Lou Reeder

Lou Reeder

Modified & Updated: 07 Oct 2023

Source: Theguardian.com

The London Marathon is one of the most iconic and prestigious running events in the world. Held annually in the capital city of the United Kingdom, the marathon attracts elite athletes, amateur runners, and spectators from around the globe. With its rich history and remarkable feats of athleticism, the London Marathon has become synonymous with determination, endurance, and community spirit.

In this article, we will delve into twelve intriguing facts about the London Marathon that highlight its significance and allure. From its origins to its impact on charitable causes, we will explore the fascinating aspects that make this event a must-watch and a dream for avid runners. So, let’s lace up our running shoes and embark on a remarkable journey through the remarkable London Marathon!

Table of Contents

The London Marathon is one of the world’s most popular marathons.

Every year, thousands of participants from all over the globe gather in London to take part in this prestigious event.

It was first held in 1981.

The inaugural London Marathon took place on March 29, 1981, with just over 20,000 runners participating.

The London Marathon has a unique route.

The course starts in Greenwich and passes through famous landmarks such as Tower Bridge, the London Eye, and Buckingham Palace before finishing in The Mall.

The event attracts elite athletes.

Many world-class long-distance runners and Olympic champions compete in the London Marathon, making it a highly competitive race.

It is known for its charitable nature.

The London Marathon is a significant fundraising event, with millions of dollars raised for various charitable organizations each year.

Famous celebrities have run the London Marathon.

Stars like Sir Richard Branson, Princess Beatrice, and Gordon Ramsay have laced up their running shoes and taken on the challenge of the London Marathon.

Fancy dress costumes are a common sight.

The London Marathon is famous for its participants donning elaborate and creative costumes to add a fun and entertaining element to the race.

The London Marathon introduced a Guinness World Record category.

Runners can attempt to break a Guinness World Record during the marathon, adding an extra level of excitement and motivation for participants.

The event has its own iconic mascot.

Since 2010, the London Marathon has been represented by “BOLT,” a cheerful and energetic animated character that embodies the spirit of the race.

The London Marathon has a wheelchair race category.

In addition to the traditional marathon, the event also features a wheelchair race, allowing athletes with disabilities to compete at the highest level.

The London Marathon is broadcasted worldwide.

Millions of viewers tune in to watch the London Marathon live on television, making it one of the most-watched sporting events globally.

It has become an iconic symbol of London.

The London Marathon has become deeply ingrained in the city’s culture and is seen as a symbol of endurance, unity, and community spirit.

So, whether you’re a seasoned runner or just a spectator, the London Marathon is an event that captures the hearts and minds of people all around the world. It combines athletic prowess, charitable giving, and a vibrant community spirit, making it a truly remarkable experience for everyone involved. Join in the excitement and be a part of the legacy that is the London Marathon.


In conclusion, the London Marathon is an iconic event that attracts participants from all over the world. With its rich history, challenging course, and charitable initiatives, it has become one of the most prestigious marathons globally. The event brings together elite runners, amateur athletes, and enthusiastic spectators, creating an incredible atmosphere of camaraderie and inspiration.Whether you’re a seasoned runner or simply enjoy the excitement of witnessing a major sporting event, the London Marathon offers a unique and unforgettable experience. From the iconic landmarks along the route to the incredible support from the spectators, it truly is a must-see event for any sports enthusiast. So lace up your running shoes or grab a spot along the sidelines, and be a part of the energy and excitement that make the London Marathon a true celebration of athleticism and perseverance.


1. When is the London Marathon held?

The London Marathon is typically held in the month of April. The exact date may vary from year to year, so it’s best to check the official website for the most up-to-date information.

2. How long is the London Marathon?

The London Marathon is a distance of 26.2 miles or 42.195 kilometers.

3. Can anyone participate in the London Marathon?

Yes, anyone can participate in the London Marathon. However, due to high demand, there is a ballot system in place, and participants are chosen randomly. There are also charity places available for those who wish to run for a good cause.

4. What is the route of the London Marathon?

The route of the London Marathon takes participants through the streets of London, passing by iconic landmarks such as the Tower Bridge, Buckingham Palace, and the London Eye.

5. How can I volunteer for the London Marathon?

If you’re interested in volunteering for the London Marathon, you can find more information on the official website. There are various roles available, from helping with water stations to cheering on the participants along the route.

6. How can I spectate the London Marathon?

Spectating the London Marathon is a popular activity, and there are plenty of great spots along the route where you can watch the runners. Check the official website for the best spectator locations and tips on how to navigate the event.