Parkrun return - all you need to know if you're planning taking part in a free 5k run

South Shields Parkrun gets underway.South Shields Parkrun gets underway.
South Shields Parkrun gets underway.
This weekend is set to see the return of parkrun for the first time in 16 months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

At 9am on Saturday morning (July 24), 5k parkrun events will return to more than 500 parks and open spaces across England.

And on Sunday (July 25) at 9am, 11-14 year olds can rejoin junior parkrun alongside 4-10 year olds, as officially recognised walkers, joggers and runners.

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All parkrun events are required to follow the organisation’s COVID Framework, developed in collaboration with Sport England and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

Participants and volunteers are required to self-assess for COVID-19 symptoms prior to attending, and not to attend if at all symptomatic.

Local public health advice is that even those without symptoms should make use of free Lateral Flow Device tests where possible, to ensure people aren’t spreading the virus without realising.

A small number of events are cancelled for various reasons and some events do not have permission to return yet, so organisers recommend checking your local parkrun event page and/or their associated social media prior to making plans or travelling.

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In preparation for the return of parkrun in England, they encourage you to familiarise yourself with parkrun’s COVID-19 codes.

How do I sign up for parkrun?

Signing up for parkrun is free and easy, you sign up once, print your barcode, and then just turn up! Any location, anywhere around the world, any weekend you want.

You will need to print off your barcode, organisers don’t accept barcodes on any mobile devices.

Next up, you just need to decide where you’re going to parkrun.

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How do I find an event?

Events are held in Sunderland, South Shields, Hartlepool, County Durham and Northumberland and finding your local event is simple with parkrun’s map, which you can find here.

Each event has its own course page where you’ll find:

*Contact details of the Event Team if you have any questions

*A map that shows the course and the start and finish areas, as well as some handy tips for getting there, including nearest bus stops and train station, as well as the event postcode

*Details of the Volunteer Team and how you can get involved.

*Upcoming cancellations and other parkruns nearby

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*Many events also have their own social media pages where you can get in touch with the team, give them a search on Facebook and Twitter.

What does parkrun look like?

What can you expect to see at a parkrun?

Parkruns are friendly, relaxed environments, where there are people of all shapes and sizes, abilities and backgrounds, some people will be in sports kit, some not, some people will walk and some will run, many will just be there to enjoy the morning.

So, don’t feel any pressure.

There’s a short First Timer’s Welcome for anyone who’d like a little more information on the day.

Once the results have been processed you’ll get a text and an email from parkrun with all the details of your participation.

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