Boost for sports clubs from marathon funds

Running club funds SUS-141216-160517001
Running club funds SUS-141216-160517001

Mid Sussex District Council is investing the money raised by the 2014 Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend in projects that will help support local sports development.

In May, over 1000 runners completed the main Mid Sussex Marathon races in Burgess Hill, East Grinstead and Haywards Heath, helping to raise money for local charities and making it a fabulous occasion for the local community. The event also provided a boost for the local economy, with hundreds of visitors drawn into the towns to spectate on race days.

The marathon money will be provided by Mid Sussex District Council to local projects in Burgess Hill, East Grinstead and Haywards Heath that will improve sporting opportunities for local people.

Burgess Hill Runners, a local club which caters for runners of all levels, has been awarded £3,500 to help them develop more, and better qualified, coaches by sending their volunteers on professional coaching courses. They will also be using the Mid Sussex District Council funding to buy indoor athletics equipment that will enable their members to continue with their sport during the winter and bad weather.

The East Grinstead Athletics Club and Activate East Grinstead have been granted £3000 for local running projects. The clubs will use £1500 for the 321 initiative, a project pioneered by Run England that encourages people who have stopped taking exercise to become active again. Signage is displayed around the town to mark out jogging routes from 1 – 5km, varied distances that will appeal to runners of all abilities. The remainder of the money has been set aside to hopefully establish a weekly Park Run in the town.

Haywards Heath Harriers, the largest running club in Mid Sussex with over 250 members, has been presented with £3,162.

The club takes pride in helping runners of all abilities to reach their potential. The money will help them to buy new hurdles, sports clothing and a storage container to protect their new and existing equipment.

“The Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend is a wonderful event that attracts a wide mix of runners, from top county athletes to the fun runners who raise so much money for local charities,” said Councillor Pru Moore, Cabinet Member for Leisure and Sustainability.

“The marathon has such a positive effect on the local community, and we want to see that grow by getting more people involved in sport and exercise.

“By investing money from the marathon into local running clubs we intend to create a positive spiral of sports participation.

“These grants will help local clubs to provide better sporting facilities for local people, which will hopefully encourage more people to give running a try. With more local runners, the Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend will grow, generating even more funding for local sports clubs.”

For more information about the Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend 2015 email

Report and picture contributed by Mid Sussex District Council.