Principles of Fell Running

Latest results

Races coming up...

FRA 50 @ 50 Race Series to celebrate the 50th Anniversary 1970 – 2020

Sadly the Rydal Round will not be going ahead this year due to the cancellation of Ambleside Sports but will be replaced in the [email protected] series by the Old Crown Round organised by Northern Fells. Online entries are open on SiEntries here
It has also been noted that Steel Fell is likely to be on Wednesday 11th August rather than the Thursday.
Please remember to check on race websites for information as details  may change as the year progresses.
The next [email protected] race will be Blackstone Edge on Wednesdy 19th May and I hope to see many of you there.

List of races and results

Frequently Asked Questions:

With the prospect of a cautious return to fell racing nearly upon us , the FRA have been working hard to compile these answers to Frequently Asked Questions:
Please navigate using the menu on the left hand side but don't expect to find any specific shoe advice 🙂
You will however see, "Is a buff a hat?"

The Wasdale Fell Race

The Wasdale fell race will now go ahead on Saturday 10th July 2021, with Richard Byers acting as RO working with support from Richard Eastman, further details will be posted on the Cumberland Fell Runners Association website and registration will be by SPORTident.

Consultation on Governance of UK Athletics

The structure of governance of UK Athletics (UKA) is currently under review. The FRA, along with all other affiliated clubs, has been invited by England Athletics to express a view on the proposed changes.
In brief, formal membership of UKA (in terms of e.g. voting rights) is likely to be shared in one of the following ways: by the four Home Nation associations (equally or pro rata); by clubs; by all affiliated athletes; or by some other structure (to be determined).
The FRA is trying to establish how the last of these options ("Option C") might look, and whether fell running might be directly represented in this scenario.
FRA members are encouraged to make sure their clubs are aware of these proposed changes. Club representatives are invited to join an England Athletics webinar on the evening of Thursday 18th March, for which details can be provided on request.
More information is available here
Charmian Heaton
Chairman Fell Runners Association

Wasdale and Scafell Pike fell races

Richard Eastman from Cumberland Fell Runners is unable to lead the organisation of the Wasdale and Scafell Pike fell races in 2021 and would be delighted to hear from anyone who feels they could take on the RO responsibilities for one or both of these classic races this year.  Richard would be available to help out with administrative support and advice.  If you feel you could work with Richard to enable these races to go ahead, please contact him on [email protected]

The Ennerdale Horseshoe Fell race

The Ennerdale Horseshoe Fell race is currently scheduled to take place on the 12th June 2021
As an English championship race the entries will online through the sportident registration system
Entries open from 10.00 on Monday 8th to 10.00 on 15th March for championship registered runners.
Entries open from 10.00 on Monday 15th March to 10.00 on 22nd March for all FRA members.
Entries open from 10.00 on Monday 22nd March until June 1st for all runners until 400 limit is reached.
The race will run subject to the Covid 19 restrictions in place at the time.
The race start is stated as 10.30 which is 30 mins earlier than previous years to allow for the use of staggered starts should we need to set people off in groups.
Runners are asked to provide an estimated completion time so that we can place people into groups by time.
We will provide update nearer to the time through the FRA website and with runners who have registered.
Colin Dulson - Race Ennerdale Organiser

English Fell Championships 2021

Having studied the road map in detail,  the FRA committee proposes that the English Fell Championships 2021 will be able go ahead this year albeit a little later than originally planned.   There will inevitably be some changes to be traditional format in line with any ongoing restrictions.  However, there is an assumption that we will be free to travel by this time and that the events may well be outside only and without the customary socialising.  Mass starts may or may not be possible.  Details of the organisation of the races will be available nearer the time but you can, at least, get the dates in your diary.
The championships will be based on the following 6 races.  
June 12th             Ennerdale Horseshoe  (AL)
July 3rd                Blencathra  ((AM)
July 17th               Alderman's Ascent   (AS)
August 1st            Pete Bland Kentmere Horseshoe  (AM)
August 28th          Arnison Crag Horseshoe  (AS)
September 19th   South Mynd Tour   (AL)
All entries will be through SI Entries with the customary staged entry criteria:  initial week for guaranteed entry list runners*, second week for FRA members and final entry for non-FRA members.
*  This list remains unchanged from 2020 except for any additional authorised additions.  It is available here.
Please contact me if you have any immediate queries, 
Lesley Malarkey

Pete Bland

The FRA and the world of fell running is mourning the death of Pete Bland and is grateful for the immense contribution which he made to our sport throughout his lifetime. Pete served on the FRA Committee and was a hard working Race Organiser for around 40 years as well as devoting 10 years to the role of Team Manager for England Fell and Mountain Running.  He will be missed primarily by his family but also by his many friends in the wider running community.
A great loss and a privilege to have known him.  He will never be forgotten and we extend our heartfelt sympathies to all his family at this difficult time.

2020 FRA AGM

The provisional minutes from the FRA's COVID-secure AGM for 2020 are now available on the AGM page. Many thanks to all FRA members that submitted a proxy voting form, which helped to ensure that the meeting was officially quorate. We hope to return to the normal AGM format next year.
Neil Talbott
FRA General Secretary

2020 'Do' cancellation

Inevitably we have had to make a decision to cancel the FRA do which was scheduled for November. Given that there have been no British or English Championships and therefore no awards and the fact that the usual entertainment and dancing (with or without shirts) will not be possible, we have little choice. Grateful thanks to Lesley Malarkey and her team from Keswick AC and we hope to join you in 2021.
Following all the remarkable long distance achievements since the end of lockdown, one trophy which will be fiercely contested is the FRA Long Distance Award. There is a possibility that this might be presented at the Kendal Mountain Festival.
Many thanks
Charmian Heaton
Chairman Fell Runners Association

FRA rule changes for 2021

The FRA's primary documentation for 2021 (comprising our rules, principles, mandatory requirements and entry forms) is now complete and available on the 'Documents' page. (Please note that there are no references to COVID-19 / social distancing; this topic is being handled separately.)


As a new initiative this year, we are publishing an annotated summary of the most significant amendments. Hopefully this will make it easier to assimilate the changes. This document is available here. (Race Organisers: this is identical to the version circulated earlier this month.)


The major changes (to come into force on 1st January 2021) include the following:


  • The use of GPS (and other electronic aids) for navigation or position-fixing will be prohibited in all FRA races. (The NG and G categories will therefore no longer be used.)
  • Race Organisers may apply dual pricing, with a lower entry fee for FRA members (up to a limit based on the race category).
  • The FRA's 'Principles of Fell Running' have been updated, in particular to include reference to non-commercialism, self-sufficiency and self-navigation.
  • A 'Race licensing guide' has been published for ROs, especially of new events, to outline the FRA's policy on registering races and emphasise that licensed races must align with FRA principles (e.g. non-commercialism).
  • All FRA Junior and Youth (e.g. U23) categories will use 'Age at end of year' in Championship races.
  • In paired mountain marathon events, Juniors may compete with an adult (over 21) other than a parent, with the permission of the RO.


In line with the above changes, our "absolute no-no" offences now include (i) using someone else's FRA membership or membership card (to gain cheaper or preferential entry) and (ii) using GPS (or equivalent) for navigation or positioning.


More details are available in the 'Summary of changes' (linked above) and in the full rules and requirements (under FRA => Documents).

Junior Fell Running Championships for 2020

Despite being as creative as possible in exploring all available options, we have made the sad decision to cancel the Junior Fell Running Championships for 2020. This has meant leaving  this decision to the last possible moment, and for that we thank you for your patience and understanding.
Like you, I had hoped  that regulations and restrictions would  lift  sufficiently to allow children to race on the fells again. We have watched  the reintroduction of a couple of adult races with major changes to racing as we recognise it,  but the nature of Junior races is very different. We have to consider  accompanying adults, multiple races and issues regarding spectators. In addition the completely understandable reluctance of small villages and land owner’s to permit an influx of people from around England,  closed down the last of our options.
The currently unpredictable and rapidly changing state of play, with local lockdowns and returning holiday makers from hotspots abroad, have made it impossible to plan for any races. As schools return, and families continue to cope with vulnerable individuals in their family circles, we have had no choice but to cancel this years Championships.
If we are unable to make it fair for all, it would be an unfair to hold a championship. It will penalise those continuing to be careful for health reasons, those affected by local lockdowns and is unlikely to be a positive and sociable experience we know to be at the heart of our sport.
I can also confirm that The English Schools Championships been cancelled.
On a positive note, we have 6 fantastic races planned for a great 2021 Junior Championships and full information on these will be published in the next edition of the Fell runner.
Keep fit  and stay safe,
Helene Whitaker Junior fell running coordinator

Fellrunner magazine index now available

The FRA is indebted to Graham Breeze who has completed an astonishing piece of work to create an index of all the Fellrunner magazines from 1971 until December 2019.  This reference has been invaluable to me whilst looking back over the last 50 years and should whet the appetite of any members who fancy dipping into the history of fell running. So if you want to know which edition a particular article appeared in or you have an interest in a particular topic, you can find the index and a comprehensive introduction on the Fellrunner page.
So make a brew and settle down to enjoy some fascinating reading.
Charmian Heaton

Up and Down

Dales Active have recently digitised a full set of eleven editions of the Up and Running magazine which were published by Dave and Eileen Woodhead.  They make fascinating reading and can be found here

FRA Ambassadors

As mentioned in the recent Fellrunner the FRA is looking to recruit a number of ambassadors. The intention is to find an individual willing to represent each club. 
The focus of the role would be to act as a point of contact for the FRA and club members. In particular this might include;
  • Passing on key information sent out by the FRA. 
  • Advertising key FRA events within your club (Championship races, navigational courses etc). 
  • Encouraging membership of the FRA amongst Fell runners in your club. 
  • Reiterating safe practise and the key rules of racing. 
  • Answering queries and providing guidance for those new to the sport. 
The intention is that those taking on the role are passionate about the FRA and there is no criteria to be a committee member within a club. The role is intended to be extremely low maintenance with the main requirement being to pass on key communications made a few times a year. 
The list of ambassadors will be published on the FRA website and will need to include an email contact. This list will be reviewed once a year and individuals can withdraw from the role at any time. 
Those wishing to take on the role should comment below with their club or email Membership Representative James Lowe to express their interest.

Mountain Navigation for Runners - Martin Bagness

The FRA are hugely indebted to Martin Bagness, Harvey Maps and the OS (HMSO) for their kind permission to publish an online copy of Martin's timeless navigational skills booklet, "Mountain Navigation for Runners", for all fell, hill and mountain runners, and coaches.

To read the full story and access the book, please click here

World Long Distance Mountain Running Championships

UK Athletics have announced a change to the trial race for the 2020 World Long Distance Mountain Running Championships. Latest details are available here

Race postponements

The calendar is updated with races that I have been told are cancelled - too many to list here.
Please note that UK Athletics have stated that races which go ahead during the shutdown will not be insured

Heptonstall, 29 March - POSTPONED to unspecified date
Exe to Axe, 5 April - POSTPONED to 27 September
Kong MM, 5 April - POSTPONED to 4 October
Wardle Skyline - POSTPONED to unspecified date
Newlands Memorial, Teenager with Altitude - POSTPONED to 7 November
Herod Farm, 22 April - POSTPONED to unspecified date
3 Peaks, 25 April - POSTPONED to 26 September
U18 International Youth Cup Selection, 18 May - POSTPONED to 19 September
U18 International Mountain Running Youth Cup, 20 June - POSTPONED to 17 October
Kentmere, 26 July - POSTPONED to 1 November

Dave Bowen, Fixtures Secretary

Coledale Horseshoe, 28th March - POSTPONED to 24th October

Due to concerns over Covid19 the Coledale Horseshoe is postponed until 24 October. Entries have been closed, but those entered who can't make the substituted date will be given full refunds. Please bear with us as this may take a little time. Nick Ray

8000th Member

As we approach the significant milestone of 8000 members of the FRA, we are delighted to announce that one lucky new member will be awarded a commemorative 50th anniversary glass plus a £100 inov-8 voucher to be redeemed at:
Many thanks to inov-8 who are one of our headline senior sponsors along with Pete Bland Sports.

FRA 50 @ 50 Race Series to celebrate the 50th Anniversary 1970 – 2020

Race Poster

The FRA have been considering how we can better educate all runners about the absolute no-no rules of fell running. Massive thanks to Jim Tyson from Ambleside who has come up with this poster which will be displayed at all fell races in the near future. Please take a moment to read and comply and help to keep this great sport safe and enjoyable for everone.

GPS devices for navigation

At a meeting in September, the FRA Executive Committee voted to introduce a new race category relating to the use of GPS devices for navigation.
This is not a cut and dried subject and throughout our discussions, the principles of fellrunning have been at the forefront of our thoughts. We have consulted extensively with our membership base and Race Organisers to arrive at the following position, which will form part of the FRA Requirements for Runners 2018 (the ‘Runners’ Rules’):
“If a race is classified ‘non-GPS’ (NG) then the use of any electronic device to delineate a route, to display current position on a map, or as a compass, will be prohibited. The use of such a device to display distance travelled, time, speed or altitude will be allowed, as will recording of an actual route for post-race analysis. If such a device is used in an emergency situation then that competitor should retire from the race and declare themselves non-competitive.”
For the avoidance of doubt, GPS is not allowed in FRA registered races in England unless the race is categorised as "G"; by the race organiser.
The Kit Requirements for FRA Races are further clarified in respect of the fact that maps must be on paper. A conventional compass must be carried in addition to this.
Happy running!
The FRA Committee

First on the Scene

What to do if you are First on the Scene of an incident on the fells -
essential reading here.

Welfare policy - Transgender and Anti Doping

The Committee have agreed that the FRA will be following the UKA policies on Transgender - and Anti Doping -
This replaces the item in the 2017 Handbook on P 24 Apps 3 and 4 and as previously set out in the Welfare policy - The policy will be updated.


Following the FRA committee meeting on 4/12/16 and in light of recent publicity surrounding historical sexual abuse at football clubs, the committee clarified that any allegations of a similar nature within the sport of fell running will be taken extremely seriously and investigated appropriately.

We have already liaised with UKA and an update and explanation of his role will be provided by the newly appointed Welfare Officer in the Spring Fellrunner.

Any enquiries should be directed to Ed Gamble ([email protected])