The growth of women’s running, one of the biggest sea changes in our sport over the past decade, is a complex phenomenon. There is no question, however, that a few significant seeds of that growth were planted in Devon in 1998, the year Pauline Beare co-founded the Women’s Running Network (along with Peggy Wiseman) with the goal of inspiring women of all ages to run.
The idea struck a cord, and from a handful of members based in Exeter, the network has grown into the largest group of women-only running clubs in the UK. Beare’s passion and enthusiasm have been responsible for launching thousands of running careers.
"Its success," says Beare, "is based on a simple philosophy: living all women, whatever their age, size or ability, the opportunity to run together to improve their health, confidence and safety."