Parish Boundary Challenge May 2015

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Cranleigh Rotary launched a new challenge on 16 May, as runners, joggers and walkers took part in the first Parish Boundary Challenge. 40 people beat the bounds, following an ancient custom still observed in many English parishes. In total, the event raised more than £900 toward supporting local and national charities chosen by the Rotary Club of Cranleigh.

Event organiser Brian Vine said: "It went very well. The Rev. Roy Woodhams spoke at the start about the history of beating the bounds and then he blessed the runners and walkers before they set off.

"We had about half and half runners and walkers. We were very lucky with the weather. We were worried that people might get lost, but we had Martin Bamford from Informed Choice as our roving marshal, keeping in touch with everyone via radio and with the St John's Ambulance." The course was divided into six stages to allow relay teams to take part, and every participant received a medal, sponsored by Informed Choice.

The fastest runner was Paul McGuinness who completed the course in 3 hours 29 minutes. 

According to tradition, a group of old and young members of the community would walk the boundaries of the parish, usually led by the parish priest and church officials, to share the knowledge of where they lay, and to pray for protection and blessings for the land and crops.