parkrun UK has announced that the planned restart of its 5k events on June 5 will now be delayed.
The decision affects all parkruns in Cumbria, including the runs in Penrith.
Although more than 250 events do have landowner permission to return – including at Penrith, Barrow, Carlisle, Keswick, Seaton, Workington, Whinlatter Forest and Whitehaven – parkrun has explained that this falls far short of the critical mass needed to prevent overwhelming those that have been given the go-ahead.
With more than three million registered parkrunners across England, and about 300,000 people taking part on a typical weekend, opening a small subset of parkruns is not viable.
parkrun UK will now target June 26 to resume all 5k events across England. A decision will be made regarding the go-ahead for this new date on June 11.
Doug Huggon, joint event director and Penrith parkrun representative said: “Although permission was granted by Eden District Council to use the land in Penrith for the 5k event, the decision by parkrun today unfortunately means we will no longer be able to go ahead on June 5.
“The decision was taken by parkrun in consideration of events across the country, with the organisation not wanting to overwhelm smaller parkruns and risk participants’ safety.ADVERTISEMENT
“Fortunately here in Eden we have had a brilliant level of volunteers that have signed up to help marshal the events, so we’re confident that once we have the go-ahead from parkrun, we can safely enjoy our 5k runs here in Penrith once again.
“It is disappointing and we were very much looking forward to restarting on June 5, but we can appreciate the decision made by parkrun UK made to keep people safe.”
Nick Pearson, parkrun Global CEO said, “We are incredibly grateful to all of the landowners who have granted events permission to return so far and for the groundswell of support for parkrun over recent days.
“Although it is disappointing not to be able to return on June 5, we are still optimistic that we can return parkrun events to nearly 600 communities across England very soon. We will do everything we can to ensure events restart on June 26.”