Caversham Park, Reading was the scene for the 66th English Cross-Country Championship. The 9¾ mile grass land course was expected to be fast although some hills had to be overcome by the field of nearly 500 runners. The weather was set fair and Gordon Pirie, the pre-race favourite, wasted no time in establishing a lead when he covered the first mile in 4min. 20secs. This devastating opening was enough to create a substantial lead which the 21 year-old bank clerk from Croydon continued to build throughout the race. The stylish Pirie eventually crossed the line without any contenders in sight. The margin of victory was estimated at 500 yards (67 seconds) and as Pirie went past the finish gantry he exclaimed 'I've done it' and done it he certainly had, covering the ground in 49min. 15sec. Defending champion Walter Hesketh was absent after an accident and doubtless Pirie would have been pleased to step out of his shadow.
Runner-up was Frank Sando (Aylesford Paper Mills) who fought off a late challenge from G. M. Gray (Small Heath Harriers). W. P. Ranger (Eastbourne Rovers) was fourth and W. Boak (Elswick Harriers) fifth.
The team race was expected to be fought out between Northern champions Bolton United Harriers and Victoria Park (Glasgow) who won the Scottish National Cross-Country team championships the week before, Thames Valley Harriers the southern champions were not expected to feature in the medal places.