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Runners approach the Finish Line on The Mall at the Virgin Money London Marathon

Apply for Charity of the Year

Apply now to become Charity of the Year for the 2023 TCS London Marathon

London Marathon Events (LME), organiser of the TCS London Marathon, is looking to appoint a Charity of the Year (COTY) partner for the 2023 event.

LME organises some of the world’s leading mass participation events in running, cycling and swimming including Vitality London 10,000, The Big Half, RideLondon and Swim Serpentine. 

The London Marathon is the world’s most successful one-day annual fundraising event and the total raised for thousands of charities since 1981 is now more than £1 billion. Charities and their runners play a central role in making it the world’s greatest marathon.

Who should apply?

LME is looking to appoint a charity, or partnership of charities, that is looking to fund an innovative project (or projects) that will create a lasting impact for its beneficiaries. We’re interested in projects that will be financially sustainable and deliver long-term benefits to the organisation.

Any UK-registered charity of any size is welcome to apply; however we do ask that you consider the work required to maximise this opportunity for your organisation before applying. Charities that develop a compelling but simple communications campaign alongside a robust fundraising and recruitment plan are most likely to succeed in delivering on the potential of the opportunity.

The chosen charity will receive help to maximise its impact and deliver its campaign from the LME team and its partners.

About London Marathon Events

LME’s vision is Inspiring Activity with a mission to deliver excellence in mass participation sporting events, inspiring participation in sport across all demographics and abilities.

LME has led the world in showing the power of mass participation sport as a force for good. We are very proud of the hugely positive impacts our events have had on millions of people since the first London Marathon in 1981: inspiring activity, improving health (physical and mental), bringing communities together, raising huge sums of money for charities and supporting local businesses.

Our nine pillars guide everything that we do. These are: 

  • To have fun and provide some happiness and a sense of achievement in a troubled world
  • To show the world that, on occasions, humanity can be united
  • To inspire more people to take up sport
  • To maximise revenue for charities
  • To improve the overall standard and status of British distance running
  • To raise money for the provision of recreational facilities in London, the areas where we organise events and across the UK
  • To help London tourism
  • To show when it comes to organising events, “Britain is best”
  • To inspire and deliver innovation in mass participation event sustainability

What we’ll offer you

The TCS London Marathon COTY is a unique opportunity for a charity to reach new audiences and raise millions for its cause. As COTY for 2023, the charity will receive:

  • 250 guaranteed places in the 2023 TCS London Marathon, plus 50 in 2024, 25 in 2025 and 10 in 2026 (all at ballot price)
  • 250 guaranteed places in the virtual 2023 TCS London Marathon (at standard entry price)
  • exclusive use of the title ‘Official Charity’ in the period between the 2022 and the 2023 event
  • other benefits including opportunities to feature in participants’ communications, dedicated social media posts, invitations to media functions, introductions to other event sponsors. 
  • a dedicated page on the TCS London Marathon website
  • a dropdown listing on the entry system for the physical event ballot to access data of individuals who are interested in supporting the charity 
  • regular planning meetings with the LME team

What is the process?

UK registered charities are invited to apply using the application form.

Your responses to the questions in the form will be assessed by the LME COTY panel and used to select the shortlist. A minimum of five charities will be shortlisted and invited to present to the LME COTY panel. These presentations will be scheduled for the week beginning 17 May 2021.

Following the shortlist pitches, two charities will be asked to give a final presentation in the week beginning 7 June.

The closing date for applications is 17:00 on Friday 16 April 2021. No applications will be accepted after the deadline.

If you wish to review the questions in the survey in advance of completion, you can download them now. Or you may complete the survey using dummy data and then submit another application once finalised. We look forward to hearing from you.  

Official charities of the London Marathon since 2010: 
  • 2010: CLIC Sargent 
  • 2011: Oxfam 
  • 2012: Team PB (Prostate Cancer Charity and Breast Cancer Care) 
  • 2013: YouthNet and Age UK 
  • 2014: Anthony Nolan 
  • 2015: Cancer Research UK 
  • 2016: NSPCC 
  • 2017: The Royal Foundation's Heads Together Campaign 
  • 2018: Teenage Cancer Trust 
  • 2019: The Dementia Revolution (Alzheimer's Society & Alzheimer's Research UK) 
  • 2020: Mencap 
  • 2021: Macmillan
  • 2022: British Heart Foundation

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