The Virgin Money London Marathon has announced the introduction of a new charity ballot for next year’s race which opens the possibility of more charities having runners on the startline. Following consultation with over 40 charities of differing sizes, the ballot will enable any charity who does not already have places in the 2015 event to secure one of the 500 places available.
The ballot opened yesterday (Thursday 1 May) and closes on Friday 23 May. Up to 500 charities will be allocated one place each – should more than 500 charities apply, there will be a random draw and the successful charities will be notified on Friday 30 May. As with existing guaranteed charity entries, this place must be filled by 30 January 2015.
Peter Lewis, Chief Executive of the Institute of Fundraising, said: “Fundraising events like the London Marathon make a huge contribution to good causes. Not only are significant amounts of money raised, but it is also a fantastic opportunity for charities to gain more visibility, engage with their donors, and for thousands of volunteer fundraisers to be involved in raising money for causes that they care about.
“We are glad that the London Marathon has consulted with a range of charities to look at how best places can be allocated – we hope that the changes will improve accessibility for charities who have not been involved with the London Marathon before, as well as being fair to those who have a long relationship with the event and have raised millions of pounds.”
This new ballot follows the success of the Virgin Money London Marathon 2015 entry ballot, which closed last week in nine hours and 41 minutes, beating the previous record by 1 hour and 47 minutes, with over 125,000 runners accepted into this ballot.
Race director Hugh Brasher said: “We are delighted that we can offer 500 places to charities who would not have had a chance to secure a place for 2015. As the popularity of the marathon continues to grow, demonstrated by the ballot closing in record time, places are always going to be extremely sought after.”
Brasher added: “At this year's London Marathon we witnessed record crowds who were rewarded with two course records and one world record, and we are naturally very happy about the continuing popularity of our event, now in its 35th year.”
To enter this new ballot charities should register at London Marathon website.