This is the story of one athlete of the 20th century and a record of the changing world of athletics during that period. It has been written because of the vast changes in sport, and athletics in particular, over a period of fifty or more years. There have been many changes but very few have brought about higher standards. Stanley Edward Eldon was born in the Royal Borough of Windsor on 1st May 1936. He grew up in Windsor during the Second World War, and during his time at Windsor County Boys' School he started his athletics career, running 880 yards and cross-country races. On leaving school he joined the Berkshire Constabulary as one of its first police cadets before his National Service call-up where he served in the Royal Military Police and became Army 3 mile champion. As a young runner from the age of sixteen years, he was ranked in the first three in the country at the one mile, and progressed by the time he was twenty years old to two World Best Performances for a junior at the 3 miles and 6 miles. After Military Service he rejoined the Berkshire Police as a constable where he further progressed his running career, including winning AAA Championships at both 3 and 6 miles; British records at 5 and 6 miles, as well as the 10,000 metres and International Cross-Country Champion (the forerunner of what are now the World Championships). He also won many international races on the track at various distances, as well as setting records in many road races. In 1961 he left the police and was the first athlete to start a retail sports business under his own name, and ran a successful sports business for over twenty-five years, which included introducing the first specialist road running shoes in this country. In 1983 he was instrumental in setting up the Reading Half Marathon, which for many years was, and still is, one of the largest and most successful events of its kind in the country. This 'hobby' eventually took over his life and more similar event organisation followed.
Keywords: Running, long distance, cross-country, athletics, international races, police, constable, half marathon, Disability Sport, autobiography, memoirs, biography, life story