Preston is a city in Lancashire. Avenham and Miller parks are 2 of Preston’s parks and are the ones that Preston parkrun is in (mainly Avenham park). The city and the park are very accessible on lots of different modes of transport. If you drive there is a carpark next to the station at Fishergate shopping centre (think you have to pay), Preston station is pretty much next to the top of the park although is still a few minutes walk so allow time, I believe there are 2 exits from the station, one has Fishergate shopping centre infront of it and the other just a road- if you come out of this one turn right then right again. However if you come out in front of Fishergate then turn right and walk up some stairs. Then left at the top and it is either the first or second right turning. You’ll come in at the top of the park however a walk down the steep hill towards the café/ toilets and river will be the meeting point. On that note toilets are next to the meeting point and near the start along with a café which is only serving through a window.
When I visited I arrived pretty early at around 8.15 so after having a little chat to the volunteers and run director who made me feel very welcome, I decided to go for a 1 mile lap warmup around the course where I also had a chat with someone after about halfway round and was asking me about my home parkrun (Harrow Lodge) and chatting about various parkruns in the area.
When I got back it wasn’t long to go before the start, so I did some stretching until the volunteer doing the briefing rang the bell. At most parkruns I’ve been to it’s the run director who does the briefing, however here one of the runners did it, he explained the course for first timers and the usual safety notes. After which we made our way to the start which was just in front of the bridge that trains go over.
The course is 3 anti clockwise laps and all on tarmac (3rd lap turn left onto path for finish line), it has a bit of a hill at one end however lots of downhill and long flat paths so overall it’s still a pretty fast course in my opinion. So from the start with the river on your right, head straight down until you reach a marshal where you have a slight left then right and (yes) up the hill which is like a spiral, take it easy as the course is 3 laps.
At the top of that you go straight and then a steep downhill (mind the humps) and straight towards a tunnel,
After going through that it’s a lovely straight path until you get to another tunnel on your right and through that, (marshal was there), left then back under another bridge and slight right through a gate. This brings you back to the river on your right and shortly after that you’ll be back to where you started. As the course is 3 laps you then have another 2 laps to complete. After 3 laps turn left onto another path and it’s around 100 metres to the finish. Like usual timers will be there and at the end someone will give you a token. Barcode scanners are on the field all spread out.
After helping to put the equipment away I then had a couple of teas from the café window and sat on the bench and chatted to some volunteers, before heading back to my hotel to check out on time and then headed to Sandcastle waterpark in Blackpool to do the waterslides, I’d like to mention also I went to Blackpool pleasure beach the night before and watched the illuminations turn on too! Great little night away and change of scenery!