Festival Date: Friday 31st May – Sunday 2nd June 2019
Nestled in the stunning Wiltshire countryside, Bowood House & Gardens stands proudly as one of the South West’s largest and best-preserved private estates. Draped in history and still home to Marquis and Marchioness of Lansdowne, Bowood House and its 100 acre ‘Capability’ Brown parkland is the perfect setting for RunFestRun. The Lansdowne family have given RunFestRun visitors exclusive access to parts of the grounds normally closed off to the public. Our routes will allow the exploration of the mile-long lake, passing hidden temples, waterfalls and secret grottos. RunFestRun’s multiple routes allow incredible views back to the Georgian house and the keen eyes amongst our runners could catch a glimpse of the Lansdowne monument and Wiltshire’s chalk white horse. It is truly the most beautiful place to enjoy the great outdoors.
Report taken from an online page:
The concept sounds simple – a festival celebrating running and runners. But it’s the little twists and turns taken by the RunFestRun event that transform what could have been a pedestrian plod fest into a brilliant weekend of exercise, music and wonderful weirdness. It’s a bit like parkrun… on acid.
Making its debut appearance at Wiltshire’s Bowood House and Gardens, RunFestRun was the brainchild of veteran presenter Chris Evans and fellow presenter Vassos Alexander. More than 6,000 turned up to take part in a range of running events, from a half marathon, a 10k to a bug-themed fancy dress 5k fun run. As you might expect, there was running, a lot of running. But there was also a fair bit of fest as well.
The event kicked off with ‘Feel Good Friday’ during which the four team captains – Paula Radcliffe, Natasha Evans, Colin Jackson and Steve Cram were introduced to the crowd. Reef and Razorlight provided the soundtrack for the launch night, with runners decked in flashing lights setting off along the track past the front of the stage for a 5k run through the dark and twisty forest tracks of the Bowood Estate. A mesmerising shimmering snake that could be glimpsed through the trees.
Saturday offered an early morning wild swim (not for me..!) before a hot and hilly half marathon and an afternoon of inspirational talks from the likes of running newsreader Sophie Raworth, Olympian Jo Pavey, Fearne Cotton and ultra marathon runners Rory Coleman and Mimi Anderson. There was time to wander the food and merch stalls before settling in for a lovely bit of Faithless followed by The Coral, Ten Tonnes and Olly Murs. The best bit about festivals, to my mind, are the unique incidental experiences that happen between the main attractions and at RunFestRun they came thick and fast.
A trio of startled deer leaping across my path during the Saturday morning half marathon, trying to keep up with marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe (dressed as a dragonfly), dancing in the rain at a silent disco while dressed as an insect, eating the most incredible paella out of a paper tray as the sun slipped down behind the Cherhill White Horse, crawling through an inflatable tunnel alongside Chris Evans and evicting hive of ants from my tent while swigging from a bottle of red wine – it was not your normal weekend.
Speaking after the event, Evans said: “We have returned leaner, meaner, fitter, lighter and shinier which is a festival first. That’s not what happens when you come back from a festival which means that Runfestrun is already the greatest festival on our planet! “It was a celebration of everything that is good about being a human being. A hit straight out of the blocks. On Friday we thought ‘Oh my goodness me, this is beyond our wildest dreams and it just got better and better.
The was a few different races to choose from and the results are shown below:
667 participants and won by Gary Dunstone of Team Bath AC in 1.20.28. The women’s race was won by Dani Nimmock of City of Norwich AC in 1.21.06
|219||Andrew Glaves||MV 50||1.55.27|
Full results; here
1900 people took part in the 5K. The winner was Tim Smales of Winchester & District AC in 17.57. The women’s race was won by Moli Lyons of Cardiff AC in 20.21
|1732||Millie Glaves||FV 50||48.35|