First Norfolk road marathon in 31 years cancelled again due to Covid

Mammoth marathon route. Picture: NNDC

The original route planned for the Mammoth Marathon, which has been delayed a second time, and will now take place for in 2022.  - Credit: Archant

What was to be Norfolk's first road marathon for more than 30 years has been cancelled once again due to coronavirus. 

North Norfolk District Council has rescheduled the inaugural Mammoth Marathon to May 2022.

After the pandemic took hold early last year the event was put back from May 17, 2020, to May 16 this year, but organisers have said it will still not be possible to run properly until 2022.

Virginia Gay, Liberal Democrat candidate for North Walsham Market Cross in the 2019 North Norfolk Di

North Norfolk district councillor Virginia Gay, portfolio holder for leisure, wellbeing and culture, said the marathon had been cancelled with safety in mind.  - Credit: Supplied by Virginia Gay

Virginia Gay, portfolio holder for leisure, well-being and culture, said the cancellation had been made with the safety of competitors, spectators and residents in mind.

Mrs Gay said: “We cancelled the original event during the first lockdown in 2020 which was disappointing, but around 950 of the 1,000 runners who signed up to take part stayed registered for the rescheduled marathon and half-marathon which we hoped to run on May 16 this year.

“But unfortunately as we are in another national lockdown and with no certainty as to when or how the current restrictions might be changed, we have had to once again postpone."

North Norfolk Beach Runners Boxing Day fun run and dip in the North Sea 2015 by Cromer pier, in aid

People taking part in a North Norfolk Beach Runners Boxing Day event in front of Cromer Pier. The running club has partnered with the district council to run the Mammoth Marathon, which has now been delayed to 2022. - Credit: Mark Bullimore

The 26.2 mile race would see runners heading from Sea Palling to Happisburgh before taking in Walcott, Bacton Paston, Mundesley and Northrepps, then onto the pier at Cromer and to the finish line at Sheringham.

There would also be a half-marathon starting in Mundesley.

Most Read

The even was to be run in partnership with the North Norfolk Beach Runners, and its ‘mammoth’ theme ties in with the council’s Deep History Coast campaign which aims to draw more people to explore north Norfolk’s prehistoric heritage.

The race was to be the first full-length road marathon in the country since the Norfolk Marathon ended in 1990.

“The event was conceived to celebrate our fabulous Deep History Coast and to really promote North Norfolk as a great tourist destination and that’s why we’ve looked to hold it in May prior to the holiday season," Mrs Gay added.

"Regrettably the longevity and gravity of the coronavirus pandemic has meant it just isn’t safe for us to hold a big and high-profile event such as this at the current time."

Competitors will be contacted via email with details of how to request a refund or roll their place over to next year's event.