16,000 Runners Complete the Royal Parks Half Marathon
23 October 2018
London played host to The Royal Parks Half Marathon presented by Royal Bank of Canada which saw 16,000 runners complete the scenic 13.1-mile race.
The 11th edition of the Royal Parks Half Marathon is still the only race of its kind, taking runners through four of London’s eight Royal Parks, including Hyde Park, The Green Park, St James’s Park and Kensington Gardens. As well as running through these historic parks, competitors also took in iconic landmarks, such as Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square and the Houses of Parliament.
TV presenter and current Strictly Come Dancing contestant, Katie Piper, started the race and sent runners on their way around the course.
Other celebrities taking part alongside Katie Piper were TV and Radio presenter, Jo Whiley; Love Island 2018 contestants, Laura Crane and Charlie Brake; BBC presenter Sophie Raworth; fitness influencer and author, Alice Liveing; Midsomer Murders actor, Nick Hendrix; Casualty actors George Rainsford and Jaye Griffiths; former Great British Bake Off winner Frances Quinn and The Apprentice series 10 winner, Mark Wright.
During the last 11 years the event has continued to promote its green credentials and sustainable ethos. By the year 2020 the Royal Parks Half Marathon has committed to going plastic free, both on the course and in the festival area.
In line with this, and for the first time this year, the Royal Parks Half Marathon removed 100,000 plastic bottles from the course and festival area, with runners receiving a carton of water at the end of the race, rather than a plastic bottle. In addition, the 2018 runner’s booklet was digital, eliminating 16,000 printed booklets and every runner received a reusable canvas goody bag, provided by Royal Bank of Canada (RBC).
RBC became Presenting Partner of this iconic half in 2017, and earlier this year extended the partnership to 2020. Dave Thomas, CEO, Europe, RBC Capital Markets said ‘RBC is committed to helping our communities prosper and we also understand the importance of keeping active to help with mental and physical well-being. The Royal Parks Half is a tremendous event, raising funds for truly worthwhile causes and increasing awareness of environmental issues. The Royal Parks Half has become a hugely popular race and we are delighted to be part of it once again.’
Commenting on today’s race, Project Lead at The Royal Parks, Persephone Deacon-Cole said; “It was wonderful to see all the runners out in force today. The race goes from strength to strength each year and massive congratulations to all those who took part.”
She added: “This annual event is extremely important to us because the money raised allows us to maintain and care for London’s Royal Parks, which truly are magical spaces for so many people.”
Since the first event was held in 2008, the Royal Parks Half has remained focused on its charitable aims and credits much of its success to its many charity partnerships. The race has now raised in excess of £40 million for its participating charities over that time.