HEAVY rain failed to stop a record number of runners lining up for the Essity Prudhoe Miner’s Race on Sunday.

No fewer than 450 competitors took part in the event’s three races, with people of all ages taking to the town’s streets. 

“It was a wet day, but it enabled us all to show our human spirit,” said race director Holly Kelleher.

“We passed the weather test with flying colours because there was a wonderful atmosphere on the day. Now we are all hoping for better weather next year because I think we all deserve a bit of sunshine.”

The Prudhoe Plodders, the local running group founded by Holly, organised this year’s event with the backing of Prudhoe Town Council and the town’s Essity paper mill.

A dedicated team of volunteers planned a new route, which took in various local landmarks, including Prudhoe Castle. It also missed out a notorious steep hill to make the run more inclusive.

The circular route started and finished at Eastwoods Park, and also included a series of road closures.
Holly explained: “The route for the Prudhoe Miners’ Race has changed over the years. Possibly too much. People come back to a run because they like it, and to try and set a new personal best (PB). 

“You can’t set a new PB if the route has changed, so now we have this route, we want to keep it. I know road closures aren’t ideal, but it’s only for an hour. This event brought people into Prudhoe from far and wide, and it brought the community together. 

“I really want to thank everyone who played their part, from runners and volunteers, to the spectators who came out to cheer on the participants. 

“We had a record number of entries and there is potential to increase that number next year.”
Liam Taylor, of Sunderland Harriers ,was the winner of the five-mile men’s race, with a time of 27:36.

David Warren, of Stocksfield Striders, was 10th with a time of 32:46, while Prudhoe Plodders’ James Furniss was 12th in 33:42. 

In the women’s race, Claire Davies was the winner with a time of 34:08. Austin Gibson was the winner in the mini 1.5-mile race, with a time of 5:26. Second and third places went to Prudhoe Plodders’ Luke Page (5:39), and Jack Gemmell (5:40). Grace Carter, of Durham City Harriers, won the female mini 1.5m race, with a time of (5:29). Phoebe Mulligan continued a great day for Prudhoe Plodders, securing second place with a time of (05:49). Tynedale Harrier Harry Courtney was second in the 3k junior race with a time of (9:41). Prudhoe Plodders’ Matthew Saunders (11:04) was fourth.