Friday, 25 June 2010

End of this road

I've had a long day with all sorts of hic-cups with my tasks. No time to talk about them before switching to the race day blog which will be listed shortly.

Not quite the BBC

I've just watched the published version of the file and its not turned out too bad. Here it is:

1295 visitors yesterday

There have been 48 today since midnight.

Page hits more than doubled compared to Wednesday with 4166 (excluding pdfs).

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Its taking too long

I'm not going to be able to wait for the latest video to get to YouTube but it should be on my "channel" at about 12.30.

I have far too many things from last night to produce and publish before the race. I have 101 things to do tomorrow (about 91 of them being required within the same hour) so it is going to be tough.

Marie thinks this is sad

I've just made this the desktop on my laptop so that I can remember (roughly) when to expect to see the leaders at the churches.

I did this one at lunchtime but didn't get a chance to link anywhere

Third cut fits

I did the first cut of the video of the 50th anniversary walkers before I went out tonight and it was 60% too long. When I came home, I edited it down again leaving out some of the stories that have already been told in other videos on the site.

The second cut was still over 12 minutes so I had to take out the introductions. This brought it down to 9.45 so there was just space to add a photo and overlay the credits in a different way to normal.

The 2nd Jools Holland concert was rather good tonight. Everyone I spoke to was in agreement with that sentiment and we spoke to quite a few.

One good thing about the when the Parish Walk is over is that I will no longer be asked if I am doing it this year - one of several who asked tonight was somewhat surprised that it is 30 years since I last took part. But I suppose the question then will be DID you do the Parish Walk?

Divide by 3

The talk with walkers who started the 1960 event lasted more than 30 minutes last night and I'm about to try and edit to less than 10 - so here goes. Time is against me in every sense.

Video published

2000 pages

688 site visitors yesterday and they viewed exactly 2000 pages on the current site (excluding pdf files files which are not counted).

50th reunion

Well done to Graham for organising the get together last night of so many of the walkers from the 1960 Parish Walk - and subsequent winners.

It was a great night at the Manx Legion Club and Tim Glover did a great job interviewing two groups of walkers, one from the modern era and one from the 1960 lineup. I've also taken a lot of video and I'm up early to start editing it. Circumstances at home did not permit this when I got home just before midnight.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010


Being a marshal doesn't preclude you from following the walk at other times of the day. Some oft e marshaling slots are quite short but they are vital to the safety and organisation of the event. There is a link on the front page to an appeal for a few more marshals.

Number of visitors continues to increase

683 visitors yesterday.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Look what else Roger Black is up to

thanks to big brother Mike for this link.


542 people visited the website yesterday. 75 of you (well I am assuming that you are some of the same) visited this page. I only wish I had more time to tell you more news. The information page has been updated today.

Monday, 21 June 2010

A different kind of stat

71.4% of the visitors to the site are using internet explorer as their web browser. Firefox is used by 12/0%, Safari by 9.6%, Google Chrome (my choice) 3.4% and others 3.6%.

This compares to the site where 81.4% are using Microsoft's IE, with 7.0%, 5.8% and 4.0% using Firefox, Safari and Chrome. Others only account for 1.8% as fewer visitors are using Blackberries and iPhones than with the PW site.

Learning from mistakes

I'm not actually very good at learning from my mistakes but throughout my life I have usually added work to a schedule that is already full until there is a crash.

This year I will be doing a special feature on the 50th anniversary get together, hopefully including quite a bit of video with some of the "old timers". I am therefore dropping plans for a final featured walker for the 2010 website - for once I am being sensible.

The next featured walker will be published when the 2011 site is launched at midnight on 1 December 2010.

Some editing to do

I'm not going to have time to edit the website until this evening but here are some changes that I will be making on advice from race director Raymond Cox:

1. Typo "Reflective"
2. Road Safety section. "Competitors must wear a reflective bib above the waist at all times and after 10pm an illuminated light source must be carried".
3. Road Closed section. "A1 is closed between 08.20 and 09.00 and not 09.20 as stated."
4. Toilets section. Toilets available at the Old Lancashire Hotel Santon. Remove Glen Darragh Road from the list. Add on Lower Ballakaighen Farm, Kirk Michael.
5. Cut off times. *Peel will remain open until 6pm for finishers.
6. Registering mobile numbers on-line. Before 20.30 on Friday June 25th.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Go, go, go

Just had a 20 minute chat with Race Director Raymond Cox. Everything seems to be well under control so I shall see what news I can share here during the next few days. I am well aware that about 50 people a day (on average) are checking out this blog but my focus has moved away from it a bit since the entries closed.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

New feature on

Site updates

The right hand block of each page has been re-designed tonight to give more prominence to the link to update your entry and to standardise the recent links that have been added:

Monday, 14 June 2010

Realistic expectations

Wow! Even if you are not a motor sport fan, if you watched the TV coverage of the TT races you could not fail to have been impressed with the production, the races and the Manx countryside from the air.

And at last the iomtt website is catching up the standard of the TV coverage. The live times were great although they could have just done with posting (and displaying prominently) the revised start times more frequently on days when there were postponements.

This is the 10th year that the website has covered what is now the Scottish Widows Parish Walk and I have tried to make it a little better each year. And I'll be working myself into exhaustion over a 26 hour shift in addition to taking time off work before and after the event to try and continue those improvements.

But with the best will in the world, the site will fall well short of the professional standards set by the TT TV coverage. I have to be a jack of all trades and therefore I am master of none - and I am funding my hobby.

Last year I received an email from one irate competitor because I did not take her photograph when she finished in the dark. I had the same complaint about not getting all the competitors at the Manx Mountain Marathon this Easter.

By all means make suggestions, or drop me a line when I make the inevitably mistakes, but don't expect the impossible. I'm trying to rope in as much help as can for the website coverage but most of the spare hands are already doing other vital jobs for the event.

The Scottish Widows Parish Walk magazine 2010

The Scottish Widows Parish Walk magazine 2010 is a full-colour special edition magazine available for all participants that you will want to keep as a souvenir recording your achievements this year. This is the second year that the magazine is produced.

The magazine includes:

  • Full results and winners from every stage
  • Colour Photos
  • Stories and Features
  • History of the Parish Walk
  • Previous years winners and highlights
  • Isle of Man walking events
  • International Walking events
  • Walking clubs on the Isle of Man
  • Editorial
  • Details of the sponsors
  • Course Map and Parish lists

You can order in person, online, or by post for just £2.50 +30p postage and packing. Why not order five copies for £11.20 and save 20%. (Posted to one address.)

Information: Race Walking Record is the magazine aimed at people who pursue walking as a serious competitive activity. RWR was started in 1941 and has been distributed worldwide for 70 years. Current readers include several Olympic medallists, other famous sportsmen, The International Olympic Committee (IOC), UK Athletics (UKA), The International Athletics Federation (IAAF), USA Olympic Committee (USOC), and Australia's National Sport Information Center (NSIC). The Parish Walk Special is the first ever special edition produced by RWR, and the 2010 edition is the second year that it will be produced. It is being produced in recognition that the Parish Walk has become the most significant walk in and around the UK and is intended to help promote walking within the Isle of Man, and in turn promote the Parish Walk to the rest of the world. The special will be an A5 magazine containing 36 full colour pages of results, photos, reports and useful information.

John Constandinou, Editor: Race Walking Record.

Three changes to the information page

In addition to the new road closure on the Peel Road which is featured on the home page of both the Parishwalk and Manxathletics sites, there is a new time limit for walkers going beyond Rushen and the Manx Telecom Merit Award is listed among the prizes.

Visit the information page here:

If you have any other suggestions for what could be published there, just let me know.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Janice's times

Everyone is disappointed that Janice Quirk is unable to compete this year.

I've just completed the same exercise with her split times and progress as I did for Jock at this time yesterday. I demonstrates what will miss. Just look at the split time between Maughold and Lonan where she was 27.26 faster in 2009 than in 2008 and 5 minutes faster than Jock Waddington!

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Jock is on the blog

I've not been doing so much Parish Walk blogging recently so I thought I would spend half an hour this lunchtime putting together some stats on Jock Waddington's last three years in the events.

Here they are:

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Real names

These two words seem to be hard for people to understand.

The forum does not allow people to hide behind nicknames - its only open to real people.

I'm afraid that I don't even reply to the (many) people who email asking why they have not been approved as users. If they can't be bothered to read the rules I can't be bothered to write.

Harsh but fair.

Feature postponed

I'm not going to get the latest feature done this week.

Simon Cox

I have written a piece about Simon Cox in the Bradford 50km on tonight.

The 61 year old is hoping complete the Parish Walk course in around 17 hours this year. This would be a personal best but probably also an over 60s record.

Here is Simon's Parish Walk record:

1993: German - 06:02:08;
1994: St Johns - 05:55:54;
1997: Finish - 19:45:27;
1998: Finish - 20:06:23;
2000: Bride - 12:09:00;
2001: Finish - 18:57:52;
2002: Finish - 20:46:10;
2003: Ballaugh - 09:09:00;
2004: Finish - 17:14:03;
2005: Finish - 17:37:34;
2006: Finish - 18:37:19;
2007: Finish - 20:56:46;
2008: Michael - 08:15:53;

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Cheap laughs

I have just signed off the site and blog saying that I was too tired to continue. But I checked the stats for the PW site and saw that more than 200 people a day are visiting and around 60 a day are even checking out this blog.

So rather than do any research, but to try and keep your appetite, I am going for the five minute cheap laugh approach.

Pictured above are 18 year olds Allen Moore (brother of Colin who takes part in Manx walking) and someone who when he now sees a young person with an afro hairstyle, is inclined to warn them to get a hair cut or they will regret it in later life!

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

For no apparent reason

..other than I like to produce something that nobody is really expecting rather than to be "perform" to order, here are the fastest times between Santon and Malew for the past three years:

David Griffiths - 00:35:35 (2008);
Sean Hands - 00:36:57 (2008);
Jock Waddington - 00:37:15 (2008);
Michael George - 00:38:01 (2008);
Mark Hempsall - 00:38:20 (2008);
Michael George - 00:38:39 (2007);
Sean Hands - 00:39:16 (2007);
Robbie Callister - 00:39:19 (2007);
Maurice Bellando - 00:39:23 (2008);
Jock Waddington - 00:39:29 (2009);
Robbie Callister - 00:40:06 (2009);
Ray Pitts - 00:40:06 (2007);
Thomas Melvin - 00:40:08 (2007);
Ray Pitts - 00:40:21 (2009);
Janice Quirk - 00:40:23 (2009);
Andrew Titley - 00:40:25 (2007);
Sue Biggart - 00:40:28 (2009);
Alan Cowin - 00:40:32 (2008);
Sue Biggart - 00:40:37 (2008);
Sue Biggart - 00:40:39 (2007);
Matthew Haddock - 00:40:47 (2008);
Ian Dunbar - 00:41:12 (2007);
Andrew Titley - 00:41:17 (2008);
Dave Mackey - 00:41:39 (2009);
Janice Quirk - 00:41:44 (2008);
Eammon Harkin - 00:41:47 (2007);
Darren Mealin - 00:41:51 (2008);
Alan Cowin - 00:42:09 (2009);
Mark Hempsall - 00:42:10 (2009);
Steve Partington - 00:42:10 (2007);
Ian Wakley - 00:42:10 (2009);
David Lon Chambers - 00:42:15 (2007);
Chris Cale - 00:42:20 (2008);
Edmund Shillabeer - 00:42:29 (2009);
Michael Readshaw - 00:42:33 (2009);
Tony Duncan - 00:42:42 (2007);
David Griffiths - 00:42:48 (2007);
Martijn Biesmans - 00:42:48 (2007);
Jane Mooney - 00:42:53 (2007);
John Shimmin - 00:42:58 (2007);
Dave Cain - 00:43:01 (2007);
Rosemarie Crellin - 00:43:02 (2008);
Michael Shipsides - 00:43:03 (2009);
Jane Mooney - 00:43:04 (2008);
Andrew Gosnell - 00:43:07 (2009);
Mark Harvey - 00:43:07 (2007);
Terry Moffat - 00:43:08 (2008);
Vinny Lynch - 00:43:14 (2009);
Chris Cale - 00:43:16 (2009);
Richard Gerrard - 00:43:17 (2009);
Richard Spenceley - 00:43:28 (2009);
Eammon Harkin - 00:43:38 (2009);
Martijn Biesmans - 00:43:39 (2009);
Andrew Titley - 00:43:39 (2009);
Vicki Rawlinson - 00:43:41 (2008);
Stephen Harvey - 00:43:41 (2009);
Alan McCulloch - 00:43:43 (2008);
Martijn Biesmans - 00:43:46 (2008);
Michael Shipsides - 00:43:47 (2008);
Alan McCulloch - 00:43:49 (2009);
Darren Mealin - 00:43:50 (2009);
Andy Green - 00:43:50 (2009);
Jock Waddington - 00:44:00 (2007);
Dave Taylor - 00:44:10 (2009);
Adam Killip - 00:44:10 (2009);
Shirley Gage - 00:44:13 (2009);
Mark Honeyman - 00:44:15 (2009);
Stephen Harvey - 00:44:23 (2008);
Doug Allan - 00:44:29 (2008);
John Stubbs - 00:44:31 (2008);
Les Brown - 00:44:32 (2007);
Chris Cale - 00:44:35 (2007);
Ian Dunbar - 00:44:38 (2009);
Christopher Flint - 00:44:41 (2009);
Terry Moffat - 00:44:44 (2007);
John Shimmin - 00:44:45 (2008);
Kathryn Kennaugh - 00:44:45 (2007);
Les Webb - 00:44:47 (2009);
David Cain - 00:44:49 (2009);
Erin Callister - 00:44:54 (2009);
John Shimmin - 00:44:57 (2009);
Catherine Lowey - 00:44:57 (2007);
Doug Allan - 00:44:57 (2007);

Website between now and the day

I am planning to cut down the number of entries on the blog. I've spent far more time here in the last 7 months than ever before. I hoped that by continually reviewing the entries I could generate enough publicity to ensure that everyone entered in time.

Since the close off my focus has been on finalising the entry statistics and trying to improve the database, particularly with regard to the analysis next year. If I can list the entries on a regular basis and link to their personal achievements then it should encourage people to let me know if the entrant is not the same as the one with the same name from 1968 (or whatever).

Having set up the stats to enable me to also update most of the databases pretty quickly after the event (the most improved is always tricky) I now want to focus on a simplified front page for the day itself (one of my hates is visiting a website on the day of an event and you are still being told where to enter or where to stay) and to get my cameras and equipment ready.

My brother Mike is again helping me up to Peel and he has been stocking up with spare batteries for his cameras. I'll send him to the start and onwards to Union Mills whilst I will take Marie to Braddan for her to play her now usual role of video camera woman leaving me both hands free for still photos for a change.

Hopefully we shall reposition ourselves around Newtown where I will be in the studio in the back of the van with Mike on the camera again. We'll probably have a brief stop on the Sloc before heading to Peel in good time - the photos there were very popular last year.

I am still hoping there will be a major new facility in Peel (and possibly another church) but that has still to be finalised.

Sean Hands did a great job at the finish last year on the help desk protecting me from people distracting me from website publication at the finish. I hope to further improve the quality, however, with another member of the team helping with photos and video at the finish.

This was supposed to be about the website prior to the event. I plan to do the final featured walker this week.

Turning over the calendar

I produce a few calendars each year for family and friends using my own photos and we have one in the office.

Suddenly the Parish Walk seems a whole lot closer when we turned over the page this morning to see a photo of the Parish Walk.

Graham Young's Parish Wall record

I have been writing about Graham Young, who celebrated his 65th birthday at the weekend, on the site. Here is his Parish Walk record:


1964 19:52:35

Finish 1971 15:43:12

German 1974 05:29:05

Jurby 1976 09:06:00

German 1977 05:37:00

Michael 1978 07:10:00

Rushen 1979 03:15:00

German 1980 06:13:00

Finish 1992 16:38:27

German 1999 09:23:19

After setting a record in 1971 he did not try and finish the course again until 1992 - when he won again. All his other entries were used as training or to help others. He walked with me until Jurby in 1976 to set me up for my first finish and he was with me to Michael again in 1978.