Major change to the 2019 Bridgnorth Walk – traditional walk to be joined by Marathon event
Bridgnorth Lions has announced a major expansion to the 2019 Walk weekend event – for the first time the traditional walk event will take place in conjunction with a newly established Bridgnorth Marathon for runners. The combined event will be known as the Bridgnorth Lions Walk and Marathon. The event takes place on Monday May 27th, the late spring Bank holiday.
Runners will set off from the high street at 9.00 am, one hour earlier than the walkers and the fastest are expected to return from the 26.7 mile route around 12.30pm.
Walkers will follow the same routes as last year with a 22 mile event for under 40’s, a 20 mile event for the over 40’s and a seven mile event in Ditton Priors for children aged at least nine but under 15 on the day of the event. Bridgnorth Lions President Richard Stilwell said: “We see this as a major step forward as we want to continue to look at every opportunity to make these fantastic community events enjoyable for as many groups as possible competitive runners and competitive walkers as well as those who do the events to have fun and raise money for their favourite charities.
“The Bridgnorth Walk has taken place for more than 50 years and is one of the highlights of the local community calendar, raising more than £100,000 for charity every year. However, since Bridgnorth Lions took over the running of the event we’ve brought it up to date with safety innovations and improvements. The Marathon event will bring added benefits for runners and bring more people to the town.”
Explaining the change Richard Stilwell said: “More and more people are taking part in running events so we felt we should offer something for them. This will be a very challenging event, running up and down hills, including a climb to the top of the Brown Clee. The route will follow the walk all the way to the top of the hill but then runners will go back down the other side, across to Burf Bank, then round to Cockshutford and back round to Bent Lane. This will provide the extra four miles to make it an official Marathon.
“We’ve taken advice from the Bridgnorth Running Club and they’ve indicated that it will be an exciting event for their members and for runners from other clubs throughout the West Midlands and even further afield. Currently, there are only a few marathons within a 50 mile radius so we expect interest from both competitive and club level athletes.”
Runners and walkers will be marshalled by volunteers from local organisations every mile along the route. Once again, competitors’ safety will be of paramount importance with motor cycle marshals ensuring that local traffic is carefully managed. Again, competitors will leave the town via Oldbury Wells to avoid using the busy by-pass.
Scott Mathers, secretary of Bridgnorth Running Club, said: “This is great news for local runners who want to do a marathon distance. To do such an event in their home area will be fantastic and with the added benefit of not having the costs associated with events a long way from home. Our own Bridgnorth 10K event has grown every year and we expect that the Bridgnorth Lions Marathon will attract great support in the coming years.”
Walkers and runners will be able to register for the event on a new Bridgnorth Lions Walk and Marathon website, due to go “live” on February 1st. Entry fees for walkers will remain the same at £15 (£5 for the junior walk) while runners will pay £25 as they are not expected to be raising funds for charity purposes.