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All the latest Helsby news on the blogLatest news

All the latest news and other good stuff is on the blog: Get involved! Join us for a club run every Wednesday, 6:30pm at the Helsby Community Sports Club, or Mondays for a quality session at the High School track (summer) or Castle Park (winter).

2016 Essar four villages half marathon

<< 2016 Race Results >> 

17 Jan, 7:55am: gritters have been out and the course driven, we have 2 experienced runners running the course. We have light, wet snow locally which HAS NOT FROZEN. Assume we're on until you hear differently. It will be cold so wear the right shoes and clothing and have a safe journey. If you're traveling please take care. We're doing everything to give you a race.

15 Jan: WEATHER WATCH — like us, you're probably glued to the forecast. Assume the race is on unless you hear otherwise. Remember we have an improved gritter booked and for the first time we have full road closures. The risk from traffic prevented forced us to cancel before. Any updates will be here, twitter and Facebook. Pack your grippy shoes rather than racing flats and prepare yourself for a classic winter race. Wrap up warm!

Entries after 4 Jan are collected up on the day - come and see us through the door on the right of the clubhouse entrance. If you entered earlier and still haven't received your number we should be able to issue a replacement if you come in plenty of time with proof of entry. No entries on the day.

By overwhelming popular demand we remain in January! One less reason to go mad with the mince pies over Christmas. Race date is 17 January 2016, 10:30am start. We're making some significant changes this year to try and avoid being jinxed by the weather and appreciate your continued support. Entries open 1 October via this site and our partners at Fabian. Onwards!

Four Villages race start

<< Go here to read the race page and enter >>

We're making some changes to try to ensure the weather doesn't beat us again. For the first time the entire course will be run on closed roads — one of the key safety reasons we were advised to cancel in last year's poor weather. As you may remember, we asked all 2015 entrants if the race should be moved to later in the year. Around 1,500 entrants responded and over 70% wanted it to remain in January.

Maps and resources

Four Villages Race Booklet - mailed with postal packs [PDF, 899KB]
Car parking help [PDF, 78KB]
2016 course map [PDF, 61KB]
Finish area map [PDF, 171KB]
Club site and start area [PDF, 103KB]

Car sharing

Please help us make this the Greenest Half Marathon around! We love running and racing and meeting up with like-minded folk but also recognise we're contributing in our own small way to congestion and emissions. That's why we're teaming up with a car sharing website developed by a runner to save you money and reduce the carbon footprint. Please EVERYONE try out the site (even if you don't expect to car share). It only takes a minute and is completely free to use. As well as saving petrol money, it will ease the parking headaches for us at the race. Nick, who created the site, is keen to hear your feedback.

Best wishes,

The Helsby Four Villages Half Marathon Team

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Sandstone trail 2016

The 2016 Challenge will be on Saturday 7 May. Entries opened 1 December and we're equally delighted/shocked/disappointed that runner's places went in half a day - sorry! Still plenty of walkers place (but please don't enter as a walker intending to run). << Go here to read more and enter >>

The 2015 results are now up. There's a Race Director's short report about the event here with a few photos. There are more photos on the web, There are some blogs and photos up on the Delamere Spartans website too. Steve Roberts' blog - he had a hard time of it and didn't finish, but we hope he'll be back for another go next year. Nick Wishart's blog - Nick finished 5th this year. John Kleiser took some photos and a short video as well. More here.

From the archives...

2014 half marathon

Thanks all for coming! Thanks to all our racers, runners, joggers, supporters and organisers (sorry if you had to wait for your bag at the end!). Thanks for generally sharing a great day with us!

<< 2014 race results >>

Loads of photos of the day up on our flickr site. Don't forget to check Mick Hall's official race photo site too!

You can use these 2014 instructions for general information — there will be some updates for 2015. Entry details.

Download the 2014 race booklet [PDF, 579KB] with updated map for the 2012 minor route change at Dunham-on-the-hill.

Full 2014 parking instructions [PDF, 733KB] with updated map and parking instructions.

Essar four villages half marathon 2013 — the race that wasn't

Halton Haven charity runFor the first time in our 32 year history we had to cancel our January Half Marathon because of treacherous snow and ice conditions. Many of our suppliers were incredibly generous in waiving their fees with just 24 hours notice of the cancellation, for which we thank them. Just as significant though were the individual small acts of kindness of our runners who chose to donate their refunds to charity.

Particular mention to our headline sponsor Essar, for their continued support for the race that never was — great to rely on them in these changing times.

Read more about the massive £20,000 our runners donated and the 'Hospice Half' where we delivered the cheque >>

Pictures from the course of the aborted 2013 race on our flickr site.

Sandstone trail challenge 2013

Another great success on 11 May 2013  with 187 walker and runners completing the event between 4h51 and 12h3. More on the 2013 Sandstone Trail Challenge event page with links to the results, race report and event pictures.


2012 was another fabulous event. Thank you all for turning out and walking or running the entire Sandstone Challenge. With a great atmosphere out on the trail — and a lovely supportive atmosphere at the finish — we're lucky to have such high quality entrants. You traversed an entire county and travelled the length of a complete OS 1:50,000 sheet!

Last year we had stunning new male and female records from Duncan Harris and Caroline Hall, but of course it's not all about speed, as our happy walkers will attest. We're keen to keep this inclusive for anyone who can complete this challenging distance over the day and we split the entries evenly between runners and walkers. Full results for 2011 and 2012 on the event pages.

Pictures :: Lots of great pictures from the day: (Larkton Hill) (Delamere Forest)
Thanks to all our photographers for sharing.

2012 half marathon...

Well that was good, wasn't it? Thanks for everyone's kind comments, looks like many of you enjoyed the day despite the wind! There's a race report over onthe blog here.


Video from Mick Hall. Gobuy a photo if you want to support him!

<< 2012 results >> There's also a great drill-down resource on the Power of Ten, where you can compare performances of club runners.

If enjoyed the run and you're local why not join us in training on Mondays and Wednesdays. We're not all fast!

2011 half marathon — round-up

Our race report is on the blog at Please add your comments! Half marathon pages here.

Posing for the Chester Chronicle!

Positive PR :: Other good press is coming in at the Chester Chronicle, Northern Running Guide, Run 247, Runners World and others. More at Rhyl Journal, Liverpool Echo,, Ellesmere Port Pioneer, Halifax Evening Courier, This is Staffordshire. Lee Riley's remarkable world record running with the 40lb pack is covered in the Crewe Chronicle. Personal stories at Cumbrian Runner, Furious Cycling, Beginner Triathlete and a great insight to life at the front of the pack from 3rd place Dave Norman.   Let us know your own stories...

<< 2011 results >>

Photos :: As well as the official Mick Hall photos, photographerSteve Angus was on hand snapping away ...immediately after a Top 100 finish. Nice one! Watch those two sites for photos as they appear and we'll let you know if we hear of any others. Mick Charman also has a nice collection on Flickr.

2010 race

After the uncertainty of the bad weather, this turned out to be another great day for running. If you enjoyed the race, have you thought about joining Helsby Running Club? We're open for all abilities. Race pictures: Mick Hall's 2010 event photos are here. Faster folk on the earlier pages, slower later. 2010 race results

A member of Helsby Community Sports Club