harrods Baubles - Andy Kingsmill & 6th Prize £10 M & S Voucher - Alison Brand.



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Sport Bromley - Coach of the year 

Sport Bromley presented their annual awards of Coach and Volunteer of the Year on Monday 5th October 2015 at the Pavilion in Bromley.  The Mayor plus Council leader and also the Chief Executive attended the Bromley celebration of their 2015 London Youth Games participation and Sport Bromley used the occasion to make their awards. 

The Coach of the year award was presented to John Blackie by Sport Bromley President, Bernard Holley.  John is the Coach to local lass Dina Asher-Smith who this year at 19 has become the fastest ever British lady sprinter.  John is a well renowned and extremely successful sprint, hurdles and jumps coach and has won this award previously.  His squad includes English Schools Champions, National and International medalists at all ages, even over 60 years of age!  It was acknowledged that if Dina is as successful in Rio in 2016 as we all hope then Sport Bromley will have not much option but to present John with the same trophy again next year!

Have attached Press release from Sport Bromley following the awards they make each year for Coach and Volunteer of the year.

Photo shows Sport Bromley President, Bernard Holley, Manola Toschi-Restivo, the Mayor and John Blackie.

John has won this before as indeed has Jay Galley. John won it the year before Manola. Volunteer of the Year trophy has the names of Brenda Brent, Paul Patten and Heather Williamson as previous winners. This year Dick Griffin was nominated and whilst not the winner was awarded with a 'Highly Commended' certificate.

Mike Martineau

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Ron Clarke


Sad to hear that the great Ron Clarke has died, aged only 78 he was twice a guest at the Club


Read Runner's World Obit here...


Visitor to Bromley
Sad to hear of the death of the legendary Ron Clarke at a very young age.


Ron Clarke was twice a visitor at the Blackheath Clubhouse in Hayes. Quite unforgettable experiences listening to the great man talk about Athletics and his experiences in the Sport. And taking and answering questions from many of his fans who were privileged to meet him. Who can forget his amazing performances in 1965 which certainly don’t seem like 50 years ago! These included his brilliant 3 miles World record at White City where he became the first man to break 13 minutes for the distance with an excellent12.52.4. And in 1968 at Crystal Palace to see him run 10k against the top Brits including an up and coming David Bedford, Blackheath’s Bob Richardson and the cream of British distance running which then was so strong. This race was won by Dick Taylor, who as an under 21, had run in the 1965 3 mile race but then finished over half a minute behind Ron.

But Gold at the Olympics eluded him. He carried the field in the 1964 Olympic 10k before being outsprinted by two lesser mortals and the 1968 Olympics was not on an ‘even playing field’ for those brought up at low altitude. His valiant attempts, coming 6th in the Mexico 10k did permanent damage to his health. He couldn’t win Gold at the Commonwealth Games either and ended up with 4 silvers from the 3 Games he took part in. Many will remember his final Commonwealth silver at the brilliant 1970 Games in Edinburgh when he was outsprinted by Lachie Stewart in the 10k, the first time the Commonwealth had been metric. Indeed the first time it had been a Commonwealth Games with the word ‘Empire’ being dropped from the title.

He did however obtain an Olympic Gold. This was a surprise gift from Zatopek who won 4. Ron was very much Emil’s sort of runner and it is clear that there was immense mutual respect. You don’t casually make a gift of such a precious possession.

His purple patch in 1965 where he broke 12 World records in 44 days was quite staggering. Just 4 days after his 3 mile record he went to Oslo and broke his own 10k record by over 36 seconds when becoming the first man to run sub 28. His 27.39.4 lasted until the 1972 Olympics when Viren shaved a mere second from Ron’s time. After the Olympics Viren also took Clarke’s 5k World record when knocking .2 of a second from the time Ron set in 1966, the fourth time Ron had set the 5k record.

But there is another Ron Clark and there is an interesting link to his almost namesake. Ron Clarke as a 19 year old was chosen to light the flame at the ‘Summer’Melbourne Olympics in 1956 which started in November and finished in December. Puts an interesting slant on the controversy about a winter World Cup in Football! Ron Clark was a member of Herne Hill Harriers and in 1956 won the Poly Marathon in 2.20 thus gaining selection for Melbourne where he ran in his Woolworth’s plimsolls which cost under ten bob (50p in current language). Sadly Ron Clark did not finish his event but is still alive, in his 80s, and living in Biggin Hill. So both Rons were involved in 1956 and the Biggin Hill one is often amused when asked if he is the other one!

Ron Clarke spent a lot of his life as a politician but it was for services to Sport that he was awarded his MBE in 1966. He won the 1965 ‘Overseas Personality’ award at the BBC Annual awards evening and was also voted ‘World Sportsman of the year’ at almost the same time.

A true legend and a wonderful human being. Thanks for the memories.


Mike Martineau


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Results of Members Survey 2014-11-10


Firstly I would like to thank all of you who took the time to complete the members’ survey earlier this year. In all 270 members responded, which is a very respectable 36% of membership. Equally encouraging is the fact that all age groups contributed, with the younger membership representing 30% of the total who responded. Their input is particularly valuable as they make a huge contribution to the athletic success of the club and many will remain members, hopefully taking on the responsibilities currently discharged by the more senior membership!


The results, which are in slide presentation form, starts with an analysis of the membership who completed the survey and how they use the club, and then goes on to show the views of members across a wide range of activities and services offered by the club. This is then followed by more specific data on the Club House at Hayes and Norman Park Track.


Many of you also added helpful comments and suggestions on how the Club should develop in the future. The Executive committee will be using these and the questionnaire responses to help shape the longer term future of our club as well as allowing us to prioritise the shorter term improvements highlighted by the survey.


Please contact me or any member of the Executive Committee if you have any questions or additional ideas.


PP Bob Cliff
November 2014

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Shake Jogle & Roll

For 29 days in the spring of 2012 Peter Rogers and John E Turner kept us on the edge of our seats as they attempted to run from John O'Groats to Land's End in a brave challenge never before attempted by any Blackheath & Bromley Harrier before. It was a remarkable journey and now that story is in print. If you followed the blog then you only read half the story. Both Peter and John have written their own version of the run with additional contributions from Greg, their valuable all round support, and their wives Sue and Maz. If you contributed to their blog then you may well find yourself included. And if you fancy a go yourself then there is everything here to plan a successful run. Statisticians will not be disappointed - all the figures are there - along with hundreds of photos that prove they actually did it!. It's beautifully laid out and a very easy to read.

A real 'Boys Own" tale of Daring-do! True adventure tackled in true Heathern style, with lashings of courage and good humour! And like all my favourite books, it has lots of pictures. There is some very helpful information for anyone brave enough to give it a go... but I think I'm content to remain in my armchair.

Shake Jogle & Roll
Peter Rogers & John E Turner
ISBN 978-0-7552-1545-4
176pp. Large format paperback

Available to order from shops and t'internet but if you order on line from:
or directly from Peter or John, the price is the same but a greater percentage goes to The Cure Parkinson's Trust to whom all authors' profits go.

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Dale Lyons book on the London Marathon Everpresents


This is the story of 42 marathon runners who were created as the ‘Everpresents’ by the London Marathon in 1995 after they run 15 consecutive Londons. Now, 33 years later only 15 remain.

Their story is a testimony to a ‘never say die’ spirit that has sustained them during the thousands of marathons they have run all over the world.

Dale Lyons, one of the last 15, has combined a detailed factual record from his research with many heart warming anecdotes and incredible hardship stories in tracking the Everpresents’ journey since 1981.

Their triumphs and cruel disappointments, the amazing sums they have raised for countless charities, their incredible running records at home and abroad and their fascinating and colourful lives away from the marathon treadmill makes for absorbing and enlightening reading.

This is a book to honour their commitment to the London, one of the greatest city Marathons and provides a lasting tribute to a rapidly diminishing group ravaged by injury, accident, illness and death.

The book will provide information, inspiration and motivation not only to marathon runners but to those watching the London each year thinking “that could be me!”


Available January 2014 price £6.99 + £2.60 pp.

Paperback version. 230 pages with photos.

For orders contact Dale Lyons e-mail

5 Richmond Hill Gardens, Edgbaston Birmingham B15 3RW


“This remarkable book is a tribute to everyone of the Ever-presents.   The London Marathon salutes them all!”
John Bryant. Author of The London Marathon book and Chairman of the London Marathon Charitable Trust.

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Press release re: Norman Park


8 November 2013

Good News for Athletics in Bromley 

The future of Track and Field Athletics in Bromley has been secured for the next 10 years.  Norman Park Track Management, the company set up 20 years ago to run the Norman Park Athletics Track, has won a contract to continue managing the Track for another 10 years from 1 April 2014.  Thus ends an unsettling period of uncertainty.  Peter Baigent, Chairman of NPTM, hails this as “a victory for common sense” and a recognition of the high standards that have always been maintained and which have enabled the Track to be used by the major men’s and women’s leagues for their fixtures.  Internationals have also used the Track prior to the Crystal Palace Grand Prix.  Baigent had also said that “the Track was managed by Athletes and ex-Athletes for Athletes” and paid tribute to those who had gone to the trouble of writing to express their support for NPTM’s bid.  Over 20 glowing testimonials had been received from Clubs, Schools, Officials, Leagues and many individual users. 

For further information, please contact Track Manager, Ken Daniel on 0208 462 5134

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Awards for 2013

Jay Galley was awarded Bromley sports coach of the year 2013, which was presented by the Mayor of Bromley


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John Leeson's quest


Date: Mon, Oct 28, 2013 13:04



Once again many thanks for your sponsorship!

On the day of the run it was clear and dry (with temperatures, I believe, reaching 18 - 20 Degress C). There was a slight breeze at the start which I am sure was a refreshing welcome to the "Rhino" waiting to go !!

The day was never going to be about time but to complete the course safely and to enjoy the event. Starting as I meant to go on, I walked up the first hill (metres from the start line) along with many others. It wasn’t too long before we were getting in to our stride of jogging and running.
Taking things a little easier did afford the enjoyment of being able to talk more to other runners. Early on in the run I found myself in the company of a member of the 100 marathon club, the pace was comfortable, and I asked what time he was hoping to finish in. He said between 6hrs - 6hrs 30 mins. Shortly afterwards my companion was heard saying "I think I will start walking for a bit".

Deciding to carry on jogging /running it wasn’t long before I had caught up with Desperate Dan from the Dandy, (well alright if I am honest a man wearing a very bright red shirt with the cartoon character printed on) who had passed me earlier on, this game of cat and mouse continued for several miles and certainly helped distract from the aches and pains.

Aware how easy it is to fall on the downhill sections (a pleasure I enjoyed when I first ran the course in 1998) coupled with the wisdom of age and self-preservation I gingerly descended in to the village of Alfreston (recalling it was here that I went base over apex) amazed by the numbers who seemed to fly pass me, carefree and upright!! Chuffed that I had managed to reach Alfreston unscathed I refocused my attention to the job in hand.

The Seven Sisters is always a challenge no matter what pace you are running, the climbs seemed much harder than I remembered, with something or someone to distract (this time it was two brothers running for the "lifeboats") coupled with a little mental attitude the worse is soon passed. I am now on a descent to Birling Gap, here the drinks station is offering hot tea, and my old friend Stan (who introduced me to running) with my son Tom are waiting with much needed encouragement. At this point I have completed just over 22 miles. A welcome break recharging the batteries a little with tea in hand I walk awhile with Stan and Tom.

Despite several runners passing me at this point including the lifeboat brothers it is not long before I have caught them back on the uphill section to Beachy Head. Once reached it is all downhill to the finish.

JOB DONE in 5 hours 31 mins 9 secs.

The effort was made all the more easy, knowing that you had kindly supported the cause,


John Leeson

Hi, Last year was to prove extremely challenging for, not just myself but, my family and close friends.

In January 2012 I was operated on for Bowel Cancer, and although successful, five months later I was diagnosised with secondary cancer on the liver. My recovery has been largely attributed to my fitness and the support of those close to me. However this is not distracting from my efforts or personal goals, and with the support of my fellow Harriers at Blackheath and Bromley I am looking to continue to improve.

If I am able to encourage and lift the spirit of others going through similar difficulties so much the better. After all it is a medical condition not a conclusion.

Having over come these slight blips I felt I should at least pay back a little to the skill and care of the medical teams I was fortunate to be under. Hence my "desire" to run a cross country marathon over the south downs, although there are some who seem to be questioning my sanity in this respect. If you are curious as to the nature of the course and the challenges that await, I believe passed entrants have video clips on you tube headed "Beachy Head Marathon" - see also Beachy Head Marathon

They always say every little bit helps, it does and it will help get me to the finish, thank you on behalf of all that we will help and support.

Through Virgin Money Giving, you can sponsor me and donations will be quickly processed and passed to charities.

Virgin Money Giving is a not for profit organisation and will claim gift aid on a charity's behalf where the donor is eligible for this. I really appreciate all your support and thank you for any donations.


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Alex Littlewood got married...


Alex's wedding to girlfriend Jordan took place on 20 June 2013.

The venue was Jordan's home town Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, just south of Cleveland which stands on the southern edge of Lake Erie, the centre of which marks the Canadian border.







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Carolyna and Adi's Wedding Pics 5 May 2013


Some pics from last nights wedding reception/pre ted pepper training.


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The Young Athletes Raffle was drawn on Saturday 4 May 2013


We have managed to raise the sum of £2169 via the raffle. After the cost of the iPad has been deducted we have the clear sum of £1,900.

And to blow the trumpet even further, since the beginning of March the ‘Pub Club’ have raised the sum of £3,657.35.

Pats on the back all around and a whole host of thank yous. Firstly to the Pub Club – Margaret, Sarah C and Sarah F, without whom we would not have raised a single penny! Ideas a plenty, sleeves up and hard graft – thank you!

Not to be forgotten is the sterling support we have received from the Club community – Hanna, Mick, Heather, David C, Tim, John, Paul P, and Mike Shepherd who have also stuffed, cajoled and donated.

Finally, thank you to our new President, Bob, who gamely stepped in to deliver a polished performance today.

We still have a couple more irons in the fire which will raise even more wonga and no doubt the Pub Club will be back in the near future with another fund raising venture.

Thank you and cheers,




All winners have been contacted and the results were ...  
1st Prize            A pair of spikes signed by Mo Farah.                                                         11595                     Brown 
2nd Prize          A shirt signed by Adam Gemili.                                                                    11133                     Buxton
3rd Prize          A 16gb iPad mini.                                                                                           11154                     McWilliam 
4th Prize          £40 towards a meal for 2 at The Bottle House, Penhurst.                          11610                     Williams 
5th Prize          A meal for two at the Zeera Spice, Adington Road.                                    11566                     Hilditch 
6th Prize          A meal for two at The New Inn, Hayes.                                                          10875                     Willem  
7th Prize          A meal for two at The Coney, Croydon Road.                                              11860                     Damree-Ralph  
8th Prize          A £10 Argos voucher.                                                                                      12946                     Thomas 
9th Prize          A large set of golf balls                                                                                    11253                     Berry 
10th Prize       A hat signed by Adam Gemili.                                                                         10031                     Reynolds 
11th Prize       A set of golf balls                                                                                               11920                     Chapman 
12th Prize       A set of golf balls                                                                                               11417                     Zmuda


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Winners all - 2012 awards


Heather Williamson was awarded the Bromley Volunteer of the Year for 2012, the presentation took place on
Tuesday 23 October at The Civil Centre Bromley


Winners all - KCAA awarded male & female athletes (U20) and official of the year to B&B members at their annual dinner on
9 November Adam, Dave & Dina proudly display their awards. All were at OUR dinner on 16 November... 10-11-12

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Message from an Old Member


Graham used to live in Anerley, joined us in October 1985 and left in September 1989

Being a former member in the 80's I enjoy seeing your club at major competitions and have great pride in pointing out your colours and tent to all my athletes at cross country events as my time in London and running for the club has left me with good memories and I keep in touch still, periodically, with Jim Phelan.

It was great to bump into Ken Daniel on Saturday at the National X/C relays and have a chat whilst watching the u/13's races where Ken will recall, my girls team were terribly mismanaged by the officials and went from 5th on 1st leg to 70 ish on 2nd leg leaving the girls really upset.

I have been coaching now at Wirral AC for about 8-10 years and have a talented squad of about 40 youngsters.

I occasionally bump into Graham Botley at cross challenges and Birmingham Indoor Grand Prix and like I said have fond memories of members past and probably still present and would like to say hi to those that may remember me, shouldn't be hard remembering my scouse accent!



4 November 2012


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Kent London Athletics Network won "Network of the Year" for the London Region 2012


England Athletics Volunteer Awards - London Region

sent on behalf of the London Regional Council

Dear Mick

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Kent London Athletics Network on winning the England Athletics London Region Athletics Network of the Year Award for 2012. As always, we had a very strong list of nominations this year, reflecting the huge amount of time and energy given by volunteers across the region in every facet of our sport. The London Regional Council is very aware that athletics would not function in this country without this huge body of volunteers who give so freely of their time and so I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all that you contribute on behalf of England Athletics. As a winner of a Regional Award you will also be considered for the National Award in this category.

We will be celebrating all of this year’s award winners at a London Region Awards Evening later this year. Details of this will be sent to you shortly.

Congratulations once again,

Kind Regards


Elspeth Turner,

Club & Coach Support Officer,

Sussex & Kent (including Kent London boroughs)

England Athletics

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Alex Littlewood is a father


Alex and his partner Jordan have a new baby daughter Amelia Madeleine Littlewood. Born on Saturday night 22.09.12 and weighing 7lb 6oz.



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Criminal Record Bureau (CRB) checks for club volunteers.

Blackheath and Bromley Harriers AC together with UKA takes its responsibilities towards the welfare of young people in Athletics very seriously and requires everyone in athletics who has significant contact with children to have an Enhanced Criminal Records Bureau Disclosure.

I have attached a stage by stage guide on how to apply and complete the the Enhanced CRB disclosure.

I have also declaration form which can be used for helpers for a one off expedition but it is preferable to complete the full CRB check. If you are submitting this through the track at Norman Park please speak with Ken Daniels who will assist otherwise contact me, Brian Power (Welfare Officer) 07919 490365.  10-05-12

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Two 50 years membership awards presented in New Zealand

Greetings from sunny New Zealand - God its hot down here - about 28/29 at the moment, however we have had quite a bit of rain, albeit warm rain, since we arrived.

Hope all went well at the National Supper last night. I have managed to meet up with 2 of our members and present them with their 50 years membership awards. The first was Rod Barker, who was officiating at the Auckland Cathay Pacific half marathon earlier today. I slightly gatecrashed their prize ceremony and managed to make the presentation to Rod from their "stage" - the back of a truck, during the proceedings.

Afterwards I drove up to Titirangi and visited Ian Mackley at his home where, as you can see, the weather was still beautiful and I presented him with his award.

We also met both wifes and had a thoroughly enjoyable day.

Both recipients were very proud and humbled to receive their awards. Two lovely men who are thoroughly proud of their membership of B&BH AC.


26 February 2012

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Darryl Hillier and Kim's wedding






This is how they do it in South Africa.... 21 January 2012


Thanks very much to the person who posted a couple of our wedding pics onto the Blackheath site, much appreciated. If I had got married in the UK, I promise you that the whole club would've been invited! We had perfect weather on the 21st January 2012 at Morgan Bay situated right on the beach in the Eastern Cape. We had 113 guests and had a great day. Kim & I are very happily married now and in still in love, can you believe it!!!

I miss the running and Blackheath terribly, but still managing to swim 20km in 5 days, so at least doing some exercise. I plan to start running the cross country for the over 40's races here, starting in May. I'm sure they won't be as hard as those UK muddy courses.

Sorry to hear it's so cold there and that you had plenty snow. I would've loved to have raced the Club 10, pity! My ultimate club race and such a flat course!

Please send regards to everyone at the Club and I'm following the results a lot, so GO ON THE HEATH!!!

Kind regards



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Ron Eaton, 'Ron the Runner'

A great servant of Athletics has been lost to us. Those who in the past have worked on Administration at the London Marathon, will remember Ron as the kindly and friendly man who managed the Registration process. Sadly he died recently and his funeral was at the City of London Crematorium on 20 September. He was 86 and was survived by a son and a daughter and two grandchildren. He was shortly to become a Great Grandfather. He was himself a prodigious runner who completed many marathons including London and New York. He also race-walked, was a Centurion and had completed the London to Brighton. He was greatly affected by the loss of his wife Joyce 7 years ago and it was appropriate to hear the BBC's London Marathon theme being played at the service which ended with the pop song 'Keep on Running'. He greatly enjoyed running and considered himself a serious runner. Thus the award by Running Magazine of the title 'Fun Runner of the Year' didn't go down at all well... 26-09-11

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Colin Poole will be running his 300th Marathon in November

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Annual Report for the Kent London Athletics Network

You will see from the following report the extent of the activities undertaken by the Network in the first year, through the co-ordination by 365 Athletics Academy. You may not wish to read every word of the report, but a glance at the two pages of bullet points will give you an idea of the impressive number and range of activities during the year. In fact, at the presentation of the Network's Year 2 Plan made to an England Athletics panel in March, they were so impressed by Year 1 achievement, together with future plans, that not only was the requested £25k awarded, but permission was granted to carry forward an £8k+ underspend from Year 1. The underspend resulting from from the late entry into the scheme by the Kent London Athletics Network.


I would take this opportunity to make it clear that these funds do not come under the jurisdiction of B&B HAC, but can only be spent by the Network as outlined in the Year Plan. The Club do make a contribution of £1k under "Partner Funding", but from the bullet points it can be seen how the Club and its members have benefitted.


If you have any questions or points you would like to raise please put them to either Tim Soutar or John Baldwin who are the B&B representative on the KLAN committee.


John Baldwin


Kent London McCain Athletics Network

First Annual Report to Member Clubs
Is your Network making a difference to your club, its coaches, officials, athletes and
wider membership? We will let you be the judges of that!
The Kent London McCain Athletics Network was launch on 9th May 2010 at the Kent
County Championships at Ashford. Mike Summers, the then CEO of England Athletics, was
on hand to present a cheque for ..80,000 to fund projects over a three year period. The
funding is part of a ..5 million sponsorship package from McCain who have partnered
with England Athletics with the goal of finding and nurturing future champions whilst at
the same time raising the profile of athletics and inspiring families to become more
involved in the sport.
The Network is seen as an important partnership between England Athletics and four
local clubs: Beckenham Running Club; Bexley AC; Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC and
Cambridge Harriers.
The Network aims to grow and sustain participation levels in athletics, increase the
number of volunteers involved in the sport, improve the quality of experience for all
participants and at the same time raise the standard of coaching and performance levels
of athletes.
Below is a snapshot of what has been achieved over the past twelve months as a result
of the four clubs working together:
• A Coaches Forum, hosted by B&BHAC, attended by 45 delegates from the
network clubs was organised which was supported by two very prominent
senior coaches and presenters from England Athletics.
• Beckenham Running Club hosted a nutrition talk organised by England
Athletics for local coaches.
• Held an Athletics Leaders Course for 22 participants.
• Coach and Athlete Development Workshops programmes established for high
jump at Erith Stadium (monthly) and hammer at Norman Park/Sutcliffe Park
(periodic – usually more frequent than monthly).

• First Aid Workshop attended by 14 participants.
• Coaching bursaries provided for new and existing coaches to attend coaching
• Purchased and distributed Athletics 365 manuals for evaluation purposes.
• Flying Coach visit organised to run an Athletics 365 workshop to demonstrate
a typical session, observed by coaches from the network clubs who work with
young athletes. The aim of the workshop was to generate confidence and
knowledge for the introduction of the scheme within the participants’ clubs.
• Work was started on developing a prototype of a Network Coaches database
• Newly qualified young coaches have been given the opportunity to develop
their coaching skills under the supervision of more experienced coaches via
the Bees Academy and Bexley Tigers.
• Helped organise a Bromley Primary Schools QuadKids event for school years 3
& 4 that attracted 120 participants. The event was so well received that this
year the Bromley Schools Sports Partnership in conjunction with the Network
will be organising a bigger borough wide festival for children in school years 3
- 6. Anticipated level of participation 500+.
• The Network entered a composite team in the Aviva Fun in Athletics London
Region Festival at Crystal Palace. Twenty-eight athletes participated with the
girls’ team finishing 3rd and the boys’ team 4th – highest ranked Network
team overall.
• Organised a major Public Lecture by Dr Costas Karageorghis entitled Inside
Sport Psychology, in conjunction with local school Langley Park School for
Boys. Attended by 150 coaches, sportsmen and sportswomen, students, PE
staff and parents. The speaker, premises and audio visual equipment were
secured at no cost to the Network.
• Designed and implemented a substantial network website that is updated
almost daily, containing information and resource materials applicable to the
network club memberships. This has now become a major source of
information (highly recommended viewing – .
Also created a Facebook page for the Network.
• Secured £1000 worth of books, DVDs and videos on long-term loan from
England Athletics in order to establish a resource library for use by Network
clubs members. Library accessible via the website.
• Purchased at greatly discounted price 2000 cross country flags and other
equipment for use by Network clubs and coaches.
• Have met with the Greenwich Athletics Activator (Melissa Catchpole) to
ensure no duplication of effort and share current and future plans.
• Network representative sits on the Lewisham Athletics Action Group.
• Meetings held with various School Sports Partnerships across the Network.

• Established meaningful links with the Kent Rural Athletics Network and Kent
County Athletics Association particularly in the area of coach and athlete
• Co-ordinators have attended numerous network training days, conferences
and workshops.
• Successfully negotiated the purchase of a full 4-lane Sportshall competition
kit from the national Sportshall organisation, a large discount funded jointly
for the network, Kelsey Park Sports College and 365 Athletics Academy.
• Creation of a centre of excellence for Sportshall activities at Kelsey Park
Sports College in Beckenham from June 2011.
• Have identified a KLAN 2012 event – “QuadKids in the Olympic Park” during
the Games targeting children visiting London from around the world. We
would like to reward the Network’s outstanding young athletes (16+) with the
opportunity to run QuadKids sessions under the guidance of senior coaches.
The challenge we have is how we put forward the idea to the Olympic
• The Network committee has agreed in principle and where appropriate for
clubs to share open and joint club championship events across the Network,
to include road-running and cross country. Road running club members to be
encouraged to participate in Track & Field events during the summer
Looking forward to the next twelve months the following priorities have been identified
and funding approved by England Athletics London Regional Network Panel:

The creation of a centralised Network administration system to help manage efficiently,
the day to day affairs of Network clubs.

Organise a range of workshops, seminars, conferences, courses to cover the following

• Two Coach/Officials conferences to be held in October & March
• Coach Training Courses
• Officials Training Courses
• First Aid Training Courses
• Coach & Athlete Development Workshops
• High Jump, Hammer, horizontal jumps, shot/discus/javelin and road-running/
Volunteer management:

• Review of needs
• Job descriptions/guidelines
• Recruitment -internal/external including recruitment evenings
• Volunteer support and training

Publication of a six monthly KLAN e-Newsletter
Content to include:

• Members’ letters
• athlete profiles - current/past
• forthcoming events
• advertising opportunities -local businesses, discounts
• England Athletics section
• Results and achievement highlights
• key contacts & resources
• interviews
Athletics in the Park – Summer holiday activities for children in local parks run by young
Network coaches.

Introduction of Athletics 365 coaching scheme and promotion of QuadKids and Super 8
short form competitions within clubs and schools.

Support for the 2011/12 Kent Coach and Athlete Development Days.

Continued maintenance of the Network’s website

And much more………………………………………..

We are pleased to be able to announce that Petts Wood Runners joined the Network
from 1 April 2011.

The Network Committee is always interested to hear new ideas and suggestions so
please let us have, by e-mail to: , your
feedback and comments.

For those of you who have supported the Network’s activities during the year we thank
you and to those who have yet to get involved please visit our website  on a regular basis in order to keep updated on what
events are being organised for you. If you have a need, let us know about it.

John Blackie & Paul Patten
Kent London McCain Athletics Network Co-ordinators

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Message from Cliff Keen

Hi All,

It has been over 3 years since my Louise and I returned to the UK (and BBHAC) after a 5 year interval down in India and Australia, and it is time to head overseas again. This time it is South America, and just for 12 months, we intend to be back in time to use our Olympic tickets, should we get any.

On this trip Louise intends to keep a blog, so if you would like to take a break from browsing Facebook you can find us on  – the best way is to enter ‘louisekeen’ into the Search box, and then look for ‘Louise and Cliff’s South American Adventure’ (but wait a while, there is nothing of interest on it yet !).

I will, of course, be able to follow your exploits on the BBHAC web site, so please make it a spectacularly successful year.



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Kirsty & Mel Got Married! - 29 August 2010


Photos from Justine


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Tony Weeks-Pearson (presentation made 27 March 2010 at culmination of 2009/2010 Bennett Cup)

Tony deservedly receives his 50 years membership award today. 

He was elected to membership on 4 April 1949 but sadly left us in 1997.  He was offered Life Membership by the Club, accepted and rejoined 2 years ago.

His application is in the name of Anthony James Pearson of Hastings, Sussex.  He was proposed for membership by Sydney Wooderson, who also became his Coach, and seconded by Sydney’s brother Stanley.  As an under 19, he paid 10/6 for a year’s subscriptions.

A top class Athlete, who represented Britain in what is now called the World Student Games, he was also a UK record holder for 3000m indoors, won several mob matches and County titles and was a consistently good performer at the highest level.

He was twice 11th on the National Cross Country Championships in 1955 and 1958 and also 11th in the Southern in 1956.  He was twice joint winner of the Varsity Cross Country race, the first time with Chris Chattaway in 1952, and was Cross Country Captain at Oxford.

He never won the Kent Senior Cross Country title but was an individual medallist 5 times and four times in successive years was either 2nd or 3rd.  He did win Kent 20 and Kent Marathon titles.

He ran his fastest Marathon in 1967, 2.31.23, missing the Club record by just 15 seconds.  In the 1957 Poly Marathon he would have broken Charlie Busby’s existing Club record of 2.34.06, but on a blistering hot June day he came 5th in 2.41 some 4 minutes behind the winner.  This winning time was some 15 minutes slower than usual.  Blackheath’s Johnny Withers was 8 minutes behind Tony and he, about 7 weeks later, ran 2.31.08, an 18 minutes improvement on his Poly run, and this was still the record when Tony missed it by just 15 seconds 10 years later in 1967.

When representing Britain in the 1953 International Student Games, he won silver in the 5000m with an excellent 14.49.

Leading up to the finale of the Bennett Cup some 50 years ago in 1960, he won the Club 10 in 54.59.  Not bad, eh!

He did the questionnaire in Athletics Weekly in 1958 and one question was: “which performance gave you most personal satisfaction and why”.  His reply was: “the 2nd handicap spoon in the mob match against SLH, I always thought this impossible under handicapper George Brooks”.  Any of you thinking today that you have been hard done by the handicapper, it was ever thus!

Alan Brent made him a Vice President in 1967 and the late Don Gillate chose him as his successor, so Tony was Club President in 1990/1.  But a comment in the 1990 Gazette says it all: “We are, above all, grateful to Tony for all the work that has gone into our two priceless histories”.  1969 and the 1989 update.

My personal thanks go to Tony for his excellent support when I was organising the Sydney Wooderson Memorial Service in 2007.  I couldn’t have done it without him and it was generally accepted to be a successful and fitting tribute to our most famous member.

So thank you Tony.

Mike Martineau, Past President

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Past member Rory Byrne 23-12-09


Hi my name is Joe Mills and I am a former member of the club (I would still be if I hadn't moved to Canada in the summer of this year). I know Nick has probably told you already of the devastating news of the passing of Rory Byrne in the early hours of Sunday morning.

I wanted to mail you directly myself, to give you some more information about Rory in case you were doing your weekly presentation, but also to give you the address of the funeral which is next Monday at 10am at Our Lady of Good Council, Fox Rock Church, Dublin.

Rory lived for running, I mean more than anyone I have ever met. He used to say to me that his loves were in order, his son (13 years, Cianan), running, his wife, Brenda and then Utd. He ran 66 min for the Great North before his first marathon a few years ago, so had great pedigree. He first discovered what turned out to be a benign brain tumour, in May 2005. He used to have many siezures and while he was adjusting to massive levels of medication was unable to run, but got into good enough shape to run last years Berlin Marathon in 2.36 (12 mins outside his PB). he didn't tell the club, because he didn't want a fuss, but also because he was understandably cautious. He was given the all clear in May and celebrated, was back running 80-90 miles a week and dragging me out the door most days around Greenwich park and Blackheath where we lived, early this summer. I know that he fully intended to start racing again and was just waiting until he felt in good enough shape.

This never happened, in July he suffered a relapse and was admitted into hospital where they found another tumour, that was to eventually kill him last weekend. It ravaged him, he lost his sight 6 weeks ago and slowly more faculties. Not at any point did he get angry, he showed immense bravery and dignity for his friends and his family and was determined to live a close to a normal life as possible, which is why for example when he recently spoke with Nick, he never fully described the extent of his illness.

His hero was Carlos Lopez (he used to make me watch the 84 Marathon on video once a year), amazingly Lopez visited him last Tuesday.

Alison, Rory was a very close friend to me and also my only real training partner over the last few years. I am slightly sad that he wasn't better known among the club, but as you know 'out of sight out of mind', in no way did this reflect his passion for athletics. What is not known at all, was that in the Southern 12 stage of 2005, Rory ran stage 11 in what looked like a very slow time, he would have been devastated by that performance. However, he was such a gentleman, he escorted my then heavily pregnant wife round the course while I ran the last leg. At the time, Rory did not know why he ran so slowly but we were within weeks to discover that he was collapsing and losing time. He obviously did so on that leg, but no-one was there to see it and he did not remember it.

I hope the club will be able to send some flowers, I have the address of I think his parents (his dad was his first coach, and even on the last day that I saw him, two weeks ago was discussing Irish athletics with his dad and me) where a wake will be on Sunday evening. 2 Whitehall Cottage, Westminster Rd, Foxrock, Dublin, Ireland. I also hope that you will be able to write an obituary or something to remember a truly wonderful person and he would want me to say, runner.

If you want anymore information please get in touch.

With very best wishes, and also an acknowledgement of sorrow that I am passing on this what must be shocking news to you.



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Another note from Mike Salmon
Mike did his 60 @ 60 in 58mins 13secs thanks to help from the lads!

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The 2009 England Athletics National Awards programme

The 2009 England Athletics National Awards programme, sponsored by Heidsieck & Co. Monopole Champagne, has seen volunteers from across the country recognised for their contributions in supporting the development of the sport.

There are twelve categories of award which recognise the work of clubs, volunteers, officials and coaches, as well as the areas of partnership and disability athletics. We are pleased to announce the results of the first stage of the programme - the nine English Regional Award winners for the 12 categories. You can read more about the regional winners in the local area news pages over the following weeks. Congratulations to the following winners: Rachel Blackie, Lauren Blackie, Dan Haque & Scott Huggins.

John Graves - chair of the EA board commented, "The regional awards programmes are one of, if not the most, important initiatives that we support as a governing body. I am delighted that this year’s programme will recognize over 100 volunteers and organizations who really make the sport tick. Without volunteers the sport would cease to exist as we know it at a local level and it is vitally important for the long term health of the sport that we recognize this contribution and support it in whatever way we can. A number of our key strategies are focused on supporting the growth and skill base in volunteering and such role models recognized in this year’s awards programme can only serve as an example to others who might be thinking of getting involved in their local club, association or community.

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Good news for Andy Edwards 
Andy Edwards is to be the press conference presenter at the 2010 London Marathon. This will entail his hosting press conferences where the stars and celebrities and all things novel and quirky are brought before the nation's press. He takes over from Tim Hutchins. I reckon he should do well with his knowledge of the sport and enthusiastic approach.
Les Roberts

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And Clare Lodwig is now Mrs Smeaton...

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A note from Gary Plank - Gary is moving away from the area...


Hi, Mike.

It was quite sad for me to say goodbye to my Clubmates last night knowing that I am unlikely to see many of them again for the foreseeable. Sadly, my next visit will be almost certainly for the inevitable funeral of an old friend. C'est la vie.

However, I shall read the news on the website avidly and hopefully meet up with some of the guys at a race. My greatest wish is to see the club back near the top of British athletics, especially over the country where our traditions and strengths used to lie.

If possible, can you please let everyone know my new location on the website, as follows:-

10 Battles Lane, Kesgrave, Ipswich, Suffolk IP5 2XF

This only a mile or so off the A14 near Woodbridge. Visitors welcome.

Until I get a landline organised I can be contacted on 07833501057 or by e-mail, of course.

I personally thank you as the first Heathen to welcome me to the club back in 1982 which set the tone for the next 25 years membership of this great institution.

All the best to one and all.

Gary Plank

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Past President Jim Day

Chris Day would like to thank all of the members who gave so generously to the British Heart Foundation following the untimely death of her husband Past President Jim Day. The total raised was £875. 17-09-07


Jim Day died suddenly on Sunday morning (1 July 2007). Jim would have been 74 in August and next year would have achieved 50 years membership of Blackheath & Bromley HAC. 2-07-07

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Most people when they hear the word “athletics” think of the Olympics or the London Marathon, or may be their school sports day. Most have no idea what happens for the whole year. If you are reading this you should be a paid up member of Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC and will know already that there are many other events in the world of athletics.

You may not be clear which races are important and which are not. Also, you may not be certain how best to prepare for those races that you want to do well in. The purpose of this article is to inform those of you who are relatively new to athletics and, perhaps cause some members of longer standing to review their objectives. It may even stimulate debate and improve performance!

First of all athletics’ is above all else an individual sport, it is a very personal sport. Team performances are secondary as they are the result of a collection of individual performances. However, there is no doubt that an enthusiastic team will help individuals to perform well. You may consider your local 3.75k road race with 50 runners important, someone else may consider their local 6.5 k cross country race important, while others may consider only County, Area or National championships as being important. If every one does their own thing it is unlikely that the Club team will do well. The Club will benefit from good performances from both individuals and teams.

Different preparation (training) is require for different events. Your body is not like an F1 car that can be rebuilt after each race ready for the next. To improve you must train your body to do what you want it to. This requires stress, recovery and more stress. Then different stress, recovery and more stress. Sound familiar? There are many ways to train but not all will suit you. To some extent training and racing is an art form not an exact science. The problem is that you have to find out what works best for you and you only get one chance! If you are a runner then following the traditional British athletics calendar is a good way to start.

What is the traditional British calendar? Well, it has been developed over some 140 years to suit both our climate and the human body. It was developed long before television dictated that athletes perform at the highest level continuously throughout the year.

Let’s start the year in September, after you have returned from your summer holiday or the summer break from school or university. The track and field season has finished and this is the Road Relay season. Runners can do individual road races and road or cross country relays. Most of these need not be too serious; more an opportunity to race fast over relatively short distances and begin to build fitness for the rest of the year. There is an opportunity for track and field athletes to run against the “distance” runners.

In the Autumn there are “short” championship road relays. These are important to the Club and allow individuals to race against the best in the Area or Country. Incidentally there are three areas in England, North, South and Midlands. B&BHAC is in the South of England.

These relays are “short” in respect of the number of runners in the team and not distance raced. All the areas have a 6 leg men’s road relay and 4 leg women’s road relay. These take about 2 hours and 1 hour respectively to run. At present the Southern event is held at the Rushmoor Areana in Aldershot at the end of September and the National event is held at the end of October in Sutton Park at Sutton Coldfield.

This Road Relay season runs in to October and over laps the start of the cross country season which runs, officially, from 1st October to the 31st March. To confuse matters even more, road racing has no fixed season, races being held throughout the year, whenever the organiser thinks is the best time for his event. Hence, the mass participation Great North Run half marathon race is usually held in September or October.

So from October through to March is the cross country running season. This comprises local league races, we do the Kent League, inter club races and championship races. The climax of the season being the World cross Country Championships which are held each year.

Basically, before Christmas the races are about 5 miles long for senior men and 3 miles for senior women. These are low key races which runners may take in the stride without easing down their training. After Christmas the Championship season happens in about eight weeks.

In the past, on the first weekend in January have been the County Championships. But from 2004 they will be in the middle of January. This is by an individual entry and all may run provided you have a County qualification. This is either by birth or nine months residence. Having once competed in a county championship you can not move to another county without missing a year. Many, but not all, of our members are qualified for Kent. As B&BHAC is affiliated to Kent we may enter teams in the Kent championship. There are races for all age groups and both sexes. For senior men the distance is 7.5 miles and for senior women about 4miles. The distances are shorter for the younger age groups.

At the end of January the Area cross country championships are held. The Club enters names and teams for these and as far as I am aware there is no restriction on who may run provided they are representing their First Claim Club. B&BHAC run in the Southern Championship. There are races for all age groups and both sexes. The race distances are the same as for the county championships except that the senior men run 9 miles.

Until 2004 the Inter Counties Championships were held In mid February. But from 2004 on they are held on the first Saturday in March. Counties usually select their team from performances in the County Championships. For seniors up to 15 names may be entered, 9 may run with 6 to score. If you aspire to represent your county, all you have to do is to run well in the County championship and make sure the County Team Manager knows that you are keen to run. For the last few years the Inter counties championship has included the UK Athletics Trial for the British Team to run in the World Cross Country Championships at the end of March. Also, it is currently held in Wollaton Park, Nottingham. if you are not selected for your county team it worth going to watch, as it is usually the highest quality domestic event in the season.

The English National Championships are held at the end of February and the venue moves round to each of the three areas. The 2003 version was hosted by the South at Parliament Hill Fields which is famous as, arguably, the “best” course in the country. The Club enters names and teams for this and there is no restriction on who may run provided they are representing their First Claim Club and that club has entered the Area Championship. There are races for all age groups and both sexes. The race distances are the same as for the county championships except that the senior women run 8k.

For most of us “The National” ends the cross country season. If you are very, very fast you could make your national team for the World Cross Country Championship which is held towards the end of March. You just need to finish in the top 4 places in the Inter counties!! This year’s World Championship was in Brussels and a next year it is in the South of France. Again, if you fancy a weekend away, watching the best runners in the world, why not go on one of PP Graham Botley’s tours to the world cross? I am sure you will not be disappointed.

Of course during the winter there are many road races. If you are interest in my view, I do not recommend too many winter road races. I consider that, if you are free on Saturdays, you are better doing cross country in the winter than road running. Cross country running will make you stronger, is less stressful on the body, more relaxing and the variety should leave you refreshed for the road and / or track races in the summer.

In April there are more road relays. These are the “long” relays typically for men there are 12 legs, 6 long about 5.5 miles and 6 short about 3 miles. The race starts with a long leg, the short and so on finishing with a short leg. The women run 6 short legs, usually over the same course as the men which makes for interesting comparisons within the club!

The Area, Southern Championship, is held at the beginning of April and the National Championship at the end of April. The Southern at the Open University at Milton Keynes on a Sunday and the National at Sutton Park, Birmingham. The courses for the National event are a little longer than those used in the Autumn road relay. These races take about 4.5 hours for the senior men and just about 2 hours for the senior women. Also, there are relay races for young athletes in Sutton Park on the Sunday following the senior races.

Of course there is a major mass participation race in April called the London Marathon. If this is your aim cross country is ideal preparation.

Also in April the track and field season begins. Track and field lasts through to September. The Club takes enters teams in the National and in the Southern Leagues, as well as the Young Athletes Leagues. There is also a Southern Vets T&F League.

Track & Field gives scope for all to take part; you do not have to be a runner. There are five basic types of T&F event; these are track i.e. sprint and middle distance and field i.e. vertical jumps, horizontal jumps and throws. There is something for every one there. The Club could do with more field event and sprint people. Do you know any footballers or rugby players who want (need) to keep (get) fit during the summer. If so bring them along for an introduction to track & field.

There are many shorter road races in the summer. 5k and 10k being ideal distances for improving marathon and half marathon times.

If you want variety then there is always Fell Running. This is very hilly cross country across fells. These, I think, are held throughout the year.

After all this you will be ready for your summer holiday and to rest ready for the next year. You may have decided which events you are best at and / or enjoy the most. You may have decided which events you would most like to set more personal bests at. If so, how to have the best chance of achieving personal bests could be the subject of another article. Racing should be special!

Enjoy your running year!

Ian Wilson

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The Club has received a position statement from UK Sport and the British Olympic Association on the use of all supplements. The opening paragraph states: “UK athletes are strongly advised to be extremely cautious about the use of any supplements. No guarantee can be given that any particular supplement, including vitamins and minerals, ergogenic aids, and herbal remedies, is free from prohibited substances as these products are not licensed and are not subject to the same strict manufacturing and labelling requirements as licensed medicines.” There is much more detailed information in the leaflet, but it does show that licensed medicines will carry a product license number, eg. PL0242/0028. Further information can be obtained from: UK Sport, Drug-Free Sport Directorate, 40 Bernard Street, London, WC1N 1ST. Email:  Website:  To check all prescribed medicines use the above website, UK Sport Helpline 0800 5280004 or call David Herbert, Anti-Doping Co-ordinator at UK Athletics on 0870 998 6732. New Supplement Advice Sheet (PDF 219k) has recently been published - if you take any form of supplement you need to read it.

Don't say you didn't know... read the official UKA document on Doping and it's regulation.  Also includes a list of all banned substances. 21-02-03

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