running and rolling together
Parkrun 10 out of the 25 was Waterworks Parkrun in North Belfast and it sets a high standard. The run director led the 227 runners in a very entertaining rendition of 'you are my Parkrun, my Waterworks Parkrun' (to the tune of you are my sunshine!) before everyone headed off for 2+ laps around this really lovely park. The run is all on Tarmac paths, mostly flat and through very peaceful parkland around two duck ponds and up towards some impressive looking community gardens. There was an incredible number of duck and swans and these lovely waterfowl were definitely responsible for making the paths a little slippy in parts. There are 2 hills, the 1st, I believe, is known as heartbreak hill and it is nasty but not long, while the 2nd is a slightly longer but gradual slope. As this is a 2-lap course, you get to do them both twice. The only real obstacle/hazard with the jogger is trying not to bump other runners as the crowd passes a 'bollard-cam' at the very start but once this thins out it is a very comfortable and enjoyable run.
The starting run brief and finish refreshments / token scanning etc. are just beside the sports pitches and children's play area. The toilet facilities are dated but functional (not sure about disabled accessible facilities) and the only parking is on-street but this doesn't seem to be a problem if you arrive by 9.15am. The core team and volunteers around the course were fabulous - lots of cheers, enthusiastic applause and encouragement for every single participant - Ben even gave a few high fives around the route - and we found this to be a very inclusive, friendly and welcoming Parkrun.