Welcome Pack

We warmly welcome you to Dereham Runners AC. The following information should answer any queries that you may have about the club, but if you have any additional questions - please ask!

Dereham Runners prides itself on catering for runners of all abilities. We want to support you in reaching your personal goals, which may include: weight loss, general fitness, taking part in races, running a marathon or simply running for pleasure. We know that running as part of a group makes objectives more attainable ...... and so much more fun!

We are an inclusive club. The current membership of over 100 spans a wide age range, including a thriving junior section. Over one third of our members are female.

Joining a running club for the first time can feel a little daunting. However, we hope you will find us friendly, supportive and approachable. Remember, we have all been in your (running) shoes at some point!

Club History
A local sports shop owner formed the club in April 1986, following interest from a group of runners lacking training facilities. A Norwich Olympiad coach subsequently offered the club his services.
Advertisements were placed and the first meeting and training session took place at The Jentique and Metamec Sports and Social Club. It soon moved to Dereham Rugby Club where floodlit evening training was available.

Dereham Runners was put on a more formal footing when a constitution was drawn up in January 1988. The club moved to its existing location at the Neatherd High School in early 1996, with use of a clubhouse and school facilities, including regular use of the sports hall for juniors training.

As a grassroots club, Dereham Runners serves the town and surrounding villages.
We appreciate that gifted athletes will move to bigger clubs for greater competition, but take pleasure in the early nurturing of talent. By the way, Francis and Christopher Baker were with Dereham Runners as juniors, moved to CONAC and now represent Great Britain. In more recent times Ashley Harrell has also competed for GB U23's.

We hope you will want to join our club to benefit from being part of a local running community!
However, we are happy to provide a month's trial free of charge for newcomers. This allows plenty of time to try us out!

After your first subscription, membership fees are due annually on the 1st April; the current fees can be found on the web site. We try to keep charges as low as possible, in keeping with our inclusive ethos.

We provide indoor circuit training during late October to around Easter, for which a small additional fee for seniors is charged to cover the cost of Northgate High School hall hire.

Please note that we have a club 'Code of Conduct' and expect members to abide by this at all times.

Honorary Members
Honorary places may be allocated to members who have served the club paying senior subscriptions for 20 consecutive years or made a significant contribution, at the discretion of the committee.

Club Committee
A committee is elected at an AGM and meets monthly to plan the running of the club, safety, organisation of races, coaching, etc. Committee officers are always keen to hear members' views about how things can be improved. Committee members and contact details can be found on the club website.

Club Coaching
The club currently has eight UK Athletics Qualified coaches:

Seniors coaches:
Geoff Fearn (Level 2), Neville Knights (Level 2), John Richardson (Level 1), Todd Lake (LIRF), Richard Egle (LIRF), Steven Rix (LIRF).
Juniors Coaches:
Garry Slattery (Level 2), Clive Baker (Level 2), Ann Baker (Level 1).

Coaching Sessions
Both junior and senior club members meet at Neatherd High School every Monday and Thursday evening: 6.30pm - 8.00pm (except bank holidays). During Autumn and Winter the Monday sessions move to Northgate High School for indoor circuit training (seniors only), whilst the juniors enjoy sports hall athletics at Neatherd High School.

We enjoy use of the school 8-lane running track during the Summer months and, with the provision of our own floodlighting, are also able to use the facilities during the Winter. When inclement weather makes it unsuitable to train on the grass, we have several sites in Dereham where planned training sessions can take place in a safe environment.

Regular organised runs take place during the Summer months and include coastal and forest sites. Additionally, members also meet informally for weekend runs.

Coaching sessions are either speed or endurance based and will always include a range of warm up excercises/drills. Sessions cater for all abilities, with varying duration and intensity. We strongly recommend that you build up running fitness gradually and carefully, especially if you are new to the sport.

Running Clothes
Although running is a relatively cheap sport, it is worth spending a bit of money on running shoes. It is not advisable to train in cross trainers, tennis shoes or fashion trainers. Modern running shoes have shock absorbers and built in stability. Professional advice is recommended (rather than buying blindly off the internet) from one of the specialist shops listed on our site. They will be able to check visually or using a gait analysis machine, the type of shoe best suited to your running style.

A high visibility reflective jacket or waistcoat must be worn in poor light/during night running. Spare jackets/vests are available from the clubhouse.

It is very important for female runners to invest in a good quality sports bra.

Club Kit
We ask members to wear club vests during organised races, available from the Club Secretary.
Additional clothing bearing the club logo can be purchased. This can usually be subsidised by the club and offered at reduced price.

Sport Shop Discounts
A discount for Club members may be available from specialist sports shops - see the website Links page.

Race Entries
Club members pay at least £2 less than runners unattached to a running club. Please inform the club before you enter your first race to update your England Athletics status to "competitive".

Norfolk Road Race/Cross Country Calendar
An active race scene exists across Norfolk and many club runners travel further afield(including abroad) to race. Whilst racing does not suit everyone, it is important to note that runners of all abilities regularly take part. Please inform the club before you enter your first race to update your England Athletics status to "competitive".

The Norfolk racing fixture is on the club website Events section.

There are several locations where 5km Park Runs (www.parkrun.org.uk) are organised both in Norfolk and nationally. These races are well supported by both experienced and less experienced runners. They are considered a good platform for taking the next step to running longer distances.

Dereham 10 mile and 5K races
Every year we organise a 10 mile race (May) and a 5km race (Aug). We gratefully ask all members to assist in these races as they bring welcome funds and increase club visibility.

Round Norfolk Relay
Held in September each year, this is a 17-person relay covering approx. 193 miles over 24 hours. The club has participated in this since 2007. As the Round Norfolk Relay requires considerable organisation, a strong back up team is required. The event provides members with a great team building opportunity!

Club handicaps
Informal races are held periodically over a 300m (track), 1000m (road) and a 3.58 mile cross country course. The races use a handicap system.

Club Grand Prix
The Committee elects twelve races for members to participate in over the year, with the best 10 results counted. To qualify, a minimum of 7 races need to be completed.
An overall male/female winner prize is awarded at the end of the year along with 2nd/3rd place prizes.

Club 100 Standards
The Club 100 Standards is for all senior members. It provides an incentive for running race events over the calendar year.
When members have reached 100 points over the year they will receive an end of year memento.
Special awards will be given to the highest scoring male and female.
Jaquie Wood keeps a record of member participation in all races, along with points allocated. Please give her your race details on club training sessions or email jaqs.wood@sky.com

Race Training
If you wish to race you will need to train in addition to attendance at the club coaching sessions. Coaches can provide you with a training programme on request.
It should be emphasised that increases in time/distance need to be gradual to avoid injury. Please listen to your body and ensure you get adequate rest between racing sessions. The Members Area has details of exercises to improve your race performance and reduce risk of injury.

Members can see our web page for massage/physiotherapy/chiropractic links to other sites.

The club is affiliated to England Athletics. England Athletics have arranged public liability insurance for its members acting within its rules/code of conduct. It is up to members to arrange personal accident insurance should they so wish.

Individual affliliation to English Athletics
Affiliation is part of the club membership fee. For those intending to take part or regularly competing in races, England Athletics require individual registration. The club makes this declaration and will update your England Athletics status to "competitive" in the Members Area.  Please inform the club before you enter your first race to update your England Athletics status to "competitive".

Social Events
Each year the club hosts a BBQ in August, a Christmas social and an awards ceremony in early January. Additional social events may also be held throughout the year.

The website holds your membership details in the secure My Profile section, including email address. Email addresses will be used to communicate club information only. Members' details are for club administration only and will not be passed to third parties.

Club Website
Vist the website for membership fees and up-to-date information including the Members Area and race calendar details.

Page last updated – January 2014.

Make an enquiry !


Get in touch

Committee, Coaches & Welfare Officers

Todd Lake


Jonathan Burton

Vice Chair

Emma Potter-Campbell