Bluebell 5

Race Description  -  Race Day Information  -  How to get there  -  Results  -  Photos  -  History


 14th May 2017

2016 Results

Check out the race Facebook page for the latest news, updates and photos.


Race Description

A five-mile off road run through the lovely Little Haven Nature Reserve (just off the A127 near Rayleigh Weir). The undulating run takes you through 92 acres of spring flowers, ancient woodland and open hay meadows.
It is a fund raising event for Essex Wildlife Trust (Charity No 210065). All profits will go to help maintain the reserve.
Full changing, showering and toilet facilities will be available at the Deanes Sports Centre, Daws Heath Road, SS7 2TD where there is ample parking.

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Race Day Information



There are showers, W.Cs and refreshments (including delicious home made cakes!) at The Deanes School Sports Centre.

The course

Allow 10 minutes to walk to the start from the sports centre. We will start the run promptly at 10:30 in the field opposite Anne’s Mini Market. The course is 2 laps all off road. Normal running shoes should give you sufficient grip but if there has been lots of rain in the week before the run you may find studs or trail shoes would be better.
The run will take you through ancient woodland, across hay meadows and, with any luck, masses of bluebells.


We want you to enjoy the beauty of the reserve but please also watch where you are running and leave sufficient gap between you and the next runner so that you can see the ground underfoot. There are tree roots to trip over and uneven ground to twist your ankle. First Aiders will be in attendance but we would prefer you not to be injured in the first place. If there any medical problems of which we should be aware of please write details on the back of your number.
The marshals will be giving vebal safety instructions for the benefit of all runners, therefore the use of headphones will not be permitted.


The 1st/2nd/3rd male and female and 1st male and 1st female veteran will receive a prize of a wooden bowl hand turned by an Essex Wildlife volunteer. The wood is sourced from the reserve. Only one prize per runner.

Updates for 2017

2017 sees a new era for the Bluebell 5. Pitsea Running Club have generously agreed to take over the organization of the event from Castle Point Joggers with the profit from the run still going to Essex Wildlife Trust.


There is a responsibility on all of us to limit car travel. So please consider cycling, walking, car sharing or public transport.
If you come by train on the London Liverpool Street line arrive at Rayleigh Rail Station to catch the 09:12 No 1 bus to Woodmans Arms. Alternatively it is a 30 minute walk from Rayleigh Station to the Deanes School Sports Centre.
Journey time by bus is 9 minutes and Woodmans Arms PH is a few minutes walk from Deanes School.
There is parking at The Deanes School Sports Centre Daws Heath Road SS7 2TD.
Please do not park in the reserve near the Hospice as this is strictly reserved for visitors and staff.

Thank you for your support. All profits from the event help in maintaining the reserve. We hope you enjoy the run and return to the reserve in the future.

If you have any questions before race day please contact

Good luck!

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How to get there

Link to Google Map showing the location of the Deanes School Sports Centre

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2016 - 2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005

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The run dates from 1998 when Cliff Moore, the chairman of the Castle Point local group, asked for ideas on how to raise money to maintain the local reserves.
Ray Vautier is a member of the trust and a keen runner suggested organising a run around the reserves.
His favourite distance was around 5 miles, away from traffic and through woodland/ meadows. He thought that if he enjoyed it, then there would be others that would too.
The format has proved to be succesful. In 2011 nearly 300 runners raised over £1880 and something like £18,000 since 1998. All this goes to maintain the existing reserves and help to purchase new ones.
In the 2010 Nov issue of Runners World we were recommended as one of the top 5 cross country races in the UK. We have had success financially but a spin off which wasn’t intended was that more people now know and appreciate the local reserves.
It hasn’t always been plain sailing. In the first year we missed out a marshal which meant that it was the Bluebell 4 ¼! In 1999 we were caught out by the very hot weather and struggled to supply enough water.
The foot and mouth outbreak of 2001 meant we were unsure whether the run could go ahead. It did but we had to change the course at almost the last minute. Ironically most runners preferred the altered course so we have stuck with that.
Essex Wildlife Trust is blessed with volunteers who regularly give up their time to support the reserve. We need a small army of people on the day to mark out the course, marshal, time keep, record, cater, water station, late entries etc, etc, etc. and before the day we also need people to print and distribute entry forms, publicise the event and prepare the catering.

After the run in 2011 Ray Vautier decided that organizing the event was becoming too onerous Fortunately Castle Point Joggers were looking to organize an event of their own. Castle Point Joggers organised the event from 2011-2016. In 2017 Pitsea Running Club agreed to take on the organisation of the race.

‘Remember 2 things;’ reports Runners World Aug 2008 ‘The cake stand at the finish is regarded by race veterans as unrivalled and leave your watch and PB aspirations at home- you’ll enjoy the stunning scenery and race experience a whole lot more’
Couldn’t have summed it up better ourselves!


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The information provided on this and other pages by me, Anita Saycell, is under my own personal responsibility and not that of the Aberystwyth University. Similarly, any opinions expressed are my own and are in no way to be taken as those of A.U.