Years of hard work and dedication were rewarded as local running club, Somer Athletic Club, was named England Athletics’ South West Club of the Year for 2023.

The club, based at Norton Hill School in Midsomer Norton, was up against clubs from Poole to Penzance. Saturday night’s ceremony saw former European 10000 metres Champion and five-time Olympian, Jo Pavey, make the award.

Shocked Somer Club Chair, Jason Nash was pleased to accept on behalf of all the members and volunteers, thanking them for their efforts. The award recognised the club’s development of its athletes, supported by warm testimonials from parents that highlighted the focus on developing the Juniors and Youth sections. The club’s growth is supported by increased visibility in the local community via greater participation in local events.

This resulted in the creation of Somer Sizzlers. The brainchild of Juniors Manager, Keith Cradock, local events such as the Longleat 10k and 2k enabled club members of all ages and abilities to run together, wearing club colours with pride. Another initiative was a dedicated Tuesday run club to smooth the transition from the Couch to 5k course to becoming a regular club runner.

Somer will now the represent the South West in the upcoming National Awards, and look forward to a busy 2024. Their next Couch to 5k course begins on Thursday 11th January 2024, and they are always keen to hear from those who want to start or continue their running journey. For more information, contact them via Facebook, Instagram or their website.