Shrewsbury to host its first ever marathon

Bosses behind Shrewsbury's first ever marathon today revealed their hopes it will become an annual fixture.

Shrewsbury to host its first ever marathon

Hundreds of runners are to take part in the inaugural Shrewsbury Marathon and Half Marathon on June 23.

Crowds are expected to line the route which will start from the Statue of Hercules and loop through The Quarry before snaking through Smithfield Road, Castle Street, The Square and Town Walls.

It will continue through Longden Coleham and Kingsland before returning to the finish line in The Quarry.

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The event has been organised by Market Drayton-based company In the Running and will cost the firm up to £40,000 to stage.

In the Running's director David Downes said he had been working on the project with council bosses for almost a year.

He said: "The course loops through the town centre and Quarry and will benefit from crowd support all along the route which is unheard of outside of the London Marathon."

Mr Downes said he expected the marathon to take place each year, attracting thousands of people from across the region.

"We are expecting the event to be hugely popular as there is nothing like this locally and we also expect the event over the coming years to grow and attract runners from further afield," he said.

"Shrewsbury and local traders will also benefit from the increased footfall on the day.

"It's great to be launching the event straight after such a successful Olympics, with sport participation on the up and the increased health benefits from running its good news all round," he added.

Water stations will be set up every two miles. The course will be closed to vehicles, with Traffix running traffic management.

Mr Downes said organisers would be hoping to raise cash for charity through the event.

All runners will receive a medal and t-shirt for taking part. Entry costs £32 for the marathon and £22 for the half marathon.

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