On your marks... Plans for second ‘official’ marathon race in Norfolk approved

Norfolk's second 'official' marathon will be held in October 2019 Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Norfolk's second 'official' marathon will be held in October 2019 Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Runners with ambitions of completing a marathon will not require a traipse to the capital to take on the challenge next year.

Instead, competitors will be able to breathe in coastal air while putting their bodies to the test.

Councillors in north Norfolk have agreed to organise a marathon to take place on the coast in October 2019, in what will provide the county with its second 'official' marathon.

The district council aims to make it the second event to be organised under UK Athletics regulations, making it 'official'. The first official marathon event in the county is the Norfolk Coastal Marathon.

Becky Palmer, portfolio holder for leisure, said she hoped the event would create the same buzz as events such as the London Marathon.

She said: 'You see the coverage events like the London Marathon and the Great North Run receive, so we want to bring something like that to Norfolk.

'It's all to do with promoting our wonderful coastline so we hope it will bring visitors to the area and really create a buzz.'

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While the event has been agreed unanimously by members of the council's cabinet, the exact route runners will take is yet to be determined.

However, with the event rubber stamped, the council will now work with partners including the North Norfolk Beach Runners to determine where it should be held.

She added work would also need to be done to plot a route that does not interfere with animal habitats, but that the race would be coastal.

The event is planning to take place making use of the deep history coast, with the 'Mammoth Marathon' name suggested West Runton would likely be included, given the discovery of woolly mammoth remains in the village in 1990.

A race will also see a half-marathon taking place concurrently, with participants able to choose between two separate courses.

If the events are considered a success, there will then be scope to extend it to include further athletic events in years to come, including a children's race and a cycling event.

The exact date of the inaugural 'Mammoth Marathon' is to be confirmed.