Xmas spirit arrives early at the Dick Maxwell 10k

Santa’s Little Helper and assembled Xmas 10k field

Dick Maxwell Memorial 10k Race @ Simister 1st December 2018
Roy Gunnett reports:
The race was not held over the advertised Nightmare course as this was flooded.
Instead, it was held on the 2 lap out and back course to the park.
Weather for November was fairly good – a mild day with little wind and a slight drizzle.
Adrian Edwards walked strongly throughout and won the scratch race with Martin Fisher just under 40 secs behind.
Roy Gunnett won the handicap and was awarded the Dick Maxwell trophy.
Following the race, all enjoyed a meal of Pie and Peas prepared by Pat and the ‘Secret Santa’.
[ Tony Taylor is reliably informed that anyone revealing the identity of Santa’s Little Helper will receive a severe penalty at the hands of the Club Handicapper!]
10 kilometres
1. Adrian Edwards Lancs WC 57:59
2. Martin Fisher Redcar WC 58:38
3.Tony Bell Lancs WC 63:32
4.Stuart Edgar D&S 64:09
5.Roy Gunnett Lancs WC 65:41
6.Dan Maskell Surrey WC 66:58
7.Glyn Jones Cov. Godiva 67:42
8. John Crahan Lancs WC 69:15
9. Joe Hardy Lancs WC 70:03
10. Sailash Shah Lancs WC 72:04
11. Ian Hilditch Lancs WC 73:07
12. Ian Vaughan Lancs WC 76:41
13. Andrea Lennon Lancs WC 83:41
5 kilometres
1. Pat Evans LancsWC 35:00
2. Greg Smith Lancs WC 36:29
3. Arthur Wilson Unattached 38:48
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The Pre-Xmas Nightmare, December 2




[To the dismay of many,  Roy Gunnett reports that Saturday’s race will take place on the infamous ‘Nightmare’ Course. We will see if prayers for a deluge of Biblical proportions are answered.]

Date:     Saturday 1st December 2018 @ 1:30pm

Race:     Dick Maxwell Memorial 10K race 

Course:  ‘Nightmare’ Course flooded so changed to usual Park Course!

Venue:    Lady Wilton Hall, Simister M25 2RX

The race will be followed by a ‘pie and peas’ meal and the Secret Santa.

Please let Roy know if you will be attending as he needs to let Pat know how many she needs to cater for regarding the ‘pie and peas’.

As usual please bring along a wrapped Secret Santa gift (£5 value)

Please bring along your £15 annual subscription ( unless you have already paid).

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An emotional AGM as Fred Pearce ‘retires’

The 111th Lancashire Walking Club AGM witnessed a heartfelt and humbling occasion. Dogged by ill-health Fred Pearce, the club’s ‘Jack of all trades’ and pivotal personality, was stepping down from his roles as President, Chairman and Treasurer. In his address, Fred outlined the club’s continuing and significant presence on the race walking scene, which owes much to his sterling efforts over decades of commitment to the cause. However, as he came to close his remarks, Fred found it nigh impossible to control his emotions, bringing a tear to many an eye, not least those of Christine, his devoted wife. Finally, he managed to mouth the painfully ironic, yet evergreen club motto, ‘Health is the first Wealth, before giving way to standing ovation from all those present. In doing so we remembered also with great sadness the passing of Dave Crompton, a much-missed Lancashire stalwart.

The meeting was faced with the dilemma of how and with whom to replace our Fred. To the rescue, cutting through the fog of anxiety,  came John Crahan, famous for his wit, tact diplomacy and fondness for a pint. He proposed to much acclaim that Fred continued as an Honorary President, whilst suggesting that Roy Gunnett and Dave Evans between them shared the tasks of Chairman, General Secretary and Treasurer. To our collective relief, Roy and Dave succumbed to John’s charm. Rumour has it that John was approached to sort out the whole Brexit chaos, but he refused, preferring to prioritise his arduous winter training regime in a bid to put his brother, Peter, firmly in his place. We will see.

Crisis averted, the business of the AGM was completed with the minimum of fuss, Our financial situation proved to be healthy. Adrian Edwards took both the Cliff Royle Salver and the AJ Taylor Award, proving to be yet again the club’s outstanding performer, whilst Joe Hardy’s commitment saw him take the Annual Handicap Award just ahead of Roy Gunnett.

Go easy on the whisky, Fred

There was though one more moving moment before the meeting closed.  Roy Gunnett stepped forward on behalf of the whole membership to present Fred with an engraved whisky decanter to mark the occasion and as a tribute to his remarkable contribution to our club across 66 years of membership. Following in his wake Glyn Jones, wearing his Race Walking Association hat, paid a fulsome tribute to Fred’s endeavours.

Glyn Jones pays tribute to Fred

Fred, number 5 – Northern Junior 10 1961 Bradford

And, allowing myself a personal touch, I recollected that Fred and I raced against one another for the first time on September 29th, 1963, over fifty-five years ago, The event, a club four and a quarter miles handicap starting at our headquarters, the imposing Midland Hotel in the centre of West Didsbury, saw John Paddick, a guest, win the scratch race ahead of Ron Wallwork. Although Fred beat me by a couple of minutes, I took the handicap prize, having a week earlier gained the then coveted 6 miles in the hour badge in the ‘D’ section of the famous Highgate track event. A fortnight later Ron Wallwork finished a brilliant 5th in the Lugano Trophy 50k in 4:23: 56, a member of the victorious GB team in what was in all but name the World Team Championship.

Ron winning the 1970 Leigh Harriers 5 miles in 36:09

In the following years, Ron put Lancashire Walking Club firmly on the map, always confident that Fred would make sure that all necessary arrangements were immaculately organised. What’s changed? And yet change inevitably lies before us.

On behalf of all, sincere thanks to Fred for all his graft, enormous goodwill and generosity.

Forever in your debt.

Tony Taylor


Roy Gunnett reports:

There was a good turnout for the pre-AGM race of both walkers and officials – the 12 walkers included 3 guest walkers (Glyn Jones and Stuart Edgar from the Midlands and Dan Maskell from Brighton). Weather conditions were good for the time of year.
The scratch race was won by Adrian Edwards. Roy Gunnett won the yacht handicap and was therefore awarded the Bill Jackson Trophy. It was a closely fought out race with half the field finishing within a minute of each other.

1 Adrian Edwards Lancashire WC M55 28.54
2 Stuart Edgar Dudley and Stourbridge M45 31.40
3 Peter Crahan Lancashire WC M65 32.00
4 Dan Maskell Surrey WC M70 32.10
5 John Crahan Lancashire WC M65 32.30
6 Tony Bell Lancashire WC M55 32.40
7 Roy Gunnett Lancashire WC M70 32.44
8 Glyn Jones Coventry Godiva M75 32.49
9 Joe Hardy Lancashire WC M75 33.05
10 Sailash Shah Lancashire WC M50 33.51
11 Pat Evans Lady Lancashire WC W65 35.08
12 Ian Vaughan Lancashire WC M65 37.38


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Club AGM 5k and Albert Rigby 10k result

Roy Gunnett reports:

NEXT RACE: 5k ordinary handicap race followed by the 111th AGM

DATE SATURDAY 3rd November 2018



Look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the race/meeting.
To quote Fred ‘s request in his letter:


‘It is essential that you make every effort to attend in order that your valued contribution will help with the election of officers and decisions to be made for the future success of the Lancashire Walking Club’.

As Fred is standing down from his Official Positions as President, Chairman and Treasurer, these positions will be required to be filled.


Please consider this and offer your services for nomination and then contact Roy at r.gunnett@live.co.uk



The race was held over 3 laps of the new ‘out and back’ course. Weather was cold and overcast. 12 took part of whom 5 were welcome guests.
Adrian Edwards and Martin Fisher shared the lead for the early part of the race. After a mile or so Adrian pulled away strongly and won the race by nearly 2 minutes from Martin who was second.

In addition to winning the scratch race, Adrian also won the handicap and was thus awarded the Albert Rigby Shield.
As always Marshal Barnard and his wife Kath provided excellent refreshments for everyone after the race.


1 Adrian Edwards Lancashire WC M55 57.21
2 Martin Fisher Redcar RWC M55 59.19
3 Tony Bell Lancashire WC M55 64.14
4 Stuart Edgar Dudley & Stourbridge M45 65.52
5 Dan Maskell Surrey WC M70 66.02
6 Joe Hardy Lancashire WC M70 66.36
7 Glyn Jones Coventry Godiva M75 66.44
8 Roy Gunnett Lancashire WC M70 69.45
9 Sailash Shah Lancashire WC M50 71.04
10 Dave Hoben Surrey WC M65 74.15

1 Pat Evans Lady W65 49.44


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Chris Bolton completes his 17th Nijmegen Walks, 60 years after his first!

Apologies to Chris Bolton for the belated appearance of this recognition of his mightily impressive Nijmegen achievement.

imagechris b

Chris hailed in the Dutch press

Chris writes:

[In July] I completed the Nijmegen four day walks for the seventeenth time.   This year it went well with no problems. The first two days were 21 miles and the last two 19, making an average of 20 a day.

It was extremely hot but I completed each day without a stop and so finished in a reasonable time.


The golden cross with 17x participation pin

Because my first participation, at 55 Kms, was in 1958 this was 60 years since my first. The local press featured my long association with the event.

When I investigated further, courtesy of the August 1958 Race Walking Record, Chris was a member of the eleven-strong Race Walking Association Team, which was captained by the Lancashire Walking Club stalwart, Joe Lambert. Chris and Joe had warmed up for Nijmegen by finishing 21st and 22nd in the Manchester-Blackpool Walk, separated by a couple of minutes. As an aside, across the same few weeks, Fred Pearce Senior was finishing the Leicester-Skegness 100 miles in 22:16;17, whilst our very own Fred Pearce Junior was winning the Northern Junior One Mile title.

For more information on the Nijmegen Marches



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Catching up yet again with results and news


In catching up we must first send our very best wishes to Fred Pearce, the heart and soul of the club, who is battling against illness. We are all looking forward to seeing him back at the helm in the very near future.

FRED informal

Our Fred, rather informally attired in truth!


Tony Bell and Sailash Shah represented the club.


1  0:58:47 Bill McFadden Scotia RWC (Guest) V55 M   2 01:01:39 Martin Fisher Redcar RWC V55 M 3 01:02:18  Ray Robinson Redcar RWC V40 M   01:02:22 Graham Jackson Yorkshire RWC V45 M   01:02:50 Colin Scott Yorkshire RWC V55 M 6 01:03:22 Dennis Jackson Yorkshire RWC V70 M  7  01:05:56 Tony Bell Lancashire WC V45 M  8 01:07:48 Neil Armitage Yorkshire RWC V55 M  9 01:10:54 Sailash Shah Lancashire WC V50 M 10 01:12:47 Atmaram Dahal Yorkshire RWC V55 M  11 01:13:01 Gerard McConnell Scotia RWC (Guest) V55 M  12 01:16:01 Dave Jones Redcar RWC V65 M  13 01:18:20 Mark Byrne Redcar RWC V55 M 14  01:23:00 Mary Thompson (Fitmums & Friends) V40 

Fred Pearce Senior Memorial Relay 2x5k, 28th July 2018 @ Simister

Roy Gunnett reports:

It was the 23rd anniversary of this unique and popular event.
The race was held on the usual ‘out & back’ course from Lady Wilton Hall, Simister to Heaton Park.
The weather was squally – the competitors had to contend with strong winds and heavy downpours of rain, particularly on the second leg.
It was good to welcome three guests from other clubs in this race.
The battle for the team prize was closely contested – good handicapping resulted in the first 5 teams coming in within just over a minute of each other.
Tony Bell put in a powerful final leg to secure the team win for himself and Ian Hilditch.


Tony Bell leads Martin Fisher in the Ken Munro 10 miles, 2016

Martin Fisher won the scratch race.

1 Martin Fisher Redcar WC M55 28:41 75.3
2 Tony Malone Lancs WC M65 28:48 84.26
3 Adrian Edwards Lancs WC M55 28:52 74.82
4 Tony Bell Lancs WC M55 29:17 73.1
5 Greg Smith Lancs WC M65 31:31 75.82
6 John Crahan Lancs WC M65 33:19 74.27
7 Steve Sargent Lancs WC M70 33:30 75.7
8 Sailash Shah Lancs WC M50 33:45 62.33
9 Joe Hardy Lancs WC M70 33:48 78:01
10 Dan Maskell Surrey WC M70 33:57 73:78
11 Russ Jackson Yorkshire RWC M70 34:37 76:17
12 Ian Hilditch Lancs WC M75 35:45 76:92
13 Pat Evans Lady Lancs WC W65 36:07 74:74
14 Ian Vaughan Lancs WC M65 36:17 65:13
15 Roy Gunnett Lancs WC M70 36:17 69:89

The final column above is the age-graded performance as a percentage.


Goodwin Cup 10k at Chorley – 18th August 2018


The race was held over the usual hilly 2 lap course on a heavy/sultry day. The weather took its toll on the competitors with nearly all posting slower times than normal.
Adrian Edwards took an early lead which he maintained to the end thereby winning the scratch race. The rest of the field quickly became strung out and it remained this way throughout the race.
Adrian also won the handicap and therefore the Goodwin Cup.
Louise and Eric provided the facilities, refreshments etc. and everyone participating was extremely grateful for this.

1 Adrian Edwards Lancashire WC M55 60:26
2 Joe Hardy Lancashire WC M70 69:42
3 Sailash Shah Lancashire WC M50 71:03
4 Ian Hilditch Lancashire WC M75 72:32
5 Roy Gunnett Lancashire WC M70 75:24
6 John Crahan Lancashire WC M65 78:46
7 Andrea Lennon Lady Lancashire WC W75 87:25
1 Pat Evans Lady Lancashire WC W65 41:06
2 John Payn Lancashire WC M85 43:20


  1. Jonathan Hobbs Ashford AC 4:43:35
  2. Dale Farquhar Manx AC 5:37:46
  3. Adrian Edwards LWC 5:39:38


I think this is the fifth successive year in which Adrian has finished in the medals. Congratulations indeed.

One Hour Challenge Track Race @ Bury 8th September 2018

Roy Gunnett reports:

There was a turnout of 11 walkers for this race (9 men and 2 women), this included the welcome entry of 3 guest walkers.

Throughout the whole race, there was steady rain.

Tony Taylor, over from Crete, and Martin Fisher together took an early lead. Both Tony and Martin were in recovery mode for this race – Tony recovering from an injury caused by his horse treading on his foot and Martin recovering from his recent 100mile race in the IOM. Tony gradually pulled away from Martin and went on to win the race. Martin came second.

There was a close battle for 3rd, 4th and 5th places. For most of the race Joe Hardy, Russ Jackson and Dan Maskell walked round together and it was only at the end the 3 split with Dan taking 3rd followed by Joe then Russ.

After the race Tony was presented with the Lambert trophy.


Dave Evans deserves more than a handshake for his valuable work whilst Fred is absent

The running of an hour track race necessitates a heavy workload on officials and all the walkers were greatly indebted and thankful for the excellent support provided by the helpers.

1 Tony Taylor Lancs WC M70 9905
2 Martin Fisher Redcar RWC M55 9890
3 Dan Maskell Surrey WC M70 8869
4 Joe Hardy Lancs WC M70 8856
5 Russ Jackson Yorkshire RWC M70 8852
6 Roy Gunnett Lancs WC M70 8694
7 John Crahan Lancs WC M65 8630
8 Sailash Shah Lancs WC M50 8381
9 John Payn Lancs WC M85 7471
10 Andrea Lennon Lady Lancs WC W75 7267
5K Challenge Time
1 Pat Evans Lady Lancs WC W65 38:28.2

It is fitting to pay tribute to Martin Fisher’s achievement in finishing his 29th 100 miles in this country a couple of weeks ago in the Isle of Man. Huge respect from all of us.

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Manx Centurions 100 Miles Track Walk, August 18/19

As a way of kicking myself up the posterior and because it’s a smashing piece of writing, which deserves an audience beyond Facebook, here is Trevor McDermot’s report on last weekend’s 100 miles on the Isle of Man. One excuse in terms of a Lancashire connection is that Manx walkers always raced in the colours of Lancashire in Inter-Counties events.Plus a special mention for Martin Fisher, who often supports our club races. Can you believe, he completed a record 29th 100 miles inside the 24 hours? Huge respect.


And they’re off , but not off the ground


The demonstration of guts and determination from the competitors last weekend was an honour to witness.

All One Hundred Mile events are occasions, way more than just mere races, and suitably for this a Civic Reception had taken place the night before in Douglas Town Hall, where top notch speeches from the Mayor and Eric Horwill framed the stage more than adequately for the various players to play their parts.

Conditions at noon the following day were blustery if not quite damp following the summer’s heatwave. Officials bustled about on official business, tents, gazebos were erected and the usual acquaintances re-made along the sidelines. Staff at the NSC were most helpful, opening gates where required and finding facilities and rooms for us to use.

The belatedly arrival of Chris Maddocks and family (after travel problems) meant that we had expert commentary for voluble Dot to hand over to.

We were handing out the usual rounds of hot and cold drinks, sponges, fruit, nuts, jelly babies, marshmallows, mars bars, jaffa cakes, crisps, chocolate, sugary and savoury snacks, bespoke sandwiches and later a popular tureen of vegetable soup courtesy of Michael George.

An eerie and silent twilight occurred during Saturday evening when the flags completely stopped fluttering, and lulled as if to gather strength for the violence that was about to hit. A mist crept in and nestled itself snugly in and around the stadium, while under half-floodlights the ever-circling walkers began to feel the strain of their labours.

Then ‘KC’ aka Karen Chiarello flashed through 100km in 11.48 (just think about that, rather impressive a mid-race split for a W50, non ?) . . . almost signalling that Storm Ernesto could now arrive.

Are all storms named after Olympic 20km Champions ?   . . . .

What followed was a torrent of almost biblical proportions for six hours, when due to drainage problems on the NSC track the Referees were seriously considering using the 2nd lane. The walkers continued regardless and there was no longer any need for sponging.

Only two retired during that spell – Erin Taylor-Talcott, well known 50km pioneer, had stopped with hypothermia and valiantly tried to continue, along with popular Frans Leitjens, meanwhile John Constandinou saw out the worst of it carrying an umbrella (although the rain was bouncing harder off the surface) before finally stopping at 300 laps in 18 hours.


Dave Talcott [the eventual winner] with Erin Taylor-Talcott

Have seen Dave Talcott in action before but not moving as well as this, muscling his way through a speedy final 10km, before the welcoming Sunday morning bacon sarnies arrived. I was also impressed by the courage of Paul Jansen (who had led from Richard Gerrard in the early stages) on and the no fuss, quiet attitude of Annic Deman who made 402 laps of a track look as much trouble as an average school run on a weekday morning.

Frank van der Gulik is simply built for long distance walking, here he ticked off another hundred and then casually warmed down with another 20 laps. The Centurion achievement of diabetic Dale Farquhar, with tears of joy from stressed-out Jayne, was worth the entrance fee alone and gave us immense personal delight. Martin Fisher was never in doubt of yet another great performance, we weren’t worried about him at all and neither was Judith.

As for Sandra Brown, who carries her own tea cup (with postcode attached in event of loss). Mere words could never do her justice. The little, ever smiling lady with the massive career numbers . . . she simply arrives, competes and leaves us all stunned once again.

I’ve raised this question before but do we in the walking fraternity – and by that I mean Everybody in Race Walking – kind of, you know and how can I put this . . . take her for granted ?

When you consider that this was her seventh ‘hundred’ in 2018 alone , and she is now approaching her 70th birthday, then it becomes obvious that some kind of official recognition by general press media, UKA, England Athletics, the RWA and anybody else is seriously overdue.

We are fortunate to have been around when she graced the sport.

The evening presentation at Manx Yacht Club was a lovely, warm occasion with race DVD’s handed out to all. And a mention here for the Belgian quintet who had entered, started, finished their Hundreds and then attended all wearing matching centurion shirts.

Massive respect to Graham Young, Martin and Manx Centurions for what they achieved with this event.

To the man whose idea it all was, whose personal contribution may be unmatched by anyone, anywhere, for a (mere) walking race – Mr. Mark Byrne – we are vastly indebted for having the experience.

Ta to Linda McDermot for the photos

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