Track rant

WiltshireWonder

Active Member
Staff member
You guys, I'm having a minor rant here.

There are SO many running tracks around the UK that just aren't available for general public use! They're so wasted!

I live in Marlborough and the only track here is part of Marlborough College. You can rent it as an organisation but not as an individual - I've asked twice (begged actually) but due to insurance reasons I'm unable to use it. The nearest track is Swindon which is only available during Athletics Club sessions and Andover, which IS available for public use but is 45 minutes away from home.

I get so frustrated running past empty tracks and not being able to use them. In the US, where we used to live, every high school has a beautiful track which is legally open to the public except when the school teams are using them (and even then they allow you to use them if that's possible and safe).

Sigh..
 

amasidlover

Active Member
Location
Gatley
Same around here... Although there was a cinder track in my 'village' (Gatley) that was part-maintained and used by a running club but still open to the public; sadly the council pulled out their part funding which meant the running club moved to the neighbouring local authority and the track has been left to grass over.

In France I was on holiday near a running track once and as far as I could tell that was open to the public.
 
OP
WiltshireWonder

WiltshireWonder

Active Member
Staff member
I know technically one doesn't 'need' a track but I got used to doing my speedwork on one in California and I really miss it now. A smooth surface, flatness (there's nothing flat round here) and car free - you can just belt the reps out!! Sigh...
 

Mudrock

Regular Member
You guys, I'm having a minor rant here.

There are SO many running tracks around the UK that just aren't available for general public use! They're so wasted!

I live in Marlborough and the only track here is part of Marlborough College. You can rent it as an organisation but not as an individual - I've asked twice (begged actually) but due to insurance reasons I'm unable to use it. The nearest track is Swindon which is only available during Athletics Club sessions and Andover, which IS available for public use but is 45 minutes away from home.

I get so frustrated running past empty tracks and not being able to use them. In the US, where we used to live, every high school has a beautiful track which is legally open to the public except when the school teams are using them (and even then they allow you to use them if that's possible and safe).

Sigh..
I feel your pain

We have the same issue here in Oxford,
But I do know one, but sadly the condition is very very poor, though lack of use and care.

So I mainly use our local footbal pitch to do my speed work.
 
OP
WiltshireWonder

WiltshireWonder

Active Member
Staff member
I feel your pain

We have the same issue here in Oxford,
But I do know one, but sadly the condition is very very poor, though lack of use and care.

So I mainly use our local footbal pitch to do my speed work.
I think the Iffley Rd one is open to the public...I'm hoping to use it next week on a visit to your lovely city.
 

Mudrock

Regular Member
Edit:
Posted twice
 

Stig-OT-Dump

Regular Member
I asked about using our local high school track. The kind Janny said that I could book it for a group session via the council. I told him I just wanted to use it for myself. He looked around to see if anyone was nearby, leaned in and told me, quietly, "it's not fenced, just go and use it - but if you ever get caught, don't say I said so". Never been kicked off yet.

Before that I used to go to an abandoned blaes/ cinder track near a railway line. I used to take my dog with me. One night while I was lapping away, a fox came out of the bushes and stopped partway up the home straight. Once the dog saw it, she took off and the fox ran back through the fence to the train embankment. Thinking her job was done, the dog fell in step beside me again. What she didn't see was the fox coming back out, and going slightly further up the home straight and waiting to be chased again. And so it continued; every lap the fox went further up the track and the dog got closer in the chase. At one point, the dog continued the chase through fence and onto the embankment. The fox re-appeared and assumed its position, but no sign of the dog. She eventually reappeared as I went up the back straight, and although she must have seen the fox waiting for her, she stuck to their rules and waited until she came off the top bend before she went for it.
 

classic33

Regular Member
We've just lost another running track, leaving just the one in the area now. And that one is for the exclusive use of the local running club, despite it being council owned & maintained.
 

classic33

Regular Member
See, that makes no sense. Why should it be exclusively for any one group? Unless they bought it, clearly.
Doesn't make any sense. The running club that use it have to pay the council for it's use. At all other times it remains closed to everyone in the area. Everyone pays for it's upkeep, but only around 100 people can use it.
 
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