Archive for March, 2006|Monthly archive page

Sicklesmere and Rushbrooke via Hawkers Lane Suffolk

In Uncategorized on March 31, 2006 at 10:41 am

8.45 am 9.5 miles in 1 hour 19 minutes 03 seconds

Week to date mileage 23

Month to date mileage 144

Average weekly rate 31.2

Average Monthly rate 135

Weather Sunny dry and mild

A wonderful circular run today. I set out from home in Bury St Edmunds and headed through the water meadows along Cullum Road and out along the pathway which runs beside the A134. This is the busiest section of this run and is a bit noisy but just turn up your MP3 player and it all fades away. I did as I listened to the Ramones, Jimmy Eat World, The Undertones and Cyndi Lauper.

The run becomes much more fun when you reach the Rushbrooke Arms in Sicklesmere. I am told this pub used to be called the Sicklesmere Wagon and this surely is a more appropriate name being as this pub is clearly in Sicklesmere and not Rushbrooke. Strange there must be some history as to when and why it changed its name any one know the storey?

The rights of way passes through the back of the beer garden and heads up hill from 41 metres to 75 metres above sea level which is a fair climb for these parts. Up Hawkers Lane there is a lovely view from here of Bury and Sicklesmere and once again another new view of the Cathedral and the Sugar Beet factory.

Anyone know the significance of the name for this lane? The history of hawkers dates back hundreds of years and seems to have had a very negative conatation at one time as being loose and idle people who sell illicit books. The OED defines the hawker as one who “goes from place to place selling goods, or who cries them in the street.” So, the word goes back either to the sound of the person (he sounds like a hawk) or, more likely, the fact that such a person was always concentrating on his prey, like a hawk. Another associated word seems to be cadge these were people who were even lower than a hawker as they apparently impersonated hawkers.

Hawkers was a word also loosely used to describe gypsies or travellers. Many of the hawkers were religous outcasts – catholics or jews that arrived in England from Holland,Germany, Spain and Portugal.

Many hawkers would call out their wares for sale as they approached a village. The earliest mention of London Cries is recorded by the one and only John Lydgate one of our local monks and a prolific writer in the monastery in Bury St Edmunds. London Lackpenny a hawkers verse dates from the 15th century. There is a good site with a history of london cries which includes many a hawkers song. A couple of examples

Rabbit seller

Rabbit ! a Rabbit ! who will buy ?
Is all you hear from him ;
The rabbit you may roast or fry,
The fur your cloak will trim.

Your coppers, kettles, pots, and stew pans,
Tho’ old, shall serve instead of new pans.
I’m very moderate in my charge,
For mending small as well as large.

After the wood you follow a grassy path through to Home Farm at Rushbrooke and here the path turns sharp left to Hall Farm and the run here is along an old concrete path through to North Hill Cottage.

I continued along Rushbrooke Lane and back into Bury. A very enjoyable circular run.

Pakenham Suffolk

In Uncategorized on March 29, 2006 at 11:46 am

9.15 am 7.5 miles in 1 hour.

Week to date mileage 13

Month to date mileage 134

Average weekly rate 31.1

Average Monthly rate 135

Weather Sunny dry and mild

I drove out to the village of Pakenham which is about 5 miles North east of Bury St Edmunds. I parked in the main road outside The Fox and set of following the signs towards the Windmill. On the way along the Fen Road I took a detour and followed a footpath towards Maulkins Hall though I soon did a u -turn as it looked private. It wasn’t just that anyone walking this way might assume this because of the amount of keep out and private signs.

Back on the Fen Road I turned along the Broadway and on to Thieves lane which leads to Pakenham Windmill. The windmill was built in the 1830’s and is 80 feet tall. It is brick built and apparently the sails still turn but I don’t think it is used to ground flour anymore. It was extensively restored in the 1950’s.

Nearby runs the River Blackbourne and this must be the reason for the official transport sign warning of frogs! It looks like the locals have also taken to writing warnings on the road. As I ran down the road I was extra careful to look at for any frogs in case of treading on them but I didn’t see any.

After the Windmall I turned along a lovely straight roman road which returned me to Pakenham Upper Town. From here I ran back to St Marys Church. Here I picked up a good pathway which took me out to Pakenham Woods. There are alot of good pathways here and thisis a place to return another time to continue on these pathways.

Pakenham really is a beautiful village and is unique in Britain as it holds a claim as being a village with 2 mills. This time I visited the windmill next time I must head for the watermill and may be I will see some of the frogs.

Horringer School /Hospital /Cullum rd Newmarket rd

In Uncategorized on March 27, 2006 at 6:04 pm

5.15 pm 5.4 miles in 42 minutes 41 seconds.

Week to date mileage 5.4

Month to date mileage 126

Average weekly rate 31.2

Average Monthly rate 136

Weather Windy and spittin of run

A recovery run tonight after yesterdays race. Combined with the even stronger winds I did feel somewhat jaded and I ran fairly ok but I could still feel yesterdays race in my legs. The great thing is that know we are on British Summer Time it was light.After running in the dark, pretty much since October in the week day evenings this is wonderful.

I have inluded some more pictures of the Joe Cox Stowmarket 10. I should also mention that Nick Huggins of St Edmunds Pacers shown in yesterdays picture had a really good race. Considering his recent back problems which has meant regular training has been more difficult his time of 1 hour 36 minutes 23 seconds was an achievement. Well done Nick – yes I did catch you on camera after all!

I will add more photos in time to my flickr site and also to my Stickam site.

I also took a couple of very short videos in the sports hall afterwards. very short and totally meaningless but if you were there you may just see yourself have a look at my Stickam site on the left hand side.

Joe Cox Stowmarket 10

In Uncategorized on March 26, 2006 at 6:55 pm

11am 10 miles in 1 hour 17 minutes 27 seconds.

Week to date mileage 27

Month to date mileage 121

Average weekly rate 31.1

Average Monthly rate 135

Weather: Spring at last mild sunny and breezy.

Today I took part in the Joe Cox Stowmarket 10. The clocks went forward an hour over night leading to an hours less sleep. There were no problems this year parking at the Sports Centre. I went early to avoid any problems and to register on the day.

The sports centre at Stowmarket is a great venue and it does provide a safe haven for spectators to get indoors and get some refreshments. There is always a great range of cakes and drinks at give away prices.The turnout seemed quite low at about 150 but it was also Mothering Sunday.

The fun runs kicked off before hand and there were a good range of events for the younger age groups to take part in and this is always good to see.

My aim today was to beat my previous time for this course set 2 years ago when I ran 1 hour 20 minutes 26 seconds when there 139 finishers.

As per usual I set of a bit too fast encouraged by a slightly down hill section at the beginning. I reached the 1st mile in 7.15 . The first village you go through is Onehouse and then very quickly you are into Harleston. I had slowed a bit by then and arrived at the 2 mile marker in 14.57 (7.42 for the 2nd mile) . Soon after this you go past Harleston Hall and then on to some footpaths.

For the first few miles I ran in sight of 2 other St Edmunds Pacers Roger Brand and Stephen Whitaker. I soon lost sight of Roger who disappeared ahead a bit too quick for me. I ran most of the rest of the race with Stephen or at least I had him in sight. My 3rd mile went well in 7.34 and so did the 4th which turned out to be my best of the race in 7.26. About here near Haughley you go over a small bridge over the A14 and then there is a climb past Haughley Park which turned out to be my slowest mile of the race in 8.29. It was at this point I actually took over the lead from Stephen but as soon as we turned into the wind at about 6 miles I wasn’t able to catch him again.

Mile 6 was run in 8 minutes and I then begun to feel better again as we turned to run more easterly and so avoid the worst of the head wind. Mile 7 was completed in 7.38 and it was somewhere near here at Shelland that the road became blocked by 2 horses. The road was fairly narrow and one of the horses started to buck and kick and a small group of runners came to a compleat halt. Eventually they managed to get round on the grass embankment besides the road which I did too but it could have been quite nasty as the rider didn’t seem to be able to control the horse which apparently was upset by the runners.

I had another slow mile between 7-8 recording 8.03 but then you arrive back at Harleston and you are back on to the same stretch of the road run at the beginning of the race. Here everyone seemed to speed up and my mile 9 was a 7.35 followed by a 7.41 to the finish.

My finishing time of 1 hour 17 minutes and 27 seconds was nearly 3 minutes better than the time I recorded 2 years ago so that has got to be good.

Once again Stowmarket Striders put on a very well organised event. It really is first class and I would urge anyone reading this who is local to support this race in the future and give it a go. All the marshalls were smiley and had a word of support and encouragement.

There were 149 finishers at todays race with Newmarket Joggers winning the team race. This is a bit down on last year when 168 completed the course

Horringer Farm Circular Run

In Uncategorized on March 23, 2006 at 7:53 pm

4.15pm 5.5 miles in 44 minutes.

Week to date mileage 17

Month to date mileage 111

Average weekly rate 31.4

Average Monthly rate 136

Weather: sunny and breezy

I was tired today after the track session last night and I had to push myself to venture out on my last run before the Stowmarket 10 on Sunday. The weather was wonderful and sunny although a strong breeze had picked up. Today I saw a metal detectorist out on the fields. Every so often he bent down with a trowel to investigate some find.

The other unusual storey to tell is of the rotary washing line which has appeared in the field with the remains of what appears to be an old army jacket. Of course this could be something of a bird scarer but I doubt it somehow and if it is it is something of a poor effort.

West Suffolk Athletics Track Bury St Edmunds

In Uncategorized on March 22, 2006 at 8:55 pm

6.30pm 6 miles in 46 minutes 38 seconds.

Week to date mileage 11

Month to date mileage 105

Average weekly rate 31.3

Average Monthly rate 136

Weather: cold and dry

My first visit to the track this month and I felt a bit rusty on the quick intervals. Tonights session consisted of 2 sets of 3 x 4 minute intervals with a 600 metre interval at the end of each set. The 4 minute intervals were supposed to be run at 10km pace and the 600 metres at a quicker 5km pace.

I was fairly consistant with the distance I covered which was around 900 metres for the 4 minute sets. I ran the 600 metres in 2.28 and 2.30

Cullum Road/Ramada Hotel and Newmarket Rd Bury St Edmunds

In Uncategorized on March 21, 2006 at 9:06 pm

5.40pm 5.4 miles in 40 minutes 35 seconds.

Week to date mileage 5.4

Month to date mileage 99

Average weekly rate 31.2

Average Monthly rate 136

Weather: cold and dry

I again ran really well tonight and without seemingly putting in any more effort I ran about a minute quicker than my previous quicker time. I just hope running well in training isn’t wasted when I race the Joe Cox Stowmarket 10 on Sunday. I have run this event before back in 2004 in 1 hour 20 minutes 26 seconds so that is my target to beat.

Tonight out training I saw 5 women running in small groups of ones and twos but no men. I have to say I have noticed that increasingly if you see runners it tends now to be more likely that it will be women. This is great and I wonder what has been the spark that has encouraged this? I know the local Race for Life races must have had a good effect encouraging the take up of the sport. Nearly half a million women have now taken part in these events and they are well on there way to achieving their target of thre quarters of a million participants.

So popular is the Race for Life event in Bury St Edmunds on the 25th of June 2006 that they know have two races. The first one at 11am is already full but there is a second race at 2.30pm. This isn’t unusual for the Race for Life Events they are normally filled to total capacity and then they are turning people away. How many running events apart from the major races such as the London Marathon can say that? This year already events at Cambridge, Colchester Lincoln and Norwich are already fully booked this summer. This is great and perhaps some lessons to be learned from their success for other more traditional road races? Is it simply successful because it is a great cause, it is a short distance or because it is an all women event??

My recent times over this course have been :

7 Mar 41.31
3 Mar 41.34
21 Feb 41.35
27 Jan 41.56
13 Jan 41.30
2 Jan 42.42
23 Dec 43.34
9 Dec 42.0
6 Dec 42.04
29 Nov 42.17

Elmswell to Norton Suffolk

In Uncategorized on March 19, 2006 at 3:23 pm

8.15am 8.6 miles in 1 hour 10 minutes.

Week to date mileage 33

Month to date mileage 94

Average weekly rate 31.5

Average Monthly rate 137

Weather: cold and dry

For todays run I drove out to the village of Elmswell which is about 8 miles east of Bury St Edmunds on the A14 towards Stowmarket and Ipswich. I parked close to Hawk End and set of for a run quickly picking up a footpath which immeadiately took me to the railway line. I ran past Elmswell Hall on the Parnell Lane.

I went under a bridge to cross the railway line and then headed across fields which took me on a twisting path out to Norton Hall and into the village of Norton.

As a run I will remember it most for the amount of dogs that I saw and heard barking everytime I disturbed the peace by approaching a house or farm. The other main memory was getting a little too close to a wood known I think as the grove near Norton Hall where the farmer was blasting away at phesants.

Elmswell has plenty of well marked footpaths and must be a good place to be based if you are a runner. The village itself is now quite sizeable and could be classed I suppose as a small town. The big news in Elmswell this week has been the announcement of the closure of the local bacon factory which is affecting around 400 jobs. That is a major loss of employment for Elmswell and it will have a big effect on the local economy.

Bury 10 February 2006

In Uncategorized on March 18, 2006 at 5:23 pm

Have a look at my Stickam site (down on the left hand column) for a short video of the Bury 10 from Nowton Park back in February. It isn’t very good but shows the winner finishing in the bright winter sunshine.

Stickam looks to be a good multimedia tool for bloggers. It gives me another opportunity to loads some photos. You can also load MP3’s

Fornham Circular Run Suffolk

In Uncategorized on March 18, 2006 at 2:31 pm

10am 7.5 miles in 56 minutes 51 seconds.

Week to date mileage 24

Month to date mileage 85

Average weekly rate 31.1

Average Monthly rate 135

Weather: cold and dry

The course – head out of Bury on the Beetons Way past Tollgate and through the village of Fornham St Martin.
Return to Bury through Fornham All Saints along the A11101 Mildenhall Road , back to Tollgate and return up Beetons Way hill and home.

11 Feb 06 59.25
14 Jan 06 60.05


17 Dec 59.29
29 Oct 59.52
3 Oct 60.19
11 Sep 60.14
28 Aug 57.42
19 Aug 59.36
22 Jul 58.24
10 Jul 59.48
1 Jul 59.42
23 Jun 64.0
18 Jun 62.18
23 May 59.38
5 Apr 62.41
1 Apr 60.26
19 Mar 59.0
12 Mar 60.43
5 Mar 62.16
26 Feb 62.16
6 Feb 61 .23
28 Jan 61.02
16 Jan 61.14

Well what happened today? I doubt my watch could have been working properly as my time was my best ever for this course by nearly a minute and 2 minutes quicker than most of my previous times. Oh well I have felt good in myself with my running over the last week or so I feel as if I am breathing well and I am on my toes. However I may well have peaked when the Stowmarket 10 is not to next week.