Paul holding a "40" medal

Pound Hill Pounders was founded in 2021, during the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020/2021.

I used to run consistently with colleagues and friends but this became more difficult with the restrictions in place.

People’s lives changed along with their availability. I wanted to create a free group that encouraged local people to get out and do something positive for their well-being.

It is well documented that exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression and negative mood and by improving self-esteem and even increasing brain function and who doesn’t want to be healthier and happier.

I know first-hand how hard it still is for people. Sometimes getting out for a run and a chat is all you need to get through those moments to clear your head or make a good start to the day. 

Signing up to the group enabled local people to find a running buddy without breaking the rules (rules of two and staying local). This not only helped them physically, but also mentally, by either walking, jogging or running.

The reaction was overwhelming! We have formed a huge support network. Beginners celebrating their Couch to 5k successes, new friendships bonding over their personal bests and a growing community sharing their knowledge and expertise.

What started off as a few people meeting for a chat and a run has turned into four different running groups, dependent on ability and experience, plus a much loved walking group for those who don’t find that running is their ‘thing’ or for those who want a bit of variety.

We aim to be there for every ability and have a fully inclusive ethos to our group! All we ask is for friendship and kindness to one another, if the last year has taught us anything, it is #bekind