Cross Country In County Durham
Sedgefield steps up to host the 2024 Northern Cross Country Championships...
Sedgefield in County Durham has been confirmed as the venue for the 2024 Start Fitness Northern Cross County Championships. Northern Athletics has announced that the event will take place on Saturday 27 January, organised in partnership with host club Sedgefield Harriers.
The 2024 edition of the Northern Cross Country Championships will be held in East Park, which is an area of open parkland to the east of Hardwick Park on the edge of Sedgefield. The land is owned by Durham County Council, which has agreed to let Northern Athletics hold the championships on the site. East Park was the venue for the North Eastern Counties Cross Country Championships in 2015 and 2021, and the races in January 2024 will follow similar routes, with some slight adjustments to allow for a three-lap race in the senior men’s competition.
Host club Sedgefield Harriers is working closely with Northern Athletics and local stakeholders to organise the championships, and will recruit volunteers to help out on the day. The team at Hardwick Park has been providing advice on elements of the proposed route, and other aspects of the event. Parking for competitors will be at Sedgefield Racecourse, which has a link to the championships, as it hosted them almost 70 years ago, in 1955!
Other local venues and businesses will also be involved in staging the event, which is expected to bring over 2,000 runners to Sedgefield, plus coaches and other representatives from athletics clubs throughout the north of England, and spectators.
Steve Gaines, board member for cross country at Northern Athletics, commented: “We’re grateful to Sedgefield Harriers and Durham County Council for agreeing to host the 2024 Start Fitness Northern Cross Country Championships. East Park is a great venue for cross country and we think that runners will really like the course set up.
"The wider infrastructure also works very well for the event. Sedgefield is just two minutes from the A1 and 15 minutes from the A19, so is very easy to get to, and there are plenty of accommodation options in the near vicinity for those who want to stay for the weekend. Northern Athletics aims to try and move the event around the Northern area, and we look forward to welcoming big fields of runners for the races at Sedgefield on 27 January.”
Jane Spink, chair of Sedgefield Harriers, added: “We’re really delighted that the Start Fitness Northern Cross Country Championships are coming to Sedgefield. East Park is a brilliant place to run and we’ve hosted two major cross country events there in recent years. We’re proud that we now have the opportunity to showcase this part of County Durham to clubs from all over the north of England.
"Sedgefield Harriers will do our bit to ensure that the championships are a big success, and we’ll also be fielding plenty of junior and senior runners in the various races, who are already excited about taking part in such a big event on home soil.”
Clubs are invited to submit entries for the 2024 Northern Cross County Championships here.
Image: Sedgefield Harriers