Open evening planned now Teesdale AC is back up and running
By Stuart Laundy - Senior Reporter
PUT on your running shoes and make a bee-line for Teesdale Athletic Club.
That’s the message from club officials following the easing of Covid-19 restrictions and the resumption of competitive races.
The club is hosting an outdoor open evening in the grounds of The Bowes Museum on Tuesday, September 14, for anyone interested in getting fit and shedding a few unwanted pounds put on in the pandemic.
Like many sports clubs, Teesdale AC’s activities came to a halt during the lockdowns.
Welfare officer Judith Rodwell said: “We are planning a bit of recruitment drive. We hope to welcome back some of those members who have not been with us since before Covid along with new members.
“We have run Couch to 5k courses in the past, but we are a bit short of coaches at the moment, but we are happy to welcome new members and tailor a group or session for them.”
Both chairman Alan Bray and Ms Rodwell said members had missed out on the social side of running.
“We had to stop sessions for a long while when you were only allowed to run on your own,” said Ms Rodwell.
“We tried to do a few challenges that people could do on their own – time challenges etc. Then we started again, but had to stop for the second lockdown.
“We did what we could but a big aspect of the club is the social side of things which people were not getting.”
While the club has begun sessions again, social distancing is being observed, with the size of training groups restricted to one coach for each nine runners.
Sessions for younger athletes which were held at Teesdale Leisure Centre are currently on hold, but Ms Rodwell said the intention was to eventually return to the sports complex.
“We are not starting again from scratch, but it is predominantly an older group [of runners] although we do have some younger members, who are heading off to university,” added Ms Rodwell.
While it is unlikely the Santa Runs will take place this year, the club already has the popular Raby Runs pencilled in for next spring.
Anyone interested in joining the club should turn up to the grounds of The Bowes Museum at 6pm on September 14.
Ms Rodwell said all ages and abilities are welcome.
Dave Palmer, from Startforth, who joined the club after moving to the area, said runners would be made welcome.
“They are a very sociable and friendly bunch of people. They have three levels of training, so it doesn't matter what level of ability you have, you will find a group you can run and train with and have a bit of fun,” he said.