We often get asked where the name “Natterjack Running” comes from. The name of the shop is taken from a local resident familiar to many runners in the Southport area.
The Natterjack toad, also known as the “running toad” is a rare protected species, easily identifiable by the vivid yellow stripe running down its back. It has a distinctive run instead of hopping like other toads and this gives the Natterjack certain feeding advantages. It is much faster than the common toad and able to forage an area more efficiently. In Britain it occurs only near sea-level and is restricted to a few specialised habitats with warm, sandy soils where it can burrow easily. One of the areas where the Natterjack toad can be found in appreciable numbers is along the Sefton coast, an area that is also popular with many runners.
The coast line around Ainsdale and Formby provides some beautiful areas to run, including both woodland and sand dunes. Over the years, many top class international runners, including Kenyans Benson Masya, (a long-distance and marathon runner who won the inaugural IAAF World Half Marathon and won the Great North Run four times) and Cosmas Ndeti (three times winner of the Boston marathon) and local man Gerry Holme (2nd in the London marathon in 1983) amongst others, have used this area as a training ground. Many other runners just enjoy the beautiful scenery and the challenge of running off-road and if you head out to the dunes on a Sunday morning, you’re sure to meet other runners making the most of this natural haven for flora and fauna.
So, when it came to naming our running shop, we thought it most appropriate to name it after a local running celebrity, found in an area popular with local runners, hence “Natterjack Running”