WITH the arrival of the ‘Mini Beast from the East’ last weekend, almost all running events in South Wales and the surrounding areas were one by one cancelled or postponed.

Barry junior parkrun on Sunday was one of these events affected and as a result had to be cancelled due to snow and extreme temperatures, but will return to Romilly Park this coming Sunday at 9am.

Luckily the snow had not arrived early enough to affect Barry Island parkrun and so, shivering and with chattering teeth, 115 people descended on the promenade to run, jog or walk the 5km course.

The strong winds and wind chill of minus 4 degrees made the event a bit more challenging than usual but that didn’t stop 13 First Timers from taking part.

It was Alfie Davies that crossed the finish line first in a time of 18:38, a new personal best time. He was followed by two first timers, Michael Morgan of Penarth & Dinas Runners completing the two lap course in 20:21 and third place was Matt Draper stopping the clock at 20:34.

For the ladies it was Evie Watkins crossing the line first in 22:03, 8th place overall. Caitlin Williams of Seriously Mad Runners was second in a time of 23:44 and third for the ladies was first timer Rosalie Heller in 24:11.

Last Saturday was also National Sleep in Day and to mark the event and get those few extra minutes in bed, runners were invited to save time getting ready by coming along in their pyjamas.

Many of the runners took advantage of the opportunity to wear a few extra layers and took part in their nightwear.

Making the big step from volunteering to running was Alison Woolcock who can usually be found helping to marshal the course at Barry Island on Saturday mornings.

This week she took the plunge and lined up with the rest of the runners on the start line.

After being challenged to run by regular parkrunner Julie Smith, Alison completed her very first parkrun, earning a donation for Ovarian Cancer Action in the process, and has since vowed to return…to volunteer.

A huge appreciation has to be given to the 27 volunteers that made the event possible in bitterly cold conditions.

Without these helpers that give up their time on a Saturday morning Barry Island parkrun would not exist.

This week’s volunteers were: Ian Thorne, Tessa Mathews, Dave Shields, Ian Warburton, Evan Warburton, Ben Butler-Madden, Kirstine Hughes, Joanna Mathews, Simon Parker, Paul Kehl, Harriet Keil, John Deakin, Michael Gibbs, Liz Mallen, Lisa James, Joanne Bagwell, Hilary James, Rachel Jones, Rachel Gibbs, Sarah Thomas, Jamie Coborn, Sarah Western, Lynn Coborn, Kayleigh Marie Thomas, Gabrielle Western and John Elward.

Barry Island and Barry junior parkrun are organised and run entirely by volunteers and rely on helpers to make sure these free, timed events can take place each week.

If you would like to get involved either by taking part or volunteering, you can get in touch via the Facebook pages or by email at barryislandoffice@parkrun.com or for Barry junior parkrun at barry-juniorsoffice@parkrun.com