On your marks for 450th anniversary run at Priory Country Park

Tim Foster receiving his medal with Sir Steve Redgrave, James Cracknell and Matthew Pinsent.
Tim Foster receiving his medal with Sir Steve Redgrave, James Cracknell and Matthew Pinsent.

A fun run being held in Bedford to mark the Harpur Trust’s 450th anniversary will be started by an Olympic gold medallist.

The trust is urging people to get active now as it launched its 5k fun run on Sunday, May 22, at Priory Country Park.

The run, which is being supported by The Bedford Harriers AC, and officially started by Olympic Gold Medallist Tim Foster, is part of an all-day sports themed public event which promises to be one of the highlights of the charity’s celebrations this year. Open to everyone living in Bedford and surrounding areas and with an array of free sports activities and tasters, the event is expected to attract around 3,000 people.

As well as a 5k fun run around the lake and surrounding countryside there will be a 1k kids run plus climbing, orienteering, mini golf and an inflatable assault course. Priory Sailing Club will be offering a variety of water sports as part of their annual open weekend and students from the University of Bedfordshire will be on hand to measure fitness levels.

Local bike shop Flamme Rouge are offering free safety checks to anyone who cycles to the event and they will be exhibiting a selection of bikes. Stage demonstrations will include line dancing, street dance and cultural dance as well as performances from the Queen’s Park Fusion Choir plus an array of charities and local businesses will be exhibiting.

Sarah Elam, who is managing the trust’s anniversary events, said: “The 5k race is the perfect entry level race for a complete beginner, but its setting in the stunning Priory Country Park will ensure there is a scenic route for more seasoned runners looking to up their personal best. This event isn’t about raising money for the trust, but we are encouraging people to raise money for a local charity if they so wish and we have been delighted to see so many people tweeting that they have signed up to support a local cause.”

With 12 weeks to go, there is plenty of time to get those running shoes on and get training but with just 300 places available, those interested are being encouraged to sign up ahead of the event via the online registration system which can be found on the Run and Fun pages of the Harpur Trust’s website at www.harpurtrust.org.uk/450.

The trust is also recruiting volunteers to help out on the day so if you are aged over 18 and would like to be involved, contact Sarah on 01234 369519.