David Staff Memorial Fell Race
The Bandstand, Sunnyhurst Woods, off Earnsdale Road,
The route climbs out of
Sunnyhurst Woods, crosses Earnsdale Reservoir dam
then climbs on tracks and paths to Darwen Tower.
We then continue along the Western side of the moor, drop steeply
down Aggie's Staircase then climb again before dropping down on the
A third climb follows, up the main track towards the Tower but cuts
off right to join the outwards route before reaching the summit. We
then retrace our steps back to the Bandstand.
As a charity event, this race has token prizes. Many organisations give
their time freely so that the vast majority of the entry fee is donated
Route showing marshal points
A bit about David Staff
David turned 17 years of age on 5th December 1994 which then allowed
him to compete as a senior for the Dashers.
His first race (and last) as a senior was in the Clitheroe 10k on
27th December 1994. David collapsed and died by the road side at 5
miles from a condition called Hyperthropic Obstructive
Cardiomyopathy, which in laymans terms is an abnormal thickening of
the heart muscles which interrupted the electrical pulses which
keeps the heart working.
This condition takes the lives of approximately 8 so-called fit and
healthy young people a week, most of them are actively engaged in
sport, but it is not the sport that kills; it is the exertion that
acts as a trigger.
The race is run in memory of David
Staff, who joined the Dashers as a 15 year old and competed in many fun
runs as a junior. In September 1994, he completed the Great North Run in
1 hour 49 minutes 02 seconds along-side his dad Granville wearing his
Blackburn Rovers home and away kit, needless to say the comments along
the route in Newcastle cannot be repeated.
David was a very likeable person who got on with everybody he came
into contact with; young and old and had a very bright future ahead of
him, not only as a young man preparing to take his A-levels at Queen
Elizabeth’s Grammar School but also as a member of Darwen Dashers.
All proceeds from David’s Memorial Race go to
Cardiac Risk in the Young, a
charity whose main aims are to raise awareness of Cardiac conditions in
young people, to introduce a national screening programme (6 of which
have been held in Darwen and have screened over 250 local young people
between the ages of 14 – 32), to counsel and support the families
affected by tragedies of this nature and to donate medical equipment to