Parkrun returns to east London: Where can you join in?

Pictured are runners taking part in the Valentines Parkrun seventh birthday run. Photo by Louis Du P

Pictured are runners taking part in the Valentines Parkrun seventh birthday run. Photo by Louis Du Plessis. - Credit: Louis Du Plessis

Thousands of runners returned to their weekly parkrun last Saturday (July 24) after more than a year’s absence, and more events are set to return in August.

Parkruns are free, weekly, community running events which run across the world.

There are 587 volunteer-run events in the UK, running every Saturday morning at 9am.

The runs are 5k and take place in parks and open spaces with no time limit.

Here are all the east London parkruns available in August:

Action from the third anniversary running of the Barking & Dagenham Junior parkrun at Central Park

Action from the third anniversary running of the Barking & Dagenham Junior parkrun at Central Park - Credit: Archant


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Barking Park

Barking parkrun consists of two laps around tarmac paths.

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The course starts near the park cafe, with toilet facilities available nearby. 

The park is a 10-minute walk from Barking train station. Bus numbers 5, 62, EL2 and EL3 all stop outside the park at the Hulse Avenue/Barking Park stop.

Barking parkrun returned on Saturday, July 24.

A runner is happy to reach the finish of the wonderfully low-key Beckton parkrun, held in the Boroug

A runner is happy to reach the finish of the wonderfully low-key Beckton parkrun, held in the Borough of Newham in East London - Credit: Carl Marston

Beckton District Park South, Beckton

Runners meet at the Will Thorne Pavilion in Beckton District Park South.

The course is one 2.4km lap followed by one 2.6km lap and utilises paths around the park, the perimeter of the football fields and part of the Beckton Corridor. It is run on a mixture of grass and tarmac.

Buses 300 and 376 stop adjacent to the start, while a large number of bus routes stop at Beckton Bus Station less than a kilometre away.

A number of DLR stations – including Royal Albert, Beckton Park and Beckton – are also within a kilometre of the green space.

Beckton parkrun returned on Saturday, July 24.

The misty setting for the Hackney Marshes parkrun, when columnist Carl Marston visited in January, 2

The misty setting for the Hackney Marshes parkrun, when columnist Carl Marston visited in January, 2017 - Credit: Carl Marston

Hackney Marshes, Hackney

The Hackney Marshes parkrun is run on a mixture of grass and paved tracks and consists of an out and back route with views of the Olympic site and a stretch following the River Lea navigation canal.

Toilets are available in the Hackney Marshes Centre in the southeast corner of the main marsh, 400m from the start.

The 308, 276, 236 and W15 buses run very close to the start of the course and the closest rail stations are Homerton and Hackney Wick. 

Hackney Marshes parkrun returned on Saturday 24.

Volunteers and runners at Harrow Lodge Juniors 250th parkrun at the weekend. Photo: Felix Forrest

olunteers and runners at Harrow Lodge Juniors 250th parkrun - Credit: Felix Forrest

Harrow Lodge Park, Hornchurch

This one-lap course is run on a mixture of tarmac paths, trail paths and grass and starts at the Warren Drive car park.

There are toilets a five- to 10-minute walk away from the start at the Hornchurch sports centre.

The nearest underground station is Elm Park and the 252 from Romford stops nearby.

Harrow Lodge parkrun returned on Saturday, July 24.

Mile End

Mile End parkrun begins in front of the Mile End Stadium and runs through Mile End Park, over the Green Bridge, and along the canal towpath. The course is run on a mixture of tarmac and towpath.

Full shower and changing facilities are available at Mile End Stadium. Lockers are available for 20p, which is non-refundable. 

309, 277, D6 and D7 buses run close to the start of the course, the closest tube station is Mile End and the nearest DLR station is Limehouse.

Mile End parkrun restarts on August 7.

Runners follow the edge of the lake in Rapael Park during last Saturday's Raphael parkrun in East Lo

Runners follow the edge of the lake in Raphael Park during last Saturday's Raphael parkrun in East London - Credit: Carl Marston

Raphael Park, Romford

The run at Raphael Park on Main Road is three laps – two long, one short. The entire course is run on tarmac and the start and finish are both close to the bandstand.

Toilets are available on the side of the cafe building by the children’s play area, roughly 500m from the bandstand.

Raphael Park is 1.5km from Romford station. 

This event returned on Saturday, July 24.

Plans have been submitted for an adventure golf course in Raphael Park, Romford. Picture: Ken Mears

The parkrun is around Raphael Park - Credit: Ken Mears

Valentines Park, Ilford

The Valentines parkrun consists of two anti-clockwise laps of the park’s flat tarmac paths, starting and ending at the far end of the boating lake. 

Toilets, including disabled toilets accessible by RADAR key, are located at the Valentines Park Cafe near the start and finish line, with further facilities located by the Gardener’s Cottage Cafe in the north of the park.

The nearest tube station is Gants Hill, which is around a 10- to 15-minute walk from the beginning of the race.

Ilford Station is also nearby and several bus routes travel along Cranbrook Road alongside the park.

Valentines parkrun returned on Saturday, July 24, and recently put out a request for more volunteers to ensure a regular event takes place.


Runners in action at last Saturday's Victoria Dock parkrun, near the Crystal Gardens, with the 'gond

Runners in action at Victoria Dock parkrun, near the Crystal Gardens, with the 'gondola' cable cars in the background - Credit: Carl Marston

Victoria Dock

The course is a double out-and-back on the northside of Victoria Dock, entirely along the dockside path.

There is free tea and coffee at the end of each run in the Crystal Community Hut, which also has a disabled toilet.

Bus routes 147, 241 and 474 all stop nearby and Royal Victoria DLR is a walk away.

Victoria Dock parkrun will return on July 31.

It was a 9am start for runners at the Wanstead Flats parkrun, in East London, on New Year's Day. Pic

It was a 9am start for runners at the Wanstead Flats parkrun, in East London - Credit: Carl Marston

Wanstead Flats, Wanstead

Runners meet at Harrow Road changing pavilion on Wanstead Flats Playing Fields. The way-marked course, run on a mixture of grass and trails, spans Harrow Road and Bush Wood and comprises two laps of 2.5km.

Leytonstone High Road overground and rail stations are half a mile away, and Leytonstone tube station is also less than a mile. Buses 58 or 308 stop nearby.

Wanstead parkrun returned on Saturday, July 24.

Wanstead Flats where a makeshift morgue is being built. Picture: Liz Whitworth

Wanstead Flats - Credit: Archant

Weald Country Park, Brentwood

The Brentwood parkrun is run on a mixture of gravel paths, woodland trail paths and grass.

The run starts near the visitor centre at the main car park and consists of a single undulating lap marked with wooden posts. Deer sightings are not uncommon along the route.

Brentwood train station is just under three miles away, and the nearest bus stop is a 1.5-mile walk away, through the country park.

Brentwood parkrun returned on Saturday, July 24.

Weald Country Park

Weald Country Park - Credit: Archant


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