Everything you need to know about the 2019 Great East Run
PUBLISHED: 01:00 07 January 2019 | UPDATED: 10:33 07 January 2019
Competitors of all abilities are urged to lace up their running shoes and take centre stage at one of Suffolk's biggest sporting events later this year.
Thousands of people are expected to pound the streets of Ipswich for the Great East Run 2019, and today details of this year’s event are being revealed.
The hugely popular run, which will see runners take on a mammoth half marathon challenge taking in scenic views of the Orwell Bridge, is taking place on Sunday, September 22.
Here is our handy guide putting together everything you need to know about the Great East Run 2019.
What’s in store for the 2019 run?
Since it was first launched three years ago, entry numbers have doubled up to 4,000.
Participants take on a half marathon course through Ipswich town centre, under the Orwell Bridge and cross the finishing line at Ipswich Town Football Club.
Now organisers, including the Ipswich Jaffa running club and Suffolk County Council, are urging people to sign up and take part in the 2019 extravaganza, which aims to boost Suffolk’s bid to become the Most Active County in England.
Nigel Gough, of the Great Run Company, said: “We’re really excited to be able to bring the Simplyhealth Great East Run back to Ipswich for the third consecutive year and to allow 4,000 runners to be a part of a fantastic half marathon in Suffolk.
“Every year, the event receives a huge level of demand for entries, selling out within a matter of months.
“Once the event is full, no more places will be made available so I would encourage anyone who wishes to sign up to do so as soon as they can to avoid disappointment.”
Can I take part?
The Great East Run is popular with runners of all abilities, from those taking on a half marathon for the first time to charity fundraisers and a competitive club runner field featuring some of East Anglia’s best-known sports stars.
It is also a hit with spectators and supporters, with Portman Road playing host to a vibrant event village packed with sponsors and charities, as well as a local farmer’s market.
Participants line up next to Suffolk County Council’s Endeavour House and head out through the centre of Ipswich, passing the Willis building before heading towards the Waterfront.
The route then goes past Felaw Maltings on the way out and back along Wherstead Road, where participants will pass under the Orwell Bridge.
Runners then head through the village of Freston and return to the town centre before crossing the finish line in the practice pitch area of the football pitch.
Run to ‘boost economy’
James Reeder, cabinet member for health at Suffolk County Council, said: “Running is one of the most accessible forms of physical activity and we know that mass participation events such as the Simplyhealth Great East Run can inspire people to get active and help us to achieve our ambition to make Suffolk the most active county in England.
“The event also makes a very positive contribution to the local economy and tourism sector, attracting participants from across the UK to visit and stay in the county, whilst raising thousands of pounds for charitable good causes.”
Ipswich council’s deputy leader Bryony Rudkin said: “The Simplyhealth Great East Run, which has grown out of our Ipswich Half Marathon, has become a welcome addition to the town’s events calendar and is extremely popular among people of all abilities.”
Meanwhile Alison Beech, chair of Ipswich Jaffa Running Club, said: “Ipswich Jaffa Running Club is delighted to be continuing its successful partnership with the Great Run Company to deliver the Simplyhealth Great East Run.
“Our running club is built on an ethos of inclusivity, embracing runners of all abilities.
“The run has proved itself as an excellent local event which has something to offer participants of all abilities, as well as an entertaining spectator experience.”
How do I sign up?
Entries for the Simplyhealth Great East Run are now open via this link.