What’s this all about then?
This is one of those club events that provides a bit of a diversion from the normal Wednesday night training. You can run it as a competitive event (no prizes though), or you can regard it as a pleasant social summer’s evening outing with some exercise thrown in. There’s a mixture of road and off-road, so something for everyone.
Where is the start?
The race starts in Hampton in Arden, in Fentham Road near the library at the junction with Butcher Road. There can be traffic in this area so do not stand in the roadway when waiting for the race to start.
How do we get there?
Meet at Tile Hill Station where you have two options:
- meet at the station at around 7pm, in time to catch the London Midland 7.15pm-ish train to Hampton in Arden. From Hampton-in-Arden station it’s a 500-metre walk to the start point in Fentham Road.
- meet at the station at 6.30pm to 6.45pm, depending on how fast you want to run, and run the route in reverse, arriving at the start point in time to meet the train travellers.
Remember, that if you want to take the train you’ll need either some money for the rail fare or, if you are a super-Vet, your travel pass.
How long is the run?
From the start to Tile Hill station is about 9km. A good bit of the route is off-road with some narrow footpaths and a number of stiles and gates to negotiate.
What’s the terrain like?
The first part of the route is along Fentham Road and down Marsh Lane on a normal paved roadway. It then follows marked footpaths and some short section of paved road. The paths cross cultivated fields and open meadows, with some wooded sections. On a summer’s evening it is a delightful run across rural Warwickshire.
Keep an eye out for exposed roots and/or low branches in the wooded areas. Normally there are no cattle in the fields crossed.
What’s the route?
From the library in Fentham Road it goes along Fentham and turns left into Marsh Lane and goes down Marsh Lane to the bottom where it follows a short footpath section before emerging onto the lane again. After crossing the A452 the path eventually picks up part of the Heart of England Way through to Berkswell Church. From the church the route then crosses the road and follows off-road footpaths across to Baulk Lane, then over to Truggist Lane where it turns left and follows Truggist Lane until just before Jasmine Cottage where it turns right onto a footpath through to Hodgetts Lane. It turns right at Hodgetts Lane and follows the road over the railway bridge until Avondale where it picks up a footpath on the left of the road leading to Nailcote Lane where it turns left and follows the road to the traffic lights. Just three or four metres after the traffic light pole, but before the bridge, the path turns right and crosses the edge of Nailcote Hall golf course, turning left just before the mobile phone mast to emerge onto Duggins Lane. It finishes with a short road section down Duggins Lane to the station at Tile Hill.
What footwear/clothing do I need?
In July the ground is normally firm enough to wear ordinary road shoes. You might not want to wear your best running shoes though, because if it has rained in the days prior to the event then you will come across some soft, even muddy, patches. If you want to wear studs or off-road shoes bear in mind that the starting and finishing stretches of the run are on road.
Depending on the recent weather there may be a few brambles or nettles growing near the paths. For the hardy types this just adds to the fun, but those of a more delicate construction may want to wear long socks or running tights.
How will I find my way?
People have been known to take wrong turns. The paths are signed but you need to keep your wits about you. There will be printed maps available for parts of the route, available on Club nights leading up to the event, and handed out at the start.
You can download maps of the the route from here
Where do I shower afterwards?
Dont’ bother. Go to the pub (Bell Inn in Tile Hill) with everybody else.
A club night event with a bit of a challenge.
Travel by train to the start point and then race your clubmates back to the finish.