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Sports journalist’s new book looks back on almost 60 years in athletics

A regional press columnist has written a book about his work in athletics spanning seven decades.

Charles Bannerman, who writes for the Inverness Courier, has penned ‘A Running Jump’ which details his involvement as a coach, national committee member, official and athletics journalist since the mid-1960s.

Charles, pictured, first joined the Inverness Harriers committee in 1969 and later served on the Scottish Amateur Athletic Association’s committee.

As a coach, he guided a number of athletes to full Scottish and Great Britain honours including Jayne Barnetson, who has held the Scottish high jump record since 1985.

Charles Bannerman

Charles told the Courier: “There are lots of stories to be told about the sport in the local area over the years such as the chaos of the Avoch Gala Sports in the 1960s, the time an athlete tries to swim the Caledonian Canal to win a race and how five of us came to be chauffeured to a Scottish championship in a Reliant Robin.

“But there’s more than that because I’m just about the last person left who remembers how basic North athletics used to be until everything changed in the 1970s, so the book isn’t entirely about me but also a record of what’s been enormous progress for athletics.”

The book, priced at £10, is available from three bookshops in Inverness or by emailing [email protected].