The fifty-sixth Senior Women's National Cross-Country Championships took place at Roundhay Park in Leeds. Provincial Insurance Limited sponsored the event and over a thousand entries were received for the senior women's race. Leeds City AC assisted with organising the event.
Jane Shields (Sheffield AC) was hoping to defend her title and win her third individual championship. Others thought to be in contention were Shireen Samy (Birchfield Harriers), the Midland champion, Sue Crehan (Sale Harriers), the Northern title holder and Philippa Mason the Inter-Counties runner-up.
Lisa Reilly (Morpeth Harriers) along with Laura Wight (Stevenage & North Herts AC), Melissa Watson (Swindon AC), Alison Gooderham (Bournemouth AC) and Shireen Samy were the early leaders. As the race developed, they were joined by Angela Pain (Leeds City AC) and Jane Shields. When they reached the steep ascent up Hill 60, Angela Pain was slighted ahead of 18-year-old Helen Titterington (Leicester Coritanian AC).
On the second lap coming off the downward slope of Hill 60, Titterington made a break and left Pain struggling to hold on. Titterington was the surprise winner in 20:57 with Jane Shields second, 16 seconds adrift and Angela Pain third.
Titterington, a leisure studies student at Loughborough Technical College, told Athletics Weekly "There was no pressure on me, but I did not think I had a chance and so winning was a really big surprise." By winning Titterington became the youngest winner since Phyllis Green won as a 17-year-old in 1951.