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News - 28th January 2020

parkrun profile: Millennium Country, Forest of Marston Vale

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Millennium Country parkrun, Forest of Marston Vale in Bedfordshire launched in March 2019. In less than a year, they’ve already welcomed more than 3,000 different people!

 

Beverley Gous, Event Director from Millennium Country parkrun, tells us more about her home event…

 

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I discovered parkrun when doing the Couch to 5k programme and I was instantly hooked. It was so easy to come back to – and only a few minutes from my house.

 

With Millennium Country, I wanted to help make parkrun accessible to a whole new community and neighbourhood, in the hope that they too, would love it as much as I do.

 

As Helen Gardner, one of our Run Directors says: “I love parkrun because it is an achievable goal for ordinary people. I got involved because I wanted a local event that I didn’t need to drive to”.

 

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Our event takes place at Forest of Marston Vale, Millennium Country Park, Marston Moretaine. Set in a lovely new forest area, it’s an out-and-back route, alongside the beautiful Stewartby Lake, and it’s extremely flat.

 

Being an out-and-backer, we’re a very social event with parkrunners high-fiving each other in both directions, and with less than 9m of elevation gain, it’s one for those not a fan of hills!

 

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Although not actually on our course, you cannot miss the Forest of Marston Vale Wind Turbine, which stands 120m high and can be seen in the distance, for miles, as well as when you come back around Stewartby Lake, towards the parkrun finish line.

 

Previously home to the massive Stewartby Brickworks and a number of landfill sites, the Forest of Marston Vale was created to bring tree coverage in the area from an incredibly low 3%. Currently it’s 15%, but the goal is 5 million more trees.

 

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Whenever you visit our parkrun and the Forest Centre, your money helps to plant more trees. Stewartby Lake also used to be a clay pit, but was filled in the 1970s and now is home to a diverse variety of wildlife.

 

We are not the biggest event in the world, nor the smallest. We average around 150-200 parkrunners each week and we love our parkrun family.

 

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For our post-parkrun coffee, we head to the Lakeview Cafe, located at the Forest Centre, which offers delicious breakfasts, cakes and beverages and 10% off on production of your parkrun barcode.

 

The perfect end to a perfect parkrun morning!

 

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