Race Day: 13 October 2019



With sustainability at the top of the agenda, the Royal Parks and Limelight Sports work together to do everything we can to help reduce the impact of the Half Marathon on the environment.

Plastic on the Course

We are committed to going plastic free on the course by 2020. This year we will take the first steps towards fulfilling this commitment, by introducing two water stations with compostable cups and reducing the size of plastic water bottles from 330ml to 250ml. To see which water stations will be cups vs bottles, please see the race route. Runners will also receive a 500ml carton of water at the end of the race.

We are also removing all isotonic from the course. If your preference is to have sports nutrition on race day, we recommend bringing your own or having a friend or family member meet you along to course.

Through these changes, we are eliminating 100,000 plastic bottles from the course and festival area. See more about the impact of this change here


All runners will receive a canvas finisher goodby bag, donated by Royal Bank of Canada, and they can collect free samples (no flyers/vouchers) from the Festival site. This reduces waste as runners only pick up want they want!

Litter areas set up for the public have clearly labelled bins for recycling and general waste. We even have special bins to collect and compost banana skins. These areas are staffed during the event to maximise the amount being recycled.

Sustainable Procurement

Participant race t-shirts are made from sustainably sourced bamboo and recycled polyester. Our local supplier works closely with her manufacturer in China to ensure a closed loop of sustainable work practices. 

  • Race shirts are shipped, not flown.
  • Participant medals are made from FSC-certified Beech wood. The lanyards are made from recycled materials, and a split ring attachment to the wooden medal encourages re-use e.g. as a key fob.
  • Where possible, we produce race branding, signage and décor without dates for re-use in future years.
  • We order only what is necessary, to reduce waste.


  • Exhibitors, charity partners and sponsors are not permitted to “leaflet” within the event site, reducing the paper brought to site and minimising litter. 
  • Balloons are not permitted, due to the potential dangers to wildlife if they get free.
  • All plastic bottles (water and hydration drinks) used on site are collected and taken for recycling locally.
  • In 2017, 58% of waste from the food festival and 95% of the plastic bottles used for the event were recycled and 891kg of discarded clothing was saved from going to a landfill site.
  • Separate recycling areas for food market traders and other exhibitors ensure that all waste is recycled – particularly packaging
  • Discarded clothing is collected and donated to Traid. 
  • Surplus food from the catering areas, the exhibitors or the food market is collected at the end of the event and distributed to those in need.

Sustainable Event Management

  • Limelight Sports, our sports management agency partner, has been certified to ISO 20121 (International Standard for Event Sustainability Management Systems) since July 2012 and since March 2010 to BS8901.
  • A stakeholder management record identifies issues, objectives and actions for social, economic and environmental requirements of the event; a key part of the event planning.
  • The event build and de-rig times are managed to minimise the need for artificial lighting –saving energy while ensuring that the Park wildlife is as little disturbed as possible.
  • Participants register online, with all communications via email or social media. The only exception is the personalised runner’s race pack. Though we encourage collection at various pick up points leading up to the race, a few are sent out shortly before the race with t-shirt, runner number with timing chip, and a folded runner information booklet (printed on recycled stock) containing important on-the-day messages and content from sponsors.
  • Event staff are provided with bicycles to move quickly around the route, keeping vehicle movements to a minimum.