Lakers’ Hunslet Handicap raises funds for Wheatfields

Local running club South Leeds Lakers hosted a pie’n’peas and quiz night along with their club night to raise money for Wheatfields Hospice last Tuesday (7 November 2023).

The club meets on a Tuesday at Hunslet Nelson Cricket Club and usually has 4 or 5 different runs going out with around 50-80 attendees, and every year holds a club race called the Hunslet Handicap.

The Handicap is usually held at the South Leeds Stadium in conjunction with a Hunslet RLFC game (The Hunslet Rugby League Foundation were instrumental in helping form the Lakers), but this year as many people were away it was moved to a club night.

75 runners split into four groups (a 5k, 7k, 9k and 11k). The starts were staggered and the runners had to take a group photo at the half way point (outside Hunslet RLFC), but after that it was every man and woman for themselves and first back to the club was the winner.

The club also welcomed four young men from overseas, Alnazir, Haroon and Hassan from Sudan and Hussain from Eritrea who are staying with local runner Michael Melia. All four lads enjoyed the spirit of the evening.

The club raises money for Wheatfields Hospice every year as three members, now no longer with us spent their final days at the Hospice with its wonderful carers. John Metcalf, Kath Corah and Lynn Dyson all have family still at the club and are missed by us all.

The first back to ring the cow-bell was Darren Briggs. Fittingly Darren was best mates with John Metcalf and received the John Metcalf Trophy from John’s son Thomas.

Darren Briggs (right) recieves the John Metcalfe Trophy from John’s son Thomas

Afterwards the runners enjoyed Pie’n’peas and then a bonfire night themed quiz. The club has moved in with the Hunslet Nelson CC who kindly let us use their Pump Room Bar, making the Gipsy Lane site a hub of local sport including Cricket, Rounders and Running.

A busy evening in the Hunslet Nelson Pump Room

Thanks go to Claire and Richard Burgess, Julie Harrison, Jeni Sword-Williams, Wendy Murgatroyd and Heather Graham who made a great night run smoothly, and at the end of the evening with online donations still coming in the total stands at £320 to send to Wheatfields.

South Leeds Lakers offer free running on Tuesday nights, 6.50pm at Hunslet Nelson Cricket Club, Gipsy Lane, Beeston for over 15s – please book on via Runtogether/South Leeds Lakers.

We also have a Junior Section for 8-14s on the track at the John Charles Centre for Sport, 6pm on Friday Nights – please see Facebook.


Main photo: the 5k group at the halfway point outside South Leeds Stadium


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