The London Marathon is one of the longest-running annual Marathons worldwide. It is extremely popular with around 40,000 runners taking part plus thousands of spectators lining the 26.2-mile route.
It is one of the memorable sporting events held in London and is definitely extremely spectacular. Large numbers of roads are closed off during the event, and it can slow down attempts to travel around London so be prepared, and avoid the area if you are not going to watch the runners. Head towards hotel Edward Paddington to book your stay and watch this majestic event. London Marathon will take place on 22 April 2018.
The London Marathon takes place every spring, and starts at Greenwich Park, high above the river Thames. Once the starting signal is given, runners hurtle down through the park and head eastwards to Blackheath, before turning back towards London passing through Bermondsey on their way to Tower Bridge. Once they have crossed Tower Bridge, the next stage is through Docklands and round the Isle of Dogs, before heading back to the Tower of London, along with the Embankment and onto to the finishing line outside Buckingham Palace. It is a long, and winding road past countless historic buildings.
The first London Marathon took place in 1981, and completion times have got steadily faster. Top runners now complete the course in around 2 hours – while less skilled runners trickle into the finishing line throughout the day. One participant has even crawled the entire length of the route, taking six days to reach Buckingham Palace. It was clearly very worthwhile since he raised £23,900 for his chosen charity, the Gorilla Organisation. Search for bed and breakfast Central London to have a healthy breakfast and get ready to run.
Charities benefit considerably from the London Marathon. Each year there is a chosen charity raising funds along the route (in 2018, it is the Teenage Cancer Trust), while many participants run on behalf of many different charities. Over the years participants have raised more than £830m.
Runners come from all walks of life. Some are professional athletes, others are beginners or amateur runners. Many celebrities have taken part, usually as a way of raising funds and awareness for charities. Recent celebrity participants have included Princess Beatrice, chef Gordon Ramsey, and TV personality Chris Evans.
Demand for a place in the London Marathon is very high. In 2018, 253,930 people applied for the 40,000 places available.