City run back from the dead

There's life in the old dog yet as Preston flagship run looks like it could be saved as a result of outside investment.

Friday, 29th September 2017, 6:46 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th October 2017, 3:26 pm
Run Preston 2016
Run Preston 2016

Last Sunday saw what was expected to be the last ever Run Preston, after race organiser Steve Ashcroft blamed the cancellation of the event on spiralling costs.

But less than a week after the popular 10k race, runners have reason to be happy, with Sports Tours International being given permission by Preston City Council to take over the event.

A spokesman for Sports Tours International said: “We were invited to a meeting to take on the 2018 event. It’s all in the planning stages at the moment.

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“Moving forward, we would want to work closely with the local people.

“The opportunity is there. We want to bring more people into the area from far and wide.”

For Steve Ashcroft, the continuation of the annual run can only be a good thing for everyone involved and the city as a whole.

Steve said: “If Sports Tours International do take over Run Preston it could become bigger and better than it has ever been under me – I’m just a one-man band.”

Steve informed the Post that a meeting will take place between himself and Sports Tours International next week to discuss the race details going forward.

Before external involvement, Steve told the Post that a mixture of hurdles including increasing costs, building work and road works mean that the races are no longer feasible.

Steve said: “In the last year, the costs have gone up dramatically.

“Lancashire County Council charged me around £3,300 in 2016 – that’s up from £1,400 the year before.”

A spokesman for the county council said: “We work with event organisers to advise on road closures and traffic management which may be needed to ensure their event runs safely and with minimal disruption to other road users.

“We require event organisers to cover the cost of around £600 to the county council of putting in place a legal order to close the road.

“However the further cost of advertising the closure, which is needed to comply with highways regulations, is not in the county council’s control.”