Record attendances have been achieved at Derby’s Markeaton and Alvaston parkruns, the popular 5K events for runners of all levels of ability and experience.

The New Year’s Day event at Markeaton Park attracted 831 participants – the highest ever – making it the 18th largest parkrun in the UK on 1 January. Over the last year numbers have grown to a weekly regular attendance of over 500 runners, and more than 30 volunteers, making it one of the largest in the East Midlands. On Saturday 11 January 725 runners took part, a new peak.

On Christmas Day, while many people were thinking about their turkey dinner, a record 379 runners were taking part in the parkrun at Alvaston Park. The record didn’t last long as it was smashed on New Year’s Day with 585 runners joining in.

Gill Richardson, co-event director of Markeaton parkrun, said:

“We are delighted at the success and growth of parkrun within Derby over the years and it is fantastic to see the popularity growing year on year. We are extremely grateful for the ongoing support of our volunteers who support the event and we are proud of our community links, including our Duke of Edinburgh Award volunteers. We look forward to parkrun being a continued success for the community for many years to come.”

Councillor Robin Wood, Derby City Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Tourism, said:

“This is a brilliant example of how we are working with people in our local communities to help them make the most of their local parks, and we are pleased to work with groups such as parkrun, who create great opportunities for people to enjoy being active.”

Both parkruns take place at 9am every Saturday. There is also a junior 2K parkrun for 4 to 14 year olds at Markeaton Park at 9am every Sunday. All are free to enter but you need to register on either the Markeaton or Alvaston parkrun website before the first time you take part.