The London Marathon Foundation reaches a funding landmark ahead of the 2023 TCS London Marathon
The London Marathon Foundation today (Monday 17 April) announced it has reached the significant landmark of £100 million awarded to projects which inspire activity across the UK. The “monumental” milestone comes just six days before the 2023 TCS London Marathon, the 43rd edition of the world’s most popular marathon, on Sunday 23 April.
The charity was created in 1981, just before the first London Marathon, by Chris Brasher and John Disley, the co-founders of the London Marathon. The London Marathon Foundation (previously known as the London Marathon Charitable Trust) currently focuses on funding projects that create opportunities for more children, young people, marginalised groups and communities to lead active and healthy lives.
The £100 million of funding since 1981 includes the following:
- 51 playing fields across the UK protected from development in perpetuity
- £7 million towards London 2012 Olympic legacy projects, including funding the London Marathon Community Track in The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
- Founding the Go! London Fund – the biggest community sports fund in London aiming to change the lives of young people through physical activity – in partnership with the Mayor of London and Sport England which launched in March 2023
- More than £4 million to play projects, including the 2018 refurbishment of the Greenwich Park Playground, near the TCS London Marathon’s famous Start Line
- Funding the innovation of the Poolpod, which provides disabled people with safe and dignified access to swimming pools, and installation in 20 pools across the UK
- Funding a huge range of projects across communities in all 32 London Boroughs and the City of London
- Supporting more than 20 large-scale projects across the UK, including:
- £1 million partnership with Transport for Greater Manchester to get 10,000 more people walking and cycling
- £1 million partnership with the Alliance of Sport to use the power of sport to improve the health and life outcomes of 11,000 children from ethnically diverse communities
- £1 million partnership with Activity Alliance to create inclusive sessions where disabled and non-disabled people can be active together
The London Marathon Foundation is the sole shareholder and parent charity of London Marathon Events (LME), the organisers of the world-famous TCS London Marathon, Ford RideLondon, the world’s greatest festival of cycling, The Big Half, the Vitality Westminster Mile and Vitality London 10,000, the Standard Chartered Great City Race and Swim Serpentine. Every year, after costs, the surplus made by LME is passed through corporate Gift Aid to the Foundation.
Catherine Anderson, Executive Director of the London Marathon Foundation, said: “Our founders Chris Brasher and John Disley were renowned for their visionary thinking and determination to inspire more people to get active. Everyone at the London Marathon Foundation and London Marathon Events is incredibly proud of this landmark moment. The £100 million funding has reached millions of people in London and across the UK who’ve been able to take part in sports and physical activities through projects we’ve supported. Over the past four decades, we’ve helped people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds - from family afternoons in a playground to dance classes for people with Parkinson’s Disease - lead active and healthy lives.
“We’re excited about the future and directing our funding to where it’s most needed by supporting impactful, innovative projects that will make physical activity accessible to everyone.”
Sir Rodney Walker, Chairperson of the London Marathon Foundation, said: “We’re hugely grateful to everyone at London Marathon Events for all their work which has enabled the London Marathon Foundation to reach this monumental milestone.
“We’re very proud of what we’ve achieved with the £100 million we’ve awarded to date and we will continue to champion new initiatives supporting participation and diversity in sports and physical activity for communities needing the most help to be active.”
Nick Bitel, CEO of London Marathon Events, said: “Chris and John’s legacy is extraordinary, and I don’t think they ever imagined that the event they created back in 1981 would have gone on to inspire so many millions to get active, sowed the seeds for our current portfolio of events and enabled the London Marathon Foundation to make grants totalling £100 million and counting. As always, we will be thinking of our founders on Marathon Day next Sunday.”
Earlier this month, the Foundation announced more than £2.4 million had been awarded to 81 projects through its new Active Spaces Fund. This funding supports a wide range of projects and activities across London, from environmentally friendly ‘plogging’ (combining jogging and litter picking) to playground improvements, and took the total amount awarded since 1981 over the £100 million mark.
To read more about the work of the London Marathon Foundation, click here.