Taunton’s annual and very popular running event takes place this Sunday, April 7th.
The 36th Taunton Marathon and Half Marathon will welcome 1200 runners from across the region and beyond to compete.
Race director, John Lewis, said: “250 runners are signed up for the Marathon and 1,040 for the Half Marathon. Amazingly we also have some runners competing from Europe and even New Zealand, they are on holiday and want to run.”
“Some 550 runners represent more than 100 clubs and teams between them and three of last year’s winners are back for more. The race will start at 10.30 outside of Taunton & Bridgwater College, Wellington Rd.”
The best times are currently held as follows;
- 2.16.45 Maurice Cowman
- 2.53.03 Cathy Newman
- 1.05.44 Danny Kelly
- 1.16.14 Cathy Newman
ROAD CLOSURES AND TRAFFIC DIVERSIONS
Safety will be on everyone’s minds on Sunday, both competitors and motorists alike. With 1200 runners taking part there will be some hold ups for traffic, especially as the pack heads through the town centre.
Traffic will be held in Wellington Road in both directions for about 10 minutes from 10.25am to allow the runners to leave the off-road start line at Bridgwater & Taunton College at 10.30am prompt. Once the pack has reached Staplegrove they will begin to spread out and traffic will be able to pass with care.
Traffic will be held in Bridge Street, Station Road, Staplegrove Road and Greenway Road as the main bulk of 1200 runners go through the town. This will take about 20 minutes altogether.
Silk Mills Road will be closed to through traffic from 10.30am to 3pm in both directions between Netherclay Lane and Bindon Road . This will allow the runners to come safely out of Netherclay Lane and get across Silk Mills Road.
The road is open at the Bishops Hull end for two way traffic to Heron Drive , with access to St Margaret’s Hospice, Abbeyfield and Avery Plant Centre. The diversion route through the town will be signed. Bookers Cash & Carry will be open as usual.
The bridge at Bradford-on-Tone has been a pinchpoint for several years, with traffic being seriously affected as runners tackle the single lane structure. This year the bridge will be closed between 11am and 1pm to all traffic. The diversion is via Nynehead.
Drivers in Bishops Hull itself are asked to follow a voluntary one-way system that flows with the runners, down Bishops Hull Hill and Netherclay Lane , but up Waterfield Drive. All other roads are open. Motorists are asked to be co-operative and patient as any delays will be of a relatively short duration.
10.30am Start at Bridgwater & Taunton College, Wellington Road, Castle Street, Tangier Way, Wood Street, Bridge Street, Staplegrove Road, B3227 through Norton Fitwarren to Hillcomon Crossroads, turn right into Oake, carry on through to Bradford-on-Tone.
Turn left at The White Hart and left again onto Hele Road. Run through Hele, Fideoak and Upcott and into Bishops Hull via Shutewater Hill.
Turn left into Bishops Hull Road and through the village. Turn left into Netherclay Lane and follow through to Silk Mills Road.
Turn right along Silk Mills Road and left into Heron Drive. Enter College Grounds from Heron Drive and then to the Finish at the front of the College. Marathon runners do this twice.
There will be approx 1000 runners doing the Half Marathon and 200 doing the full 26 mile Marathon. The great majority of Half Marathon runners will finish within two hours.