Striders History 1982-1993 by Roger Stephenson (founder member and club archivist)

My thanks for the valued assistance of John Rothwell, Ian Shepherd & Norma Parkes in compiling this article. And to Mick Wall for transcribing and formatting my original document over to the website and scanning all the photographs.

Hi Striders and other interested folks, hope you find all this an informative and enjoyable read. 35 years since the club was formed and when I look back at everything connected with the club, I realise a book could be produced, may be one day!

The following will give an outline of our history. Read how the club has developed, see how the foundations were laid, learn about those members whose contribution has been priceless.

Many aspects of life here in the UK have arrived from the USA. Some have failed to materialise, others have been been slow to be accepted. What is referred to as ‘ The Running Boom ‘ came from the USA around 1980 and immediately grew like a well fed mushroom, in fact running flourished at an unbelievable rate !

In Sheffield like most of the UK, folks began to be seen at any time of the day and anywhere running or as some folk called jogging.

The first London Marathon in 1981 was a major catalyst and in 1982 the Sheffield Marathon was resurrected, a race that was once a feature of the Sheffield sporting calendar. A social phenomenon had occurred and many were keen to be involved not just as runners, but as suppliers of the kit required and as organisers of the many local races that began to appear.

Why and how was the club formed ?

Prior to 1980 distance running and the marathon was very much a niche sport and the established clubs in Sheffield were struggling to come to terms with the mass participation boom. They simply couldn’t cater for and indeed were not welcoming the new breed of fun runner / jogger. Striders were one of many similar new wave clubs that formed during the early to mid 1980’s to cater for this upsurge in interest and participation.

From acorns, oak trees grow and where did the name come from ?

After viewing a 1982 Sheffield Marathon video at the Abbeydale sports club in June 1982, an 11 member steering committee was formed after an invitation by Richard Hnat, a local businessman with a sports shop on Infirmary Road. The steering committee met on the 20th of July at the Faces Night club on Charles Street. Richard Hnat’s vision and drive together with John Rothwell, who was to become a renowned club member, gave birth to what has now become a special club with loads of special people !!

The steering committee formed that night comprised

  • Keith Ibbotson – Chair
  • Eileen Bibby – Secretary
  • Diane Knowles – Treasurer
  • John Rothwell – Membership Secretary
  • Richard Hnat & Ken Richardson – Social Secretaries

plus Christine Jackson, Mick Thompson, Derek Broomhead & Martin Gomersall. Ken Rutter who was also present did not become part of the Steering Committee and no longer had contact with the club.

Another organisational meeting was held at Faces night club behind Cole Brothers store on the 3rd of August 1982.

On Wednesday 22nd September 1982 the club was officially launched at the Pine Grove Country Club at Stannington in Sheffield. A group run was followed by a meeting where the runners attending were invited to join the club.

A social evening featuring Diet and Health Food followed at Pinegrove on the 1st of November.

Where did the name come from and why yellow and green for the club colours ?

Richard Hnat had already decided on the name before that 1982 Sheffield Marathon.

John Rothwell comments that a year or so later whilst in Richard’s shop and chatting with members of Chesterfield AC and others, someone said that they suggested the name to Richard. Just how much truth in that story we will never know !

John Rothwell along with fellow Strider Christine Jackson had met Richard in his shop, telling him that in relation to the club’s colours, they wanted to stay away from the Hallamshire red, Sheffield AC yellow, Rotherham black and the Wednesday and United colours. Richard had a stock of green and yellow material with a yellow pinstripe which we could have cheaply and so the club colours were born !

Striders began to use Rowlinson Sports Centre on Sunday 7 November 1982 and what was then Queens Tower Squash club near Norfolk Park on the following Monday the 8th as training venues. The use of various locations around the city for Striders training runs was established.

Queens Tower Squash Club 1984

In mid Dec. 1982 there was a disco and fashion show for members ( venue unknown )

On Boxing Day 1982, Striders held their 1st Boxing Day Fun Run in Graves Park, with 43 runners, Striders and their children, completing a Fun Run of 2 miles.

In January of 1983, the club held it’s first annual meeting and a decision was made to join both the Amateur Athletic Association and the Womens Amateur Athletic Association.

Sub committees were then formed and affiliation to various running bodies was progressed.

The club held it’s first AGM on the 24th of January 1983 at Pinegrove Country Club at which the Steering Group was disbanded and a Committee of 10 was elected.

Mention must be made and thanks given for all the work undertaken in the setting up of the club. A group of very enthusiastic folks giving their time and energy to establish a very special organisation.

Weekly runs were organised followed by a chat and a drink in some nearby pub.

The sociability and friendliness aspects of the club were being established.

A Boxing Day Fun Run, Christmas Disco, Pie & Pea Supper and a Nike produced video strengthened the clubs sociability.

Various members achieved good results in both local and other races close to Sheffield, personal bests were achieved, social events were organised, as were trips for members to various races, the club was growing, enthusiasm was high, Striders became an essential part of members lives.

Why no club HQ established ?

An emotive subject this became, yet 35 + years down the road the club functions well without an HQ.
It was and still is a unique concept to take the club out to the suburbs to maximise accessibility and training opportunities. To make all this work the club was dependent on strong communication channels i.e. Striders News, which in it’s day was ahead of it’s time and was voted Running Magazines newsletter of the year ! Communication is still the backbone of the club and thanks to the internet and social media we are as strong with communicating to and amongst our members as ever !

A brief point of discussion here re the clubs decline in the early to mid 2000’s and then an upsurge in interest. The decline could have been due to a reduction in the frequency of Striders News appearing and the upsurge as a direct consequence of social media.

Society changes in many ways and so do the sections within it. Striders will continue to change, that is inevitable !

I will now continue with extracts from the monthly club newsletter, Striders News along with reference to committee meeting minutes. The first edition of Striders News appeared in August 1983, a double sided A4 sheet, edited by Dave Ashurst & John Rothwell. I have extracted what I would call significant information relative to dates, members, events and various organisational issues re the club and the running world, instances which shaped the future of the club. There is mention of occasions involving members who are still around 30 years later.

Club organised races and events where possible are mentioned in the month they took place. Many races reported on lack the date when they occurred.

Pre organisational issues and comment re races and events have always featured in editions of the Newsletter, but have not been included to avoid confusion in instances where races and events did not occur.

There have been a million words in print, a complete story would fill numerous volumes !

There is a lot to read through here and yes it is somewhat monotonous in it’s content. However, history is being recorded and I believe a worthwhile task is on the way to completion. Whilst collating the following information, I have also referred to Committee meeting minutes. Minutes as you are all aware contain detailed information, much of it although of interest is too detailed for inclusion here. I take responsibility if there is anything missed. I am of course dependent on folks pointing out to me those omissions.

We remember with affection those Striders no longer with us, friends once loved and now lost. So I dedicate this history to the memories of those below.

  • Trevor Brown
  • Adrian Butler
  • Les Eyre
  • Keith Hale
  • Keith Ibbotson
  • Rachel Leonard
  • George Maynard
  • Les Parkes
  • Julian Paul
  • Dennis Tuft
  • Roy Kitson

July 1983

  • The first Steel City mile, 35 members took part in 5 races.

September 1983 

  • Club membership now 100 including 1 junior.
  • New club vests available from Richard Hnat, cost £4-35.
  • A Striders organised talk took place at the Hallam Tower hotel on the 14th of September, the guest speaker being Ron Hill, one of the finest long distance runners this country has produced.
  • Afterwards it was proposed that the club ask Ron to become Striders first Honorary member.

October 1983

  • 1st Steel City 10K on Friday 14th of October.
  • A request for runners to be seen in the dark. Members heard such requests then as they do now !!
  • Striders 1st 10K race from Middlewood to Oughtibridge and return.
  • Club member Ian Shepherd had been involved in discussions re the organisation of a Great British Fun Run. This would incorporate a 3500 mile relay run around the coast of Britain. Striders considered taking part along with The British Deaf Association, a charity that Ian worked for, but in the end neither did.

November 1983

  • 1st club cross country race took place in Longley Park on the 13th of November.
  • Striders Keith Ibbotson & Dave Ashurst involved in the organisation of the 1984 Sheffield Marathon. This issue of Striders News increased to 4 x A4 size pages.
  • Details of a Amateur Athletic Association registration scheme to enable communication from the AAA to club members. This initiative would hopefully encourage the now hundreds of non club runners to become involved in a club of their choice. Registration was essential for runners wishing to take part in the many road races now being organised.
  • Concern expressed that the club wasn’t looking after it’s slower runners and as a result ‘ Doubling Back ‘ was introduced.

December 1983

  • Club to apply for affiliation to the English Cross Country Union.
  • Affiliation to the Yorkshire Cross Country Association confirmed !
  • South Yorkshire Amateur Athletic Association contacted re the club wishing to compete in the following seasons league.
  • Mention of the club’s initiative in ‘ Doubling Back ‘ for slower runners on training runs.
  • After the the club’s 1st cross country race had taken place in Longley Park, further events were planned at Shirecliffe, Concord & Graves Park.
  • Total membership at this year end was 130.

January 1984

  • An interesting article titled ‘ From a rabbit to a hare ‘ by club member Roger Rowe. The story of a broken down, recalcitrant, 38 year old ex rugby player who became bitten by the running bug. A tale of progression, running in the dark not to be recognised, visiting Richard Hnat’s shop for his first pair of running shoes, his first race and pride in completing it, hardly being able to walk for a week, a running inflicted injury and a visit to the doctors, another race and the discovery of PB’s. A story many can relate to, an example of the change to a persons life through involvement with running and of course becoming a member of this well loved club !!

February 1984

  • The club had plans to run a 10K from the Rowlinson Sports Centre (now Graves Leisure Centre). However, South Yorks Police stated it was their policy NOT to give permission for races to take place, other than existing events that are held in the city.
  • Striders holding training runs from SWFC’s training ground on Middlewood Road.
  • In a time without on line communication and social media sites, difficulties with distribution by hand of the Striders News were being encountered.

March 1984

  • 1st mention of the South Yorkshire Amateur Athletic Association 5 mile road race series. 3 races, 10p per race !!
  • Another comment that in 1984 and in a society minus on line communication, photocopying was becoming a problem ! Both renting and purchasing a machine were under consideration.

April 1984

  • 1st advertisement of a Sports Injuries Clinic.
  • Mention of Beginners Nights training runs.
  • Lis Colquhoun’s Hare & Tortoise project said to have been successful.
  • Richard Hnat to move his shop from Infirmary Road to West Street.

May 1984

  • Striders News had now enlarged to 6 x A4 pages.
  • Long training runs in preparation for the 1984 Sheffield Marathon to be run from Rowlinson Sports Centre on Sunday mornings.

June 1984

  • Wednesday evening training runs commenced from Rowlinson Sports Centre on the 6th of June.
  • 1st post Sheffield Marathon party night took place on the 17th.
  • Supervised weight training sessions planned.
  • Sew on cloth badges in club colours and incorporating the ‘Striding Legs’ logo now available at 65p each.
  • Sunday morning Women only training runs from the Hallam Grange Lawn Tennis Club.
  • Local clubs, Striders included, are being encouraged by the NCAA, Northern Counties Athletic Association District Committee to put forward members who would be interested in qualifying as officials i.e. Track and Field judges, Timekeepers and Starters.
  • Striders took part in a Powerjog competition ( running on a treadmill ) at Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane ground on the 19th of April 1984.
  • Club received details of the AAA / Esso award scheme for clubs and schools to encourage in young people a long term interest in cross country running.
  • Dave Ashurst and John Rothwell were to introduce and coordinate the Striders involvement in the award scheme which would hopefully be the first stage of a longer term aim to provide regular training/racing facilities and opportunities within the club for youngsters.

July 1984

  • Queens Tower Squash Club and Pinegrove Country Club now established as Striders training venues.
  • John Rothwell attended a meeting to discuss the proposed Woodbourn Athletics Development Centre.
  • A warning to club members that it is a contravention of the of the laws of the AAA / WAAA to run in non permitted events.
  • The clubs first quiz night attended by 60 members, relatives and friends at the Manchester Hotel on Nursery Street.
  • Club member Ian Darley seeking interest in members wanting to take part in the Paris to Versailles 10 mile road race.
  • Striders and the Sheffield Central Deaf Club heavily involved with the organisation of the Duke of Devonshires Chatsworth Chase.
  • Steel City mile at the Hillsborough track.

August 1984

  • Club recently affiliated to the WCCA , Womens Cross Country Association.
  • Ron Hill, former European and Commonwealth Marathon champion is made the clubs first Honorary Life member.
  • Striders take part in the Mansfield Triathlon.
  • On August 22nd, Striders Le Jog ( Lands End to John O’ Groats ) team consisting of Rosie Adams, Malcolm Bramhall, Iain & Lis Colquhoun, Malcolm Hadfield, Craig Jenkinson, Rob & Rachel Leonard, Marie Miller, Laurie Parmenter, John Rothwell, Gill & Phil Samuels, Ruth Shield, Graeme Siddall and Craig Steeland passed through Sheffield accompanied by club members and together they ran between Rowlinson and Concord Sport Centres. This relay began at Lands End on the 19th and finished at John O’ Groats on the 27th.

September 1984

  • 1st club track meeting took place on Friday 7th.
  • Volunteer assistance required for the forthcoming ‘Chatsworth Chase’
  • 7 Striders took part in the Tour of Tameside which comprised 6 races over 7 days !!

October 1984

  • Beginners night commence, Monday evenings, Queens Tower Squash Club.
  • 1st inclusion in Striders News of information relating to South Yorkshire Cross Country League.
  • New club vests arrive !

Cutlers Relay – 1984

November 1984

  • John Rothwell resigns as SN editor because of the need to reduce his ever increasing workload with the Striders, Ruth Shield to take over as from the1st of November.
  • In addition to the normal 7 -10 mile run from Rowlinson on a Wednesday evening, a speed session is introduced.
  • Members enthusiasm for their sport is reflected in the uptake of training and qualification as officials i.e. race starters and timekeeping.

December 1984

  • Following area’s identified as requiring short / medium term development. Cross Country, track, Women’s athletics.
  • Mick Derrick, John Rothwell & Lis Colquhoun qualify as AAA/ WAAA officials.
  • Club library being developed by John Rothwell.
  • Minutes of the club for 4th of Dec. comprised of 6 x A4 sides, an indication of the increasing workload in running the club.
  • Again to be mentioned in a time where on line communication had not yet arrived, the purchase of a typewriter for club use was being considered.
  • Sponsorship enquiries to aid the production of the Striders Newsletter were ongoing.
  • An increasing membership was adding to problems in hand distributing the Newsletter across the city.

1985 – Junior Striders

This year was notable in the early history of the club with the rise in participation of Junior Striders.

The development was natural in the fact that many members had children and their Strider parents brought them along to training sessions. The original Juniors were Glen and Neil Parkes, Neil Keally and Paul and Angie Bragger.

Initially the youngsters just joined in with the adults at Monday night beginners sessions taking place at Queens Tower but after a few weeks it became very apparent that the youngsters needed something different and a separate group was introduced for the juniors.

Junior Striders at play!

You will read further on that at one time, the Juniors formed a fifth of the club membership.

  • Club members began coaching the Juniors and the enthusiasm gathered momentum.
  • Junior coaches and helpers involved at various times and in various disciplines were Dave Ashurst, Winston Bendell, Sue Bragger, Trevor Chambers, Rod Clark, Iain Colquhoun, Martin Dye, Pete Dye, Les Eyre, Joan Gould, Jean Gregory, Roger Hibbert, Mike Ingham, Mark Johnson, Alison Memmot, Alan Mitchell, Andy Oxley, Les Parkes, Janet & John Rothwell, Phil Samuels, Ian & Pam Shepherd, Graeme Siddall, Martin Sunderland & John Wilkinson.
  • Some of those Striders went on to gain coaching qualifications.
  • The AAA / Esso 5 Star Cross Country Award Scheme along with other initiatives were well received and attended, being valuable contributions to the development of the Juniors.
  • Graves Park, Rowlinson Sports Centre Queens Tower, Redmires Playing Fields and Woodbourn Stadium were often used training venues.
  • As natural as the initial development was, the demise had a measure of inevitability about it. Those youngsters had other interests, other distractions and of course gradually moved on with their life. The same with coaches and helpers whose time involvement became too much and they also moved on.
    The demise of the Junior section wasn’t instant. Through the 1990’s there was still involvement which over that decade gradually faded and then ultimately finished.
  • The Juniors competed with distinction both locally and regionally in school and club athletics with many representing Sheffield and some going on to represent their county at national level at both Cosford and Birmingham and also at various South Yorkshire locations both on the track and cross country.
  • It is a little known fact that the very first Striders ever to run on Woodbourn Athletics track were a few of the juniors in the Sheffield City Schools Track and Field Championships on the 4th of July 1986, the day the stadium formally opened.
  • Various social activities over the years were organised for the club’s junior members and were thoroughly enjoyed by both kids and their members.
  • Archive material relates to the admirable work done and the time given towards the organisation of this well remembered section

AAA-ESSO Award Scheme – 1985

January 1985

  • 100 mile Canal relay race proposed on the ‘ Cheshire Ring’
  • Information relating to Junior Striders taking part in the South Yorks Cross Country League.

February 1985

  • London Marathon guaranteed places on offer for the first time to club members.
  • 1st appearance announced of Striders at the National Cross Country Champs at Milton Keynes.
  • Training schedules for a half and full marathon listed in this issue.

March 1985

  • Ron Hill Sports becomes supplier of club vests and shorts.
  • Striders run in the Northern Cross Country Champs. for the first time.

April 1985

  • Sponsorship arrangement being considered with the Manufacturers Life Insurance Company MANULIFE who have offered the club a £500 cash sponsorship deal.
  • Striders 100 mile Canal Relay Race to be sponsored by the Cheshire Building Society.

May 1985

  • This Striders News was 9 x A4 pages !! Evidence of the increased participation by members in road races, too many results for this issue.
  • 2 specific weekly training sessions planned for young people.
  • Club members travel in a club organised coach to the Lincoln half marathon.
  • Entry form available for 1st club track meeting.
  • 1st article detailing the availability of sports nutrition products.

1985 – More Junior News

  • The inclusion of Juniors within the club was now gathering momentum.
  • Neil & Glen (son’s of club members Norma and Les Parkes) had run in the 1984 Chatsworth Chase Fun Run. They had continued to compete and gained mention in Striders News along with Ben Howarth (son of club member Mary) in the 4th of November 1984 results of the South Yorkshire Cross Country League meeting at Cannon Hall near Barnsley.
  • Junior Striders were again mentioned in the April 1985 Striders News having competed in cross country events at Hillsborough Park and Graves Park.
  • There was a letter in the April 1985 edition by club member Mike Ingham containing favourable words re encouraging youngsters in the club and those wishing to join.
  • In the May 1985 edition as mentioned above, the club was to provide 2 specific training sessions per week for youngsters.
  • In the June 1985 edition, it was reported that Redmires Playing Fields would be a venue for training on a Saturday morning. This turned out to be a popular location for the Juniors.

June 1985

  • Striders honoured by being given the chance to stage the 1986 Yorkshire Cross Country Champs. In Graves Park.
  • Permission given for the club to use the Redmires playing field for Saturday morning training sessions.
  • Striders now training from Queens Tower, Pine Grove, Rowlinson, Concord, Middlewood Road, Redmires and Hillsborough.
  • 15 Striders ran the London Marathon.
  • Club members appointed to establish and organise the club’s 3 weekly training sessions for youngsters.

Nike Womens Own 10k Race – Chesterfield 1985

July 1985

  • Club road running championship introduced based on 19 local races.
  • Father & son Striders, Les & Paul Eyre completed Sheffield Star Walk.
  • Striders first club tent purchased.

August 1985

  • A new editor for this edition, Mike Ingham, 11 pages. plus an 8 page cross country preview.
  • New design of club vest.
  • 4 Striders took part in the World Vets Road Running Champs at Lytham St Ann’s.
  • 8 Striders took part in the Mansfield Triathlon.
  • New section in Striders News for the young athletes in the club.
  • Cross Country training schedule in this edition.
  • Rob Leonard the new cross country secretary.

September 1985

  • Young athletes now form one fifth of club membership.
  • News that on Sun. 20th October, Striders will organise the 1st event of the South Yorks Cross Country season in Graves Park with 50 Junior Striders due to take part.
  • Problems with club kit now resolved, new style vests available.
  • Significant numbers of Striders ladies expressed interest in regular ladies meetings.
  • On the club social scene the following were offered. Family day trip to Morecambe & Blackpool. Bonfire party. Children’s Christmas party. Adults Christmas party.

3 years of Striders history and the foundations have been laid. Hard working Committee members, affiliation to running bodies, the creation of Striders News, a thriving social scene, training sessions organised, Junior Striders on the ascendency, club races organised and participation by club members in major races. Read on, although the pace of development tends to slow down !

October 1985

  • A new format for Striders News, now A5 size pages and 20 of them in this bumper edition.
  • Sponsorship agreement with Manulife terminated by the club. £200 had been received with which a club tent had been purchased.
  • Club records now collated and printed in this edition, with awards to existing holders.
  • Important info not included in Striders News for this month – Mike Ingham discussed with John Rothwell who had organised Le Jog in 1984 the feasibility of organising a relay run around the British Coast.

November 1985

  • Club membership was 277, comprising 50 ladies and 50 juniors.
  • Following an application to the Sheffield Council for Sport & Recreation, the club was granted financial assistance of up to £50 to help with the purchase of 2 large heavy duty plastic Start & Finish banners.
  • Venues for the 4 club cross country meetings were advertised as Longley Park, Ryecroft Glen, Shirecliffe & Graves Park.
  • Striders weekend in Amsterdam advertised for May 1986.

December 1985

  • Yet another change to the appearance of the club magazine. Now bound with a green & yellow A5 size cover.
  • Club to stage Yorkshire Cross Country Champs. in Graves Park on 25th of Jan next.
  • In the Worksop half Marathon on the 27th of October current members (as of 2017) recorded the following times: Dave Beech 1-21-45, Roger Stevenson 1-22-32 pb, Bill Locking 1-23-08, Alan Barnett 1-26-03, Alan Brook 1-26-43, Jean Locking 1-40-21, John Hunt 1-42-43, Norma Parkes 1-54-52 pb and Gerald de Vane 2-03-36.

Boxing Day Fun Run Graves Park – 1985

January 1986

  • The general committee of the Amateur Athletic Association agreed in principle at their September meeting, to allow a single advertising logo of no more than 50 sq. cms on club vests.
  • Striders staged the Yorks Cross Country Champs in Graves Park on the 25th.

February 1986

  • Annual membership for 1986. Seniors & New £6. Junior members £2.
  • Striders planning a British Coast run in 1987 !

March 1986

  • Striders running sub committee through Women’s Sec. Rachel Leonard, proposed that a low key 5 km open race for women only be held around Norfolk Park.
  • An article in this issue expressing reasons why women don’t run i.e. housework, demands of a young family, amusement, ridicule and hostility from male partners, relatives, friends & neighbours.
  • A report in this issue re the staging by the Striders of the Yorks Cross Country Champs in Graves Park on the 25th of January.
  • The president of the Yorkshire Cross Country Association, Fred Lewin, commented that in his 31 year membership of the YCCA, this had been the best ever event !

April 1986

  • Plans to hold a jumble sale to raise money for club funds.
  • Meeting planned to discuss the issue of fund raising for the club.
  • Visits arranged to Whitbreads Exchange Brewery and Fletchers Bakery.

May 1986

  • Striders News wins a competition held by Running Magazine for the Best Club Newsletter. 1st prize was a Minolta Photocopier.
  • Club member Mary Howarth to run the Lincolnshire 100K.

June 1986

  • Striders Tote planned to boost club funds.
  • Club member Rod Clark donates trophy awarded annually, to recognise the Young Strider to have earned recognition for their attitude, contribution and effort.
  • Large contingent of Striders run at Harewood House near Leeds for the first event in the British Deaf Association Grand Prix series. The club was connected on many occasions with the Deaf Association by Ian Shepherd, later to become Chair of the club.

July 1986

  • Club announces a twinning partnership with a running club in the German city of Bochum. The club is called Langlaufgemeinschaft Opelaner E.V. This initiative proved to be a real success, with visits to and from Sheffield and Bochum. Many lasting friendships were made !

I am indebted to Pam and Ian Shepherd for the following information, the club involvement with our German friends forms a major part of the club history.

  • Sheffield’s twin city in Germany is Bochum and Pam had been involved with the official exchange visits from the start of 1980.
  • This was with her language group at Rowlinson. In 1983 Ian was employed as a bus driver with South Yorkshire Transport and started to to plan a relay run from Sheffield to Bochum exchanging with bus drivers in Bochum. This relay took place in 1984.
  • When Ian returned and after discussions with a few fellow Striders, it was suggested that Striders should explore the possibility of arranging an official exchange with a running club in Bochum. This was agreed at the club’s 1985 AGM.
  • Pam and Ian then made contact with Sheffield City Council who said they would be prepared to acknowledge it as an official exchange if the initiative was forthcoming.
  • Pam and Ian then spoke to their friends in Bochum who made enquiries with the runners they knew. This culminated with Pam and Ian visiting Bochum in the Spring of 1986 where they attended a meeting with representatives of Langlaufgemeinschaft Opelaner e.v., the running club of the Bochum based Opel car factory. At this meeting, their Chairman Herbert Hahn went along with Pam and Ian’s proposal and a few days later the Bochum Town Hall acknowledged it as an official exchange and Ian along with Herbert went to Opel and signed a certificate ratifying the exchange.
  • In September 1986, 20 Opelaners came to Sheffield and took part in the Graves Park Chase. They were hosted by 14 Strider families.
  • The exchange lasted for 15 years, with both clubs hosting each other in alternating years.
  • After the first exchange, the following exchanges all took place over the August Bank holiday weekend.
  • The format of those weekends was a race followed by a party on the evening of the race day. Both Sheffield and the Bochum local authorities contributed a small donation towards the visits, usually a prize presented after the race.
  • Those races covered 5K fun runs,10k and half marathon distances. One year a yacht race was staged at Pinegrove. On a couple of years. Saxilby running club got involved by participating in our races at Rother Valley as well as organising a race in Saxilby.
  • One memorable event was the Derwent Dash, a 10 mile run around the Derwent and Howden Dams in Derbyshire.
  • On the year that the club ran the relay and cycle to Bochum, Striders were hosted halfway in Germany by a running club at a village called Kalkar. One of the Opelaners had a friend who lived in the village. In future exchanges, Kalkar became involved both in Germany and Sheffield.
  • Over the years great friendships were formed, some which last to this day.
  • Approximately 30 Striders and their families both hosted our German friends and visited Germany. Also numerous other Striders contributed to the success of the exchange by assisting in race organisation and fundraising.

Striders racing in Bochum, Germany

August 1986

  • Club member Mary Howarth becomes the 1st Strider to become a British National Champion by winning the British National 100K Championship.

September 1986

  • Club track meeting see’s 21 races across all male & female age groups !

October 1986

  • Club membership now 388.
  • Heavy demand for club kit.
  • 91 Striders and 7 guests ran the club 10K

November 1986

  • An extensive 2 page report on the visit to Sheffield of our Friends from Germany
  • Striders now running far and wide i.e. Tatton Park in Cheshire, Wakefield, Barnsley,
    Rockingham near Barnsley & Cleethorpes,

December 1986

  • Club Tote now well established.
  • Striders Juniors Time Trial results from the AAA / Esso Cross Country Award Scheme & the South Yorks.
  • Cross Country League indicate the continuing success and progress of Junior Striders.
  • Junior Striders Christmas party held.

Junior Striders Christmas Party – 1986

4 years of Striders history and the foundations have been laid. Hard working committee members, affiliation to running bodies, the creation of the clubs monthly newsletter, Striders News. A thriving social scene, training sessions organised, Junior Striders on the ascendancy, club races organised and members entering races both across this region and the UK and the 3 running disciplines of road, track and cross country all popular. The twinning partnership with our German friends from Bochum had become an instant success. Successive committee members have worked hard to establish the club.

Striders are now well and truly part of the social phenomenon that has landed on these shores. In Sheffield on any day of the week and at any time of the day can be seen folks out running, many of them being Steel City Striders.

A lot has happened in the 4 years of the clubs existence, the future beckoned and further reading of this club history will outline the ongoing development of a once small acorn growing towards being a mighty oak !!

Any organisation needs folks who are born leaders and individuals who drive initiatives forward. We were thankful that during these early years of the club, there was John Rothwell, Dave Ashurst, Keith Ibbotson and Ian Shepherd to guide the club through this period. They were assisted by too many to mention !

January 1987

  • Club to hold a meeting to discuss possible involvement in the forthcoming South Yorks Track League after the interest shown in the discipline last year.
  • Strider Roger Rowe reports on his run in the New York Marathon.
  • Over 50 races advertised for the year, the majority of them within easy reach of club members, an indication of the growth in running events.

February 1987

  • A review of the accounts for 1986 shows the club being financially stable. Striders has now changed from a small organisation into a well established running club.
  • Members asked to show interest in the forthcoming half & full Benidorm Marathons.
  • 7 Striders had competed in the Gateshead International Mcvities Cross Country event.

March 1987

  • A report of problems with the running surface at the Woodbourn Athletic Development Centre.
  • A demonstration on self defence for ladies to be given by club member Jack Mitchell.
  • Striders just completed it’s first year of membership to the Fell Runners Association.
  • A proposal that the club offers life membership to first claim club members who either represent their country or win a national title in open competition.

April 1987

  • Junior Striders to cycle out in the Peak District from Parsley Hay.
  • Day trip to Scarborough in September advertised for members to take part in their 6 mile road race.
  • Membership application by John Tollerfield accepted, a member who would become an outstanding competitor, setting many club records still in force 30 years later.
  • A cruise on the Peak Forest Canal aboard the Judith Mary advertised.
  • An amusing article in the newsletter covering many associated running topics, issues in life that most folks in their pre running days wouldn’t be concerned with. ie:
    • Lady members frightening the male members with their increased standards.
    • The increasing standards of Junior Striders, who poke fun at their ‘ elderly ‘ club members.
    • The obsession of training, deemed not to be good for anybody !
    • Striving for PB’s instead of PW’s Personal Worsts.
    • Avoiding first aid support by over enthusiastic St John’s staff.
    • The best dressed club in S.Yorks, attired in kit which is useless on a cold, rainy and miserable
      January day !
    • Running shoe obsession, what’s wrong with the old black pumps we all wore at school.
    • Members are denying charity shops of income.
    • Shorts are too short, should be ex Army & Navy stores, ex rugby union and fit 4 inches below the knees.
    • Members are not wearing garters to support socks soaked whilst out in the rain.
    • The choice of bin liners prior to the start of races is appalling. Liners still with waste food attached and no coloured designs.
    • Male members wearing ladies tights to keep warm, a disgusting practice !
    • Thanks to Strider Sam for some light hearted comment !

John Tollerfield Road Race Champion – 1987

May 1987

  • John Rothwell now the club’s first Coaching Officer.
  • Striders to visit the club’s twin club in Bochum, West Germany in August.

June 1987

  • After 18 months of planning following a suggestion by Mike Ingham and John Rothwell in 1985 the British Coast Relay Run +had finally got underway on the 9th of April. Whist the team were in the Applecross area in North West Scotland on the 21st of April, Club member Les Parkes age 41 tragically died. A devoted family man, with Norma his wife and 2 son’s, Glen & Neil. An all round friendly guy, much loved and respected, full of enthusiasm and encouragement. We remember his death with much sadness, a friend who left us with so many memories !!  36 days of hard running, finishing on the 14th of May.

British Coast Relay Run – 1987

July 1987

  • Mary Howarth runs the Feltham Puffers 24 hour foot race, covering 101.5 miles

August 1987

  • A special general meeting of the club is announced to discuss the possibility of the club owning it’s own premises !
  • Mike Ingham, Striders News editor is to step down and be replaced by Steve Beckett.
  • 79 Striders run in the club’s Steel City Mile event.

September / October  1987 – A joint issue.

  • The SGM called to discuss the club owning it’s own premises, led to a vote against the proposal !
  • Newsletter production problems overcome. Striders News carries on !
  • Sub committee formed to organise the club’s twinning arrangement with Opelaner e.V.  Ian & Pam Shepherd agreed to coordinate.

November 1987

  • An extremely well attended floodlit track meeting at Woodbourn Road with races varying in distance from 60 to 5000 metres.
    News of a possible trip to the indoor track at RAF Cosford near Wolverhampton.

December 1987

  • Club member John Hunt organises accommodation in London for Striders running in the 1988 London Marathon together with their family and friends.
  • John Kerr who would become an outstanding performer in club colours became a member.
  • Committee minutes in 1987 contained much discussion about problems associated with runners of other clubs wanting to join Striders, existing members failing to pay subs, members failing to respond and the work involved by the membership secretary in solving the problems arising.

January 1988

  • Article about the staging of the World Student Games in Sheffield which were due to take place in 1991.
  • 3 Striders Senior Men had run sub 2-40 marathon times in 1987.

February 1988

  • New club Chairman John Rothwell gives thanks for the work done by Ian Shepherd retiring Chairman.
  • 3 Striders at the invitation of South Yorks Orienteers take part in an event in Beeley Woods.
  • Numbers in excess of 70 run from the Queens Tower venue on a Monday evening.

March 1988

  • In pre electronic delivery days, a report on the problems associated with the distribution of the club magazine.
  • A Striders Ladies team for the first time had taken part in a major cross country championship, the Northern Women’s at Nunroyd Park, Yeadon near Leeds.
  • 5 Junior Striders picked for the Sheffield schools cross country squad.

April 1988

  • Rob & Dave Ashurst replace John Moore as joint editors of Striders News.
  • Dave Ashurst resigns as Secretary, with Mike Ingham taking over and taking on a dual role with his position of Treasurer.
  • Increased club participation in track and field athletics leads to the compilation of 20 forthcoming track meetings in this issue.
  • A full and detailed article appears re the British Olympic Appeal Day on the 15 May in Graves Park. This is both a fund raising event for the Olympic team and an encouragement for people to get involved in the world of athletics.

May 1988

  • Details of the recently introduced club family membership are given in this issue.
  • A new race on the club calendar, the 10 mile Derwent Dash around the Derwent and Howden reservoirs. This race is in conjunction with the visit of our twin running club from Bochum.

June 1988

  • On Wednesday 27th of April before the S Yorks Road Race League fixture at Loxley, club member George Maynard had died suddenly. A quiet and well liked guy who had only been running for 2 years, showing continuing improvement on the way.
  • Discussions underway with Birley Squash Club for use as a club training venue.

July 1988

  • Comments of praise and thanks from fellow athletes, Sheffield Lions Club,
  • National & Provincial Building Society and the Lord Mayor for the clubs participation in the Olympic Appeal Day.
  • Birley Squash Club recognised as a club venue on Monday evenings.

August 1988

  • John Hunt stands down as club Social Secretary, Sandra Page takes his place.
  • 96 Striders take part in the full and half Sheffield Marathon.
  • Running Magazine asks the club to stage a family fun day, promoting the idea that running benefits participation in all sports. Sponsorship raised on the day will benefit Heart research.

Sheffield Marathon Fundraising – 1988

September 1988

  • Concern in this issue of the lack of response from members on the state of training venues used and the training provided by the club !! Removal of 2 venues from the club’s information sheet brought about some strongly worded response.
  • News of the club’s intention to stage the Northern Cross Country in Graves Park in 1989.

October 1988

  • Club member Bob Marlow in talks with the Sheffield Transport club at Meadowhead concerning the club training night on Wednesdays being transferred to that venue.
  • A group of Striders travelled a fair distance north to attend the Barrow & Furness AC Open Track & Field meeting.
  • Strider Mary Howarth runs the Preston International 24 hr race, covering 109.75 mls.
  • Discussions ongoing regarding recent criticism towards the Committee.

November 1988

  • Comment that the Bochum exchange weekend had been a great success.
  • 86 runners in the 10 mile Derwent Dash and 52 ran the 3 mile fun run.
  • 47 Junior Striders gained awards in the AAA/ESSO Track award scheme.
  • 475 members in the club this month.
  • Confirmation that Striders will host the Northern Cross Country Champs in Graves Park in January.

December 1988

  • Jean Locking awarded Honorary Life Membership in recognition of becoming British ‘ Over 50’s ‘ 10K champion.

Jean Locking awarded life membership in 1988

January 1989

  • Sunday morning training runs commenced from the SWFC club gymnasium.
  • Race reports on the Buckstone Biathlon, a combination of running and cycling, starting and finishing at Redmires reservoir. The race went beyond Stanage Pole to the Buckstone below Stanage Edge and back.
  • 45 Striders ran the Worksop half marathon.
  • Suggested establishment of Standing Instructions and Guidelines.

February 1989

  • What turned out to be a memorable day on January 14th last was the hosting by Striders in Graves Park of the Northern Cross Country Champs.
  • Striders Veteran Ladies, Rachel Leonard, Claire Piddington & Sally Wakefield, took the Silver medals in the Yorkshire Veterans Cross Country Champs at Thirsk. These were the first county medals to be won by Striders. Rachel, Claire & Sally were well supported by Mary Howarth, Chris Hall, Sheena Woodhead & Norma Parkes.

March 1989

  • The first organised cycle ride for club members was to take place on the
    2nd of April.
  • Adidas became involved in a series of mid week road races. 2 events, 5K and 10K were to be held in Sheffield City Centre.
  • In celebration of the 100 years of the Yorkshire Cross Country Association, a dinner was held at the Griffin Hotel in Leeds. Striders were represented by Roger Stevenson, Dave & Rob Ashurst and Graeme Siddall.
  • 17 area track fixtures advertised with events at Woodbourn Rd, Cudworth & Rockingham.
  • Further agreement by the committee with reference to the club paying entry fees and transport costs where members run as part of a team. Decisions re this issue had been taken by the committee in 1987.
  • 4 Junior Striders represented the club at county level.
  • A report prepared on the feasibility of the club hosting the National Cross Country Champs in Graves Park. It was concluded the location was not suitable !

April 1989

  • Striders Senior Men win the South Yorkshire Cross Country Champs at Herringthorpe Valley Park in Rotherham. Pete Wakefield, Dave Bonnington, Andrew Wilkinson and John Lindley were the club’s 4 lead runners who won the title.
  • Another addition to the busy social life for club members, a 12 mile ramble starting and finishing at Longshaw.

May 1989

  • A bumper issue of Striders News, 32 pages, a reflection of the very good health the club found itself in !
  • Club membership was 507.
  • Strider John Tollerfield placed 4th in the Sheffield 10K Easter Road Race with a time of 32-29.
  • A new trophy, the George Maynard Trophy, presented by the wife of the late George Maynard will be presented annually to the fastest under 11 Junior Strider over 100m at one of the club track meetings.

June 1989

  • Strider Billy Kerr runs the Dubai half marathon in temperatures around 80f in 1-18-31.
  • A team of male Striders took part in the Manchester to Blackpool road relay resurrected after 25 years. They were placed 10th out of 47 clubs competing.
  • Strider Roger Rowe runs the London marathon in 2-38-12.
  • Club money to be invested in a Building Society a/c.

July 1989

  • Striders News editor Dave Ashurst gives news of his departure, not from the club but from his editorial duties. He was about to become the manager of Runnercare on Arundel Gate.
  • Mary Howarth and Christine Hall had run the Feltham Puffers 24 hour race in May. Mary ran 84 miles and Chris 72 miles.
  • Striders men were the 5 mile South Yorkshire Road League champions.
  • This years Canal Relay cancelled due lack of support.

Steel City 10k – Redmires 1989

August 1989

  • An enjoyable day out for the club, with members competing in the Filey cliff race.
  • Pete Wakefield, Graeme Siddall and Alan Barnett were the men’s team winners.
  • Numerous reports of fell races were an indication of the growing popularity of this running discipline for club members.

September 1989

  • News in the July issue of the cancellation of the Canal Relay from Whaley Bridge to Stenson Marina was unfounded, with the event taking place on the 13th of August.
  • A party of 50, including Striders, their family and friends took part in the 4th exchange visit with Striders twinned club Langlaufgemeinschait Opelaner e.V, this time to Bochum.
  • 23 races took place at the Striders track meeting at Woodbourn Road.

October 1989

  • Pete Wakefield won the Rund Um Die Burg Blankeinstein race in West Germany whilst with the Striders party on the exchange visit to our twin club.
  • 50 Striders and 10 guest runners competed in the 10 mile Derwent Dash, won by Iain Darley in 56-26. 31 runners competed in the fun run won by Mark Johnson.
  • The 3rd club cycle ride of the year went out to Clumber Park.

November 1989

  • John Rothwell steps down as the coordinator of Junior Striders.
  • Club membership is 496.
  • Norma Parkes steps down from her work in ordering and distributing club kit.
  • Thought provoking comments within a letter in Striders News from John Tollerfield.
    i.e. poor turnout of club members in local races, especially a recent fell race, members inferring that our club was a poor choice to join with reference to other area clubs, surprise at comments about training sessions being too fast, consider those who wish to improve by increasing mileage and intensity, formation of groups committed to improvement, the club must have direction and that is in a forward manner.
  • Results of the club’s field event champs. In which 13 men and 6 ladies took part.  The disciplines were high jump, shot putt, long jump, javelin, triple jump and discuss.

December 1989

  • Comments in this issue relating to the difficulty and the work load whilst organising the distribution of Striders News can be appreciated today ( 2017 ) 28 years later when we live in this electronic driven world.
  • A well remembered shop opened on Attercliffe Road ‘ Keep on Running ‘ A location much visited by Striders in later years.

January 1990

  • Striders compete in a AAA track meeting at Cosford.
  • Another visit planned to Sheffield in August by our running friends in Germany.

February 1990

  • A motion proposed at the AGM in March to change the club name to ‘ Athletic Club ‘ was defeated.
  • Club member Pete Wakefield had become Yorkshire Vets over 50 Cross Country Champion at York on the 14th of January.
  • Striders Ladies team claimed the silver medal at this event in their 5K race.
  • Training runs in Derbyshire titled Sunday Specials were to commence in April.
  • Resignation of Dave Ashurst announced, a member noted for his past work in driving the club forward.
  • 3 Striders competed in the Rawmarsh 5.5 mile road race on the morning of the 1st of January. No mention of what time they had gone to bed the night before.
  • The possibility of the club purchasing it’s own computer was discussed.

1990 Annual General Meeting

  • The 1990 AGM was somewhat explosive, with resignations following and because of situations discussed there began a decline in both Junior Striders and the Track and Field section of the club. Comment had been passed that T & F was never taken seriously and the move to change the name to “ Athletic Club “ a Committee sponsored motion, was defeated after some adverse comments were made between members during the debate.
  • Comments made with reference to the Junior section were not well received and as a result Janet Rothwell ( a qualified throws coach ) resigned then a number of Juniors followed as did John Rothwell who carried on with his intense involvement in coaching with Sheffield AC.
  • We can reflect and wonder upon the future direction of Striders if that meeting had been a dull affair with no contentious issues raised.
  • Only 7 members were left on the committee after the meeting to carry the club through the year. Co opted officers were appointed to help with the club administration.
  • Arguments and differences of opinion are a sometime feature within every organisation and Striders are no different. The club moved on with the help as usual of some very dedicated folks. 27 years later the club thrives, onwards and upwards !!

Junior Striders – 1990

March 1990

  • 2 club stalwarts and founder members, Janet & John Rothwell have announced they are leaving the club.
  • 54 members ran in the Barnsley TUC Classic 10K.
  • Concern expressed in a letter re the fact that the club committee is down to 7 members.

April 1990

  • Hathersage Triathlon advertised. 800 mtre swim, 18 mile bike ride & 6 mile run.
  • Ron Hill, one of the UK’s greatest runners, is to give a talk at the Pinegrove Country Club.
  • South Yorkshire Cross Country Champs. held at Stradbroke College. A successful day with Striders girls team in 3rd place, boys team in 3rd place, youths team winners, ladies in 3rd place, senior men in 3rd place and veteran men winners.

May 1990

  • Mary Howarth sets new ladies marathon club record of 3-15-45.
  • Club track meeting on the 6th of April consisted of 32 races.
  • Club to organise a Ladies 5K road race at Redmires.
  • Over 1000 compete in the Sheffield 10K road race.
  • Strider Ian Darley runs the London Marathon in 2-36-20.
  • Concern expressed at the lack of help forthcoming to assist in the running of the club.
  • Club appoints a Press Officer, Graeme Siddall.

Womens 5k – Redmires 1990

June 1990

  • John Gregory becomes first Strider to win the Hallam Chase, said to be the oldest race of it’s type in the world, first run in 1862 ! Club member Mick Derrick in 2nd place.
  • A report in this issue of the Ron Hill evening at Pinegrove and a summary of his running achievements. What an incredible read !
  • Striders ladies won the team prize in the Manchester to Blackpool relay !!
  • Resignation of Ken Richardson, one of the club’s founder members.

Manchester to Blackpool Ladies Relay winners – 1990

July 1990

  • Mary Howarth runs the UK 100K champs race at Holme Pierrepont, Nottingham in 9-45-00.
  • Christine Hall runs the Doncaster 24 hour track race and covers 107 miles.
  • John Tollerfield wins the Stainforth 10 mile, Rotherham Advertiser 10K and the Sheffield Half Marathon, in which John Kerr was 1st male vet and Rachel Leonard was 2nd lady.

August 1990

  • The Bochum exchange visit will involve a ‘ yacht race ‘ in which the distance and route remain a closely guarded secret until 45 mins. before the race starts. At this point the runners inform the timekeeper of how long it will take them. Runners must then start without wearing a watch ! At the finish the winners in each category are those finishing the nearest to their estimated time.
  • 37 Striders complete the Sheffield Full Marathon.

Junior Striders Coaches – 1990

September 1990

  • An excellent turn out of 60 runners in the ‘ Yacht Race ‘ and 34 runners in the Fun Run organised for the visit of our friends from Germany.
  • The Striders organised Ladies 5K race at Redmires attracts 72 entries of which 25 were Striders.
  • A volunteer registration form for the 1991 World Student Games appears in this issue.

October 1990

  • 65 runners in the Derwent Dash won by Pete Wakefield in 54-54. Jayne Allot was first lady in 63-59. 21 in the fun Run won by D Stamp. This event was first run in 1988.
  • John Tollerfield wins the Prince of Wales half marathon in 1-09-49. 65 Striders finished.
  • Mary Howarth ran the Bolton 40 mile event in 5-39-44 taking 2nd place.
  • 5 Striders took part in the Sheffield Triathlon. Dave Gledhill, Christine Milton, Stephen Watson, Anne Maskrey and Roger Stevenson.

November 1990

  • 1st appearance of the 18.5 mile Totley Terminator, later re named the Exterminator.
  • An article appeared in this issue penned by Strider Bill Aukland, a Sheffield Star reporter.
    He had completed the Sheffield half marathon and gained help near the finish in
    Hillsborough Park with the sight of a plunging vest of a lady hanging over the spectator barrier.
  • Christine Hall and Mary Howarth became British 24 hour record holders with a combined team total of 219 miles. Mary ran 112 miles and Christine 107.
  • Striders membership is 444.

December 1990

  • Club social scene is well advertised. 3 Christmas training runs, Gents Christmas night out and a Ladies Christmas night out.
  • The increased fragmentation of the club and the decrease in participation of members in club events has led to discussion around the establishment of a central base for the club.

January 1991

  • The club welcomes it’s 1000th member, Julia Gash
  • 1st mention ever in Striders News of Orienteering !

February 1991

  • Full page advertisements requesting volunteers for the World Student Games and a booking form for tickets for the event.
  • Striders Ladies become Yorkshire Vet’s Cross Country Champs at Thorne Park, Wakefield.
    Carol Moore, Christine Milton and Rachel Leonard were our scorers, supported by Mary Howarth, Helen Lindley, Claire Von Anrep, Sheena Woodhead and Sandra Page.

March 1991

  • Striders volunteer to set up a drinks station on the route of the Sheffield Marathon.
    The race incorporates the World Student Games Marathon.
  • Committee charged at the AGM to examine the establishment of a central venue for the club.
    Venue representatives introduced, club members who will be a point of contact at Queens Tower, Birley, Rowlinson, Pinegrove and Hillsborough.

April 1991

  • Strider Mary Howarth has her entry accepted to run in the Everest Marathon.

May 1991

  • Special General Meeting called at the Victoria Hall on Norfolk Street at which the committee will recommend that Queens Tower becomes the administrative centre of the club. The meeting will give members the opportunity to debate the situation.
  • Ian Shepherd takes on the role of Club Press Officer.
  • Mary Howarth and Christine Hall compete in the Darlington Interprint 12 hour track event.
    Mary ran 66 miles and Chris 65 miles.

Mary Haworth – Women’s 5k – Redmires 1991

June 1991

  • Rod Clark, Striders oldest member, is made an Honorary life member of the club in recognition of his victory in the British Indoor Long Jump Championship for his age group at the Kelvin Hall in Glasgow.
  • Mary Howarth is best placed lady in the Doncaster 24 hour race, running 114 miles.
    Chris Hall ran 92 miles.
  • The club is to run a drinks station in this years Sheffield Marathon.
  • Striders have now adopted Queens Tower as the administrative centre of the club after a motion was passed at the Special General meeting on the 21st of May.

July 1991

  • Striders News not produced !!

August 1991

  • Sara Watkinson confirmed her ranking as Sheffield’s number one by completing a sprint double, 100m & 200m, in the Junior Girls age group at the Sheffield Schools Track & Field Champs at Woodbourn Stadium.
  • Resignation announced of Keith Ibbotson, Striders first Chairman and founder member of the club and a very accomplished runner.
  • Anne Wilkinson 1st lady in the Blackamoor Chase.

September 1991

  • This edition contains a 4 page advertisement for the Marlow Group Limited, a company owned by club member Bob Marlow who was generous in his sponsorship directed towards encouraging participation in cross country events. Bob also supplied the club with a new tent.
  • 100 ( 93 Striders ) ladies competed in the Striders organised Ladies 5K at Redmires.

October 1991

  • Striders Christine Milton and Dave Gledhill are to take part in the World Triathlon Champs. In Queensland, Australia.
  • Strider Jenny Blizard wins the Yorkshire and Humberside Women’s Triathlon Championship and is runner up in the British Youth Triathlon Women’s Champs.

November 1991

  • Strider Anne Watson is first lady in Chesterfield Half Marathon.
  • The Bochum Exchange Group raise funds through Jumble Sales.
  • Event planning in progress to celebrate the club’s 10th anniversary. A mixture of running disciplines with events on 6 consecutive days.
  • Junior members compete on the track at Cosford and Birmingham.
  • Striders compete in the Leeds Country Way Relay

Leeds Country Way Relay – 1991

December 1991

  • The 100th edition of the club magazine.
  • Club Christmas Dinner & Disco will be held at The YMCA Shaftesbury Suite, Broomhall Rd
  • Numerous forms of club kit now available. Tracksuit tops, Sweatshirts, T Shirts, long & short sleeve, Men’s vests & shorts, Ladies vests & shorts, Viloft tops, Tracksters,  Hooded tops.

January 1992

  • Worthy of mention is the Rod Clark trophy. Rod is Striders oldest member. The trophy was awarded by Rod to the Junior member who showed the most dedication and improvement in the year.
  • Other notable achievements by club members in 1991 mentioned in this issue and not mentioned previously in this history.
  • John Tollerfield selected for Yorkshire in the Inter Counties 20 mile Champs. Running the distance in 1-48-42.
  • Christine Milton, Ladies winner of the Wombwell 5.
  • Mary Howarth, Ladies winner in the White Peak Marathon.
  • Anne Wilkinson, Ladies winner in the Blackamoor Chase.
  • Anne Watson, Ladies winner in the Swallownest 6 and Ladies winner in the Bassetlaw Half Marathon.
  • An interesting report to say the least by Mary Howarth on her run in the Everest Marathon on the 2nd of November. A remarkable achievement by a remarkable lady. 59 runners completed the full course, including Mary in 8hrs 42 mins.
  • Doug Thomson edits his last Striders News.
  • Juniors again compete at Cosford and Birmingham.

February 1992

  • Mike Ingham, a previous editor, again takes on the role of editor of Striders News.
  • 3 Striders competed in the 48 mile Rowbotham’s Round Rotherham Run: Mary Howarth 8-57-34, Preston Grundy 9-14-55 and Peter Morris 10-02-59.
  • Provisional programme of 12 events announced for September to celebrate the club’s 10th anniversary.

March & April 1992

  • Unfortunately March & April editions either not retained or not produced !

May 1992

  • 77 Striders run the Sheffield 10K
  • 86 athletes turned out in the Striders Track meeting in April. 8 new club records achieved.
  • Striders compete in an indoor open meeting at Birmingham.

June 1992

  • City of Sheffield Sports Development & Events Unit thank Striders for the help given at the Reebok Festival of Road Running held in the City Centre.

July 1992

  • Jenny Blizard wins the National Junior Triathlon Champs. In Wiltshire.

August 1992

13 Striders run the full Sheffield Marathon and 69 compete in the Half distance.

September 1992

  • Looking back through the Striders News in this year, there is an appreciation of the hard work and time spent by members in organising the programme of events to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the club in September.
  • Here are full details of that programme during the week of Sun 13th to Sun 20th
  • Sun – Special Run in Chatsworth.
    Mon – Paper Hash run at Birley
    Tues – Point to Point race from Pinegrove
    Wed – Orienteering event and junior fun run from Graves
    Thurs – Striders 5K and Junior 3K in Norfolk Park
    Frid – Track meeting at Woodbourn Stadium
    No event on the Saturday
    Sun – Striders 10K and Fun Run at Redmires
  • A 10th anniversary tee shirt was produced.

October 1992

  • An interesting article from Strider Julian Paul in which he suggests a slight change of name for the club to increase the visibility of the fact that we are Sheffield based i.e. Sheffield Striders Running Club.
  • 10 Striders return with medals from the South Yorkshire Track & Field Champs. at Herringthorpe, Rotherham. Juniors also competed.

November 1992

  • Warnings in this issue of the danger posed by Autumnal bracken which gives off poisonous cancer causing spores.
  • An appreciation of the work done by club members, 28 0f them, in distributing Striders News on foot / bike car in pre electronic days.
  • Striders Roy Kitson, Julian Paul, Terry Gomersall, Dave Bonnington and Roger Stevenson competed in the World Veterans Road Running Champs. staged at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.
  • 10 Striders competed in the 60 mile Leeds Country Way Relay. 6 legs, each run by 2.
  • 1st report of Striders running in the Great North Run.
  • A variety of reports on the events celebrating the club’s 10th anniversary with 248 taking part over the week.
  • Our friends from Germany took part in the celebrations.
  • Strong comments from some members against Julian Paul’s suggestion that there should be a name change for the club.
  • Juniors compete in the SY Cross Country events at Hillsborough and Campsall.
  • December 1992
  • An article by club secretary at the time, Roger Stevenson, promoting the establishment of a club Point to Point Challenge ie. Sheffield to Barnsley / Rotherham / Doncaster / Chesterfield & Worksop. Surprisingly little response, the initiative never started
  • Strider John Kerr worth a mention for his high placings in local and national road races over the past 10 years.
  • Juniors compete on the track at Cosford.

January 1993

  • This edition contained the Annual Report for 1992. It’s worth mentioning here a good number of the names of members involved in club organisation.
  • The 1992 Committee had been
  • Chairman – Iain Colquhoun
  • Secretary – Roger Stevenson
  • Treasurer – Norma Parkes
  • Membership Secretary – Les Eyre
  • Track & Field Secretary – Alan Mitchell
  • Road Secretary – Keith Hale
  • Cross Country Secretary Peter Wilkinson
  • Social Secretary – Rose Nelson
  • Co-opted Officers Minutes Secretary – Anne Wilkinson
  • Striders News Editor – Mike Ingham
    Coaching Officers – Iain Colquhoun, Paul North, John Wilkinson, Trevor Chambers, Martin Sunderland and Pete Dye
  • Press Officer – Ian Shepherd
  • Striders News Distribution – Doug Thomson
  • Twinning Coordinators – Pam & Ian Shepherd
  • Photographer – Norma Parkes
  • Club Kit Coordinators – Diane & Chris Stamp Barbara & Martin Miller
  • Archivist – Roger Stevenson
  • Venue Reps – Queens Tower ( Mon ) – Anne & Steve Watson
  • Birley – Sue & Mick Bragger
  • Norton – Christine Hall
  • Norton ( juniors ) John Wilkinson
  • Pinegrove – Keith Hale
  • Queens Tower ( Thurs ) George Appleby
  • Hillsborough ( Frid ) John Crossland
  • Hillsborough ( Sun ) Barry Wiles and Rod Clark for his commitment to Junior Striders

February 1993

  • Full page spread showing the new route of the 1993 Sheffield Marathon.
    One of many variations over the years, with this new route starting and finishing at the Sheffield United ground on Bramall Lane, going out to Totley at it’s furthest point.

March 1993

  • Contained a report on the first and last use of Hollinsend Playing Fields as a club cross country venue on the 31st of January.
  • News of Striders visiting our twin club in Bochum in what is the 8th year of the partnership.
  • Trunce 93 dates advertised, still going strong 20+ years later.

April 1993

  • A report on the attendance of Junior Striders in February at the Sheffield Ice Sports Centre on Queens Road in Sheffield.
  • Still a small intake of Juniors into the club.

May 1993

  • Mike Ingham, Striders News Editor, gives notice of his resignation.
  • A report on Striders running in the National Cross Country Champs at Parliament Hill Fields, London, in a field of 2156 runners.
  • Striders take out a 6 month membership at the Northern General Sports Injury Clinic

June & July 1993

  • June & July editions for 93 not produced – This was a result of editorial resignation and difficulty in finding a replacement !

August 1993

  • Doug Thomson takes on the role of Editor on a temporary basis.
  • A shortage of news for publication made this edition just a double side A4 containing South Yorkshire League Cross Country dates. New members and resignations, a Sunday Special run, news of the Percy Pud, 1993 Christmas Party and a photo of past Chairman Ian Shepherd sat on a large pile of Stones beer cans donated for a reception being held by the British Deaf Sports Council of which Ian was Press Officer.

September 1993

  • Still publication problems, this edition without it’s usual front cover and just 8 pages.
  • Sad news that Queens Tower on Park Grange Road has closed and no longer available for club training runs.
  • A thank you letter produced from Norwich Union, sponsors of the 1993 Sheffield Marathon recognising the help from the club in manning a drinks station.

October 1993

  • Sheffield Works and Social Club on East Bank Road being used as a replacement venue for Queens Tower on a trial basis.
  • Strider Mary Picksley recorded as 1st Lady Vet in a time of 1-27-08 in the July Prince of Wales Half Marathon starting and finishing at Herringthorpe Stadium in Rotherham.
  • Strenuous attempts being made to find a permanent replacement venue for Queens Tower
    Venues considered – Ponds Forge, Hallamshire Tennis Club, Graves Leisure Centre,
    Davy’s Sports & Social Club, YMCA Broomhall, SUFC Bramall Lane, Birley Squash Club,
    Goodwin Centre on Northumberland Road, Woodbourn Road Track and the Sheffield Works building on East Bank Road.

November 1993

  • Sheffield Works on East Bank Road now the official replacement for Queens Tower.
  • Striders donated £58 towards the staging of the 1993 Special Olympics in Sheffield.
  • A report on a very successful visit to our twin club in Bochum, Germany.
    51 Striders attended with friendships renewed and made. Races were entered with 3 distances on offer.
  • An invitation was accepted by our German friends to come to Sheffield in August 1994.
  • A report by Julian Paul on the Leeds Country Way Relay in September in which the following Veteran Striders won the Vets trophy. John Gregory, Dave Sedgewick, Bob Pringle, Dave Bonnington, Mike Goss, Dave Parry, John Kerr, Pete Wakefield, John Robinson, John Cutts, Steve Ludlow & Martin Rhodes.

December 1993

  • A new editor for Striders News announced. Dave Beech will take over in January
  • Positive comments re the use of the Sheffield Works Department as a training venue.
  • Strider Andy Oxley asks for anyone interested in playing 5 a side soccer at the SWD Sports Club to contact him.
  • Juniors continue to run in Cross Country events.

A pause now for reflection and comment

10 years on and the baby that was has now fully grown !

Reading through these pages and your breath is almost taken away by the extent to which the club has developed.

Although mentioned before, the following words / statements are an indication of a special organisation.

  • Development and foundations
  • Members contributions
  • Striders kit in it’s many forms
  • Establishment of training venues
  • Ongoing increases in club membership
  • Affiliation to various running organisations
  • Lands End to John O’ Groats
  • A life changing experience being a Strider
  • Communication problems both arisen and solved
  • Typing and photo copying issues
  • Junior Striders
  • Members qualifying as officials
  • Canal Relays
  • Major events staged by the club
  • A valued connection with the Sheffield Deaf Club
  • Twinning arrangement with our German friends in Bochum
  • Rise in popularity of track and fell running
  • British Coast Relay Run
  • The following Striders achieving outstanding results
  • Mary Howarth, Christine Hall, John Tollerfield, John Kerr, Pete Wakefield, Rachel Leonard.
  • Ann Watson and Mary Picksley
  • The occasional club cycle ride
  • Honorary life members Jean Locking Mary Howarth Rod Clark Ron Hill
  • Sponsorship from club member Bob Marlow
  • Club records, some long established.

The rise and fall of club membership has always been a point of discussion and will continue to be so. Currently whilst I compose this history ( October 2017 ) we have around 550 members. In May 1989 we had over 500 members and arguably we were the biggest club in the city at that time. That claim is supported by the fact that our members were fully paid up whereas it was usual in other clubs that member numbers were inflated by including those in debt to a club.

We were again arguably one of the best and still are one of the best clubs in the North in terms of creativity and organisation. These facts are borne out by by events that we once had and are still organising i.e. Coast run, Lands End to John o’ Groats, Chatsworth Chase, Northern and area cross country events. South Yorkshire 5 mile road league, Percy Pud, Dronfield Way Relay and Sheffield Way relay.

The recording of our history is some task, to write a book is nigh impossible.

I do hope the manner in which I have set out the above is acceptable.

Your comments and criticisms are more than welcome and any omissions I would be glad to hear of, both appreciative and contentious !!

The recording of the club history will continue and the demise of our club magazine in paper form will make the task harder. Informing club members has bowed to the presence of on line communication. Thankfully we have committee meeting minutes in paper form still a source of reference.

I will carry on that’s for sure, let’s hope I am around long enough to see the job through.

Alas I can no longer run and that saddens me more than you can all imagine.

I run in my dreams and I think of all the running I once did.

Let’s be hearing from you !

Roger can be contacted via the Contact Form