- Event Charities
About the Event
What is The Virgin Money London Marathon?
The Virgin Money London Marathon is one of the best mass participation marathons and takes place around the streets of London, culminating in the finish line in front of Buckingham Palace. The annual event, which began in 1981, takes in many of London’s famous sights around the course.
Due to the sheer volume of runners who take place in the marathon each year, there are three different starting points for the mass start. Your race number determines which colour wave you will start the race in: red, blue or green. Competitors begin the race at the same time, but the different starting points ensure the initial starting line congestion is reduced slightly.
Each mile of the marathon is marked with an arch that stretches across the road and a large timer clock for you to keep track of your progress throughout the race.
The 26.2 mile course is relatively flat and during the marathon runners will pass many famous landmarks including: Canary Wharf, Tower Bridge, the Cutty Sark, St Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye and the Houses of Parliament. The race ends with the iconic stretch up the Mall to the finishing line in front of Buckingham Palace.
How to enter the Virgin Money London Marathon
Entry to the Virgin Money London Marathon takes place through a ballot system due to the large number of people wishing to run the event each year. Due to the popularity of the event, the ballot is quickly filled. Ballot entries open around May and the results are announced in early October.
There are other methods of entry into the marathon such as overseas entries, Good For Age entries and British Athletic club entries. There is also the Virgin Money London Wheelchair Marathon, open to elite disabled athletes who meet the qualifying specifications.
Those aged between 11 and 17 looking to compete against the best new talent in British road running can enter the Virgin Money Giving Mini London Marathon. The course is three miles long and is open to entrants from the nine regions of England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales and will include teams from all 33 London Boroughs.
Run for charity
If you don't secure a place in the ballot or haven't been able to enter before it has closed, you may still be able to run the marathon with a charity entry place. Most major charities have a set number of entry places in the Virgin Money London Marathon each year, which they allocate to runners on the basis that they will raise an agreed amount of money for the charity.
If you are interested in running the Virgin Money London Marathon for charity or would like to receive useful fundraising information from charities then have a look at the charity listings page to find a charity and get in touch. If you do secure a place through the ballot, you can still put that to good use by running for charity as a ballot place runner.
Want to know more?
To find out more about signing up, charity places and any other event information you want to know about the Virgin Money London Marathon, then visit the official website.