Parkrun and Junior Parkrun
Parkrun is a free, weekly community event which welcomes everyone to either walk, jog, or run in their local park or open space. It’s a positive, welcoming, and inclusive experience where there is no time limit, and no one finishes last.
Rochford parkrun is a community focused activity and holds 5km adult runs on a Saturday morning and 2km junior parkruns for children aged 4-14 on Sunday mornings. The first parkrun set up in Rochford, was held in Hockley Woods, and the Hawkwell Junior parkrun followed providing an opportunity for children to participate.
The Hockley Woods parkrun was set up to encourage local residents to come together, get active and meet new people within their community. It was also designed to inspire families to be active together and spend time outside in the fresh air to improve physical health and mental wellbeing. At their own pace, the route took participants through picturesque woodland and due to it’s friendly, relaxed and supportive atmosphere, the event has since grown in popularity.
Active Essex supported the growth of parkrun in Rochford by providing Active Network funding to launch the junior parkrun. Working and promoting junior parkrun with schools has meant that the participation levels with The Daily Mile has significantly increased. During covid 19, many schools focused their physical activity and PE offer on personal challenges. Walking, running and jogging were great options, as it suited all abilities, adhered to social distancing guidelines and no equipment was needed.
The project is now able to run independently through the support of a dedicated team of volunteers, who are essential to the sustainability of the events.