Darlington Harriers & AC - Track & Field
ONE of the North-East's oldest clubs, Darlington Harriers, has a proud record of helping athletes of all levels and ages make the most of their abilities. There have been a sprinkling of internationals over the years and the club punch above their weight in regional competitions, backed up by their highly regarded coaching team. Founded in 1891, the club has surpassed its 125th anniversary and, at more than 350, its membership is at its highest for a long time. Three Olympic athletes have hailed from Darlington Harriers - George Butterfield, who ran the world's fastest mile in 1906 and competed in the 1908 London Games over 800m and 1500m, R.L Hawley in London in 1948 and Joyce Grieveson, an 400m silver medallist at the 1962 European Championships who also competed at the 1964 Tokyo Games. Other greats such as Max Coleby who along with Brendan Fosters team started the Great North Run, Bill Wylie a former Scottish Steeple Chaser, Fred Alsop former GB Long and Triple Jumper as well as Charlie Spedding along with his brother Michael have all graced the club over the years as well as many other superb athletes.
More recently, the club nurtured 2012 national indoor 1500m champion Lewis Moses, who re-joined the club in early 2018 from his Loughborough base, just one of many talented young athletes developed through Darlington's junior programme at their base at Eastbourne Sports Complex. The Harriers moved to the eight-lane track almost 15 years ago and on club nights it is packed with training groups of all ages. Our oldest and longest-serving member is 83-year-old Ian Barnes, the club's vice chairman, who is a former European M65 1500m champion and who still regularly represents England at British Masters cross-country events. He was also the inspiration behind Darlington's booming parkrun, which regularly attracts more than 300 runners on Saturday mornings. Ian has also broke the 1 mile V80 National record this year proving there is life in the old dog yet. Phil Teece, Sue Phillips, Linda Noble, Val Clarke, Shirley Gibson along with Ian have also been called up to represent their country based on current age grading performances.