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Archive for the ‘River Lark’ Category

Rver Lark from Fornham All Saints to Culford ,Fornham St Martin and Bury St Edmunds Town Centre

In Culford, Fornham Saint Martin, Golf, Hengrave, Johnny Morris, River Lark, Tales from the Riverbank, Tarka the Otter, Tiger Woods, Wind in the Willows on September 9, 2007 at 9:35 am

7.50am 10.5 miles in 1 hr 28 mins 30 seconds
Week to date mileage 35 miles
Month to date mileage 53
Average weekly rate 30.1 miles
Average monthly rate 131
Year to date 1091
Lifetime 10684

This run really begins for me when I pick up the footpath sign along the Mildenhall Road near the old malting’s building. This takes you down to the River lark and a chance of a river bank run.

This is also the point where funding and seemingly will power ran out for the expensive project to develop the lark for larger boats to ferry large cargoes by river navigation. It succeeded from Mildenhall up to this point in Bury St Edmunds but funding and the coming of the railway ended this ambitious project.

When you reach the banks of the river following the course of the river takes you through the Suffolk Golf and Country Club.

You always have to keep one eye on a potential golf ball hitting you but running between the large weeping willow this is a lovely spot. However the peace and tranquility of the river bank only really comes after crossing over the road at Fornham All Saints and resuming the River Bank run. Here you lose the golfers in there Armani sweaters approved by Tiger Woods and the focus is on the river bank. One explanation for the name Golf is that it is really an abbreviation for Gentlemen Only Ladies Forbidden. Not sure if I believe that.

I soon disturbed a heron which flew up from the river and rested in a tree. Thoughts of Tarka the Otter ,Wind in the Willows and Tales from the Riverbank spring to mind. There are some great videos on You tube of Hammy the Hamster , Roderick the rat narrated by Johnny Morris a wonderful black and white series.

Onwards the river bank run takes you through to Culford and Hengrave. I chose to run into Culford before returning to Bury along the busy B1106 Thetford Road into Fornham St Martin and to extend the run I ran into Bury Town Centre before returning home .

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River Lark Bury St Edmunds Suffolk

In Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds, River Lark, suffolk on August 19, 2007 at 6:08 pm

9am 6.4 miles in 53 mins 10 secs
Week to date mileage 36 miles
Month to date mileage 91

Average weekly rate 30.2 miles
Average monthly rate 131
Year to date 997
Lifetime 10590

I decided on a run around the town centre of Bury St Edmunds. There is always so much to see and after a good week’s mileage this was easy work.

My run took me around the Abbey Gardens, I like the height added by the gardener to some of the flower borders. In the early part of the last century when entrance to the Botanical gardens was chargeable I imagine the gardens were more like Kew and some of the photographs give an impression of a jungle with lots of tall plants.

Over the bridge over the River Lark I ran two laps of the circular walk which takes you around No Mans meadow and the Haberden Rugby Club.

Many years ago I worked at the Haberden Service station before self service pumps were in operation. I believe 4 gallons were £5 and folks did ask for a fill up, a fiver’s worth or so many gallons. The pumps didn’t operate then in litres. I was still at school so this must have been around 1977/78.I can recall my hours on a Sunday were 9am to 7pm on my own with no official break though it could be quiet at times.

Culford Suffolk

In bridge, Cricket, Culford, Culford School, Marquis of Cornwallis, River Lark, sign, suffolk, village on June 24, 2007 at 6:12 pm


1pm 5 miles in 40 mins

Week to date mileage 31 miles

Month to date mileage 119

Average weekly rate 30 miles

Average monthly rate 130

Year to date 750

Lifetime 10343

Parked just off the main street in Culford which is now well known for its public preparatory school in the grounds of the former home of the Marquis of Cornwallis. Cornwallis being the Commander who surrendered British forces at York Town in the war of independence

I immediately set off into the grounds of the school past St Mary’s Church.

I stopped briefly at the back of Culford Hall before following a path named the David Anderson Way which led through some trees to the back of Culford Hall.
I continued past the lovely cricket ground and down to the River Lark and another visit to the Cornwallis Bridge.

Actually I am not sure what it is called but I have read that this was built under Cornwallis direction using an old cannon from a battle in India when he was the Governor General.


Back round past the front of the hall and then along the main road in Culford for another 20 minutes.

Fornham Circular Run Suffolk

In Fornham All Saints, Fornham Saint Martin, Fornham St Genevieve, Lark Valley Path, River Lark on January 14, 2006 at 11:17 am


8.15am 7.5 miles in 1 hour 5 seconds

Week to Date mileage 18

Month to date mileage 62

Average Monthly rate 135

Weather: Dry cool.

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.

A bit slow this morning but I didn’t set out to blow it hard and couldn’t have any way.

The 2 pictures show a typical Suffolk Pink Thatched house and the River Lark. You can follow a path nearby that takes you on the Lark Valley Path also

known as St Edmunds Way. The pathway takes you 13 miles over to Mildenhall .

My times over the Fornham course over the last year have been as follows

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

So a pretty average performance today some way of my best back in August when I did a 57.42. How did I do that ? Then again how did I run a 64.o back in June thats over a 6 minute difference between my best and worst getting on for nearly a minute a mile difference.

River Lark & Water Meadow Bury St Edmunds Suffolk

In Bury St Edmunds, Marvel, No Man's Meadow, River Lark, Spiderman, spiders, The Ramones, Water Meadows on October 16, 2005 at 2:21 pm


9.am 5.7 miles in 48min 16 secs.

Year to date mileage 1034

Month to date 83 miles

Average miles per month 109

Average weekly rate 25

Weather: A warm autumn day.

Course: A short run this morning through the Water Meadows, No Mans Meadows and by the River Lark.

Felt a bit sluggish this morning and I ran slowly, so slowly that I managed to run into a spiders web. There seemed to be an abundance of spiders webs hanging from bushes and trees,shining wet with morning dew.

I know many people are scared of spiders but it is said that without them we wouldn’t be able to go outdoors so easily in the summer months as they keep down the number of flies, wasps, mosquitoes and gnats.

All spiders have venom glands but very few are poisonous and most cannot penetrate the skin. In Suffolk there are apparently over 400 types of spiders most of them are very small and hard to identify.

A spider that has excited naturalists in Suffolk is the fairly recent arrival of the wasp spider. Previously confined to the South Coast they are now spreading North and appear to be here to stay. If you spot one it is worth informing the Suffolk Naturalists Society.

Talking of spiders I have enjoyed both the first 2 spiderman films. I was always a reader of the Marvel Comics and still have a stack of these in the loft. The art work from Stan Lee and Steve Ditko was also impressive.Stan Lee was born in New York in 1922 and is now 83 years old.

An ideal music soundtrack to go with Spiderman 3 would be any of the Ramones Albums. I understand Spiderman comes up against the Sandman and it is released in May 2007

Moreton Hall Circular Run Suffolk

In barnack stone, Moreton Hall, Peterborough, River Lark, suffolk on September 30, 2005 at 7:27 pm

5.30pm 7.6 miles in 1hr 2 mins.

Year to date mileage 950

Month to date 141 miles

Average miles per month 106

Average weekly rate 24.4

Weather: Heavy rain showers

Course: Set of through the Town Centre along Cullum Rd and the Water Meadows. Along by the River Lark and No Mans Meadow then over the A14 bridge. I did a circuit around Moreton Hall before returning home via the Town Centre.

When looking at the low level of the River Lark in Bury St Edmunds you would hardly believe it was once navigable, however the barnack stone used to build the Abbey was transported up this river. The Barnack Hills are near Peterborough and the original medieval quarry is now a nature reserve.

September has been my second most successful month of the year for mileage

Jan 127 No of Runs 19
Feb 45 No of Runs 7
Mar 94 No of Runs 14
Apr 97 No of Runs 15
May 84 No of Runs 12
Jun 89 No of Runs 13
Jul 145 No of Runs 21
Aug 130 No of Runs 18
Sep 141 No of Runs 20

Total Runs for the year 139 out of 273 days which of course is a run every 2 days approximately.

My average distance that I run is 6.83 miles.

Favourite Beer!

In Abbot Ale, beer, Greene King, River Lark, Water Meadows on September 19, 2005 at 6:41 pm

River Lark and Water Meadows Run

6pm 7.2 miles in 56.42 Year to date mileage 912

Month to date 106 miles Average miles per month 106

Average weekly rate 24.4

Weather bright and sunny.

Course:Head out through the water meadows and then turn left at Bury Rugby Club . Follow the path through No Mans Meadow which is at the back of the Abbey Gardens returning to Southgate Bridge and then returning over the meadows for a 2nd lap.

Return home up Southgate Street past the Police Station and through the Abbey Gardens graveyard then through town centre and home.Ran this course in a new pb time.

I was generally running this course in 1 hour back in June so I may have improved a little though it was warmer of course.

One of the great things about living in Bury is the smells of the Town. I suppose it brings back memories from childhood. Today they were definitely brewing at Greene King and the lovely malty smell of what I imagined to be Abbot Ale floated on the breeze giving all passers by an intoxicating whiff of one of the great beers of this country.

Send me an e-mail and let me know your favourite beer I would have to say my favourites are

Hardwick Trig/Nowton Park/Abbey Gardens Circular Run

In Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds, Hardwick Trig, Jarman Collection, Past and Present Society, River Lark on September 2, 2005 at 11:37 am




10am 8 miles in 1hour 4mins 54 seconds.

Year to date mileage 827.

Month to date 18 miles

Average miles per month 103

Average weekly rate 23.6

Weather: Hot and sunny

Course: Ran out through Hardwick Heath and along Hencote Lane out to Hardwick Trig point. Ran over fields along the Bury to Clare footpath to Brecley Ley House. I then ran into the Abbey Gardens along the River Lark through town centre and home.

The two photos above are of the same building on the corner of Risbygate Street and St Andrews St South. Today it operates as an Estate Agents. From childhood I have always remembered it as being a Grocers. However the black and white photo depicts a time when it was a butchers shop. The display shows very elaborate decorated cuts of meat hanging outside the shop. All the staff seem to be posing for this photo with Mr Clarke who was the owner.

The black and white pictures are from a superb collection of photographs known as the Spanton Jarman Collection. The Bury St Edmunds Past and Present society are working on the restoration and storage of the negatives.

The Abbey Gardens in Bury St Edmunds are well worth a visit if you are ever visiting Suffolk

River Lark & Water Meadows

In Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds, River Lark, Water Meadows on August 29, 2005 at 5:24 pm

8am 7.2 miles in 58.07 mins.
Year to date mileage 802
Month to date 122 miles

Average miles per month 101
Average weekly rate 23.3

Weather bright, sunny and warm.

Course : Head out through the water meadows
and then turn left at Bury Rugby Club . Follow the path through No Mans Meadow which is at the back of the Abbey Gardens returning to Southgate Bridge and then returning over the meadows for a 2nd lap.

Return home up Southgate Street past the Police Station and through the Abbey Gardens graveyard then through town centre and home.

Ran this course in a new pb time.

I saw several runners today seemed to be more than usual perhaps just a combination of the good weather and the bank holiday but maybe there is a a bit of a running boom at the moment. Interest levels seem to be quite high.

15th July River Lark / Abbey Gardens Run

In Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds, River Lark on July 15, 2005 at 6:08 pm



5.30pm 5 miles approx in 43.32. Year to date 591 miles, July mileage 56. Weather hot sunshine. An easy end of the week run for a total of 31 miles this week which is good for me as I am averaging 21 miles a week this year.

Course – head out of centre of Bury on the Cullum Rd through the Water meadows. Run past the Rugby Club and the petrol station then turn left following the circular walk sign. The run now follows the course of the River Lark which runs through the back of the Abbey Gardens. Turn left at ‘the bridge with a thousand memories’ into the park.

Of course the bridge isn’t really called that its just that I have so many memories of it from early childhood. One such memory was when when I was about 8 years old. Two or three of us used to go to the local off-licence and ask the landlady for all of her beer bottle caps. She used to be only to please to get rid of them covered as they were with cigarette ash. We would then take them down to the River Lark in the Abbey Gardens and we would then float them upside down in great armadas along the river. We would then take turns at lobbing small sticks at each others ships in a recreation of the Viking invasion. So when I run over that bridge I know there must be literally hundreds if not thousands of beer bottle caps at the bottom of the river.

My route takes me through the Abbey gardens through the main gateway entrance. Turning right and then left up Northgate Street, up Springfield Road then along Risbygate Street and home.