The rising stock of the MBNA Chester Marathon has filtered through to the local economy with figures showing that last year’s race generated more than £1.5 million. This is supplemented by a further £700,000 being raised in 2014 for a range of local and national charities.
Since being introduced in 2009, Chester Marathon has established itself as one of the top events in the country, voted as the UK's number 1 marathon in 2012 and 2013. This year saw the introduction of the metric marathon, a 26.2k race that is seen as the ideal way to prepare for the full marathon.
Almost 5,000 people entered last year’s race and in addition to race day visitors, this contributed to an extra 16,500 people arriving in the local area during marathon weekend.On average, each runner spent around £400, with shopping, eating out and visiting local attractions all popular activities.
Just over half of all entrants said they booked overnight accommodation in the city or surrounding areas, some for longer, and race-goers are continuing to champion the Chester location as a major draw for signing up.
Chris Hulse from race organisers Active Leisure Events commented on the news: “The feedback we’ve received from our 2014 race survey demonstrates the importance of this race to the city of Chester and the enormous benefits it delivers to local businesses and charitable causes every single year. When we established the first MBNA Chester Marathon in 2010, we set out to make it the UK’s favourite regional marathon.”
The 2015 event is scheduled for Sunday 4 October and is expected to build on the field of 5,000 it attracted last year. More information on the race is available here.