Get your running shoes on Newmarket: New fitness scheme ready for the off

Warren Hill will be the setting for 2km or 5km courses
Warren Hill will be the setting for 2km or 5km courses

The Great Run Local, a popular running initiative aimed at improving community fitness is under starters’ orders in Newmarket.

The town’s iconic Warren Hill will be the setting for 2km or 5km courses which participants can either run or walk every Sunday.

The Jockey Club, which has agreed that the town’sracehorse training grounds can be used for the all-grass course, and Suffolk County Council have each provided £1,750 as initial funding to launch the event which will be free to enter for all those taking part.

And Newmarket town councillors have welcomed the initiative after hearing about the plans from Ian Evans, physical activity development manager for Abbeycroft Leisure, which runs the town’s leisure centre.

“We hope it will be an initiative the people of Newmarket will take ownership of and be proud of,” said Mr Evans.

“As a not for profit event we now looking for volunteers to help and support the event. We need up to 10 who will all be given first aid training.

“Volunteers help with marshalling of the course and timing at the finish and we hope to be able to put together a rota so people don’t have to commit to every single week.”

The Newmarket Sports Pavilion on The Severals will be the meeting point for runners every Sunday at 11am.

“It’s a great idea to have something like this in Newmarket when people can just turn up and run for free,” said Cllr Mick Jefferys.

Great Run Local which encourages non-runners and beginners to get started in running uses a unique mobile phone app that tags each runner’s wristband to record their time.

Wristbands are free to registered participants and sent in the post.

Mr Evans said a definite date had not yet been set for the run to start, but dependent on the training of volunteers it was likely to be in the next couple of months.