In short: Tough hills throughout In full: New course much tougher than previous years. Collecting baggage at the end of race needs improving. It was much better when Town Hall was used for HQ. Toilets, don't ask! Although areas for improvement it is a great event. Date of review: February 11, 2015
In short: My toughest half yet, but fantastically tough. Worth the trip In full: I signed up expecting a flat, fast PB potential race, how wrong was I!? Instead I hoped to practice a negative split strategy; a timing clock at the halfway mark aided this, however the climbs made it very difficult to achieve!
The start was initially strange with the snr men separated from the remaining field I guess due to the narrow park paths but for me it made it brilliant as you could look across and see runners everywhere and the merge point was nice for me too.
As for comments of crowding I found the pen time markings very good in this race and I didn't experience any overcrowding at all, not because I am slow either (I was still within the top 400 of over 2000).
I found the medal to be excellent as I like bespoke, event-specific ones as a pose to the generic cheap ones. To get a tech t-shirt in with the price was also a plus point. As stated though there was nothing except drinks at the finish and a banana or something would have been very welcome after a tough run.
The marquee being a mud bath and the toilets (although I've seen much worse) were my biggest negative points but is so minor as the race was brilliant! Date of review: February 10, 2015
In short: Challenging as quite Hilly In full: Well organised, did this in 2014 and will enter 2016 as its a good 1st half marathon to start off the year. Seemed to be more hills this year probably would have got a PB if it was flat but nevertheless good training !
Well organised as ever, marshals on hand and encouraging.
Only criticism is the lack of baggage handlers, took ages to get my bag back. Date of review: February 4, 2015
In short: Challenging new course but well worth it! In full: This was a very cold, hilly and challenging course but excellent organisation all round and fantastic marshals out on the course. Some lovely scenery to take your mind off the hills! Good value too and a decent t-shirt. Date of review: February 3, 2015
In short: Great , tough half In full: A fantastic start to the year with a hilly, cold run. Tough and rewarding, too. Well organised with great marshals - I preferred the new course and the marquee HQ rather than Town Hall. Only suggestions for organisation would be to send the numbers out in advance and have more people manning the bag drop. Date of review: February 3, 2015
In short: Tough new course, indifferent tech shirt, lack of goodie bag In full: First long run of year but worth turning up for. New the course had changed but I thought the 2 1/2 extra hills were abit harsh at the time but on finishing knew they would help in the year ahead. Tough but do it every year and will keep coming back. Date of review: February 2, 2015
In short: Bumpy with hills, cluttered start In full: Pros: scenic rural hilly course that really tests you with no sustained periods on the flat. Out of town. Nice marshals. Decent technical t-shirt.
Cons: parking (plan it well before arriving as you will have a walk), therefore numbers really should be posted. Very cluttered start in the park and for some time after, No water until mile 5. Traffic on roads in places. Naff medal.
I really enjoyed the course with the undulations. Reminded me a lot of St Albans half (large park cluttered start, rural course crossing motorway and lots of hills). Number collection was easy (but who wants to do it). The course is better than the flattish roadies. Date of review: February 2, 2015
In short: Too many runners In full: There were far too many runners running this race. There was very little space out back and I never had a free run. It would have been nice to have had a banana or a chocolate bar at the end of the race. The queue to getting coffee was far too long as was the queue to get your bag. Date of review: February 2, 2015