Peterborough City Council has made the difficult decision to cancel one of the highlights of the city's events calendar - the Perkins Great Eastern Run - because of the ongoing disruption caused by the Coronavirus outbreak.
The launch of this year's race was due to take place in March, around the same time the country was being asked by the Government to socially isolate.
Since then the city council has been in discussion with Vivacity, which is taking over the management of the race, and the main sponsor, Perkins Engines, about whether a race would be viable this year.
With the continued uncertainty about when the social distancing measures will be lifted, the city council has decided to cancel this year's race, usually held in October.
Councillor Steve Allen, cabinet member for housing, culture and recreation for Peterborough City Council, said: "This has been a really tough decision to make as we know it will be disappointing for lots of people and also the many charities that benefit from the event.
"In addition, an event such as the Perkins Great Eastern Run takes many months of planning which would be well underway by now. Many of the suppliers we use are also temporarily closed.
"We hope that all of our amazing runners, running clubs, businesses and residents will understand this decision and get behind the 2021 event to help the event bounce back and make it one of the biggest and best we have seen for many years."
Last month the council announced that it would be passing control of the management of the race across to the city's cultural and leisure trust, Vivacity.
The council wants to be able to grow the race and attract additional sponsorship and it believes that Vivacity is best placed to do this with its links with the culture and leisure sector and knowledge.
The council will continue to support the event in a number of ways including managing the necessary road closures and leading on the public safety aspects. Perkins Engines will continue as the main sponsor in 2021.
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Runners can get advice from experienced racers and coaches at a series of free training sessions in the build up to this year's Perkins Great Eastern Run.
The sessions take place fortnightly on Wednesday evenings at Peterborough Embankment Athletics Track in Bishops Road.
The first session takes place on July 10 with the events held up until October 2. Each session starts with a warm-up at 7pm and will last around an hour.
Runners can meet seasoned competitors who will be acting as pacers to help entrants achieve personal best times in the race which takes place on Sunday, October 13.
Councillor Steve Allen, Peterborough City Council’s cabinet member for recreation, said: "Running is becoming more and more popular in Peterborough as witnessed by the recent Sunrise 5K event which attracted over 200 participants, as well as our previous free lunchtime sessions which were well attended.
"These sessions are a great way to get in shape for the Great Eastern Run and get advice on how to prepare for the big day. They are led by some of the best coaches in the region and are suitable for people of all levels of fitness and experience with runners split into groups to reflect their ability."
Runners do not have to be signed up to the Perkins Great Eastern Run to take part in the sessions, you could be considering taking part or just want some running advice.
Target times for pacers will range from finishing the race in just under 90 minutes, to up to three hours which is the race limit.
Representatives from the charity Anna's Hope will be on hand at the first session for anyone who wants to find out about the 5K Fun Run event.
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Peterborough City Council is informing residents and motorists about road closures around the city for this year's Perkins Great Eastern Run.
Both the half marathon and the Anna's Hope fun run will start and finish on The Embankment. The 5km fun run starts at 10am on Sunday October 14 and the half marathon follows at 10.30am.
Entries to both races close at midday on Friday 12 October at midday. There are no entries available on the day itself.
To ensure the race goes as smoothly as possible the council will be closing several roads on the 13.1 mile route.
The following roads will be closed between 9.30am and 10.45am: Rivergate, Bourges Boulevard (southbound) from the Queensgate roundabout, Priestgate, Cathedral Square, Long Causeway and Broadway.
In general, all other roads along the route will be closed from 9.30am until 2pm. However, as the last runner passes each mile point, that road junction will reopen.
The mile points and approximate reopening times are:
1 mile - 11am - Broadway to Northminster
2 mile - 11.15am - Park Road to Park Crescent (two way route opens on return)
3 mile - 11.30am - Fulbridge Road to Foxdale (two way route opens on return)
4 mile - 11.45am - Paston Ridings to Witham Way
5 mile - 12pm - Corfe Avenue to Rockingham Grove
6 mile - 12.15pm - Lincoln Road to Staverton Road
7 mile - 12.30pm - David's Lane to Hodgson Avenue
8 mile - 12.45pm - Fulbridge Road to Aster Drive
9 mile - 1pm - Donaldson Drive to Pratt Avenue
10 mile - 1.15pm - Fulbridge Road to Tennyson Road
11 mile - 1.30pm - Dogsthorpe Road to Park Road
12 mile - 1.45pm - Eastfield Road to Boongate
13 mile - 2pm - Embankment - finish
Annette Joyce, Peterborough City Council's Service Director, Environment and Economy, said: "With the Perkins Great Eastern Run fast approaching it's important residents and businesses take note of these road closures.
"The race is one of the biggest events on our annual calendar and we expect many hundreds of residents and visitors to come out and support the runners along the course.
"However, we always want to minimise the impact on other residents by ensuring they know in advance about the necessary road closures we need to put in place. We would like to thank road users for their cooperation during this event."
Entries to the half marathon and fun run can be made online. Visit www.perkinsgreateasternrun.co.
For road closure enquiries, please call: 01777 705053 (option 2) between the hours of 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.
The council, in association with RingGo cashless parking, has introduced a special offer for runners to park all day in council car parks for just £3 when you use RinGo cashless parking.
By registering with RinGo you will save time by avoiding ticket machine queues and save money.Visit www.myRingGo.co.uk/park or use the RingGo smartphone apps.
This year’s much-anticipated Perkins Great Eastern Run is just one month away and would-be runners are being urged to sign up before the late entry fee is applied.
Places remain available for the popular half marathon and with entry fees increasing by £2 from Friday, September 21, anyone thinking of signing up is urged to do so as soon as possible.
So far over 3,500 people have registered for the run which takes place on Sunday, October 14 and also includes a wheelchair race and a 5K Fun Run in aid of the charity Anna’s Hope.
Starting and finishing at the city’s Embankment, the half marathon route takes runners through the city centre and north up to Werrington, before looping back to the finish.
Annette Joyce, Race Director, said: "The Perkins Great Eastern Run is one of the fastest courses in the country and we get runners from near and far taking part, so it is always a fantastic occasion.
"More and more people are taking up running and we want to give them an event where they can have a brilliant day with fellow runners being cheered on by the great crowds we see all around the course."
The closing date for entries is Friday 12 October at midday, or when the race limits are reached, whichever comes first.
Entries to the half marathon and fun run can be made online at www.perkinsgreateasternrun.co.
Meanwhile, free fortnightly training sessions which are being held to help runners prepare for the event, are continuing to take place.
Runners of all abilities are welcome to attend the sessions at Peterborough Embankment Athletics in Bishops Road which take place on Wednesday September 19 and Wednesday October 3 from 7pm.
You can follow the latest Perkins Great Eastern Run developments on Twitter @PerkinsGER and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/