Running High Events, the organisers of the award-winning Bath Half Marathon, have confirmed that a grant from the Bath Half Marathon Fund has helped to fund the set up costs of the new Bath Odd Down junior parkrun, which launched on Sunday 19th March 2017.

More than 100 children participated in Bath’s first junior parkrun at Odd Down Sports Ground, which will now be a regular fixture in the calendar every Sunday for young runners aged 4-14.

The Odd Down junior parkrun builds on the success of the Bath Skyline parkrun launched two years ago, which also received funding for start-up costs from the Bath Half Marathon Fund. The contribution to such events is a prime example of the Bath Half’s commitment to the community, the Fund having helped 162 local community projects and 102 local community groups in the 13 years since it was set up in 2003.

The Bath Half Marathon Fund is funded by generous donations from runners entering the Bath Half. The voluntary donations from runners entering the popular spring race have so far raised £180,000 in grants for local sport, play and active lifestyle projects, in areas of deprivation and rural isolation within Bath & North East Somerset.

In addition to the grants given to the Bath Odd Down junior parkrun and the Bath Skyline parkrun, projects that have benefited from the Bath Half Marathon Fund over the last few years have included Bath Rugby Community Foundation, Age UK Bath & North East Somerset, Mentoring Plus, a number of schools and pre-schools and numerous sports clubs including Minerva Bath Rowing Club and Paulton Amateur Swimming Club.

Race Director Andrew Taylor, from Running High Events, said: “We were delighted to be able to offer a grant from the Bath Half Marathon Fund to help fund the start-up costs of the Bath Odd Down junior parkrun. The Fund was set up 14 years ago with the aim of promoting sport and a healthy lifestyle to people of all backgrounds within Bath & North East Somerset, and it was hugely rewarding to help launch the first junior parkrun in the area, just as it had helped launch the first adult parkrun two years previous. The event had a brilliant turnout and we look forward to seeing many more young people try parkrun and enjoy the great community event that it is.

“We would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to all our Bath Half Marathon entrants who have donated to the Fund. Their support has been amazing and it is down to their donations that this has all been possible. We look forward to receiving future donations to the Fund to ensure that we can continue to invest in local community sports projects as part of our ongoing programme of support.”

Andy and Harriet of Bath Odd Down junior parkrun added: “Thank you to everyone who has made the Bath Odd Down junior parkrun happen, especially to Bath Half Marathon entrants for their generous donations towards the start-up costs. We are delighted to have got this fantastic weekly event off the ground and are looking forward to seeing our new event grow organically, in true parkrun form.”

The Bath Odd Down junior parkrun takes place at 9am every Sunday over a 2km course at Odd Down Sports Ground. Entry is free but participants must register at parkrun, print a barcode and bring it with them if they want their time recorded.

The 2017 Vitality Bath Half Marathon took place on Sunday 12th March and welcomed a record number of runners and spectators to the two-lap, traffic-free course that straddles both sides of the River Avon. It is expected that charity fundraising from the day will also exceed all previous records, raising substantial sums for the 130 official charities that the race supports.

The date for the 2018 Bath Half Marathon has been confirmed as Sunday 4th March. Early bird entries are now open, offering runners a £5 discount until 14th April.

The race sells out each year and the organisers are expecting places for the 2018 event to sell out quicker than ever before.

Go to www.bathhalf.co.uk for further details and to sign up, like the Facebook page www.facebook.com/BathHalfMarathon and follow @bathhalf #bathhalf on Twitter to keep up to date with all the latest news about the Vitality Bath Half Marathon.

Featured image courtesy of Rich Kenington.