The Henley Rotary Clubs have announced that they will not be organsing any future Henley half marathons or 10K runs due to their ageing volunteers and a large decline in runners over the last few years.
The event has been running for almost 40 years and took place in October each year. It has helped raise hundreds of thousands of pounds for good causes.
The course used to start at Henley Rugby Club and it was well-known for the difficult Fawley Hill near the end of the course.
The cost of staging the event is around £12,000 and last year’s event attracted just 262 runners for the half marathon and 125 for the 10km run which meant that the event only just broke even.
In 2019, 421 completed the half marathon and 209 took part in the 10km, which was well down on the 1,000 people who took part in the two events in 2018 and more than 1,000 in 2017.
Annie Lathaen, Chair of Rotary Club of Henley Bridge said, “We are disappointed not to be able to continue running the Half Marathon and 10k, but the numbers are considerably down and therefore we are not making the surpluses to enable us to help local charities. When the half marathon started there was very little competition but now there are so many other races taking place in Henley and locally that we have struggled to get entrants, this is particularly so post covid. It was a very difficult decision to make but we really feel that the time has come, although we would be happy to help anyone else who would like to take on the organisation of the races. We would be willing to donate equipment and provide the expertise to help others to make a success of a local half marathon and 10k.”