ROTARY ROUND-UP: Looking forward to the coming year

The start of the Three Forts Marathon Challenge
The start of the Three Forts Marathon Challenge

This week, David Chapman, from the Rotary Club of West Worthing, gives an update on the latest and future goings-on.

The big events are under preparation and registration is now open for the Rotary-organised Three Forts Marathon Challenge which takes place on Sunday, May 6.

This is an event which attracts hundreds of serious runners and brings together five rotary clubs – Worthing Steyne, Worthing, West Worthing, Shoreham and Southwick, and Steyning and Henfield.

More than 40 Rotarians turn out on the day to organise and marshal the event, assisted by local running clubs who help with the marshalling and man the first aid stations.

There are two races, both starting from Hill Barn. The main marathon is a gruelling 27-mile cross country race which is made even more challenging because of ascending and descending the hills.

300 runners or more take the route around the three Iron Age forts which top the South Downs – Chanctonbury Ring, Cissbury Ring and Devil’s Dyke. There is also the 13-mile half marathon which takes in Chanctonbury and Cissbury Rings.

Both races have a national reputation among all serious runners as ‘the tough one’ with 3,450ft of climbs which sets it apart and creates a serious challenge compared to most other marathon events run on comparatively level surfaces. More information on: www.threefortschallenge.org.uk

As spring approaches West Worthing Rotary Club will be joining the host of businesses, community groups and families who will be descending on Worthing promenade to plant their flowerbeds and start this year’s annual Worthing seafront planting competition initiated by the Town Centre Initiative and the Worthing Journal.

Entrants compete for a top prize of £100, although the real thrill is to see the delight on residents and visitors faces as they walk along the promenade to see the creativity and colour in the individual flowerbeds. Led by Rotarian Jayne Knight, the club planting group is already sourcing materials for their theme.

Work is also underway to prepare for the Rotary Carnival to be held this year on Sunday and Monday, August 26 and 27. A high spot of summer activity in Worthing, the carnival has been held since 1921, making it one of the oldest in the UK.

Last year the carnival chose the medieval theme and this year’s theme is ‘the seaside’ which leaves plenty of scope for interpretation!

If you are a club, society or business and would like to bring a float to the procession, take a stall on the Steyne or have any ideas for events and activities that would enhance the event or to find out more details, then in the first instance contact, Al Frostick on 01903 249675 or email: alandjulia@btinternet.com

Meanwhile, the club is busy with a host of other events. Zoe White, student from Chatsmore High School, was successful in the second round of the Young Chef competition and now goes forward to the next round at Billingshurst.

Preparations for the Rotary Young Leaders award are in place with the club sponsoring students Ellen Bryder and George Reigate, who are part of the Combined Cadet Force. Both young people plan to have a career in the services.

Also on the youth front, President Jeremy Flaskett will be presenting certificates to students Sky Stanbridge, Kiera Dornan, Chloe Holmes, Emma Varley, and Erin Mills to acknowledge their participation and enthusiasm in running the Durrington High School interact club.

We have enjoyed our first game of wheelchair darts in 2018 at Care for Veterans and the club continues with bingo for the blind at the Sight Support Centre in Worthing.

The club has had one of its first social events of the year, a ten pin bowling evening at Worthing Bowl where two teams of six were locked in battle. However they relaxed afterwards at a local restaurant. A further series of evening events as well as a Sunday walk and a golf day are being planned.

We would particularly like to make our readers aware of our regular coffee mornings at Haskins where you are welcome to join us if you are interested in finding out more about Rotary. The next one is on Thursday, March 7, at 10.30am. Contact Jeremy Flaskett on 01903 713880 for more details. You are sure of a warm welcome.

Details of Worthing’s three Rotary clubs are:

• Worthing Rotary Club meets Monday, 12.55pm, at the Chatsworth Hotel, in The Steyne, Worthing, 01903 209564.

• West Worthing Rotary Club meets Tuesday evening at Tudor Close, Ferring, 01903 501961.

• Worthing Steyne Rotary Club meets Monday evening at The Ardington Hotel, in Steyne Gardens, Worthing, 07788 638757.

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