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News - 26th May 2021

The reopening of parkrun across the UK

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With a new date announced for the return of 5k events in England, and significant progress being made across the rest of the home nations, we provide an update on the restart situation for the whole of the UK.

 

On Friday 21 May, we sadly announced that we would need to delay the restart of 5k events in England, due to a lack of landowner permissions.

 

With more than three million people registered to parkrun in England, and 300,000 participants on a typical weekend, it simply isn’t safe or sensible for us to allow a small subset of events to resume.

 

Since the announcement there has been a groundswell of support, which we have been truly humbled by, including clear national direction from the Government, in the form of a joint letter from the department for Digital Culture Media and Sport and Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, as well as public support from the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

 

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High profile figures like World Athletics President Lord Sebastian Coe, Former Chief Medical Officer Sally Davies, and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, have all written open letters of support, encouraging landowners and local authorities to get behind parkrun.

 

As the permissions for 5k events in England continue to come in, we are increasingly optimistic for the new planned restart date of Saturday 26 June, and we’ll be making an announcement regarding this on Friday 11 June. Please keep an eye on our social media channels for all the latest information regarding permissions, a full list of events that currently have the go-ahead can be found here.

 

We are really grateful to those landowners who have now given us the green light, and look forward to working with the remainder to get permission over the line.

 

We are also optimistic that 5k events will return in Northern Ireland on Saturday 26 June and Scotland on Saturday 3 July. Work is ongoing to achieve the clarity needed to confirm these dates, and to hopefully announce a planned restart date in Wales very soon.

 

Great progress is also being made with our junior parkrun series, which allows children and their families to take part in a 2k event every Sunday.

 

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Almost 180 junior events are now operating across the UK, with more than 11,000 children taking part last Sunday, supported by nearly 4,000 volunteers and just short of 2,000 people joining us at a junior parkrun for the very first time, either as a walker, jogger, runner or volunteer.

 

junior parkruns have now resumed in England, Northern Ireland and Wales (temporarily for 4-10 year olds pending the resumption of 5k parkruns). A restart is now planned for Scotland on Sunday 20 June. Again, we are working to get the clarity needed to confirm this date, and hope to share positive news soon.

 

More junior events are restarting across England, Wales and Northern Ireland every week. Please check local event team web pages and social media for more information on specific junior parkruns.

 

We look forward to continuing with our collective efforts to bring parkrun back to the hundreds of communities across the UK, who are still missing their regular opportunity to be social, active and together outdoors.

 

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