Supporting British endurance running
One of the founding pillars of the London Marathon when it was created by Chris Brasher and John Disley in 1981 was to improve the overall standard and status of British endurance running.
To meet this objective, London Marathon Events (LME) has created a pathway of support for British running that stretches from the playground to the podium. This includes:
- The Daily Mile: LME has been working with The Daily Mile Foundation since 2018 to support the delivery of The Daily Mile into schools across London. The Daily Mile encourages pupils to take part in at least 15 minutes of activity a day.
- TCS Mini London Marathon: Since 1986, the London Marathon has hosted the Mini London Marathon. Olympic and Paralympic champions such as Sir Mo Farah and David Weir have competed in the event and this year, for the first time, the TCS Mini London Marathon will be held the day before the full TCS London Marathon, with approximately 7,500 children due to take part.
- TCS Mini London Marathon in schools: Created in 2020, the event is now in its third year and sees children run, jog, walk or wheel 2.6 miles in their school over a three-week period around the TCS London Marathon. The 2022 event takes place between Monday 26 September and Friday 21 October and more than 650,000 children are due to take part.
- Talent Development Hubs: LME supports two training hubs at the University of Birmingham and Leeds Beckett University which aim to provide bases for the country’s most promising young athletes. The hubs were created in 2019 and have already brought about huge success. European 800m champion and Olympic and World silver medallist Keeley Hodgkinson is the stand-out name from the Leeds Beckett University hub, while European Under-23 800m champion Isabelle Boffey attends the University of Birmingham hub.
- Elite athlete funding: Since 2019, LME has provided a funding programme for 30 British endurance runners not currently on British Athletics support programmes. The scheme has proved hugely successful, with 10 athletes (Neil Gourley, Aimee Pratt, Charlotte Purdue, Steph Twell, Piers Copeland, Jake Smith, Marc Scott, Lizzie Bird, Alex Bell and Jake Heyward) being promoted to British Athletics funding.
Elite athlete funding programme
In 2021, 11 of the 30 athletes on the LME elite athlete funding programme were selected for the Tokyo Olympics and this year (2022), 17 athletes have appeared at major championships.
The full list of funded athletes for 2022, including details of their major championship appearances, is:
- Mo Aadan (Thames Valley Harriers): 30th at European Championships marathon
- Charlotte Arter (Cardiff AAC)
- Sam Atkin (Lincoln Wellington): 9th in 5,000m at European Championships and 10,000m at World Championships and Commonwealth Games
- Andrew Butchart (Central AC): 5,000m at World Championships and European Championships and 7th in 10,000m at Commonwealth Games
- Emile Cairess (Leeds City AC)
- Luke Caldwell (Dorking & Mole Valley): European Championships marathon, DNF
- Natasha Cockram (Micky Morris Racing Club): 12th at Commonwealth Games marathon
- Jamaine Coleman (Preston AC): 3,000m steeplechase European Championships
- Ben Connor (Derby AC)
- Jonathan Davies (Reading AC)
- Stephanie Davis (Clapham Chasers)
- Patrick Dever (Preston AC): 7th in 5000m at Commonwealth Games and 23rd in 10,000m at World Championships
- Samantha Harrison (Charnwood AC): 6th in 10,000m at Commonwealth Games and European Championships
- Rose Harvey (Clapham Chasers): World Championships Marathon, DNF
- Sarah Inglis (Lothian Running Club): 7th in 5000m and 9th in 10,000m at Commonwealth Games
- Kristian Jones (Swansea Harriers)
- Matt Leach (Bedford & County AC)
- Amy-Eloise Markovc (Wakefield District Harriers): 5,000m at World Championships, Commonwealth Games and European Championships
- Jonny Mellor (Liverpool Harriers): 6th at Commonwealth Games marathon
- Tom Mortimer (Stroud AC)
- Jennifer Nesbitt (Cardiff AAC): 12th in 5,000m at Commonwealth Games
- Phil Norman (Woodford Green): 9th in 3,000m steeplechase at European Championships
- Verity Ockenden (Swansea Harriers)
- Lily Partridge (Birchfield Harriers)
- Mark Pearce (Shaftesbury Barnet)
- Jess Piasecki (Stockport Harriers): 12th at World Championships marathon
- Jack Rowe (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC)
- Zak Seddon (Bracknell AC)
- Phil Sesemann (Leeds City AC): 17th at European Championships marathon
- Chris Thompson (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC)*
*Chris Thompson was selected to run the World Championships marathon but was unable to compete due to a visa delay that prevented him from travelling to the USA.