In short: Scenic but tough route! In full: The route was very scenic and extremely hilly, which certainly added to the challenge. The marshals were encouraging, especially the young blonde girl standing by the cattle grid when you came down the BIG hill towards Longleat house (I think standing around for 2 hrs in the baltic weather must have been as challenging as the hills)! Complete con with the price for spectators so ended up going on my own and the medal was a bit pathetic. Overall a good challenge on a picturesque route. Date of review: March 14, 2013
In short: Poor medal for a tough run In full: A real challenging run on a freezing cold morning. A real cheek to charge to come In and watch especially as people were raising money for such a good cause. I have run several half marathons and the medal from BHF was something my daughter plays with in her toy box, what a joke. No course info before the run, loads of hills. No energy station. Thanks but no thanks. You won't be seeing me or my family next year.
In short: Tough hills but like the challenge to improve time next year. In full: Very hilly, didn't see any animals until in car on way out. BHF cant help that it was cold, but hardly any spectators due to stupid costs. Marshall's were the real stars, thank you. I agree cheap medal for entry cost - should be real gold for that route. Date of review: March 11, 2013
In short: Stick to the 10k event. In full: To be fair there was enough warning about being spectators being charged, but this a bit of an own goal. Given that the Bournemouth Bay Run is also a BHF event, they couldn't be more different. I was looking forward to putting a HM medal alongside my two wonderful lionshead 10k medals, but I've hidden it in drawer.
The route itself was nice and scenic, but someone had stolen all the animals which was a shame. Date of review: March 11, 2013
In short: Supporters faced with extortion In full: I have posted this letter as a supporter – NOT from a runner's perspective - (although knowing the area very well and talking to my niece after the event, the course answers are right). So the organisation refers to the detail in my letter I have sent to the BHF, copying in Longleat and the local MP... [Please feel free to extract anything I've written and send email of complaint to avoid the same thing happening next year or at other events. Email: email@example.com, copying in: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com]
FAO British Heart Foundation
cc. Office of Longleat, Andrew Murrison MP
It is of a matter of principle that I feel drawn to bring your attention to the matter of public extortion.
I have been left disgusted this weekend, after discovering that supporters of runners participating in the Longleat Half Marathon yesterday, faced an entrance fee to access Longleat grounds to watch the race.
Supporters arriving after 9am faced paying £13.05 for adults and £8.55 for children – an insult to supporters to face such extortion and disgrace to the BHF Event Organisers and Longleat. In our case as a family of 4, we faced paying £43.20.
We had not travelled to Longleat to see the attractions. We were purely there to support my 17 year-old niece who we had sponsored for charity (and cousin to our children – 4 & 6 years of age), running her first-ever half marathon. I called the Longleat office on Sunday morning who told me the race also went outside the grounds – but we wanted to be at the finish line, which required us paying a entrance fee to the House and Gardens. I repeatedly said that we were not interested in seeing these – we have been to Safari Park before and the children would not be interested in seeing the House at their age – and nor had we made the time in our plans that day. However, Longleat suggested we take advantage of lower ticket prices by purchasing online.
With an hour's drive ahead of us, we had left it too late to arrive before 9am, so after much bitter disappointment, we decided to abort going to the race, totally spoiling our weekend plans and missing seeing my niece run in her first public racing event.
I remain dumbfounded that a national and credible charity such as the BHF allowed for such a situation to arise, no doubt leaving many other supporters like ourselves, frustrated and angry.
I look forward to your reply.
[I've removed my sign-off on this forum] Date of review: March 11, 2013
In full: A great venue but an expensive family day out on Mothers day if it were not Tesco vouchers. Longleat need to think about that but mostly they should should drop the BHF as a sponsor.
Pathetic generic medal after a long hard run was not worthy of the event and is a poor reminder of the thrill of finishing such a challenging but enjoyable run. Also the pressure to raise money is OTT. If I asked people for money every time I ran, I would have no mates left. Its my hobby BHF and an effort to keep fit. I dont get asked to sponsor my friends hobbies so why should they sponsor mine. I run for myself, my health and thats it. I see the BHF are to sponsor my local Swindon half in October - I suppose they will ruin that one too! Date of review: March 11, 2013
In full: My daughter ran this race and found it very challenging, more pre-race info would have helped. Much smaller field than was expected. This was probably due to the fact that spectators were stung for entry fee to the park. By the time the family and friends had forked out over £50 to watch ( !!!!! ) it was rather annoyoing to find nobody actually issued tickets or checked to see if you'd paid. BHF take note : another venue would have been more cost effective and would have left family & friends able to actually sponsor a runner rather than line the pockets of the venue owner. Date of review: March 11, 2013
In short: cold,hilly,not much support In full: this race was ok hard to get in any rhythm,up and down like a rollercoaster,only animals I saw were two swans and some sheep,Marshalls good,but pretty average medal for the race fee Date of review: March 10, 2013
In short: Hilly, chilly and Billy no mates In full: Okay, firstly, beautiful location and the BHF were friendly and well organised. Longleat just seemed to be out for money. I can't think of anyone who would pay 20 to stand around outside in the freezing cold for 2-3 hours early on Mother's day morning. Given the hills and the cold, a fuel (lucozade or gel) station would have been handy around 9 miles. Also more signaled on miles 9-11 would have been helpful. A quiet run in lovely countryside with heroic marshals, would have paid more for an event-specific medal. Lovely support from the locals in Waitrose afterwards LOL Date of review: March 10, 2013
In short: Undulating a bit of a euphemism In full: A few bits of feedback: Charity events tend to target people wanting a bit of a challenge: This would put a lot of first timers off. BHF, cover your costs but don't put runners on a guilt trip. VFM quite good as the t-shirt's okay but the ubiquitous medal with the unsealed clasp and non speciific ribbon, while cutting your costs make it a meaningless and cheapened memento. Close the gap, date the ribbon. Event could have incorporated a 10k and got more entrants. Plus points: Good start and finish, cracking, testing route; well marshalled by friendly people. Reasonable goody bag, adequate water and in sports bottles. Adequate parkinga nd changing although short (Very) on loos. I'd target charity runners and invite others rather than push everyone to fundraise. Quite off putting as it makes some feel like they can't do it unless fundraining for BHF even though it's a good run in a great location and could become an essential pre VLM Date of review: March 10, 2013