The London 10k Race is held in July each year and enables runners to enjoy running through some of the most famous parts of London (including the Embankment, Trafalgar Square and past the Houses of Parliament) on roads closed to traffic in order to raise funds for their favourite Charity.
On the 14th July the London 10K took place. It is an amazing event and is the largest non televised 10K in the UK. The runners pass a number of famous landmarks including the Houses of Parliament, Nelson's Column and Big Ben.
Well, the weather was certainly kinder than last year (when it was drizzling) but temperatures of up to 30C were quite a challenge! Two of our runners had to drop out at the last minute because of health issues but that still left four who were prepared to brave the heat. The route was the same as for last year and, thankfully, the organisation was better which meant that the race packs arrived in good time.
This time the Olympian Sally Gunnell was part of the team for the official start which was much appreciated by the runners. Nearly 25,000 people took part. To give you some idea of what that means, it took almost an hour for all the runners to run past the place we had chosen as our viewing point. It is difficult to spot individuals amongst so many people which is where the Charity logos become all important. Some of the Charities do take this to extremes. Despite the heat we saw people running in full animal suits including a wolf, an elephant, a tiger and a monkey! One man was even dressed as a post box and I have to say I have no idea which charity he was representing.
As we were watching we noticed at least four runners dropping out of the race to use the toilet facilities at a cafe on the run and then joining back in again! Although there was a large notice saying that the loos were for the use of patrons only, the waitress was very sympathetic to the runners concerned.
We were absolutely thrilled that our runners were able to complete the course and so very grateful to them for their efforts. The runners this year were Tom from Marlborough, Husband and wife Dan and Jacqui from London and Matt also from London. We will be recruiting six runners for 2014. If you are interested please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
On the 8th July ten intrepid runners ran their hearts out for the Charity. The weather was not kind with rain at the start but this did nothing to dampen the spirits. The enthusiasm was very clear to see. We had runners from all over the country including Liam from Sutton in Ashfield, Tom from Marlborough, Louise from Birchington, Doug from Rowsley and Elly, Lilian, Elaine, Emma, Miroslava and Paul from London.
The race organisation was not quite as smooth as in previous years and so I went to the Trafalgar Hotel the day before to collect the race packs. In the past these have been sent to the Charity in good time for distribution to the runners. The Trafalgar Hotel was very busy but after three trips we managed to get all the packs. At 8.15 on the Sunday morning we were in Trafalgar Square waiting for our runners. When they arrived they had to change their T shirts as they had been sent the wrong ones, put on their timing devices, pin on their numbers and get organized - all in the rain! We had a good supply of safety pins and everyone managed with help from their friends. As they set off to the start we made our way to the bottom of Trafalgar Square to watch the start on the large screen and to cheer our runners as they went through. Cheer them we did and we also enjoyed watching some “character” runners including Superman, a man dressed as a tap, and one very brave man running only in his underpants!
The elite runners who set off first seemed to have finished before some of the 25,000 runners had had chance to start and our runners put in very creditable performances. It was a real joy to see them and to share their stories afterwards as we gathered for a welcome drink and de-brief. As the trustees we are so very grateful for the people who are prepared to give up their time to enable us to continue providing the support that is so desperately needed. All too soon we wished them a safe journey home. Let’s hope that next year the weather is a little kinder!
When my husband, daughter and I attended the London 10K in 2009 to support the CLT runners the event was truly inspiring. My daughter and husband both said they might like to consider running in 2010. So what actually happened?????????
After a certain amount of “Should I – Shouldn’t I” we were able to have a team of 10 runners at the 2010 event including both our daughters (Elly and Nikki) plus respective boyfriends (Graeme and Kev) and other friends (Lizzie, Rachel, and Lilian) two speech therapists from Derbyshire (Sarah and Kate) and Len Hynds grand daughter (Louise) who is a serious runner and had competed the year before.
We had learnt from the previous year how to organise ourselves and stayed near to Trafalgar Square so that our hotel was available for showers after the race (I just hope the hotel wasn’t metering the water!).
We gathered in Trafalgar Square at 8.00 am and hoped the temperature would not climb too high. As one would expect there were the usual questions about how they could possibly have agreed to run 10K but we were there to support and encourage. As last year the atmosphere was so friendly and the weather was very kind.
We had improved the T shirts by putting a logo on the back as well which was a great help with recognition and profile raising for the Charity. We had also joined Just Giving so that donors could support the runners via the Internet. This was very successful and resulted in funds coming in from as far away as Athens!
There were 25,000 runners supporting Charities large and small. The first runner to go through Trafalgar Square was an expert who had been invited to set off the race. He sprinted past us at an incredible speed and, if anything, the motorcycle escort seemed to be getting in his way! There were runners dressed as zebras, chickens, deep sea divers and very overweight male ballet dancers complete with pink tutus! Our runners looked very smart and were all determined to achieve a good time as well as raising funds.
We moved down to the Embankment to see them run under one of the bridges and I was able to talk about the Charity again on one of the mobile microphones. From there it was back to Trafalgar Square to meet the runners again. They were tired but clearly exhilarated by what they had achieved. The Speech Therapists were quick to point out that there are a lot more hills in Derbyshire where they had been training! We were able to take lots of photos including the medals that had been handed out and we all enjoyed a refreshing drink to celebrate.
So do you know anyone who would enjoy taking part? It is an unforgettable experience and we are looking for 2012 runners already.