Organisers of the Sunderland City Runs have announced the cancellation of this year’s event, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The annual festival of running had been postponed until September, but following extensive discussions with Sunderland City Council and other partners, Events of the North has confirmed that the Sunderland City 5K, Saucony Spire 5K, Sunderland City 10K, Sunderland City Half Marathon and Active Sunderland BIG 3K will now not take place in 2020.
As the COVID-19 outbreak started to impact the UK in March, Events of the North and Sunderland City Council made an early decision to postpone the Sunderland City Runs and agreed a new date in September, subject to circumstances allowing the rearranged event to go ahead. However, organisers, partners and sponsors have been monitoring the ongoing situation with regard to the COVID-19 restrictions and have concluded that, in light of the latest guidelines from the Government and Public Health England, safely delivering mass participation races in September will not be possible. All partners will now start planning for a full return in 2021.
Event founder Steve Cram comments: “We’re incredibly disappointed that we now can’t go ahead with this year’s Sunderland City Runs, but this is absolutely the right decision in the current situation. Sadly, due to the planning involved for major occasions such as this, the timescales required to deliver a successful and safe event are not in our favour. We’re removing any uncertainty or speculation now, for the sake of all of our runners and volunteers, and every other person and organisation involved in the event. This also allows us to focus all of our energy and effort on working with Sunderland City Council and our partners to ensure a spectacular return in 2021.”
Cllr John Kelly, Portfolio Holder for Vibrant City at Sunderland City Council, said: “We realise this is extremely disappointing news, but the health and wellbeing of the community continues to be our main concern. We are very pleased to say that the planning for next year’s Sunderland City Runs, including the Active Sunderland BIG 3k run has already started and we look forward to welcoming runners back to our vibrant city in May 2021.”
For the latest updates from the Sunderland City Runs team, visit www.sunderlandcity10k.com, follow @sunderland10k on Twitter and @sunderlandcityrun on Instagram, and find the event on Facebook.