1964 – 2022
It was a great shock to learn that Sue died on Wednesday October 5th , during a training
run. Despite the presence of the emergency services she could not be resuscitated.
Sue was the loveliest person, always with a smile and a kind word, and never pushing
herself forward, despite her considerable talent as a runner. As she ran she looked so light
and fleet footed.
She was one of Croft’s earliest female athletes, arriving with partner Mark, and already a
Welsh international, proud to represent her country in her red vest. At first she was ‘just’ an
important team member for cross country races, but with Mark she championed a charity
tandem event in Bishop’s Castle, which became a very popular race. Later she was to
support Mark as a coach, of newcomers to running and to juniors, as they selflessly
sacrificed their own training time to bring on many enthusiastic young runners.
It was Sue who inspired me to try mountain running, having heard of her exploits in Poland
and Slovenia. Her latest mountain running was in southern Italy in 2019 where she won a
team GB silver medal as an under 55 (despite Mark’s faux pas in describing her as in the
55-59 age group!).
Having left the club in 2021 she was seen around less, but many club members kept up
contact, even visiting their nursery site in Adforton to admire the expansion of their joint
She will be sorely missed by all those who came in contact with her, and most particularly
by Mark, her longtime partner.
A few words from Mike Blenkinsop:
I am still deeply distressed by the loss of the lovely lady who I fondly called ‘Magic” . I gave her that name many years ago when I learned from her that she was about to represent Wales – she was the Magic Dragon. The name summed up her charming and enchanting character. I will retain fond memories of her big beaming smile and joyful laughter,
She was so sweet natured and selfless, often putting others’ considerations before her own needs. This would be characterised by the number of times she volunteered to help me at the CARC Handicap events. I knew that she would have loved to be competing, but she was willing to sacrifice her own wishes for the common cause. In a way, I am pleased that she did as I thoroughly enjoyed her company.
Guy mentioned her involvement in the Bishop’s Castle Tandem Triathlon event. I used to go along to timekeep for her, not because I had any involvement with the cause but because I admired her dedication and commitment. It was a long event and she and Mark used to set up the course, then camp there overnight to get proceedings moving early the next morning.
Sue and Mark did so much to advance the fortune and success of Croft Ambrey R.C. and we owe them both an enormous vote of thanks.
A few words from Sam Harper:
It is hard to put into words what an integral part of Croft Ambrey Running Club Sue was for many years. She was a huge inspiration to me when I first joined the club – as a vet 40 she was a frequent medal winner in races in was always one of the top finishers in the league races. She was supportive to all new runners to the club, including me – always ready to give advice and encouragement making everyone feel part of the team. She didn’t spend time training and competing for the Croft but spent a lot of her time with extra roles on the committee – as the ladies captain, club member secretary and sorting out the club kit and coaching the juniors and beginners groups. She left the club and left a big gap where her smiling face should have been. I always hoped that she would find a way back to us and am so sad that this can no longer be the case. Her sudden loss is such a shock and came too soon.
Theresa, Wayne and family: You could not help but to love Sue. Full of ethusiasm and joy she was always so much fun to spend time with.
Mark and Sue got me hooked on running perfectly complementing each other; our first torch runs, our first longer runs, our away Thursdays, our first fell run and then lockdown runs. Sue was always there looping back encouraging and then bobbing to the front again ponytail bouncing and her playful effortless way of running. Never grumpy always quick to volunteer whenever the club needed help.
It feels very unreal that we have lost our beautiful friend and team mate. We will all miss her terribly.
Our thoughts are very much with Mark and Sue’s family.
Clare, Roland, Bronny and Thea (the Preeces): I was so sad to hear the news of Sue’s passing. My introduction to Croft was friendly sessions led by Sue and Mark. Sue was always so lovely and helpful, never making me feel bad for being so slow at the back. On torch runs I was always so grateful to see her bounding gracefully to the rear to check I was ok. Her encouragement was endless.
My last memory of Sue was of her and Mark proudly guiding a few of us Croft ladies around their beautiful arboretum. Sue with her usual enthusiasm and bounce pointing out trees and shrubs that they had cultivated and lovingly grown. After we shared chocolate cake and tea and laughed and talked. Wonderful memories I shall cherish forever.
Our thoughts are with Mark and with both families at such a sad time.
Tonia Noon: I first met Sue and Mark when I joined the CARC beginners group in 2019. Sue was always so cheerful and encouraging never making me feel awkward for being slow.
I was always in awe of her effortless way of running, she looked so graceful.
I’d seen Sue on a few occasions since they left the club the last being only a couple of weeks before her tragic passing. We talked about running, plants, gardens, family and much more.
Sue was never without a smile and a friendly encouraging word.
She will be sorely missed by so many people.
My heartfelt thoughts go out to Mark and all their family xxx
From Suzanne Field: Where do I start?
I’m heartbroken at the sudden death of Sue.
Sue was such a lovely person 💕 always smiling. She was full of enthusiasm, knowledge and she was great fun to be with.
I 1st met Sue at the beginners group many years ago. ( I think I went to all the beginners groups 🤣 ) which Mark and her took.
Sue was always so encouraging no matter how slow I was ( still am) and always had something positive to say.
When her and Mark left Croft I felt lost as they had always been my rock.
Luckily we kept in contact with them.
My last memory of Sue ( a few weeks before she died) was sitting in the kitchen of their Nursery having a cup of tea – id called by with my daughter on the off chance they be there we had a fab afternoon laughing which I will treasure forever.
Sue I will never forget everything you did for me you were such a special lady.
My thoughts are with Mark, Sue’s family and friends ❤️