National XC 1967 (14/02/2020)

We recently came across a 1969 magazine "part work" called "The Game" which, over a large number of weeks (127) provided an insight into a wide variety of sports and associated personnel and issues. This issue, Part 21, covered the following topics beginning with "C".

Cross Country Running/Crowd Behaviour/Crystal Palace FC/Stan Cullis/Currie Cup (Cricket)

The cover of this magazine is of interest to Tipton Harriers as it carried an atmospheric photograph from the Senior Men's 1967 National Cross Country Championships, held at the Royal Agricultural SHowground, Costessey, Norwich. The image was taken by Gerry Cranham a well known athletics photographer of the era.

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On the image you can pick out two or three Tipton Harriers. The most obvious is carrying the number 1632 which identifies him as Geoff Wood. Just below, and slightly to the left as you look at the picture, is another. This time we think it is Jim Wright. The third one in just in front of the athlete in white wearing 522. We are uncertain who this may be if indeed he is a Tipton runner. If you can name any others let us know via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Tipton team that day comprised Allan Rushmer (9th); Jim Wright (22nd); John Edwards (51st); Alan Whittle (119th); Mel Evans (135th) and Tony Burkitt (149th) were the scoring six. Doug Fownes (158th); Geoff Wood (160th) and John Malpass (180th) completed the nine. The team finished 6th behind Portsmouth (1st); North Staffordshire & Stone Harriers (2nd); Longwood Harriers (3rd); Belgrave (4th); and Reading AC (5th).

Of those with clearly visible numbers we can track down we know S70 (W Drysdale, Monkland Harriers); 119 (L O'Hara, Belgrave Harriers); 1047 (C Vaux, Middlesborough & Cleveland Harriers) and 603 (I Gains, Eton Manor AC). It is interesting to see the runner in the top left hand side of the field carrying NZ10. New Zealand had a team entered and this athlete was N Wyatt.

The associated article gives an overview of the sport of cross country and its development within the UK up to that stage.