OVER 300 runners from across the county took part in the inaugural Ross-on-Wye parkrun last weekend.

Competitors were keen to try the riverside course, which loops around the fields by the sports centre at Wilton.

The event is the brainchild of Nigel Lane and his daughter Cat who attended their first parkrun together in August 2015.

They both loved the concept of parkrun and how well it was run and organized that they decided to set one up in Ross on Wye.

With a strong supporting team behind them this dream has at long last been reached.

parkrun is a free, timed five-kilometre run or walk, happening every Saturday morning both nationally and across the globe.

People of all levels of fitness are welcome, and it's okay to walk.

Volunteer marshals support people along the route, and a tailwalker follows at the end so no one comes last.

It is free to take part, but you need to register first at parkrun.org.uk.

Ross-on-Wye is the first parkrun in the UK where all the local practices have already signed up to the RCGP parkrun initiative.

Dr Simon Lennane, Ross GP and Clinical Director for South Herefordshire Primary Care Network, said: "parkrun is an excellent way to be active in a supportive environment, letting us enjoy the great benefits to both physical and mental health. Diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease are significant problems in the UK, but encouraging our patients to exercise gives us other options, and in some cases means we can avoid medication.

"We welcome volunteers to help run the event, and there is a strong, friendly community ethos. There are great benefits to tourism as well, as many people now choose places to visit around parkrun. We are lucky in Ross to have another way to share the beautiful place in which we live, while also supporting our local economy."

The Ross on Wye parkrun core team, comprising of Jo White, Cath Bennett, Lynn Latham, Simon Lennane and Nigel and Cat Lane are very grateful to their sponsors, and all those who have given their time and effort to bring parkrun to Ross.

Those include: Ross on Wye Town Council, Ross Lions, Ross Rotary Club, Pendeen and Alton Street Surgeries, Jesse Norman MP, Wesleyan, The Kings Head Hotel, John Bennett, Phil Cutter, Cath Bennett, Catherine Lamport, Dr Alix Ritson, Forest of Dean Athletics Club and other private donors.

In addition The Ross on Wye Sports Centre Committee, have welcomed parkrun, and allowed the parkrun to use its facilities every week.

parkrun is every Saturday at 9am, at the Ross on Wye Sports Centre.

Meet at 8.50am for a briefing beforehand.

There is cheap parking nearby at the Wilton Road car park (by the skate park).

For more details, see parkrun.org.uk/rossonwye