Founded in 1869

Ted Pepper

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Last updated 03 May 2021
 

The Edward Pepper Memorial Trophy

Ted Pepper Facebook page 

This year the race is on 3 May 2021

Previous winners/results

 

The Ted Pepper 'Seven' was first organised in 1979 so the 2021 version marks the 43rd Anniversary, unfortunately, due to Covid-19 the 2020 event was cancelled - so this year is the 42nd running of the event.

Back in 1979 the Club Committee turned down a request to make it a 10k road race, as they said no one ran 10k on the roads! (those were the days). 

It was always a short seven miles and was basically 3 laps around the Langley Park area of Beckenham.  In 1991 the course was re-measured and adjusted to make it 10k.

The cup and six replicas were presented to the Club by Ted's Company: Collingwood, Conduit St. Limited.. In the early years the winner kept the small replica.

Who was Ted Pepper?  Read his Obituary.

 

A few things you may have forgotten or never knew about the Ted Pepper.
When Ted died I'd only been in the club for 6 years but knew and met him a few times. He was a very useful runner and of very good standard. I knew he was running the Three Peaks on 30 April 1978, and that he was looking forward to it. My family and I had been away for that weekend to our static caravan. As we were driving home on the Monday (which was the very first, First Monday, May Bank holiday) the BBC News came on telling us that the runner that had been lost on Sunday had now been found, sadly it was Ted. The conditions had been very bad that year and we think Ted must have taken a wrong turn, was exhausted, so rested up, fell asleep and eventually died of hyperthermia. Some history on the Three Peaks Race


After some consultation it was agreed that Club would organise a Memorial Race in his honour, so a sub-committee was formed and I joined up.

In those far off days the Club Committee insisted that the event be in miles (we opted for seven miles, It was always a bit short!) and not kísÖ ď.you only run 10k on the track.Ē

It was eventually reduced to 10k (for the 1991 and subsequent ones) by amending the start and finish. The event (both 7m & 10k) was always run over 3-laps around the Park Langley area of Beckenham. I took over the organisation for the next seven years and we built the event up to become one of the most popular events in the whole of the London and south east area; It was always self-financing having a working budget of over £1,000, even in the '70s & 80s.

This was funded, in the main, by an eight-page programme listing the competitors and carrying advertising which was duly sponsored, mostly by club members. Each year it got bigger and bigger until the final event I was involved when we had over 400 finishers, all athletes, all members of affiliated clubs - no joggers or unattached were runners allowed...

But by that time it was getting too big for one person, so it was time to move it on to a new team. When I did pass it on I suggested that, due to the large numbers, we had: why not separate races for men (3 laps), Women (2 laps), Veterans (2 laps), youngsters (1 lap). A whole day of racing, using the same course. Wasn't to be, I'm afraid. But after 42 years, including a change of venue and terain, it is still going strong, albeit not this year due to Covid-19.

We only have full results on here from 2001, and photos from around 2005, sorry. Right from the beginning the results were computerised and published on the day. I'm sure I have back up files somewhere on mini/floppy disks but no means of reading them.

Mike Peel

PS: Mike Martineau has just reminded me that it was It was Mike Williams (the then Road Race Sec) who made the proposal to committee to change from 7 miles to 10k and he asked MM to second that motion which he did. Mike M says " Three of us ran it for a bit, Steve Freemantle, Bill Clapham and myself. Canít remember the years and for how long. Steve dropped out when he moved away leaving Bill and myself. Then Bill dropped out and I ran it on my own until Richard Coles took over. Andy Tucker took over from him and now Dave Beadle runs it."


An informative message from the Hon: William Wade - 26-05-2020

 

Iím a remote member of Blackheath, living in the Yorkshire Dales, but from time to time I have a look at the B&B Club website.

Recently I found an article on the web page about the Ted Pepper Memorial Road Race, which was established in 1979 - the year after Tedís tragedy during the Three Peaks Fell Race. I have not forgotten that very sad occasion in April 1978. The Three Peaks Race has been a part of my life for nearly 60 years. I took part in most years between 1962 and 2013, and since 1996 I have been on the organising committee (I returned to live in my home county of Yorkshire in 1983).

I donít remember exactly how it was agreed that a Blackheath team should take part in the race that year. Alan Davis had come with me to Ribblesdale in the mid-1970s; in 1978 it was decided to send a team which included four other club members: Ted, Ian Young, Brian Swift and Stuart Knowles. After the event I felt that if I had not been a regular participant in the race the tragedy might not have happened.

On the Saturday before the race we all stayed at a cottage in Dentdale which belonged to the family of Steve James Ė a very good northern runner who had known Alan at university. Ian and Ted arrived quite late on the Saturday evening having been involved with the National Road Relay which often took place during the same weekend. In those days the race was held on a Sunday (it became a Saturday race in 2008). It was fortunate that the Monday following the accident was a Bank Holiday and we had not planned to return to London until then.

Conditions in Ribblesdale in late April can vary enormously, from heatwave to snowfall. In 1978 it was a miserable day with low cloud shrouding the hills and accompanied by a strong cold wind with steady drizzle. These are circumstances when even a well-clad runner can be affected by the conditions especially when fatigued in the later stages of the race. Much of the race is on tracks but there is a difficult section on the summit of the final peak, Ingleborough. The summit check-point is on a large flat stony plateau. Runners have cross this for about 400m to reach the summit and then run back on the same route until reaching the path which descends east (and leads onwards to the finish at Horton-in-Ribblesdale). Runners can often make an error here in cloudy conditions and in recent years this section has been taped (one of my duties as a marshal since my last run in the race). Turning off the summit too soon takes runners into a huge featureless moorland area which is especially difficult to navigate in poor weather.

In the 1970s there were fewer fell races than now and not so well organised. (The Fell Runners Association was not formed until 1970). However, the race did have experienced officials and safety rules were in place which were as good as in other similar events at that time. Following the accident some stricter rules and safety measures were introduced and the Three Peaks race programme continues to include a reminder of the sad day in 1978. Since the 1970s the race has grown in size and now has an entry limit of 1000. It is mostly flagged and taped (and GPS is allowed). This year the race has been postponed to a date in late September but at present there is no certainty that it can take place then.

My running has not stopped but is now mostly limited to parkruns. Iíll be hoping to run one when I enter the over-80 category in a yearís time (assuming that the runs have restarted by then). The present situation is tedious, as it must be for all of us, but we are lucky here in having open countryside on our doorstep and shops nearby for provisions. It must be a somewhat difficult time for the club too, with changes in HQ getting under way. I hope that all goes well with those arrangements.

With best wishes

Bill Wade

PS. Iím not sure who will receive this message, but there may be some members who will have memories of 40 years ago. Iím glad to know that the ďSevenĒ (now 10K) continues, even if not this year.

 


 

And Ian Wilson remembers... 30-05-2020

Having read the piece by Bill Wade on Ted Pepper I remembered a bit of back ground to that tragic weekend that may not be widely known.

I was Winter Captain that season and finishing off the season and had selected the National 12 stage RR team, which Ted was selected for. This was on the Saturday and the Three Peaks was the next day. During the week Ted was saying that he might not run either as he had a "cold". He did run, the second leg, finishing 8th on his leg, fastest BH runner on the day, beating the likes of Ian Young, Julian Spooner, Tim Souter, Andy Frankish and Peter Horwood! I think it was his fastest ever time on the leg. After the relay Ted drove up north, with Ian
Young, I think, to do the Three Peaks race the next day with other BH members.

Pauline, Mark, Ben and me drove to stay with our friends Richard & Ann in Worcester for the night. We returned to Hildenborough on Sunday evening in terrible weather. The weather had been terrible the whole weekend. We heard on the car radio on our way home that some runners in the Three Peaks race were missing but we had no idea who. It was not until the next day, when Ian Young phoned me at work to tell me the sad news and what had happened. A weekend I will never forget.

Ian Wilson PP

 


 

The report from the inquest in the Bradford Telegraph and Argus - 23 May 1978

Thanks to Chris Haines we now have a few more results:

Report on the 7 May 1979 event and the Programme

Report on the 6 May 1985 event

Some history on the Three Peaks Race


2011


2010


2009


2008


2007


2006


2005 - 1st Man & 1st Lady - Mark & Gemma both B&BHAC!



THE EDWARD PEPPER MEMORIAL TROPHY
1979 B J WATSON 34.06
1980 P GADEN 33.55
1981 K PENNY 33.40
1982 B FORD 33.10
1983 K PENNY 34.01
1984 G PAYNE 33.37
1985 K PENNY 33.30
1986 I LAMPLOUGH 34.19
1987 K PENNY 34.05
1988 J WIGLEY 34.11
1989 C PAYNE 33.52
1990 N GATES 34.25
Course changed to 10k for 1991
1991 P BETTERIDGE  30.52
1992 D L SMITH 31.17
1993 C J ANDREWS 32.48
1994 R D SMITH 32.45
1995 M R STEINLE 30.37
1996 A KOIKAI 31.05
1997 D RATHBONE 32.04
1998 J A MOORES 31.47
1999 S McDONALD 31.49
2000 S A MAJOR 32.19
 2001 S McDONALD 33.53
2002 D GIRBEDDE 31:17
2003 R SMITH 33:43
2004 B STEPHENSON 31:39
2005 M STEINLE 31:36
2006 M STEINLE 31:02
2007 P TUCKER 32:42
2008 P ANTHONY 32:52
2009 M CLAYTON 35:14
2010 C MINNS 33:53
2011 M STEINLE 33:26
New off-road Course for 2012
2012 I FRITH 35:56
2013 A RAYNER 34:32
2014 R LECCIA 35:15
2015 P TUCKER 35:28
2016 R GODDARD 35:23
2017 R BRADEN 34:33
2018 R VILARDELL 35:35
2019 A BOND 34:10
2020 CANCELLED  
2021 P Baksh 32:07
Presented by Collingwood, Conduit St. Limited. 

(Engraved on base of trophy)

Thanks to Chris Haines we now have a few more results:

1979

 

1980

 

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The following is the OBITUARY that appeared in the Blackheath Harriers Gazette and Club Record number 595, dated Mar/Oct 1978.

E. M. H. PEPPER

It is always with a sense of shock that we hear of the death of a young man. It was with a deeper sense of shock that we heard of the death of Ted Pepper during an athletic event. The Three Peaks race is a demanding feat of endurance. It was during this race, in April 1978, that Ted lost his way and was not discovered until the next day.

Ted joined the club in 1961 as an eighteen year old. His performances improved both on the track and over the country and he was well regarded by a succession of captains as a loyal and reliable club member. His attention turned latterly to longer distances on the road and he represented the club in the National Road Relay Championships. He also became one of the small band of Harriers who have been attracted to the rigours of fell-running.

Ted's contribution to the administration of the club was in his professional field of accountancy. He became a Chartered Accountant and was the Club's auditor. He did not interpret this role in any narrow sense and was always ready with financial advice either to individual club officials or, as will he remembered by so many, to the club as a whole at a number of Annual General Meetings.

We have lost a friend. To Ted's wife and young family we offer our deepest sympathy.

The report from the inquest in the Bradford Telegraph and Argus - 23 May 1978

 

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