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Produced by publishers of The Popular Village Monthly


 Laura’s Story

I was never a ‘runner’. At school, I could sprint but give me long-distance or cross-country and I hated it! I gave it another go just before my wedding in an aim to get trim for the big day; I went on one run, hated it and didn’t go again! Fast forward four years from then and I had just given birth to my second child. I was in the same situation as many women find themselves: I wanted to lose my ‘baby weight’ but was taken up with being a mum during the days. So, I started running in the evenings. Not far and not fast but each time I went, I tried to go a bit further before I walked. I measured it by lampposts: each time I went I’d run to the next lamppost on from where I stopped the night before and gradually I was running further. It wasn’t very far and it definitely wasn’t very fast but I was hooked; the feeling I got after reaching that next lamppost and when I got home from my run was addictive!

I carried on and in the meantime, my eldest daughter started school. From there, I met some lovely ladies and we all ‘fell’ into running together. We entered a 5k Race for Life and during our runs, joked that we should set up a running group called Gnosall Ladies’ Running Club but as we carried on running and our love for going out in the Staffordshire countryside together grew, we decided it shouldn’t be just a joke. We set up a Facebook page and started meeting regularly, then started the early Saturday morning Bootcamp runs; it took a bit of persuasion to get me to join those, the memories or school crosscountry haunting me but once persuaded, again, I was hooked!

It all sounds very cliched but I can honestly say that I love running, not only for the buzz it gives me after I’ve been (there is usually less of a buzz during the run!) but for the amazing, life-long friends it has given me and that way it has made me push myself to do things I never believed I could (three half-marathons, one full marathon and numerous 5k and 10k races)! Whenever anyone says to me, “I’m not a runner” or, “I can’t run”, I tell them that they are and they can and I’m total proof of that. I’ll never set the world on fire but I am a runner and always will be!


Laura Whittick



 Memorial Erected By The People Of The City Of Paju South Korea

The South Korea City of Paju. have donated 1,000 sets of personal protective equipment for key workers in Gloucestershire fighting the coronavirus.

The good people of Paju, have once again demonstrated their friendship with Gloucestershire that goes back to 1951, the time of the Korean War, when the Glosters fought in the famous Battle of the Imjin River.

The gift, at a time when PPE has been in short supply in Britain, led to praise from establishment figures here in the county.

Edward Gillespie, the Lord-Lieutenant of Gloucestershire, said in a tweet: 'Heartfelt thanks to the city council of Paju in South Korea for their unexpected and most generous gift of 1,000 sets of PPE to the people of Gloucestershire to mark our friendship on the 69th anniversary of the regiment’s heroic stand on the Imjin River. To friends in need.'

The Honourable Company of Gloucestershire, which had been due to go to South Korea before its trip was cancelled, said in a tweet that it was 'thrilled by the generosity of the people of Paju':

PRO David Winterbottom Gnosall & District RBL

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