‘Wainwrights’ come to Calderdale

They only went and did it!!!!

Calder Valley Fell Runners haven’t been racing or running together since the Covid lockdown began.  One thing that came up was that there was nothing available for club members to do as a group, socially and physically.  As we all love a good hill or two, a hill climbing challenge was devised.

  The challenge was to find as much climbing as possible. Members were asked to create their  toughest category in AS (min 1.5km up to 10km), AM (up to 20km) or finally AL (30km limit) race.  The ‘A” standard for these distances is an average of not less than 50 metres climb per kilometre.

An additional challenge was for the club to run the equivalent of the height of all 214 of the Lake District Wainwrights from sea level on their local fells and that is total of 453,000 feet.   CVFR sponsored this event and donated £1 for every 1000 feet climbed by club members who enter this competition.  The money raised was donated to the Halifax Homeless and Community Kitchen.

Halifax Homeless and Community Kitchen opened in January last year and runs a kitchen in the town centre every Sunday serving meals and handing out food, toiletries and sometimes clothes to take away.  The coronavirus outbreak means the kitchen has had to be closed for now, but the volunteers who run the project have begun delivering food to those in need across the town.

Club statistician Andy Wright said “As well as giving me lots of excuses to play with spreadsheets, it has been rewarding to see the effect this has had on our members.  People are chatting to one another about their runs, pushing themselves outside their comfort zones, talking about the mental effect that lock down is having on them as well as competing with one another to see who can come up with the ugliest, hilliest courses.”

Gayle and Jo on the “Wainwrights” terrain in the Lakes a few years ago

After a close week the CVFR runners pulled some amazing climbs out of the bag on the final day of the challenge allowing us to beat the Wainwright target with a combined total climb of 486,151 feet.  Total running distance by entrants to the challenge was 2,054 miles. So £486 will be donated to Halifax Homeless and Community Kitchen.

Nicola Freemantle, organiser of HHCK said “The challenge looks amazing and the mental well-being and how people are talking and getting involved and feeling better is amazing.  You are all so great. This money will go towards feeding over 500 people a week. That is 3 meals a day for 7 days. This is family referrals from social services, young carers and other sectors. We provide healthy meals with fresh fruit and veg.”

The routes with the most climb for each distance were short (under 6.2 miles) Darren Kay with a leg busting 4,321 feet climbed, medium (under 12.4 miles) Matt Kay with 4,656 feet climbed.  For the long route (under 18.6 miles) Stuart Russell climbed a monstrous 7709 feet.

The steepest routes overall were Darren Kay’s run at 697 ft per mile, followed by Holly Page’s route up and down Hardcastle Crags at 552 ft per mile.  Men’s Captain, Shaun Godsman covered 527 ft per mile.

Bullets and Bolts

What a weekend of fell racing with bronzed god Mounsey AKA Ben the bullet placing 9th in a stacked British championship race while ultra god Kevin Holt crowned Usain Bolt sharing 1st at Yorkshires Howarth Hobble…….

Kevin Holt AKA Usain Bolt leading out the Howarth Hobble – Credit Dave Woodhead

On the weekend of the 14th March, Calder Valley Fell Runners were out in force racing. There were 2 big races on the Howarth Hobble and Yr Aran. The Howarth Hobble is a very challenging one at that, an ultra race with a distance of 31.7 miles with 4396ft of ascent. It was a close fought race for the first place between Calder Valley’s Kevin Hoult and Ken Sutor of Cheshire Hash House Harriers. They both tied first place with an incredible time of 4 hours 16 minutes. Other sterling efforts were from Jonny Croston in 10th, Dan Marsden in 15th, who were both comfortably under 5 hours. Great performances were also put in by Paul Haigh and Elina Eady. If there had been a team prize the ads would have taken it.

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Join us @ Resolution Runs ….


Unfortunately due to the Corona Virus we’ve had to stop the RR for the foreseeable future. We hope to see some of you back on the fells when we can all get to run together again. Take care all and keep healthy. The RR teamIn the Spring I will do more exercise? Take up a new sport? Get outside more …. so why not come along to the Resolution Runs and discover fell running with Calder Valley Fell Runners.

  • Ideal follow on from Couch to 5k.
  • Every Saturday @ 9.30am
  • we will be out on the fells for approximately 60mins to 90mins
  • meeting at St George’s Square, Hebden Bridge 
  • See our Face Book page for route map and information.

Your chance to learn new routes, meet like minded people and see if fell running is for you.

You will need to wear your grippiest trainers and bring along a waterproof jacket, hat and gloves.

Resolution Runs – Great for your heart. Great for your mind.

There is no charge, but an idea of numbers would be great so we can see how many club helpers we’ll need.

Interested? Contact Jocasta: 07939 668164 or Gill:  kit@cvfr.co.uk

Pendle, Peaks and more


The first weekend in March was another busy one for Calder Valley Fell Runners, with racing dominated by several big events.

Saturday, 7th March marked the inaugural year for the Saddleworth Ten Res’s – billed as 24-mile course with 4000ft of climb, this was actually a tough 25+-mile high-moor route around Saddleworth Moor, complete with 4500ft of ascent & descent, as racers navigated around a mixed-terrain route taking in a staggering ten local reservoirs, visiting each checkpoint in a specific order – with whisky a beer available for all competitors at least one of the later checkpoints.

Amazing atmospheric skies and big smiles from Bill. Photo courtesy of Jim Harrison

Half a dozen red & white hoops entered this race & grouped fairly well from the start. Jonathan Moon led the way for CVFR, keeping a steady pace throughout as he battled for a top three place, but eventually finished a very respectable 6th overall in 4hr 50 minutes (& third in open age category). Despite trailing early on, Bill Johnson’s racing experience showed, as he took a pre-planned alternate route bringing him out ahead of many of the other runners, to finish only three minutes behind Moon, in 8th place overall, & first in the MV50 age category. Phil Wells, in his first event at this distance, also ran a savvy race to finish 9th overall (& 3rd MV45) in in 5h12 – seeing the Calder Valley men take the team prize. Andy Wright raced well to finish in 13th place overall in 5h23, with James Cooke in 28th place, closely followed by Toby Sydes in 29th.

Moon described this race, as a ‘a future local classic in the making’ – ‘very enjoyable up to Wessenden Head’ before the snow & ice covered. climb to Black Hill, followed by ‘knee-deep bogs’ on the way down to Crowden.

Also. On Saturday, 7th March, over 230 runners competed in the Moorhouse’s Stan Bradshaw Pendle Round fell race – a 10.4 mile fell race on and around Pendle Hill, complete with nearly 2000ft of climb. CVFR’ss Darren Kay ran an outstanding race to take 4th place overall (& second MV40), crossing the line in just 1h 7 minutes & 30 seconds. Teammate Mark Wharton came in 58th overall (& in the top 15 in the MV50 category) in 1h 22 minutes & 59 seconds.

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