Cancer Research UK plans to bring back Race for Life events this year

The charity plans to run more than 400 individual events in the autumn

Cancer Research UK has said its Race for Life fundraising events will return in the autumn after a year’s hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The charity said its flagship fundraiser would return with more than 400 events between August and October, including 3km, 5km and 10km routes and the Pretty Muddy obstacle courses for adults and children.

Last year, the government’s pandemic restrictions meant in-person events were replaced with virtual Race for Life at Home events that encouraged people to do a 5km route around their local park or neighbourhood.

These events, held across 2020 and April 2021, raised more than £4m for the charity.

In a typical year, Race for Life raises about £30m. More than 59,000 people took part in virtual events last year, compared with more than 375,000 people who took part in the 2019 Race for Life.

CRUK declined to confirm whether it had any fundraising or participation targets for this year’s events.

The charity has said it expects a decline in fundraising income of £250m over three years, due to the pandemic.

To mark the return of in-person Race for Life events, CRUK has launched a campaign to encourage people to run, walk or jog at their local event this autumn.

The campaign, which will run across TV, radio, video on demand and social media, features people affected by cancer to help demonstrate the importance of raising money for the cause.

Philip Almond, executive director of marketing, fundraising and engagement at CRUK, said: “We can’t wait to see people back at our Race for Life events across the nation this autumn. Covid-19 hit us hard last year and it was a devastating decision to cancel our events.

“But we’re back and ready to Race for Life again. The safety of our participants is our top priority, and we’ve developed ways to ensure our events can operate safely, following government guidelines. Our events might look a little different this year, but will still be a great experience for everyone taking part,” he said.

“By doing Race for Life and raising money, people will be supporting our vital work to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer and, ultimately, save more lives.

“We hope the new campaign demonstrates how everyone can be part of the solution and inspires people to sign up to their local Race for Life event.”

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