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Film to chronicle Haverhill's first half-marathon

Wednesday, 26th February 2014.

The origins of two Haverhill races will be chronicled in a documentary.

The team behind the Haverhill Man Alive documentary, which showed the positive side of the town in response to the 1968 BBC programme, are now filming a documentary about HaverHalf.

Gary Pontin and Ron Walker have been filming with race director Jack Tappin to document to coming together of the race, which marks the first time Haverhill has hosted a half marathon.

Supporters and sponsors including Matthew Hancock MP, Haverhill mayor Roger André, Suffolk County Councillors Anne Gower, Tony Brown and Julian Flood, beneficiaries St Nicholas Hospice Care, Stylize Display Graphics and GreenAir Cars have already been involved with the filming.

Other sponsors including Sanofi, Castle Manor Academy, Real Bodies Health and Fitness and Perform Sports Therapy may also be involved.
The film crew will be shooting when the races take place on May 11, with the documentary expected to be completed by June.

Producer Ron, 64, from Lordscroft Lane, said: “Man Alive is still a current operation and we thought the race fitted very well with our profile and concept, which is to highlight the positives of Haverhill and its people and continue the process of dismantling negative views that still appear to persist.

“My personal objective is that we will find people making positive statements which have come not from a project specifically orientated to bring such comments forth.

“We’re due to revisit the 2010 documentary in 2015 and would like to see that half marathon project going strong.”

Main cameraman Gary, 42, from Great Yarmouth, who lived in Haverhill from 1971 to 2009, added: “I wanted to continue the positive light that has been shone on Haverhill by Man Alive and continue that message through HaverHalf.

“This documentary will help up the profile of HaverHalf and generate more runners and hopefully cement it in the long term on the Haverhill calendar.”

Almost 130 runners have signed up, but organisers are pushing for more to get involved and for people to help marshal too.

“It was a big boost when I first heard from Ron and welcome their involvement in making the documentary,” said Jack.

“Hopefully this will be chronicling the start of something special and years from now people will be able to glimpse back at the origins of an established community event.”

Mr Hancock, who will be running his first half marathon and setting off the 10k, said he approaches the day ‘with a bit of trepidation’.

“I’m thrilled that this is happening and as a keen runner it’s great that Haverhill has it’s own race to showcase the town,” said the skills minister.

“This puts Haverhill on the map as it’s a growing town that’s on the up and I hope the race goes on to become an established fixture.”

Cllr André, who will set off HaverHalf, added: “The town council was particularly keen to build on the Olympic legacy and this is also a chance to bring people into the town and get people involved in sport.

“It will bring the community together like when the Olympic Torch came through and people thronged the streets.

“We can compete with any town and Haverhill is an expanding town, and I’ve seen from races elsewhere people become accustomed to them and have them on their calendar so hopefully this will become an annual event too.

“We need better and more services for the growing population, and the town council can’t do that alone so we need partners like HaverHalf to provide an opportunity for us to leverage extra value for the community.”

HaverHalf and Haver10 will be held on May 11, setting off at 9.30am from the recreation ground in Camps Road.

Entry is £16 for HaverHalf (£14 for affiliated club runners) and £12 for Haver10 (£10 for affiliated club runners).

Entry costs rise by £2 on the day. Entry is free if you raise £100 – pay the entry fee and then submit the amount raised minus that fee.

There will be trophies and premium goody bags for first, second and third, first over 40, first over 60 (both male and female, both races).
All finishers will get goody bags and medals.
T shirts featuring the logo are available for £10. All money raised goes to St Nicholas Hospice Care.

You can enter the race at entrycentral.com/haverhalf, at runbritain.com/races or by collecting a form Haverhill Arts Centre.
You can e-mail jack.tappin@gmail.com for an application for or to volunteer to marshal on the day.

Haverhill Online News

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