Major national event set to return to Calder High

They're off: the  year eight/nine race in the English Schools' Fellrunning Championships gets under way at Calder High School
They're off: the year eight/nine race in the English Schools' Fellrunning Championships gets under way at Calder High School
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Calder High School did such a good job of staging the English Schools’ Championships last Sunday that they have been asked to host them again next year.

“I can’t imagine we will say no,” said head of PE Rob Kenworthy, who thought that everyone involved in the showcase event could feel proud of their efforts.

It was the first time the event had been staged in Yorkshire and a record entry of 465 runners faced the starter in races for four different age groups.

Competitiors arrived between 9.30 and 10.0am and the races started at 11.30 with the younger age groups first. It was all over by 3.45pm.

The contests, which ranged from 3km to 8.7km in length, started on the field in front of the school and competitors sped up Midgley Road to Midgley Moor.

Huge crowds cheered on the runners and the local entrants responded with Calder Valley Fell Runners’ Jack Denton finishing fourth in the year 10/11 race.

The Crossley Heath School pupil was chased home by Calder High’s Tom Nelson, who also finished in the top 10 in spite of being one of the younger runners in the section.

Issy Wharton was fourth among the year 12/13 girls.

Kenworthy added: “It involved a lot of work but it all came together and it was very, very good.

“The routes were very hard - proper fell running routes, which is what they should have been.

“It was challenging but good - there must have been about 1,000 people watching.”

Kenworthy said impressed officials had asked him twice within 24 hours of the finish of the event if Calder High would be hosts again in 2015.

“All the work is done - the routes and the paperwork - so it would be much easier a second time.”

Kenworthy said it had been a tremendous team effort to ensure the event was a success.

Members of local running clubs had provided specialist knowledge and parents, staff and sixth formers at the school had all mucked in.

“Everyone has got to be proud of how well it went,” said Kenworthy.