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Must Do Races In 2022

BY: The Running Channel
10 January 2022

One of the best things about running is getting together with other runners at events, something we know a lot of runners have missed over the last few years. Well, fear not! 2022 will be the – with help from our friends at Let’s Do This, we’ve compiled our ultimate list of must-do running races in the UK for the coming year. We’ve split them into four categories – 10K, Half Marathon, Trail and Other, but quite a few have multiple distances available so you should be able to find a race and distance that suits you.

10K

Cancer Research UK London Winter Run

Where better to start than the capital’s biggest 10K? The Cancer Research Winter Run from Human Race gives you that perfect mix of iconic landmarks, a lively atmosphere, live music, and… Penguins? That’s right – this 10K through the streets of London has a frosty theme, meaning you’re likely to spot a few arctic creatures outside of their natural habitat along the route… The route is really flat, too, which would make this race a great opportunity to smash your 10k PB.

Distance: 10K

Date: Sun 13th Feb

Elevation:  N/A

Participants: 20,000

Entry fee: £32.00 – £65.00

Sign up today


Great Manchester Run

The Great Manchester Run is a multi-distance event attended by around 30,000 people every year, including a star-studded elite field that has previously featured the likes of Sir Mo Farah, Haile Gebrselassie, and Tirunesh Dibaba. The elite race is often shown on telly, too, so you might be lucky enough to be on camera! This race is a must-run for locals and visitors alike, as each kilometre marker houses an entertainment zone that showcases the best of the city’s vibrant culture.

Distance: Junior / 10K / HM

Date: Sat 21st & Sun 22nd May

Participants: 30,000

Elevation: N/A

Entry fee: £18.00 – £49.00

Sign up today


Oswestry 10K

Okay, so maybe city races aren’t for you? Enter the Oswestry 10K, a rural road race that follows a scenic route in the heart of Shropshire. The race offers a bit of everything: a fast-paced start along the high-street, a respectable amount of elevation, and some lovely countryside views to boot.

Distance: 10K

Date: Sun 16th Oct

Participants: 1,500

Elevation: 129m

Entry fee: £18.00 – £49.00

Sign up today


Hampton Court Palace 10K

The Hampton Court Palace 10K is an historic race. No, literally – the route takes you through the grounds of King Henry VIII’s favoured London residence, making it a one-of-a-kind event! Take in the views as you follow the River Thames around the palace’s perimeter before doubling back towards the Rick Pond – no, not that Rick – and the Great Fountain Garden, where the route finishes. As an extra treat, participants are also allowed to explore the palace’s infamous maze afterwards!

Distance: 10K

Date: Sun 22nd May

Participants: 1,500

Elevation: N/A

Entry fee: £36.00

Sign up today


Bacchus Wine Half Marathon & 10K

Tres bien! This alcohol-infused race in Surrey is pour tout le monde! Well, so long as you’re over 18. The Bacchus Wine Half Marathon and 10K in Dorking offers entrants a chance to sprint with a Sauvignon, shuffle with a Chablis, and pace themselves with a Pinot as they work their way around an undulating course that starts and ends at Denbies wine estate, home to the largest vineyard in England. Wine not your thing? Don’t worry – water is also available, and all finishers receive a ticket to the hog roast afterwards. And yes, fancy dress is permitted, if not encouraged!

Distance: 10K / HM

Date: Sun 11th Sep

Participants: 2,000

Elevation: 220m / 440m

Entry fee: £35.00 – £56.00

Sign up today


Half Marathon

Great North Run

Ever fancied running the largest half-marathon in the world? Well, look no further than North East England. The Great North Run gives runners a chance to follow the iconic city-to-sea route from the heart of Newcastle out to the coast at South Shields. The event is over forty years old, and has had well over a million finishers in total. Combine these staggering figures with an electric atmosphere, stunning views through Tyneside, and a unique GNR40 finishers medal for the 2022 edition, and you’ve got an amazing race on your hands.

Distance: Junior / HM

Date: Sun 11th Sep

Elevation:  115m

Participants: 57,000

Entry fee: £58.00

Sign up today


ABP Southampton Half

We love going for runs in new locations, and events like the Southampton Half give you a chance to do just that. The event starts and ends in the city’s bustling Cultural Quarter, with the route taking participants over the Itchen and Northam Bridges, giving runners stunning views of The Solent, The New Forest, and the rest of southern Hampshire. The Half is a must-run for football fans, as you get the chance to run right through St Mary’s Stadium along the way!

Distance: 10K / HM / Marathon

Date: Sun 24th Apr

Participants: 12,000

Elevation: 68m / 127m / 264m

Entry fee: £25.00 – £54.99

Sign up today


Mercer Surrey Half Marathon

The Surrey Half is a fast and flat half marathon that follows a single loop around Woking and Guildford in South East England. The race takes place on closed roads, and has an ‘award-winning atmosphere’. It also boasts one of the fastest half marathon finish times on record (62 minutes), meaning it’s a great choice for anyone looking to set a new PB.  The route is based mainly in the leafy suburbs of Surrey, it’s really easy to get to, too!

Distance: Junior / 5K / HM

Date: Sun 6th Mar

Participants: 5,000

Elevation: 159m

Entry fee: £12.00 – £38.00

Sign up today


Anglesey Half Marathon & 10K

Who wouldn’t want to start a half marathon on a 195-year-old bridge? That’s precisely what happens at the Anglesey Half Marathon in Wales. Runners get the opportunity to take in the breathtaking North Wales scenery as they run an out-and-back along the southeastern coast of the Isle of Anglesey, running parallel to the Menai Strait towards Beaumaris. The best part is you get a free pack of Welsh crisps when you cross the finish line – winner!

Distance: Junior / 10K / HM

Date: Sat 6th Mar

Participants: 2,500

Elevation: 275m

Entry fee: £7.00 – £41.99

Sign up today


Trail Events

Maverick – West Sussex

Some of you might be thinking, “hang on, what if I’m up for something a bit muddier?” Enter Maverick events. Whilst it may sound slightly intimidating, this Sussex-based event offers trail runners of all abilities the chance to take part in an off-road run right in the middle of the South Downs National Park. For first-timers, be warned that there are a couple of technical sections, but remember that the challenge is part of the fun! There are three distances to choose from – 7, 14, and 23km – all of which take participants part-way along the infamous South Downs Way.

Distance: 7K / 14K / 23K

Date: Sat 12th Feb

Elevation: 142m / 264m / 357m

Participants: N/A

Entry fee: £25.00 – £40.00

Sign up today


Rye Ancient Trails

The ultimate combination of mixed terrain and medieval history, Rye Ancient Trails takes competitors along country lanes, across farmland, and through quaint woodlands and villages in East Sussex. The two distances – 15K and 30K – both provide moderate elevation gain, and the countryside environment means you’ll have to negotiate numerous stiles and gates in the process. The history buffs among you will be sure to appreciate the five Norman churches en route, too.

Distance: 15K / 30K

Date: Sun 11th Sep

Elevation: 202m / 422m

Participants: 1,000

Entry fee: £22.00 – £35.00

Sign up today


HOKA Half Marathon

The course for the HOKA Half Marathon weaves its way through Afan Forest Park, an area of hilly woodland situated in an old coal mining valley. If you like climbs, you’ll love this one, as the half marathon boasts over 2,000ft of elevation along the route! There’s even a climb called ‘The Wall’ at Mile 11 – as if the final stretch of a half marathon isn’t already hard enough…

Distance: 10K / HM

Date: Sat 19th Feb

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 1,500

Entry fee: £15.00 – £25.00

Sign up today


Bristol Epic Trail 10K

On the outskirts of Bristol city centre lies an 850-acre woodland estate first established over 600 years ago – this is the setting of Tough Runner’s Epic Trail 10K. This race gives you a bit of everything – trails, trees, climbs, and there’s a cafe at the end, too. This might just be the event for you if you’re a road-runner who’s recently developed a taste for the trails.

Distance: 10K

Date: Sat 21st May

Elevation: 205m

Participants: 1,000

Entry fee: £28.00

Sign up today


Beyond Badminton

Before you ask: this has nothing to do with racquet sports. This multi-distance event offers runners the chance to run anything from 5 to 50km on trails, tracks and tarmac around the Badminton Estate and the surrounding villages in Gloucestershire. Whilst the route is undulating, this is one of the less hilly events in this round-up. Elevation is always worth considering – every metre matters!

Distance: 5K / 10K / HM / Marathon / 50K Ultra

Date: Sat 3rd Sep

Elevation: 38m / 77m / 150m / 300m / 341m

Participants: N/A

Entry fee: £17.50 – £40.00

Sign up today


Great Estates: Belvoir Castle

If running through the grounds of stately homes is your thing, then this next event will be right up your street. The Great Estates Belvoir Castle 5K, 10K and junior events all take place within close proximity of one of Leicestershire’s oldest castles. Runners will be able to see for miles over the counties of Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire as they follow the easy-to-navigate grassy circuit around Belvoir Castle.

Distance: Junior / 5K / 10K

Date: Sat 19th Feb

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 750

Entry fee: £4.99 – £19.99

Sign up today


Other Events

Inflatable 5k – Brands Hatch

This is where things get interesting. Here’s our selection of UK running events that don’t quite follow the rules…

First up, the Inflatable 5K at Brands Hatch Race Circuit. Participants face 32 different obstacles, all of which have slightly ominous names… ‘The Mangle’, ‘The Growler’, ‘The Vortex’… One’s just called ‘Holy Moly’! Don’t let the names put you off, though – this inflatable 5k is the world’s biggest and bounciest, meaning you’ll have loads of fun! To top it all off, there are 5 different music zones to help you as you bound along through the different blow-up barriers.

Distance: 2.5K / 5K / 10K / 15K

Date: Sat 21st May

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 3,000

Entry fee: £18.00 – £45.50

Sign up today


The Ciderthon

Where better to hold a cider-themed race than the heart of Somerset? Runners can take on one of two distances at The Ciderthon: the Forbidden Fruit 5K, or the Half Marathon. Runners of the shorter distance can expect two cider refreshment stops on their route, whilst those who opt for the longer distance earn themselves a mighty 6 samples on their run, with 6 more available at the finish. The cider on offer comes from a variety of local producers. Be warned, though: this is not a timed event, for fairly obvious reasons…

Distance: 5K / HM

Date: Sun 8th May

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 1,500

Entry fee: £25.00 – £47.00

Sign up today


Run Alton Towers

Running, like rollercoasters, has its ups and downs. It makes perfect sense, then, to combine the two! Run Alton Towers gives entrants the opportunity to race around the Staffordshire Theme Park before getting the chance to go on the rides after their run. The course takes runners along the roads and paths within the park, and starts and finishes in front of the stunning castle.

Distance: Junior / 5K / 10K / HM

Date: Sat 12th Nov & Sun 13th Nov

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 7,500

Entry fee: £23.00 – £38.00

Sign up today


Blackpool Music Run

Ever wanted to dance your way to a 10K? The Blackpool Music Run gives you the chance to do just that, with the fourth instalment of this exhilarating event taking place this summer. Both the 5K and 10K routes follow the historic Blackpool Promenade, where you’ll find a whole host of live performances hoping to spur you on during your run. The race finishes under the iconic Blackpool Tower, where there’ll be a headline performance after the race, as well as concessions, entertainment, and much more.

Distance: 5K / 10K

Date: Sun 17th Jul

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 3,000

Entry fee: £15.00 – £30.00

Sign up today


Milton Keynes Marathon Weekend

From fancy-dress fun runs to Rocket 5Ks and full-blown marathons, the Milton Keynes Marathon Weekend has it all. Entrants get the chance to take in the green and scenic routes through the heart of Milton Keynes before finishing the race at Stadium MK, the home of the MK Dons. Whether you’re looking for a Boston Qualifying time, or you just want to share a running experience with friends and family, you’ll be sure to find the distance for you at the MK Weekend.

Distance: Junior / 5K / 10K / HM / Marathon

Date: Sun 17th Jul

Elevation: N/A

Participants: 8,000

Entry fee: £10.00 – £50.00

Sign up today

If you’ve signed up for any of these races, let us know how you get on via our social media channels. We love to hear from you.

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