Residents of Dumbarton and the Vale are being encouraged to shake off the winter blues - by taking part in the town’s ‘parkrun’ event.

The free weekly event at Levengrove Park was officially launched last month, and got back underway last Saturday, January 4, following a break for Christmas and New Year.

With the option to either run or walk the gentle 5km course, it’s the ideal way to get rid of the excesses of the festive season.

Organisers are also looking for volunteers to help marshal the event, so even if you don’t fancy completing the course, you can still get out in the fresh air, and help others to do so to.

Helensburgh Amateur Athletics Club is lending its support to the Levengrove Park event.

Laura Johnstone, of the club, said: “Running is so much more than just fitness. Having a local parkrun is hugely beneficial - not just for developing fitness, but also for maintaining mental wellbeing and building social connections.

“For these reasons it was very important that our club supported such a worthwhile initiative.”

The ‘parkrun’ idea is a global movement providing a free, weekly, timed 5K for walkers and runners in local parks all around the world.

The concept is simple: turn up every Saturday morning and walk, jog or run. It doesn’t matter how fast you go, or what you’re wearing, it really is the taking part that’s important, just like you were told at school all those years ago.

The Dumbarton course takes in three laps of Levengrove Park, with its spectacular views of Dumbarton Castle and the River Clyde.

Councillor Iain McLaren, the local authority’s convener of infrastructure, regeneration and economic development, said: “I am glad to see parkrun starting up in Levengrove Park, where I am sure it will be extremely successful.”

See or for more information or to book your place.